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Florida Verdicts

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A slip on nightclub's wet stairs allegedly ended athlete's career

Amount:

$900,000

Type:

Verdict-Plaintiff

State:

Florida

Venue:

Miami-Dade County

Court:

Miami-Dade County Circuit Court, 11th

Injury Type(s):

arm; other-labrum, tear; other-labrum, torn; other-physical therapy; other-Hill-Sachs lesion; other-compression fracture; other-decreased range of motion; shoulder; shoulder-Bankart lesion; shoulder-fracture (Hill-Sachs fracture), shoulder (Hill-Sachs fracture); shoulder-dislocation; shoulder-rotator cuff (supraspinatus muscle/tendon, tear), injury (tear) (supraspinatus muscle/tendon, tear); surgeries/treatment-arthroscopy

Case Type:

Slips, Trips & Falls - Slip and Fall; Premises Liability - Stairs or Stairway, Dangerous Condition, Negligent Repair and/or Maintenance

Case Name:

Kimberly Adams v. Global Initiatives LLC, a Florida Corp., No. 14020506 CA 01

Date:

July 19, 2017

Parties

Plaintiff(s):

Kimberly Adams (Female, 21 Years)

Plaintiff Attorney(s):

Ernesto L. Santos Jr.; Halpern Santos & Pinkert, P.A.; Coral Gables, FL, for Kimberly Adams ■ Ian D. Pinkert; Halpern Santos & Pinkert, P.A.; Coral Gables, FL, for Kimberly Adams

Plaintiff Expert(s):

Answorth Allen; M.D.; Orthopedic Surgery; New York, NY called by: Ernesto L. Santos Jr., Ian D. Pinkert

Defendant(s):

Global Initiatives, LLC

Defense Attorney(s):

None reported; for Global Initiatives, LLC

Facts:

On March 11, 2011, plaintiff Kimberly Adams, 21, a college student and basketball player, was at the Dream Nightclub, on Washington Avenue, in Miami Beach. When she was leaving the club, a bouncer directed her to a staircase that led from the second floor to the exit. As she began descending the stairs she slipped on some liquid, fell, and caught her left arm in the handrail. She suffered injuries to her left shoulder. Adams sued the nightclub's owner, Global Initiatives LLC, alleging negligence in maintaining the premises, creating a dangerous condition. Specifically, counsel contended that the stairs were poorly lit which made it impossible for Adams to see the liquid on them. Adams testified that the stairs were dim and she didn't see the liquid. Her counsel argued that the nightclub had a duty to clean the stairs and remove the liquid. Global Initiatives did not respond to the lawsuit, retain counsel or appear for trial. Before trial, the court entered a default final judgement on the issue of liability, and the case went to trial on the issue of damages.

Injury:

Adams was taken by ambulance to the emergency room at Mount Sinai Medical Center, in Miami Beach. She complained of pain in her left (non-dominant) shoulder. X-rays revealed that her shoulder was dislocated and that she had a Hill-Sachs lesion (a compression fracture of the humeral head). She also had tears of the supraspinatus tendon in the rotator cuff and of the labrum (the ring of cartilage around the shoulder socket), in the form of a Bankart lesion (a tear in the lower rim of the labrum). Adams returned home to New York several days later and presented to an orthopedic surgeon, who prescribed MRIs. On March 24, she had arthroscopic repair of tears to the supraspinatus tendon and labrum. Her arm was placed in a sling and immobilized for several weeks. Six weeks after surgery, Adams began physical therapy, which was rendered two-to-three times per week, for seven months. Adams testified that her left shoulder never fully healed, her injuries are permanent and are causally related to the accident. She claimed she has a limited range of motion in her left arm. Her treating orthopedic surgeon submitted an affidavit to the permanency of Adams' injuries. At the time of the accident, Adams was an avid athlete. She was completing her senior year as an undergraduate Division I basketball player for the University of Pennsylvania and hoped to pursue her athletic interests after she graduated. Adams claimed she planned to play basketball on a professional international league overseas and wanted to dedicate her free time to working her technique as a swimmer. As a result of her injuries, Adams claimed, she could not pursue her post-graduate plans and is unable to play basketball or pursue post-graduate programs in swimming. Her counsel asked the jury to award $860,152.10.

Result:

The jury awarded Adams damages of $900,000. However, the jury miscalculated the amounts of medical costs and pain and suffering as totaling $900,910. The court entered a final judgment of $900,000.

Kimberly Adams: $60,052 Personal Injury: Past Medical Cost; $840,858 Personal Injury: Past Pain And Suffering

Trial Information:

Judge:

Rodney Smith

Trial Length:

1  days

Trial Deliberations:

20  minutes

Jury Vote:

6-0

Jury Composition:

4 male/ 2 female

Editor's Comment:

This report is based on information that was provided by plaintiff's counsel. The pro se defendant was not asked to comment.