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New Jersey Verdicts
Find out about the most important recent New Jersey cases, selected by VerdictSearch editors. Coverage includes Essex, Hudson and Middlesex counties.
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No manufacturing defect with exploding jar, jury rules
A jury declined to award damages to a woman who claimed her hand was lacerated by a glass jar that burst when she tried to open it. In 2012, Paula Wirth-Lemunyon, 43, was in her kitchen, in Chesterfield, trying to open a jar of minced garlic. To loosen the lid, she struck the bottom of the jar once with the palm of her right hand. The jar exploded and a glass shard sliced her right index finger, severing the two main tendons and a nerve. She sued McCormick & Co., which she believed made the jar. She brought alleged a manufacturing defect. The company argued the jar lacked an identifying label and because it had shattered it could not be known if there was a defect. The jury found that McCormick made the jar but found no proof of a defect.
Wirth-Lemunyon v. McCormick & Co.
Cemetery partially liable for sidewalk trip
A cemetery in Fairview was found liable for not properly maintaining an adjacent sidewalk. In 2015, Liliana Arrunategui, 59, was walking by the Fairview Cemetery when she tripped on an uneven sidewalk slab. She broke her right kneecap. She claimed the cemetery negligently maintained the sidewalk. With support from an engineering expert, she argued the sidewalk had been poorly repaired by using asphalt that abruptly rose about three inches to the adjacent slab. The cemetery denied any negligent repair and countered that Arrunategui was comparatively negligent. The jury found that the cemetery was 80 percent liable and Arrunategui was 20 percent liable for her accident. She was awarded $335,000, which was reduced to $268,000, to reflect the apportionment of liability.
Arrunategui v. Fairview Cemetery Co. of NJ
Prison liable to officer for sex-based harassment
A corrections officer received damages from a jury for her claim that she endured sex-based harassment at the New Jersey State Prison, in Trenton. In 2013, Jennifer Schiavone, 34, heard of a false rumor that she was trying to curry favor with a male superior at the prison by having an affair with him. The rumor, she claimed, generated hostility among co-workers. She alleged the rumor caused a sex-based hostile work environment because it was based on a stereotype about women. The defense denied the rumor was sex-based and argued that any hostility was not severe or pervasive. The jury awarded Schiavone $100,000 for emotional distress and $216,875 in punitive damages. The court awarded $564,907 in attorney fees and $20,107.35 in court costs.
Schiavone v. The State of New Jersey Department of Corrections
Largest New Jersey Jury Verdicts
|$787,300,000||Barden v. Brenntag North America||Middlesex Co.||2020|
|$364,228,023||Bondi v. Citigroup Inc.||Bergen Co.||2008|
|$169,932,670||BASF Corp. v. Lyondell Chemical Co.||Morris Co.||2007|
|$165,972,503||Velesquez v. Newark Beth Israel Medical Center||Essex Co.||2013|
|$135,450,000||Verni v. Lanzaro||Bergen Co.||2005|
|$125,000,000||Eagle View Technologies Inc. v. Xactware Solutions Inc.||Federal||2019|
|$119,900,000||Crowley v. Estate of Chait||Federal||2005|
|$117,000,000||Lanzo v. Cyprus Amax Minerals Co.||Middlesex Co.||2018|
|$112,000,000||Globespan Virata Inc. v. Texas Instruments Inc.||Federal||2006|
|$106,700,000||Mylan Inc. v. SmithKline Beecham Corp.||Federal||2014|