$1.6 Million Jury Verdict for Mother’s Death Due to Trucking Negligence

$1.6 Million (later reduced to $960,000)

A. v. Milton Peebles and JB Hunt Transport, Inc.

We brought suit in Cook County Court on behalf of the estate and surviving spouse of a 47-year-old mother of three sons. She was killed on her way to work at Amtrak when her vehicle was rear-ended by a truck on I-55.  The woman’s car had crashed into crash barrels at the Lagrange Road exit and slid back into traffic when it was struck by the JB Hunt Transport truck. At trial, we introduced expert testimony which indicated that if the truck driver had been paying closer attention he would have noticed the mother’s vehicle earlier and could have acted in time to avoid the collision or hit her vehicle at a much lower, non-lethal speed. After more than nine hours of deliberation, with the jury deadlocked at 10-1, we stipulated with defense counsel to accept a unanimous “verdict” of 10. The jury promptly returned a verdict awarding $1.6 million for grief, sorrow, loss of society, love and companionship on the part of the woman’s sons, then reduced by 40 percent for her comparative fault in the initial crash.