Preexisting Conditions and Comparative Fault: Strengthening Plaintiff’s Case by Upending Efforts to Shift Blame
Recording of a 90-minute CLE video webinar with Q&A
This CLE webinar will discuss how plaintiffs’ counsel can turn the tables on predictable defense strategies related to contributory negligence and leverage a pre-existing condition to make the jury understand the severity of a specific plaintiff’s injuries. The panel will explain how to meet these defenses head on and reverse the typical narratives.
- Comparative and contributory fault schemes
- Factors that impact juries' apportionment of fault
- Best practices for personal injury attorneys to overcome plaintiff's level of fault
- Types of preexisting condition
- Symptomatic preexisting condition that is worsened
- Overall physicality is diminished
- Physical and mental preexisting conditions
- Different injury
- Aggravated injury
- Factors supporting general damages related to preexisting conditions
- Personality and demeanor of plaintiff
- Location, timing, nature of post-accident pain and suffering
- Role of experts
- Before and after activities
- Jury instructions
The panel will review these and other key issues:
- What is the effect of a plaintiff's partial responsibility for an accident?
- What arguments work best for reducing the plaintiff's fault?
- How might preexisting conditions increase recovery for pain and suffering compared to cases with none?
- What factors affect recovery in preexisting condition cases?
- Does it matter if the preexisting condition is emotional, mental, or physical?
Ms. Ptacek is a lawyer in the firm’s Personal Injury Section, where she represents individuals who have been... | Read More
Ms. Ptacek is a lawyer in the firm’s Personal Injury Section, where she represents individuals who have been injured and family members of deceased victims. Before joining the firm, she worked for a different plaintiff’s firm in Georgia, handling cases involving catastrophic injury, premises liability, trucking accidents, amputation, medical malpractice, wrongful death, whistleblower / qui tam, government monitorship and federal criminal defense. Prior to law school, Ms. Ptacek worked as a paralegal in a solo practice firm handling car accidents, trucking accidents, and premises liability cases.Close
Kevin H. Seiferheld
Michigan Auto Law
Mr. Seiferheld has been a trial lawyer for nearly 25 years. He specializes in litigation involving large commercial... | Read More
Mr. Seiferheld has been a trial lawyer for nearly 25 years. He specializes in litigation involving large commercial vehicles and semi-trucks, No-Fault matters, insurance coverage disputes, municipal vehicles and construction accidents. Mr. Seiferheld has argued complex legal issues before the Michigan Court of Appeals on several occasions and achieved victories for his clients every time. He has obtained millions of dollars for his injured clients and is a tenacious fighter both inside and out of the courtroom.Close