Presided over a lengthy, expert witness intensive, jury trial brought by the widow and two adult daughters for wrongful death of their 58-year-old husband and father, arising from his suicide by hanging while residing in residential drug rehabilitation facility. Plaintiffs contended that the defendants failed to provide medical detoxification management while decedent was withdrawing from benzodiazepine addiction and inadequately supervised their at-risk client. Defendants asserted that Plaintiffs were aware that its facility was a counseling only facility and did not use medications to manage withdrawals, and that any conduct on their part was not a legal cause of decedent’s death.
Presided over a lengthy, expert witness intensive, jury trial brought by the adult daughter for wrongful death of her 71-year-old father, arising from a motorcycle accident, allegedly resulting from the defective design and manufacture of the motorcycle. Plaintiff was test driving the subject “pre-production” electronic motorcycle, negotiating a left banked curve on a rural roadway when the left foot peg broke causing decedent to lose control of the motorcycle and collide head-on with a motorist traveling in the opposite lane of travel. Defendant contended the claim was barred by decedent’s signed express assumption of the risk agreement relating to the test drive program and that the left foot peg did not fail pre-impact - it was broken off during impact.
Presided over lengthy, expert witness intensive, jury trial involving traumatic brain injury suffered by plaintiff, 49-year-old male (helmeted) bicyclist. He asserted he was required to move out of the bicycle lane when suddenly confronted by a two inch below grade utility manhole cover and in so doing was hit by a motorist in the adjacent travel portion of the roadway. He claimed negligence against the utility provider and maintenance of a dangerous condition against the County. The defendants argued that the condition was open and obvious, not a dangerous condition and plaintiff was 100% responsible for the accident.
Presided over a lengthy, expert witness intensive, jury trial brought by the widow and seven adult children for wrongful death of their 65-year-old husband and father arising from an auto v. bicycle accident. Decedent, and each of the surviving plaintiffs were residents and citizens of Mexico. Decedent was an itinerant farm worker. At dawn, while crossing a rural highway on his bicycle without a helmet, he was struck from behind by an uninsured motorist. Decedent was thrown into the opposing lane of travel. While laying disabled in the roadway for a period of minutes, he was run over by defendant’s vehicle in the opposite lane. Plaintiffs contended that decedent survived the first impact and was killed by the negligence of defendant, the second motorist. Defendant contended that decedent was not visible on the roadway, that the injuries he suffered in the first impact were fatal, and that decedent was 100% at fault.
Presided over a jury trial involving a motorcycle v. U-Haul truck collision resulting in traumatic brain injury to the 50-year-old motorcyclist. Plaintiff contended that he was in the process of passing on the left a slow-moving U-Haul box truck when suddenly, without signaling, the truck driver turned left, collided with the motorcycle and plaintiff was propelled to the ground landing on his head. Plaintiff suffered permanently disabling injuries. Defendant U-Haul was the employer of the driver of the truck who was in the process of moving the truck from the street into the U-Haul lot. Defendant contended that the left turn signal was activated prior to the turn and that plaintiff was engaged in an illegal passing movement.
Presided over a jury trial involving an intersectional collision between plaintiff’s SUV and a Yellow Taxi cab. Defendant admitted liability. Plaintiff, a 61-year-old housewife, claimed she suffered disc bulges in the cervical spine which required a two-level discectomy which had not yet been performed. Defendant contended that the mechanics of the forces applied during the collision were insufficient to produce the claimed disc bulges, that plaintiff’s neck issues pre-existed the accident, and that plaintiff’s pain was primarily psychosomatic.
Conducted hundreds of successful judicial mediations involving every manner of personal injury and wrongful death case arising from auto v. auto, auto v. motorcycle, auto v. bicycle and auto v. pedestrian collisions; trucking accidents; slip/fall; dangerous conditions of public property; defective products; asbestos/chemical exposures; sexual assaults; negligent transmission of sexual diseases; child molestations; convalescent/nursing home negligence; unsafe workplace conditions; failure to supervise in school settings; sporting event accidents; negligent maintenance of private property; social host liability; amusement park accidents; prescription mislabeling and others - ranging in severity from soft tissue injury cases, to quadriplegia, amputations, traumatic brain injury, blindness, and death cases.
Hon. Paul Burdick (Ret.)
96 North Third Street Suite 350 San Jose, CA 95112