WHEELING – Bordas & Bordas recently obtained more than $500,000 in a jury verdict returned in Ohio Senior Circuit Judge Arthur Recht's courtroom in favor of a man who was injured in a car accident in 2010.
The jury returned the verdict June 26 in favor of Chris DeNoble, who was represented by Scott Blass and Chris Regan of Bordas & Bordas.
On July 12, 2010, DeNoble was injured when Austin Reed, of Detroit, rear-ended his vehicle on Interstate 70.
Blass said the jury's verdict was a testament to DeNoble's character, to the credibility the jury placed in his testimony and that of his family and friends regarding the serious injury he sustained in the accident.
Prior to the verdict, Bordas & Bordas attempted to compromise and settle the case within the defendant's insurance policy limits, however, the insurance company elected to refuse the settlement proposals, offering less than $70,000 to settle the claim despite DeNoble's permanent back injury, significant deficits in his ability to pursue his employment and the major impact his injuries have had on his quality of life.
Regan said DeNoble was a coal miner who was seriously hurt because of the accident.
"Without the third-party bad faith, we are seeing more and more people going to trial that shouldn't have to," Regan said. "DeNoble had a good case, but the defendant was not willing to compromise."
Regan said in the end, the defendant has ended up having to pay out more than they would have if they had compromised and settled in the beginning.
Regan said after the Legislature's elimination of third-party insurance bad faith claims several years ago, large insurance companies feel they have the leverage to force every plaintiff to trial no matter the quality of the case.
"The DeNobles should not have been required to be put through a trial at all," Regan said. "This is the type of case that used to settle when West Virginia had third-party bad faith. Fortunately, the jury got it right and awarded this substantial verdict in favor of Mr. DeNoble."