This past April, on the Saturday before Easter, a manager at a health care firm left his office for the drive home. He had recently purchased a Jaguar sedan and he drove that car to work that day. On the way home, New York City police officers pulled him over and arrested the Bronx man for possession of a stolen car. Although the man presented his license, the registration for the car, the title to the car and a receipt for the bill of sale, the officers still arrested him. The police ultimately dropped the charges and the man retained me to represent him. He wanted the New York City Police to be held accountable for their reckless actions and compensation for missing the Easter holiday with his family. Last week, we settled the case for $25,000.
In November 2009, the New York City Police improperly and illegally arrested a young man and held him for nearly a day before releasing him. The police never filed charges against the man. Upset, he contacted Carol L. Schlitt to investigate the matter and to pursue damages against the City of New York. Ms. Schlitt conducted a rigorous investigation that proved that police misconduct occurred. In September 2010, Ms. Schlitt negotiated a $20,000 settlement with the City of New York to compensate the man for the wrongful arrest and imprisonment.
On July 16, 2010, I settled a case for a client who had suffered psychological abuse due to witnessing an assault by New York City Police on her father and the further misconduct by the New York City Police that traumatized the young girl. This was a sad case and the settlement payment recognizes the damage done to this now young woman and will help pay for the psychological care that she continues to receive.
I had been retained as trial counsel a few months before trial. We reached the settlement while the jury was deliberating the case. Just prior to the trial, the City had offered $20,000 to settle the case. The proper assessment and success at trial raised the offer to $250,000.
The Importance of Knowing the Value of a Case: How an Accurate Case Assessment Earned My Client an Additional $230,000 Settlement
Last Friday, I settled a police misconduct case against the City of New York for $250,000. I want to focus on how a clear assessment of the case enabled my client to receive an additional $230,000.
The case concerned the false arrest of a Bronx man and the psychological damage that police misconduct caused his daughter. I was brought into the case very late to serve as trial attorney representing the daughter, while the original attorney represented the father. At the time of the incident, my client was seven years-old and witnessed the police falsely arrest and manhandle her father. The trauma led to psychological problems that continue to affect the woman who is now twenty-three years old. The father and daughter have been estranged since the time of this incident.
As I do in all my cases, I prepared a detailed case assessment and shared it with my client. My analysis of the case suggested that the daughter’s case was worth as much as her father’s, perhaps even more. I had carefully developed that assessment based on an analysis of the facts, our ability to present a strong case, my review of case law and my review of similar cases in the Bronx. I carefully reviewed that assessment with my client and made sure that she understood how I estimated the value of her case.