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Settlements and Decisions


$230,000 Jury Verdict Awarded Against Vincennes University


On May 4, 2012, a Knox County jury awarded PWR client, Coach Dan Sparks, $230,000.00 when it found that Coach Spark's previous employer breached his employment contract. For nearly 30 years, Coach Sparks had been the head basketball coach at Vincennes University. During that time period, Coach Sparks had been awarded tenure for his position as the basketball coach and a professor of physical education. In the summer of 2003, Vincennes University offered Coach Sparks a new employment contract. In exchange for Coach Sparks giving up his tenure and position as Athletic Director and agreeing not to receive a pay raise for the 2003-04 academic year, the University offered Coach Sparks the ability to remain as the head basketball coach and professor of physical education so long as he did not violate the terms of a "zero tolerance policy."

Coach Sparks accepted the new employment contract. Less than one year later, Vincennes fired Coach Sparks. At trial, Vincennes University admitted that Coach Sparks did not violate the terms of the zero tolerance policy. Vincennes University contended that when Coach Sparks gave up his tenure, he became an "at-will" employee and could be fired for any reason (or no reason at all).

PWR attorneys Will Riley, Joe Williams, and James Piatt presented Coach Sparks' case at trial. After the three-day trial concluded, the jury came back and found that Vincennes breached the new employment contract when it fired Coach Sparks and awarded him $230,000.00 for lost wages and future lost wages. Prior to trial, PWR had demanded just under $176,000.00 to settle the case.


Settlement Reached in Dispute Involving Product Liability

In February 2012, Will Riley, Joe Williams, and James Piatt obtained a $1,200,000.00 settlement in a product liability case against the manufacturer of a billboard. As part of his employment, the Plaintiff was charged with climbing billboards and changing the vinyl advertising that was attached to the face of a particular billboard. As the Plaintiff was climbing the ladder that was fixed to billboard designed and manufactured by the Defendant, he fell more than twenty feet to the ground and suffered a severe brain injury. The injury to the Plaintiff was tragic and catastrophic. On behalf the Plaintiff, PWR attorneys contended that the fixed ladder was negligently designed because it failed to maintain the OSHA-required seven inches of space between the ladder rungs and the torsion tube behind the ladder. This lack of toe space, caused the Plaintiff’s foot to contact the torsion tube, which caused the Plaintiff to lose his balance and fall as he was attempting to transition onto the catwalk between the two faces of the billboard.

Liability was hotly contested, as the billboard manufacturer claimed that the Plaintiff’s fall was due to both his inattention while climbing and his employer’s failure to adequately train the Plaintiff to climb safely. Specifically, the billboard manufacturer claimed that Plaintiff was not a qualified climber and should not have been permitted to climb the billboard on the date in question. The Plaintiff had been climbing billboards for less than three months when he fell. Ultimately, the manufacturer moved for summary judgment on the issue of incurred risk, which the Plaintiff defeated.

One day before the trial was originally set to commence, the parties engaged in mediation. At the conclusion of the mediation, the PWR attorneys obtained a $1,200,000.00 settlement on behalf of the client.


Settlement Reached in Alleged Breach of Contract for Hotel Rooms During Super Bowl

On January 3, 2012, Price Waicukauski & Riley, LLC attorneys Ron Waicukauski and James Piatt obtained a settlement in a case involving an alleged breach of contract by a local hotel. Our client negotiated a group of rooms for a Super Bowl package with a local hotel in the fall of 2010. Nearly six months later the client learned that the hotel was no longer holding the rooms and the client was forced to find new and more expensive accommodations, as well as transportation, for his guests. After the client’s pre-suit attempts to resolve the issue were unsuccessful, Price Waicukauski & Riley, LLC was hired and a complaint was filed in Marion County Superior Court to compel the hotel to honor the contract. The case was mediated on January 3, 2012 and a satisfactory settlement was reached.  The specific terms of the settlement are confidential.


$923,000 Judgment Won in Legal Malpractice Case after Lawyers Failed to Read Statute

On February 29, 2012, Price Waicukauski & Riley, LLC won a judgment totaling $923,000 following a bench trial on a legal malpractice claim in the Allen County Superior Court.  The counterclaim defendants in the case were attorneys from one of Indiana’s largest law firms who had been hired to defend a corporate client against claims involving wrongful death and catastrophic personal injury.  A 2001 amendment to the Indiana Worker’s Compensation Act provided a defense that should have been relied upon to obtain an early and inexpensive exit from the 2005 lawsuit.  The lawyers, however, did not read the amendment until two years later.  In the meantime, substantial and unnecessary expenses were incurred by the corporate client.

The company hired Henry Price, Ron Waicukauski and Brad Catlin of Price Waicukauski & Riley, LLC to pursue their legal malpractice claim.  After several years of litigation and four days of trial in August 2011 and closing arguments on December 13, judgment was rendered on February 29, 2012.  The court concluded that the company’s lawyers in the underlying case committed malpractice by failing to read the 2001 statutory amendment when they responded to the complaint and this failure led to damages totaling $923,000.  The losing lawyers are now appealing.


ettlement in Excess of $1.8 Million Reached
In November 2011, Henry Price, Carol Nemeth Joven, and Joe Williams entered into a confidential settlement agreement with a present value of the settlement in excess of $1.8 million.  Settlement was reached pre-suit with an unnamed organization for damages on account of negligent hiring and retention which resulted in the sexual abuse of a minor.
Settlement Reached in Case Involving Breach of Implied Warranty of Aircraft Engine
In November, Ron Waicukauski and James Piatt settled a case for our client, Lac Seul Airways, Ltd., which owns a Canadian fly-in fishing business that’s takes fisherman by seaplane to remote lakes in Ontario. The suit arose from an aircraft engine problem that developed after the manufacturer’s express warranty expired.  Nevertheless, we were able to assert a claim against the seller for breach of the implied warranty of merchantability. Although the seller purported to disclaim all implied warranties, we successfully argued on summary judgment that the disclaimer was legally ineffective, which contributed to achieving a settlement at mediation. If you or someone you know is ever interested in a Canadian fishing trip or want to hunt for Canadian moose, you might want to check out our client at http://www.canadianflyinfishing.com. We hear the fishing is incredible.
Settlement Reached in Case Against IHOP
In November 2011, Joe Williams and James Piatt obtained a settlement in a trip-and-fall case against the owner of an IHOP restaurant and the contractors responsible for designing and manufacturing the restaurant’s handicap-accessible ramp. On behalf of the Plaintiff, Messrs. Williams and Piatt contended that the ramp was designed and manufactured in violation of the applicable building codes and the Americans With Disabilities Act, and that these violations created an unsafe tripping hazard that ultimately caused Plaintiff’s injuries. The defendants’ insurance carriers settled with the Plaintiff for a total amount of $65,000.00
Settlement Reached in Case Involving Breach of Implied Warranty of Aircraft Engine 

In November, Ron Waicukauski and James Piatt settled a case for our client, Lac Seul Airways, Ltd., which owns a Canadian fly-in fishing business that’s takes fisherman by seaplane to remote lakes in Ontario. The suit arose from an aircraft engine problem that developed after the manufacturer’s express warranty expired.  Nevertheless, we were able to assert a claim against the seller for breach of the implied warranty of merchantability. Although the seller purported to disclaim all implied warranties, we successfully argued on summary judgment that the disclaimer was legally ineffective, which contributed to achieving a settlement at mediation. If you or someone you know is ever interested in a Canadian fishing trip or want to hunt for Canadian moose, you might want to check out our client at http://www.canadianflyinfishing.com. We hear the fishing is incredible.


Settlement Reached in Case Against IHOP

In November 2011, Joe Williams and James Piatt obtained a settlement in a trip-and-fall case against the owner of an IHOP restaurant and the contractors responsible for designing and manufacturing the restaurant’s handicap-accessible ramp. On behalf of the Plaintiff, Messrs. Williams and Piatt contended that the ramp was designed and manufactured in violation of the applicable building codes and the Americans With Disabilities Act, and that these violations created an unsafe tripping hazard that ultimately caused Plaintiff’s injuries. The defendants’ insurance carriers settled with the Plaintiff for a total amount of $65,000.00.


Personal Injury Claim Settled Against State Farm Insurance for $250,000

On September 30, 2010, a Price Waicukauski & Riley client was struck by a car while crossing a street on the Indiana University Campus. James Piatt, an associate of the firm, handled the case for our client. Among other injuries, our client suffered fractures of her skull, humerus, tibia and fibula. The injuries necessitated multiple surgeries, her withdrawal from IU for the remainder of the fall semester, and extensive rehabilitation.

Liability was in question because our client was crossing at an unmarked intersection (without a crosswalk and without a stop sign for the driver). After a thorough investigation, including interviews with witnesses, photographs of the scene, and a review of all the medical records, James sent a demand letter to State Farm requesting that it pay the driver's policy limit of $250,000 to settle the claim.

James was successful in settling the claim with State Farm for the policy limit of $250,000, while also saving our client the costs of filing a lawsuit. James was able to negotiate down the medical lien placed on any recovery by our client's ERISA Plan by over 30%, resulting in an increased monetary disbursement directly to the client.

Because our client contacted us within a few weeks of the accident, we were able to achieve this settlement within seven months of our client's injuries.


14.5 Million Dollar Jury Verdict Awarded Against State Farm Insurance

June 30, 2011 – A six-week trial in Hamilton County Court ended yesterday afternoon with the award of a $14.5 million jury verdict for Joseph Radcliff and his restoration company, CPM Construction of Indiana, against State Farm Insurance.

State Farm had filed suit for insurance fraud and RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations) claims against Radcliff and CPM.  The case arose out of work done by Radcliff and CPM following the April 2006 hailstorm.  Radcliff and CPM’s allegations were that after State Farm received negative publicity in the Indianapolis media for denying hail damage claims, State Farm made unfounded claims of fraud against Radcliff and instigated the filing of felony charges against him.  Those charges were dismissed by the Marion County Prosecutor, but the negative publicity resulted in Radcliff’s personal reputation and business being destroyed.

Not only did the jury find that State Farm’s claims against Radcliff were baseless, but they also found that the Radcliff’s allegations of being defamed by State Farm were true. The jury ordered State Farm to pay Radcliff $14.5 million.

Radcliff was represented by Will Riley, lead trial counsel of the law firm Price Waicukauski & Riley, LLC along with attorneys Joe Williams, James Piatt and Jamie Kendall of the same firm and Mark McKinzie, Partner in the law firm Riley Bennett & Egloff LLP.

Riley stated, “It was a tribute to the American jury system that one man can take on the largest insurance company in the nation and win.”  McKinzie agreed, stating “This sends a strong signal to Bloomington, Illinois that Hoosiers will not put up with this sort of conduct.” Radcliff commented “I am grateful to those who believed in me and helped me get the true facts before the jury and to the jury for giving me, and my failed company, justice.” 

Price Waicukauski & Riley, LLC is a law firm known for its representation of clients in complex litigation. Riley Bennett & Egloff, LLP is a law firm known for advising and representing businesses and their owners in various litigation matters.


Settlement Reached in Fish Kill Case

On March 10, 2011, PWR attorney Brad Catlin, obtained a settlement in a case involving environmental contamination of a lake. This case arose because diesel fuel from a truck stop spilled into a neighboring lake.  Our clients had leased that lake to run a pay-to-fish business for little more than a year at the time of the spill.  After the spill, our clients were ordered to shut down their business and their lease was not renewed.  We obtained a recovery in excess of $55,000 for our clients
Settlement Reached with Major Health Insurer for Denying Health Insurance Coverage

On January 3, 2011, PWR attorney, Joseph Williams, obtained a settlement in a case involving a major health insurer’s decision to deny health insurance coverage.  The case involved the health insurer’s alleged bad faith decision to deny coverage for the treatment of a health condition that was allegedly not disclosed during the application process.   The terms of the settlement are confidential.

Settlement Reached in Business Dispute Involving Alleged Breach of Non-compete and Confidentiality Agreements and Misappropriation of Trade Secrets   

On January 4, 2011, PWR attorneys, Ron Waicukauski and Brad Catlin, obtained a settlement in a long-running business dispute between our client, a high-tech military contractor, and the defendants, a former employee and former Purdue professor.  The case involved allegations that the defendants had breached duties of confidentiality and loyalty, violated a non-compete agreement, and misappropriated trade secrets.  A bench trial was started in the case on January 3 and after the second day of testimony, a settlement was reached.  The terms of the settlement are confidential. 


Soft Tissue Injury Case Reaches Settlement

On January 3, 2011, attorney Jamie Kendall settled an underinsured motorist claim involving a concussion and a soft tissue injury for $100,000. The case involved a seventeen year old high school student who was injured when the vehicle he was riding in was struck by a drunk driver.  The tortfeasor’s insurance settled with the client late last year. 
$89 Million Settlement

In the fall of 2009, William Riley was appointed settlement counsel for all consumer claims in the In re Bextra & Celebrex Mktg. Sales Practices & Prod. Liab. Litig., MDL No. 1699 (ND Cal.), which resulted in an $89 million settlement.

Structured Payout Worth More Than $1,000,000

On October 16, 2009, Henry Price entered into a confidential settlement agreement with a structured payout worth more than $1,000,000.  Settlement was reached pre-suit with an unnamed organization for damages on account of a personal injury claim for sexual harassment and negligence of corporate officers.

The Indiana Court of Appeals has Issued its Opinion in a Case Involving Students' Rights in the State of Indiana

May 2, 2008 - Ron Waicukauski and Jana Strain have been working on this case with Michael Weisman and Rebecca McIntyre of Weisman & McIntryre in Boston, Massachusetts since 2006. In April 2006, nine students filed this case against Governor Mitch Daniels, Indiana State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Sue Ellen Reed and the Indiana State Board of Education. The case sought a judicial determination that (1) the Indiana Constitution imposes an enforceable duty on the General Assembly to provide an education that prepares all of Indiana's children to function in a complex and rapidly changing society, to discharge the duties and responsibilities of citizenship, and to compete successfully with their peers for productive employment and opportunities for advancement through higher education; and (2) that Indiana's current system of financing education violates the Indiana Constitution because it fails to provide the Plaintiffs and thousands of other similarly situated Hoosier public school children with the constitutionally guaranteed education. In its opinion, the Court of Appeals recognizes, for the first time, that the Indiana Constitution "imposes a duty on the State to provide an education that equips students with the skill and knowledge enabling them to become productive members of society" and that it is appropriate for the courts to declare whether the State is fulfilling its duty to provide an education that "meets modern requirements." The decision reverses the trial court's dismissal of the case.

Class Action Certified in Case Against Cape Canaveral Tour & Travel, Inc. and Others

On February 14, 2008, the Court certified this lawsuit as a Class Action under Rule 23 of the Indiana Rules of Trial Procedure, which permits a member of the class to bring a lawsuit on his or her own behalf and also on the behalf of all persons who have the same or similar claims. Donyelle Thacker filed this lawsuit individually, and on behalf of all others similarly situated (hereinafter the "Representative Plaintiff".) This class action essentially asks the Court to determine whether or not the Defendants complied with Indiana law when sending mailings to residents of Indiana to solicit their vacation packages. Indiana law requires companies, like the Defendants, who solicit Indiana consumers by mail to include certain things in their mailings. These things include the Defendants' assigned registration number, the additional costs that might be added, and whether a person must attend a sales presentation regarding timeshares while on the vacation. Plaintiff alleges that the Defendants did not meet the requirements of Indiana law when making solicitations to class members between July 3, 2000, and July 3, 2002.

Additional State Settlement Receives Final Approval in Class Action Against AT&T

On June 28, 2007, Judge David F. Hamilton gave final approval to a settlement involving certain active railroad corridors in Louisiana where AT&T has installed fiber optic cable. To date, 37 settlements have received final approval in this nationwide action.

New York Gives Final Approval in Class Action Against AT&T

On June 15, 2007, Judge Karla Moskowitz of New York County gave final approval to a settlement involving certain active railroad corridors in New York where AT&T has installed fiber optic cable.

New Jersey Judge Gives Final Approval in Class Action Against AT&T

On April 16, 2007, Judge Craig L. Wellerson of Burlington County gave final approval to a settlement involving certain active railroad corridors in New Jersey where AT&T has installed fiber optic cable.

Additional State Settlements Receive Final Approval in Class Action Against AT&T

On February 2, 2007, Judge David F. Hamilton gave final approval to settlements involving certain active railroad corridors in Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Oklahoma, Oregon and Tennessee where AT&T has installed fiber optic cable. To date, 34 settlements have received final approval in this nationwide action.

Additional State Settlement Receives Final Approval in Class Action Against AT&T

On September 19, 2006, Judge David F. Hamilton gave final approval to a settlement involving certain active railroad corridors in Pennsylvania where AT&T has installed fiber optic cable. To date, 28 settlements have received final approval in this nationwide action.

Additional State Settlements Receive Final Approval in Class Action Against AT&T

On July 18, 2006,  Judge David F. Hamilton gave final approval to settlements involving certain active railroad corridors in Kentucky and Utah where AT&T has installed fiber optic cable. To date, 27 settlements have received final approval in this nationwide action.

Court of Appeals Affirms Legal Malpractice Verdict

On July 11, 2006, the Indiana Court of Appeals issued an opinion affirming the judgment of the trial court and the jury's verdict for the plaintiff in the amount of $3,612, 574.00 in the case of Lite Machines Corporation v. Bennett, Boehning & Clary.  In that case, Ronald Waicukauski and Carol Nemeth represented the plaintiff Lite Machines who asserted a legal malpractice claim against the Lafayette law firm of Bennett, Boehning & Clary.  The malpractice claim arose out of the Bennett firm's representation of Lite Machines in a prior lawsuit brought by Lite Machines against Techno, Inc. Lite Machines alleged that in the prior case, the Bennett firm failed to perform adequate legal research, failed to take needed depositions, failed to cross-examine the opposing expert witness, and failed to present rebuttal evidence or argument and because of these failures, Lite Machines had not obtained the recovery from Techno to which they were entitled.  The legal malpractice case went to trial in Boone Circuit Court in June 2004 and after eight days of testimony and argument, the jury returned its verdict its in favor of Lite Machines.

Additional State Settlements Receive Final Approval in Class Action Against AT&T

On April 6, 2006,  Judge David F. Hamilton gave final approval to settlements involving certain active railroad corridors in Florida and Mississippi where AT&T has installed fiber optic cable. To date, 25 settlements have received final approval in this nationwide action.

Two More State Settlements Receive Final Approval in Class Action Against AT&T

On December 9, 2005 Judge David F. Hamilton gave final approval to settlements involving certain active railroad corridors in Iowa and Washington where AT&T has installed fiber optic cable. To date, 23 settlements have received final approval in this nationwide action.

Case Filed by Leading Rosacea Internet Guru is Short-lived

On October 6, 2005, Fishers physiologist, Geoffrey Nase, agreed to abandon his legal battle against a group of people who started a website that had been critical of Geoffrey Nase just two months after filing for an injunction to shut down the website. The Defendant, represented by Ron Waicukauski of Price Waicukauski & Riley, LLC, will continue to maintain the on-line presence.

Three More State Settlements Receive Final Approval in Class Action Against AT&T

On July 8, 2005 Judge David F. Hamilton gave final approval to settlements involving certain active railroad corridors in Kansas, Maine and Texas where AT&T has installed fiber optic cable. To date, 21 settlements have received final approval in this nationwide action.

Two More State Settlements Receive Final Approval in Class Action Against AT&T

On May 13, 2005 Judge David F. Hamilton gave final approval to settlements involving certain active railroad corridors in Minnesota and Vermont where AT&T has installed fiber optic cable. To date, 18 settlements have received final approval in this nationwide action. Five additional states have received preliminary approval.

Judge Certifies Security Guard Statewide Class Action

On March 15, 2005, U.S. District Court Judge, David F. Hamilton, certified a statewide class action against U.S. Security Associates, Inc. The class consists of "present and former security officers employed by U.S. Security Associates, Inc. who work or worked at any Indiana location from December 11, 2000 until the present." The Amended Complaint filed in this case alleges, among other things, that the Plaintiffs and similarly situated employees were required to report to work prior to the start of their shift, but were not compensated for that time. The Defendant, U.S. Security Associates, Inc. denies the allegations and asserts that the Plaintiffs and similarly situated employees were timely and properly paid for all compensable work. On April 15, 2005, Notices were mailed to all known current and former employees of U.S. Security Associates, Inc. 

Class Action Settlement Against Conrail Receives Final Approval

The Final Fairness Hearing was held on January 13, 2005. On January 18, 2005, Judge Thomas K. Milligan gave final approval to the class action settlement.

Settlement Reached in Allen County Class Action Against LNC Corp.

The Final Fairness Hearing was held on October 28, 2004 before Judge Boyer.  The hearing went well and the Judge signed the Order Granting Final Approval to Class Action Settlement and Entry of Final Judgment.  This Order approves of the Settlement Agreement. 

Vioxx Recalled – SEPTEMBER 30, 2004

Our office is actively accepting inquiries from Vioxx users and their families who have suffered cardiovascular complications including thromboembolic adverse events (swelling of extremities), angina pectoris and myocardial infarction while taking Vioxx. Click here to send us an e-mail or call us today toll-free at (866) 999-8469.

Judge Rules on Contract Dispute

On July 23, 2004 Judge Sarah Evans Barker in federal district court granted our motion for summary judgment on behalf of Sherwin-Williams in a case brought by Celadon Trucking. 

$3.6 Million Verdict Won for Lite Machines Corp. in Legal Malpractice Case

Ronald Waicukauski and Carol Nemeth represented the plaintiff, Lite Machines Corp., in a legal malpractice claim brought against the Lafayette law firm of Bennett, Boehning & Clary.  The malpractice claim arose out of the Bennett firms' representation of Lite Machines in a prior lawsuit brought by Lite Machines against Techno, Inc. Lite Machines alleged that in the prior case, the Bennett firm failed to perform adequate legal research, failed to take needed depositions, failed to cross-examine the opposing expert witness, and failed to present rebuttal evidence or argument and because of these failures, Lite Machines had not obtained the recovery from Techno to which they were entitled.  The legal malpractice case went to trial in Boone Circuit Court in June 2004 and after eight days of testimony and argument, the jury returned a verdict in favor of Lite Machines in the amount of $3,612,574. 

Class Action Against CSX Transportation Receives Final Approval

On July 25, 2002, Judge William J. Hughes preliminarily approved a settlement in the above case.  This settlement encompassed approximately 609 miles of abandoned CSX railroad corridors in the State of Indiana. The Settlement Center has completed the processing of claims. All qualified claims have been paid. The Declaratory Judgments have been issued for each county.

Grocer Pays Former Female Employees

Female employees settle for $1.2 million in equal pay case.

Final Approval Given to $2 Million Fish Kill Settlement

November 2001 – Approximately 738 property owners along with White River from Anderson to Indianapolis were eligible to participate in this settlement against Guide Corp., an Anderson based firm that released toxic pollutants into the river and Crown Environmental Group, a Cincinnati contractor who dismantled Guide’s wastewater treatment facility.

PWRD Co-Counsel for 9/11 Victims

Thomas Burnett, Sr., et al. v. Al Baraka Investment and Development Corporation, et al., is currently pending in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. This multi-district litigation seeks to hold Saudi individuals and entities liable for the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.

Jury Awards $2 Million Verdict to Parents of AIDS Victim

This lawsuit was filed by the parents of a young man who was diagnosed shortly after birth with hemophilia. He had been a long time user of AHF blood product concentrates for treatment of the hemophilia. Miles, Inc. through its agents and employees provided the AHF blood product concentrates. He contracted the HIV virus and developed AIDS as a result of using the defendant’s product. Following a seven week jury trial, the jury awarded $2 Million to the family.