Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia on July 6, 1975 · Page 12
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July 6, 1975

Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia · Page 12

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Charleston, West Virginia
Issue Date:
Sunday, July 6, 1975
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Page 12
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1*A July 4, 1*75 :SSSi«SiSiS:SS^i5»iiSBM!»»»^^ Juries Giving More Money For Injuries From Negligence lor* TIMM ferric* WASHINGTON - Across the country, in rural areas as well as big cities, juries are awarding more money than ever before to people injured because of other people's negligence or misconduct, and to the estates of people who died because of somebody else's negligence or misconduct. Before 1962. a million-dollar award for personal injuries or libel was unheard of. But since then, there have been dozens. Three awards in Washington-area courts in recent months illustrate the upward trend. Thomas Hooks was an 18-year-old Explorer Scout in town for a Scout convention. Diving off the board into his hotel's swimming pool, he broke his neck and became a quadriplegic. Last month a jury here awarded him $7 million in damages, payable by the hotel's owners. »· Bernadette Ascher was a bilingual typist at the World Bank and the mother of three in the hospital for a common gynecological operation. As a result of what a jury determined to be malpractice by the anesthesiologist, she had permanent brain damage, no use of her hands and arms and limited use of her legs. A jury awarded her $1.55 million. *· Barbara Blum was a 30-year-old housewife and mother living in an apart- Perspective ment building in Maryland that advertised its security system. One day an inebriated furniture mover working in the apartment building next to hers raped and then killed here. The jury awarded $13,355,000 to her husband, two children and estate. The million-dollar awards and the catastrophic injuries that elicit the awards make up just a tiny percentage of the total cases. But with less catastrophic injuries, the awards are also going up. Jury Verdicts Research Inc., an Ohio organization that collects information on verdicts throughout the nation, reports, for example, that in a case involving a leg amputation where the person incurred between $15,000 and $20,000 in monetary losses the most likely verdict, statistically, was $100,000 in 1967 and $135,000 in 1973. Statistically the most likely verdict for all personal injury .cases combined increased at a rate of 6.25 per cent a year in the early 1970s, according to a Jury Verdict Research study made in 1974, compared with a 2.2 per cent a year increase in the late 1960s. The current crisis over medical malpractice insurance has focused attention on jury awards against physicians. Doctors and insurance companies are contending that high awards are causing malpractice insurance costs to skyrocket. But lawyers for injured persons are contending that verdicts are statistically increasing at a rate much lower than that of insurance costs, and that losses in the stock market rather than high verdicts are prompting the increase in insurance premiums. Basically, though, the dispute is about whether jury verdicts should be as high as they sometimes are. Partly, this is a debate about whether awards should be limited to actual monetary losses, such as medical expenses and lost income, to the extent they can be estimated; or whether they should also include awards to make up for "pain and suffering" and, as well, awards to make up for assessments called "punitive damages" designed to keep the wrongdoer and others from commiting a similar offense again. It is a complex, emotional and often bitter debate. Damage awards, he says, should simply compensate people for their losses, not make their heirs rich. I! DEPARTMENT STORE MONDAY MADNESS SHOP MONDAY NITE TILL 9 P JH. MEN'S REGULAR TO 14.00 FIRST QUALITY · FAMOUS MAKER CUFFED BAGGIES LARGE SELECTION OF FASHIONED PLAIDS WAIST SIZES * 29 TO 38 3 LENGTHS 32 34 36 VALUES TO 7.99 IF PERFECT LADIES' BRAND SPORTSWEAR ·DOUBLE KNIT 100% POLYESTER PULL-ON PANTS · DOUBLE KNIT SHORTS \l I AND TOPS t|N 100% COTTON AND POLYESTER ASST.SIZES,COLORS EACH i f ·A,' MD CREW NECK. ·ASST. COLORS. ·SIZES: 3 to 18 BOYS'KNIT SHIRTS ·REG. 1.99 VAL. ·SHORT SLEEVE ·COLLARS $100 El. VIllUES TO'5.99 If PERFECT MEN'S KNIT SHIRTS « · COLLARS AND CREW HECKS ·SOLIDS AND NOVELTIES LADIES' REG. 5 14" POLYESTER DOUBLE KNIT 2 AND 3 PIECE PANT SUITS ·CHOOSE FROM SLEEVELESS TUNIC PANT SUITS AND SHORT SLEEVE JACKET PANT SUITS ·EASY TO CARE FOR SIZES: 8 U IS EA. VALUES TO '3.99 MEN'S ^.^ LATEX SWIM $199 TRUNKS 1 shop mondays and fridoys 10 to 9 other weekdays 10 to 5 ohone 346-0981 20%OFFSALE WAVERLY MADE-TO-MEASURE CUSTOM DRAPERIES LINED WITH ROC-LON® Lots of stores run sales on last year's merchandise or this year's "losers." Not us. We're giving you 20% off on our beautiful new collection of nationally advertised Waverly made- to-measure draperies. Choose from the newest, Scotchgard® protected, "Fashion Gallery" patterns and solids in almost any window treatment you desire--and you can have them to your exact measurements in less than 4 weeks. Roc-Ion insulated linings keep heat out in summer--in during winter to save energy and cut utility costs. EA. f i 4T*4 · · PLAY SHOES VALUES TO 3" IF PERFECT MEN'S, LADIES', GIRLS' TENNIS OXFORDS AND LADIES' AND GIRLS' SUMMER SANDALS AND DECK SHOES. CLOCS AND OTHER STYLES ·SNOPEMLY FOKKSTSBKTWN. FREE SHOP AT HOME SERVICE From our phone to your home--shop the easy way. Just call--we'll bring samples to you and let you select your custom made draperies and bedspreads right in your own home, no additional charge. Call 346-0981 (ext. 352). DRAPERIES--Fourth Floor 20% OFF SALE MID-SUMMER PILLOW CLEARANCE BY FAMOUS MAKERS Choose the pillows you've always wanted from our wide collection of Velvets, Corduroys, Linens, Tapestry, Needlepoint, Cut Velvets and many, many more. All in a wide variety of colors and shapes to lighten and brighten your home. Buy now or put on lay'away for. gifts later on. But shop early for the best selection and remember that's 20% off the regular price of any pillow in the department. PILLOWS--Fourth Floor SEALY POSTUREPEDIC CAN MAKE ! QUITE A \ DIFFERENCE \ IN YOUR : MORNINGS The difference between Posturepedic and an ordinary firm mattress are extraordinary. Posturepedic--a Unique Back Support System is designed in cooperation with leading orthopedic surgeons for comfortably firm support.; "No Morning backache from sleeping on a too-soft mattress." You'll wake up feeling like a million and what ordinary firm mattress can offer that. IMPERIAL SEALY POSTUREPEDIC 109.95 TWIN EACH PIECE 129.95 FULL EACH PIECE SLEEP SHOP--Fourth Floor vfAy^^^^}^^y^^^^^VAVf^v^K^-

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