$1,350,000: Parents Collect Insurance Policy Limits for the Death of Their Son as the Results of a Single Vehicle Auto Accident
August 3, 2010
CASE DESCRIPTION: Parents, Cary and Emily R. of the deceased, Plaintiff Zachary R., filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Defendants James M., Mark M. and Mark L. for the tragic loss of their only son. The defendants Mark M. and Mark L. were partaking in a speed contest on Live Oak Canyon Road that resulted in the sudden death of Zachary, who was riding in the vehicle Mark M. was driving. James M. is Mark’s father and registered owner of the vehicle Mark M. was operating at the time.
On April 7, 2009, 17-year-old Zachary was a passenger in a 2008 Ford Mustang GT driven by his friend Mark M. At approximately 1:40 p.m. Mark M. and Mark L., another driver, were engaged in a race driving northbound on Live Oak Canyon Road in the city of Orange. While driving negligently, at high speeds, defendant Mark M. lost control of the vehicle and slammed into a tree.
Police and other emergency personnel arrived on site and pronounced Zachary R. deceased at the scene.
The defendant was clearly at fault for the injuries sustained by Zachary because he was recklessly driving and may have been racing with Mark L. before he lost control and slammed into the tree.
Defendant Mr. M argued that the full value of the injuries should not have reached the insurance policy limits. In the end the matter was resolved for the policy limits of both defendants insurance policy.
BILL: Assemblyman Jeff Miller has also introduced Assembly 2099, titled “The Zach R. Memorial Act”, in the legislature. AB 2099 will bring a renewed focus on teen driver safety. The California Driver’s Handbook will highlight JourneySafe.org and direct new teen drivers and their parents to important education materials and outreach programs about the unique risks young drivers and their passengers face.
Additionally, the family has become supporters of “Journey Safe” at www.journeysafe.org. The primary goal of the JourneySafe program is to educate teens and parents about the unique risks faced by young drivers and their passengers (arising out of another tragic automobile incident involving Orange County teenagers.)
FINAL RESULT: $1,350,000.00
TYPE OF CASE: Wrongful Death; Automobile Accident
INJURIES: Zachary R. sustained fatal injuries from the crash. The cause of his death was reported to be multiple visceral and skeletal traumatic injuries and blunt force vehicular trauma.
DATE & LOCATION OF INCIDENT: April 7, 2009 at approximately 1:40 p.m.
Live Oak Canyon Road, City of Orange
PLAINTIFF’S AGE: 17
PLAINTIFF’S ATTORNEYS: Christopher R. Aitken, Esq. of AITKEN * AITKEN * COHN
For Plaintiffs THE ESTATE OF ZACHARY R. by and through his Successors in Interest EMILY R. and CARY R.
DEFENDANT’S ATTORNEYS: None reported for Defendant
DEFENDANT INSURANCE CO.: Mercury Insurance- $250,000 (Mr. M’s primary auto insurance policy)
Scottsdale Indemnity/Insurance Company-$1,000,000, Mr. M’s Umbrella policy)
Mercury Insurance-$100,000 (Mr. L.’s primary policy)
KEYWORDS (3 or 4): wrongful death, automobile accident, Live Oak Canyon Road, Orange, 2008 Mustang GT, fatal injuries, reckless driving, slammed into tree, multiple visceral and skeletal traumatic injuries, blunt force vehicular trauma, Personal Injury Lawyer, personal injury attorney, Southern California personal injury lawyer, personal injury settlement, personal injury car accident
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