In a Middlesex County suit, Kowaleski v. Spectraserv, a Manville man has received $4.25 million as compensation for injuries he sustained when a van collided with his motorcycle.
Plaintiff Travis Kowaleski, now 32, received his settlement funds on Aug. 22, said his attorney, Daniel Epstein.
Kowaleski agreed to the settlement with defendant Spectraserv Inc. and its driver, James Miele, on July 25, after an arbitration hearing, said Epstein, of Epstein Ostrove in Edison.
The lawsuit, filed in Middlesex County, was mediated by retired Superior Court Judge Frank Ciuffani, now with Woodbridge’s Wilentz, Goldman & Spitzer, according to Epstein.
Kowaleski was injured on May 28, 2016, as he was traveling on Union Avenue in Bridgewater. The Spectraserv van was attempting to make a left turn in front of Kowaleski when the two vehicles collided, Epstein said.
As a result of the accident, Kowaleski sustained a broken left forearm and left leg that required multiple surgeries, Epstein said. The suit claimed Kowaleski continued working as a retail clerk but was forced to work fewer hours, and will likely be able to work fewer years.
A defense expert agreed that the accident caused Kowaleski’s injuries, but disputed the duration of the injuries, according to Epstein.
Robert Dunn of New York’s Lester Schwab Katz & Dwyer, for the defendants, confirmed the amount of the settlement.
— Michael Booth
$950K Failure to Diagnose
The family of a man who died of a heart condition received $950,000 in their Ocean County medical malpractice suit on Sept. 10, settling claims that a doctor examined the man prior to his death but failed to diagnose the condition.
Jonathan Morse, age 44, was found dead in his car at the side of a road in Pennsylvania on May 6, 2015. He was on the way to a business meeting when he began feeling unwell and pulled over. His death was attributed to atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease.
Court records identify the defendants in the case as Silver Bay Medical Center and Vincent DiStasio.
According to the suit, for several days prior to his death, Morse sent text messages to DiStasio, complaining of shortness of breath, sluggishness and chest pain. At one point, the doctor prescribed Morse an inhaler in response to his text messages, , said the family’s lawyer, Joseph LePore of LePore Luizzi in Brick.
Morse began seeing the doctor about a year earlier, and the two regularly exchanged text messages to discuss the patient’s treatment, LePore said.
Two plaintiff experts opined that the doctor breached the standard of care by failing to order an X-ray, which they contended would have likely revealed Morse’s heart disease and potentially saved his life.
The settlement was reached on July 13.
The lawyer for Toms River-based Silver Bay and DiStasio, James Moody of Orlovsky, Moody, Schaaf, Conlon & Gabrysiak in West Long Branch, did not respond to call about the case.
— Charles Toutant