Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Torts: Damages. Moody v. Blanchard Place Apartments

Moody v. Blanchard Place Apartments
Subject: Conflicting evidence of expert witnesses
Pl. injured when shocked by stove in Def.’s apartment building.
Special Damages: Those which must be specially pled or have ready market value. The amount of the damages can be determined with relative certainty.
Plaintiff’s witness
Past lost wages: those wages, inclusive of fringe benefits from date of injury to date of trial. Subjected to a discount rate which takes into consideration inflation and other economic factors, including previous earning capacity.
*3.96 years (date of injury to date of trial)
*21.4% of salary in fringe benefits, lowered to 12% (his were well above industry average)
*$12/hour = actual lost wages.
*1997+ 3% wage increase to reflect inflation.
Lost wages = $60.283, lost fringe benefits = 7,234.
Defendant’s witness.
*$8.50/hour = actual lost wages
*3% wage increase reflecting inflation
*$61,877 from date injured to trial, subtract income earned = $35,242
*Loss of past fringe benefits not included.
[JURY AWARD = $60,000] Past lost wages.
-Future lost income/future earning capacity = speculative/insusceptible of calculation with mathematical certainty.
[Factors]: physical condition before/after injury, past work record, consistency thereof, amount earned absent injury, probability of continued wages earned over working life.
-Award predicated upon difference b/t Pl’s earning capacity before and after injury.
Plaintiff’s Witness
*Life expectancy = 35.1 years from date of injury (75.99)
*Work life expectancy = 61.09 years, 20.2 years from date of injury, 16.24 years from trial.
*If he worked to full retirement age of 66.17, he would work 21.32 years from date of trial.
*$12 = earning capacity
*3% annual increase
*12% loss of fringe benefits, 1.5% discount rate
*61.09 = $437,382 *66.17 = $336,341, Average = $300,974
Defendant’s Witness
*Work life expectancy = 17.64 years
*Average annual income = $19,000
*6% discount rate
*If totally disabled = $181,579 invested to get $19,000
*If could work minimum age = $79,072 to get $19,000
*if became a journeyman, would only need to be compensated for training, 24 months, $27,012
*post-tax, no fringe benefits, would likely get health insurance.
[JURY AWARD = $100,000] Future Lost Income.

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