BWMK Partner Elizabeth Kaveny featured in Chicago Daily Law Bulletin for $5.25M settlement with Village of Merrionette Park

Burke Wise Morrissey Kaveny (BWMK) partner Elizabeth A. Kaveny was interviewed and pictured in a June 4, 2013 Chicago Daily Law Bulletin (CDLB) story for securing a $5.25 million settlement to resolve a lawsuit on behalf of her client, Adam Copack, against the Village of Merrionette Park. The suit was filed in Cook County Circuit Court alleging that Mr. Copack suffered traumatic injuries when his vehicle was broadsided by a car that was being chased by defendant Merrionette Park Police Officer John Longini. The settlement was reached on May 16, 2013 after mediation, and the lawsuit against the Village, its Police Department and Office Longini was then dismissed by Cook County Circuit Judge Kathy M. Flanagan.

"It's amazing how often police high-speed chases and pursuits end up with injuries of innocent bystanders — either motorists or pedestrians," Ms. Kaveny told the CDLB. The settlement that she reached represented the entirety of the Village's primary insurance coverage of $5 million. Shortly before mediation, the Village disclosed that it also had $6 million in excess coverage, but the carrier was denying coverage because it was given late notice.

Ms. Kaveny successfully sought an additional $250,000 beyond the $5 million settlement based on her client's loss of the opportunity to pursue the other $6 million in excess coverage. "From a plaintiff attorney's perspective, I don't usually go above and beyond to make sure that defendants have notified their insurance companies … so I think it's a little bit of a lesson for the plaintiff's bar," Ms. Kaveny noted concerning her settlement strategy.

Click here to download the entire CDLB article (PDF).