Date of Verdict: November 26, 2018 (settled on the trial day)
Court: Middlesex County Superior Court
TEODOR NEGOVETTI and MARY NEGOVETTI,
DAVID L. WONG, TOWNSHIP OF EDISON, COUNTY OF MIDDLESEX, STATE
OF NEW JERSEY, FRANK KIRCHNER, GENEVIEVE PALAGNAS, and JOHN
DOES 1 through 10 (fictitious parties)
Judge: Honorable Thomas Buck, J.S.C.
Attorneys for All Parties: Dan T. Matrafajlo, Esq. of Beninato and Matrafajlo Attorney at Law, LLC and Frank P. Cofone represented the plaintiffs. Miriam R. Rubin, Esq represented the defendant driver, David L.Wong. Lori Brown Sternback, Esq. Of Methfessel & Werbel, PC represented the defendant homeowners, FRANK KIRCHNER, and GENEVIEVE PALAGNAS. Gregory Drews of Deutchman & Drews, LLC represented the interests of the excess carrier, Fitchburg Mutual Insurance Company. Insurance Carriers: Plymouth Rock Insurance Company insuring defendant driver, David L. Wong. The Excess carrier insuring defendant David L. Wong was Fitchburg Mutual Insurance Company. The defendant homeowners, FRANK KIRCHNER, GENEVIEVE PALAGNAS, were insured by Merrimack Mutual Insurance Company. Facts of Case: On September 13, 2014, defendant Wong failed to stop at a stop sign striking plaintiff’s vehicle. Defendant Wong contended that he was unable to see the stop sign because it was hidden by overgrown tree branches on property owned by defendants Kirchner and Palagnas.
Plaintiff was prepared to offer proof that he sustained a L4-5 herniated disc which required a transforming lumbar interbody fusion with allograft, screws and a rage. Apportionment: Defendants Edison, Middlesex County, and State of New Jersey were granted summary judgement ; Plymouth Rock Insurance Company paid $250,000 (policy limit) and Fitchburg Mutual Insurance Company paid $380,000 for defendant Wong and Merrimack Mutual Insurance Company paid $70,000 for defendant Kirchner and Palagnas.