Toyota dealer to pay $15.7 million in damages to accident victims for poor maintenance

After five weeks in trial and just over five years to the day after an accident that stripped a Philadelphia doctor of the use of her left arm and her medical practice, a Philadelphia jury awarded $11.4 million to Noreen Lewis and $4.3 million to occupants of the rental car she was driving. Defendant Central City Toyota, under contract to rental agency PhillyCarShare to provide maintenance on the vehicle Dr. Lewis rented, was found 100 percent liable for the damages, according to Duffy + Partners.

Tom Duffy and Ken Fulginiti of Duffy + Partners represented Dr. Lewis in the matter, while other attorneys represented the additional occupants of the vehicle.

Defendant attorneys claimed that Dr. Lewis was driving too fast in wet weather and hydroplaned, skidding across a highway in New York and rolling down a steep ravine. In reality, mechanical failure due to faulty maintenance and service was the cause, Duffy + Partners claimed. As a result, what should have been a pleasant family outing to see Dr. Lewis's daughter perform in a school play in New York turned into a career-ending injury which will leave Dr. Lewis with severe pain and physical limitations for the rest of her life, the law firm claimed.

"Our goal for Dr. Lewis was to give her the means to move on from this accident and plan for the future," said Tom Duffy . "Now, that future includes financial resources to pay for good medical care, lost wages she would have earned if she could have continued in the profession she loved, and compensation for the massive injustice that she suffered."