January, 2015

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Santa Fe Jury Awards $165 Million to Family of FedEx Crash Victims

autoA Santa Fe jury has awarded $165 million to the family of 2011 FedEx big rig crash victims, on January 23.

On June 22, 2011, at around 1:30 a.m., a FedEx truck crashed into a pickup truck at I-10 outside Las Cruces, New Mexico. The pickup driver, Mariali Venegas, 22, was killed in the accident along with her 4-year-old daughter, while her infant son survived. The driver of FedEx truck, Elizabeth Quintana, also died in the crash.

Following the accident, Venegas family had filed a wrongful death lawsuit against FedEx. In Friday’s verdict, the jury has ordered FedEx to pay $165 million to settle the claim.

FedEx spokesperson Jack Pfeiffer said, “We extend our heartfelt condolences to those affected by this tragic accident…We respectfully disagree with the jury’s verdict and are exploring our options, including appeal.”

VA Pays Nearly $1 Million to Settle Wrongful Death Claim

arbitrationThe Department of Veterans Affairs has agreed to pay $900,000 to settle a wrongful death lawsuit centered on the delay by a VA scheduler in referring a melanoma patient in 2011.

The lawsuit was filed by the family of a Veteran, Cliff Douglass, who was diagnosed with melanoma in May 2011 and died in November 2012. Douglass served in the U.S. Army just after the Vietnam War and later worked in Puget Sound, Washington. According to his family, a VA scheduler had to refer him for surgery at the University of Washington but he never made the call. The cancer kept spreading for 3 months until Douglass himself made the appointment. By then, the cancer had spread throughout his body.

Recently in January 2015, the Department of Veterans Affairs agreed to pay $900,000 to settle the wrongful death suit filed by Douglass’ sister Connie Olberg. According to Olberg, “I don’t think we can ask for more than that.”

It is believed that the settlement is the largest wrongful death payout by the VA Puget Sound since 2001.

$165 million Awarded in Wrongful Death Lawsuit

auto
A $165 million award in a wrongful death lawsuit against FedEx goes to the family of 22 year old Mariali Venegas and her daughter, who died in 2011.

The June 2011 crash involved a FedEx big rig that struck the back of Venegas’ pickup truck on I-10 outside Las Cruces. Venegas’s 19-month-old son survived. FedEx driver Elizabeth Quintana did not. Quintana was going 65 mph, and struck the pickup which was pulled over with hazard lights on.

The award of $165 million is a record wrongful death judgement in New Mexico.