Motorcycle Accident Leaves Rider Dead: $1.975 Million Settlement

Man Pronounced Dead On Arrival At Hospital

$1.975 Million Settlement
July 23, 2001
A 40-year-old man was killed after he was thrown approximately 25 feet when a man driving a truck struck his motorcycle at an intersection.

The decedent, Robert M. Gianguzzo was riding southbound on Interstate 91 in Mayfield Heights. As Gianguzzo entered the intersection, the defendant, Joseph Presti, 83, struck Gianguzzos motorcycle, sending him 25 feet away from the point of initial contact. Witnesses advised Gianguzzo not to move and they called the EMS. An off-duty EMT was driving by and assisted Gianguzzo, who at that time told the EMT that he was having trouble breathing. Gianguzzo was transported to Meridia Hillcrest Hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival.

The defendants insurance company, Allstate, settled a suit for $100,000, the policy limits. A Scott-Pontzer claim was filed against the insurance company of the decedents employer, Federal Insurance and Chubb Insurance, because the wrongful death statute in this case greatly exceeded the amount recovered from the liability carrier. The insurance company claimed that the accident had occurred after the effective date of the legislation. After Federal and Chubb rejected the Pontzer claim, the case went to mediation on June 5, 2001. The parties were able to settle the claim for $1,875 million, bringing the total settlement against the insurance companies to $1.975 million.

Type of Action: Automobile Accident Underinsured Motorists Coverage Scott-Pontzer Claim

Type of Injuries: Wrongful Death

Court/Case Number/Date: U.S. District Court, Northern District/July 5, 2001

Caption: Fisher, admin. for estate of Gianguzzo v. Federal Insurance Co.

Judge, Jury or ADR: N/A

Name of Judge: Kathleen O'Malley

Verdict or Settlement: Settlement

Allocation of Fault: N/A

Last Offer: N/A

Last Demand: N/A

Attorney for the Plaintiff: W. Craig Bashein, Cleveland

Insurance Carriers: Federal Insurance, Chubb Group of Insurance, Allstate Insurance

Plaintiffs Experts: Dr. John Burhe (economist)

Defendants Experts: N/A

W. Craig Bashein
Estate of Gianguzzo v Federal Insurance
Settlement: $1,975,000.00
July 5, 2001