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$400,000 Recovery for Trucker who Rear-Ended Another Truck

Federal Court, Northern District of Illinois

Attorneys Michael J. Goldberg and Timothy M. Whiting earned a $400,000 settlement for a man involved in a trucking accident who rear-ended a truck on Interstate 80. While most attorneys reject cases like this, preferring the opposite scenario where the plaintiff is the victim of being rear-ended, Michael J. Goldberg and Timothy Whiting would not allow this uphill battle deter them from defeat.

On February 17, 2004, the Plaintiff, Michael Baker, operated a semi-truck on Interstate 80. Mr. Baker first observed the Defendant, Ronald Rennhack’s, semi-truck on the shoulder of Interstate 80. As Mr. Baker continued eastbound on Interstate 80, he observed Mr. Rennhack’s vehicle leave the shoulder and enter Mr. Baker’s lane of traffic. Approximately 650 feet away, Mr. Baker applied his trailer brakes, leaving 650 feet of skid marks. Unfortunately, the trailer brakes did not stop Mr. Baker in time from striking the rear of Mr. Rennhack. Mr. Baker suffered shoulder and back injuries requiring multiple surgeries.

Attorneys Michael J. Goldberg and Timothy Whiting filed a complaint in federal court under diversity jurisdiction and argued that Mr. Rennhack failed to accelerate from the shoulder to a speed that was consistent with highway traffic, which caused Mr. Baker to rear-end Mr. Rennhack.

The attorneys for Mr. Rennhack argued that Mr. Rennhack was traveling at a sufficient rate of speed and had Mr. Baker applied his tractor brakes as opposed to his trailer brakes, he would have stopped or slowed his vehicle in time to avoid the collision.

Four accident reconstruction experts were hired on this case and all four agreed that Mr. Baker violated commercial driving regulations by applying his trailer brakes as opposed to his tractor brakes. However, after impeaching Mr. Rennhack during deposition testimony, and through zealous advocacy and their unwavering drive to overcome any obstacles in a case, Michael J. Goldberg and Timothy Whiting reached a considerable settlement, especially in light of the questionable liability, with the Defendants prior to trial.

The firm has also won numerous cases that were either settled or tried before a jury and resulted in millions of dollars in recovery for the firm’s clients over the past 15 years.

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