Written by Ronemus & Vilensky on May 7, 2020
Ronemus & Vilensky helped their client receive a $1.75 million settlement for an RSD (reflex sympathetic dystrophy), otherwise known as CRPS (complex regional pain syndrome) case. The term RSD is older. The newer one is CRPS, but both are still used and are synonymous.
The condition, although fortunately rare, has been known since the time of the Civil War. It can be the result of a serious injury but in many cases, CRPS results from a relatively minor injury. The diagnosis is often made when the pain experienced is disproportionate to the level of injury.
In February 2020, Ronemus & Vilensky secured a settlement of $1.75 million for our client who sustained serious injuries. Our client was a 45-year-old special education teacher who had worked for the NYC department of education for approximately 20 years. She was working at a school in far Rockaway, NY. The school brought in five trailers which were intended to be temporary classrooms. However, the trailers remained for eight years before the date of our client’s injury.
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The stairs and ramps leading in and out of the trailers were wood and they were constantly wet, moldy, slimy and slippery. There had been multiple complaints about the slippery condition of the ramps but efforts to clean or make them less slippery were not successful. Our client was instructed to teach a class in one of the temporary classrooms and as she was leaving the trailer to return to the main school building, she slipped and fell on the wet slippery moldy slimy staircase. She injured her ankle and left the school and went home. The next day she saw a physician. Over the next weeks and months, her pain increased in the right ankle and leg and she was eventually diagnosed with RSD/CRPS.
Over time, despite the best medical care and RSD treatments, her condition worsened until she was declared disabled by the department of social security. Her condition has been determined to be permanent by her doctors.
We sued the department of education for a dangerous condition and negligent failure to maintain the stairway. The case went to trial and it settled during trial for 1.75 million dollars. The doctors for the department of education would have testified that although our client had made some recovery, she still suffered from the effects of the injury. She was unable to work or take care of her home or family following her injury.