Attorney Benjamin J. Mayerson of Pottstown, PA, recently found closure on a legal battle waged against Nationwide Insurance that had gone on for 16 years. Mayerson was fighting this large insurance company on behalf of his client, Sheryl Berg, who was involved in an auto accident with no injuries in September of 1996.
Attorney Mayerson fought for his client on the grounds that the insurance company refused to declare the car totaled, as it was originally appraised, instead of requiring her to pay $12,500 for repairs and drive the car until the lease expired. Mayerson’s relentless and lengthy fight stemmed from his distaste for the auto insurance industry and the way they handle claims brought forth by clients like Berg.
Nationwide aggressively refused to make for a reasonable outcome for Berg. Both the judge who handed down the verdict, as well as Attorney Mayerson, expressed great disgust for the actions of Nationwide.
Judge Jeffrey K. Sprecher of Berks County stated, “Simply put, what Plaintiff, and more importantly, what lawyer in his right mind, will compete with a conglomerate insurance company if the insurance company can drag the case out 18 years and is willing to spend $3 million… Its message is:
1) That it is a defense-minded carrier
2) Do not mess with us …
3) You cannot run with the big dogs
4) There is no level playing field…
5) You cannot afford it and what client will pay thousands of dollars to fight the battle
6) So we can get away with anything we want to
7) You cannot stop us.”
Further, Judge Sprecher commented that Nationwide Insurance was willing to risk the Bergs’ lives to save money on their claim.
Mayerson fought relentlessly for his client over a time span of over a decade and a half. He was awarded $18 million in punitive damages and fees of $3 million by Judge Sprecher. Punitive damages are additional to actual damages and are awarded in order to punish defendants for acting harmfully and deter similar conduct in the future. They are often awarded when compensatory damages are deemed inadequate punishment for the defendant to pay.
Judge Sprecher commented that Mrs. Berg will never receive justice in relation to this claim as she recently passed away as a result of cancer. Attorney Mayerson’s continued work for his client in hopes of justice is incredibly admirable.
Personal injury attorneys such as Mayerson exemplify the positive image to which lawyers hope to aspire. Putting excessive time and money into one case with one client is worth it when the outcome deters powerful insurance providers from handling their claims in an unfair manner. Acting in the interest of the public in his fight for one individual against a large and powerful “defense-minded” insurance company, Mayerson’s sustained commitment is commendable and worth acknowledgment.
This case is a great example of why nearly anyone involved in an auto accident should contact a lawyer. Although Sheryl Berg was not injured in the collision, the insurance company with which she was a policyholder dealt with her claim in an unreasonable manner. By refusing to declare the car totaled, they put the Berg family in a terrible position as they paid over $10,000 for the damages incurred to their vehicle. Hiring an attorney experienced in personal injury as well as insurance lawsuit realms can make the best possible outcome for anyone involved in a car accident. It is important to know your rights and understand that large wealthy insurance companies will not always act with your best interest in mind.
Fellerman & Ciarimboli Law has had extensive experience in this area and is eager to help anyone receiving unfair treatment. Results matter. If you have suffered an auto accident and need legal help, be sure to contact Fellerman & Ciarimboli at 570-714-HURT today.