Jury Awards $ 9 Million Verdict to Local 1 Ironworker After Construction Accident

The Case

Chris Kelly, a journeyman ironworker was working on the construction of the Amazon Warehouse in Monee, IL.  Chris and his co-worker were tasked with finding a truss and transporting the truss to a crane to be erected in the building. Chris was a “groundman” responsible for finding the piece and marking “center” on the piece. His co-worker was a lull operator responsible for lifting and moving the piece of iron. The co-worker proceeded to knock over the truss with the lull and the truss landed on plaintiff’s feet.

Mr. Kelly suffered fractures to both ankles, feet, and heels requiring 11 surgeries, as well as developing post-traumatic arthritis in feet/ankles, and now walks with the assistance of a cane. 

In-Depth Look

CHICAGO, IL – On April 1, 2022, 12 jurors unanimously agreed to award a $9,000,347.25 verdict to a 51-year-old Local Ironworker. Clifford W. Horwitz and Michael D. Carter, Jr., partners at Horwitz Horwitz & Associates, tried the case on behalf of the journeyman Ironworker who was injured when a co-worker lost control of a 5.2 ton steel truss.

We alleged that Clayco, the general contractor  was  responsible for all activities on the work site. They knew and were considered experts on what safety procedures should have been in place. And created more job site risk by allowing excessive deliveries before the time they were needed for erection and adding more congestion to the area.  

They tried to contend that other companies were responsible for the accident and falsely stated that Mr. Kelly was the signal man should not have been in the location when the truss was knocked over and crushed leg. In fact the local 1 operator who cause Chris’ injuries tried to blame Chris by testifying that Chris was the operator and knew this could happen.    We demonstrated to the jury that in fact that the ironworker and defendants, Clayco, employees changed their stories at trial. The jury agreed. The jury awarded Mr. Mr. Kelly over $9 million.  

Chris has lived a difficult life due to this accident and had to endure listening to his co-workers change their stories in an attempt to help their employer and the insurance company. 

Our Attorneys Stand Up For Workers

Recently, the Illinois Jury Verdict Reporter has honored Clifford W. Horwitz, awarding him with the Plaintiff’s Achievement Award. This coveted award has only been awarded to 15 attorneys since the Jury Verdict Reporter was established over 55 years ago. To be considered an attorney must first win at least five jury verdicts in excess of $5,000,000.00. Since 2012, Cliff’s trial team at Horwitz Horwitz & Associates has secured record verdicts at an astounding rate – every two out of three cases that Cliff has tried resulted in record-setting jury verdicts. 

If you have been injured in a work accident, contact our dedicated Chicago personal injury lawyers at Horwitz Horwitz & Associates today for a free consultation.