John Hochfelder brings three invaluable benefits to his law firm clients:
- An unsurpassed reputation as the leading resource on damages in New York as evidenced by his renowned damages research site, NewYorkInjuryCasesBlog.com and his status as a damages lecturer throughout New York State not only for accomplished personal injury attorneys but also for trial and appellate court judges. It is a reputation that brings immediate credibility to any case he takes on and ultimately maximizes his attorney client’s opportunity for the most highly favorable recovery.
- Access to a unique and vast digital database of bodily injury and wrongful death cases and underlying case documents not available elsewhere.
- An ability to help his attorney clients obtain settlements and garner awards that more than compensate for his contingency-based fees.
Some cases in which HDC has made a difference:
Near-Drowning Leads to Death One Year Later
A well-known and successful New York City personal injury law firm asked Hochfelder to evaluate and opine upon all aspects of damages in a near-drowning case that resulted in the death of a middle-aged man over one year later. Liability was all but conceded.
Hochfelder reviewed thousands of pages of documents including deposition transcripts of many family members, voluminous discovery responses with numerous expert reports and extensive medical records. He then revised and finalized counsel’s draft settlement demand letter so that it was a cogent and powerful statement as to the life and suffering of the decedent, the impact he had had on his survivors and the sustainable value of a damages verdict. Hochfelder analogized the facts in this case to other cases that he already had in his extensive databank -- not just to the unique, extended pain and suffering period in this case, but also to all of the survivors’ claims including loss of consortium, parental guidance and household services.
Hochfelder's involvement in this case was not disclosed to the defense (at our client’s request). He was, though, available night and day, and during the mediation by phone as well as after the mediation until the case was settled three months later.
Credibly building up and demonstrating the value of these claims more than made up for the fee Hochfelder was paid when the case settled after mediation for $3,500,000.
Severe Traumatic Brain Injury from Construction Site Accident
A highly successful Manhattan solo personal injury lawyer was struggling to accurately figure out what was sustainable in a case scheduled for mediation the following month. The case involved severe traumatic brain injuries from a scaffold fall at a construction site. The attorney retained Hochfelder for assistance in presenting figures that would be both persuasive and favorable to his client at the mediation.
After reviewing extensive deposition transcripts, medical records and other pre-trial disclosure and investigation materials, Hochfelder prepared a 17-page demand letter with references to numerous cases addressing each of the specific injuries (TBI, sensory losses, facial paralysis and loss of consortium as well as loss of earnings). In addition, he utilized underlying documents from other cases not easily available elsewhere. Hochfelder also attended two mediation sessions.
Client obtained a $6,000,000 offer after the second mediation session, settling thereafter for $6,825,000 after resolution of complicated lien issues. Settlement more than compensated attorney for Hochfelder’s fees.
Pedestrian Knockdown Case
Hochfelder was retained by counsel for a 22-year-old foreign national who had sustained a non-operative foot fracture as well as some alleged emotional, cognitive and vision deficits due to a fat embolism that had traveled to her brain. Liability was contested. Counsel was uncertain how to value damages in view of the disparate injuries and minor medical treatment.
Hochfelder prepared a damages analysis, based upon references to analogous cases with underlying documents that neither plaintiff’s nor defendant’s attorneys had been aware of previously.
The case settled at mediation for $800,000. Following settlement, Plaintiff’s counsel stated, “There is no doubt in my mind that you (Hochfelder) added much more value [than your fee]. When the mediator walks in and says ‘nice to meet you, I read your blog,’ that gave us the credibility we needed… I will consider retaining you in the future on any high 6-figure or 7-figure cases.”
What Our Clients Say...
"I retained him because I felt his words would carry weight with the mediator. I was 100% correct. In the end, I think we settled for close to $200,000 more than the mediator thought the case was worth at the beginning. I have little doubt that John added value to this case."