William C. Lindsay - Practice Highlights

We obtained summary judgment for our client by arguing that it qualified as a borrowing employer and was, therefore, immune from tort liability pursuant to the Worker’s Compensation Act. The plaintiff’s decedent, a repairman, was working on an overhead garage door when it unexpectedly opened, striking and killing him. Our client was one of several car dealerships held by a common owner. Although the decedent was hired by another dealership, we argued that our client exerted sufficient control over the decedent’s work to be deemed a borrowing employer. The trial court agreed, and the decision was affirmed on appeal. Prodanic v. Grossprops, et al., Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois Appellate Court, First District.

Our client, a general contractor, was sued for wrongful death and survival following an industrial accident where the contractor had renovated a plastics factory, and allegedly failed to provide sufficient fire protection. The plaintiff's decedent, a woman in her mid-forties with three children, burned to death when she dropped a bottle of this chemical which then ignited. We obtained a summary judgment from the Circuit Court of Cook County, which was affirmed by the First District Court Appellate Court. One of the remaining defendants paid $4,000,000 to settle out of the case. Lopez v. L.R. Hein Constr. Corp., Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois Appellate Court, First District.

We obtained summary judgment in a trip/fall case where the plaintiff was employed by a tenant of an industrial property, and tripped on a defective stairway landing at the edge of a loading dock. Our client was the tenant on an adjoining property. We contended that the defective stairway landing was not part of our client's premises and not under our client's control. The plaintiff contended that the stairway landing was part of our client's loading dock and under our client's control. The judge found that it was a common area, not under our client's control. The Appellate Court affirmed the summary judgment in favor of our client. The remaining defendant settled out of the case for approximately $800,000. Fitzgerald v. Excel, Inc., Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois Appellate Court, First District.

We successfully resolved several related construction defect claims for a steeply discounted value on behalf of a CGL insurer where contractors sought coverage for claims of faulty synthetic stucco, resulting in damage to several hotel buildings developed by a national chain. Extended Stay America v. Quaker Windows v. Schmitz & Liss, Circuit Courts of Cook County and Lake County.

We negotiated a unique "High-Low Settlement" with the plaintiff in a three car, rear-end accident. Apportionment of liability against the client at trial was greater than the "High" end of settlement. The non-settling co-defendant was forced to absorb the difference. Hager v. Shulda, Circuit Court of Lake County.

We limited a jury verdict to under $500,000 in an admitted negligence case where the plaintiff, a school girl, suffered severe facial disfigurement and other injuries when struck as she crossed in front of a school bus with lights flashing. The plaintiff was represented by one of the leading trial lawyers in the state-Pat Salvi-and asked the jury for $2.8 million. Plaintiff's settlement demand was never below seven figures. Bartholomew v. Chevsanth,Circuit Court of Lake County.

We obtained a not liable jury verdict on behalf of a national retailer in a false arrest case. Taylor v. Venture Stores, Circuit Court of Cook County.

We obtained a defense verdict of no liability in an auto accident case where the drivers both claimed the accident was caused by obstructed visibility as a result of overgrown shrubs on our client's property at the intersection. Vole v. Curry, Circuit Court of Lake County.

We obtained a defense verdict of no liability in a premises liability case where the plaintiff was seriously injured by a truck's tire block that shot out from a tire when the truck started to move. We convinced the jury that the trucking company was to blame for the presence of the block, not our client, which was the owner and manager of the dock. The jury returned a $900,000 verdict against the trucking company but found our client not liable. The plaintiff was represented by the Anesi, Ozmon firm. Cipich v. Federal Marine Terminals, Circuit Court of Cook County.

We received a directed verdict on behalf of our client United Parcel Service in a case where the plaintiff, a UPS package car driver, was injured at a residence where he was delivering a package. He sued the City of Des Plaines for negligent design, construction, and maintenance of the curb and sidewalk adjoining the residence, and the city impleaded UPS, alleging that UPS failed to provide proper training to the plaintiff. We moved for a directed verdict at the close of all the evidence, on the basis that as a matter of law, any training or lack thereof was not the proximate cause of the plaintiff's injury. The court granted our motion. San Girardi v. City of Des Plaines, Circuit Court of Cook County.