Tippi Hedren, the actress who starred in Alfred Hitchcock’s classic movie The Birds, won a 1.5 million lawsuit for injuries caused by water falling through a California soundstage onto her head. Ms. Hedren thought she had put a lifetime of headaches behind her when she had spinal surgery several months before starting a television show in 2006. She said the spinal surgery was a miracle cure to a lifetime of pain.
What Happened at the Soundstage
During the production of The Birds, Ms. Hedren famously suffered an attack by seemingly thousands of birds. In 2006, she began work on a show titled “Fashion House” in San Diego, California. While rehearsing for “Fashion House,” a gallon of water fell from the roof onto her head. In an odd turn of events, the claim listed a bird’s nest as the culprit; it had blocked an air-conditioning condensation tube, causing water to collect under the soundstage’s plywood roof, which eventually spilled onto Ms. Hedren. After the spillage, her severe headaches returned. She tried a number of remedies, including Botox and acupuncture, to no avail.
What Happened in the Lawsuit
When the remedies didn’t work she hired a lawyer because the headaches prevented her from continuing her acting work. The lawyer began a personal injury lawsuit against the soundstage but dismissed the suit without prejudice. The lawyer failed, though, to toll the statute of limitations. When Ms. Hedren’s first claim failed because the defendant successfully said the claim is too old, Ms. Hedren hired a second lawyer to sue the first lawyer for legal malpractice. A jury awarded Ms. Hedren $213,400 for past earnings lost and $440, 308 for future earnings lost. The higher court, in 2013, denied the second lawyer’s appeal ruling that the non-economic damages (for pain and suffering) were not out of line and did not suggest “passion or prejudice on the part of the jury.”
This Case Confirms Several Personal Injury Issues:
- Persistence is key. Defendants will fight every inch of the way. You need a law firm that will fight for you.
- Lost earnings can be a large part of a personal injury case.
- Juries will award large pain and suffering awards when they’re merited.
If you or a loved one are in need of an experienced personal injury lawyer contact the law offices of Cohen, Placitella and Roth at 888-375-7600.