For another year, Michael Goodove and Franklin Swartz have been selected as 2014 Super Lawyers. Michael Goodove was selected as a Super Lawyer in the field of Plaintiff’s Personal Injury. Franklin Swartz was selected as a Super Lawyer in the field of White Collar Criminal Defense. Franklin Swartz also received the distinction of Virginia: The Top 100 Superlawyers 2014. Only 5% of Virginia attorneys are chosen every year and Goodove and Swartz were selected based upon evaluation by other top lawyers and independant research of the candidates. Goodove and Swartz will be contained in the 2014 Super Lawyers Magazine as well as in the 2014 November/December issue of Hampton Roads magazine.
VIRGINIA BEACH[separator top=”21″ bottom=”21″ style=”single”]
The claims read like an insurance commercial.
Potholes blowing out tires.
Trash trucks backing over mailboxes.
Smelly sewage flooding from toilets.
They’re just a sample of the dozens of complaints filed with the city each year seeking repayment for damages.
Some are sobering, others slightly silly.
Either way, they add up, with 205 auto and general liability claims resulting in roughly $1.2 million in settlements during the last fiscal year, according to the city’s most recent Annual Risk Management Financial Report.
A year’s worth of petitions obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request shows fender-benders and everyday mishaps as well as more serious incidents that sometimes result in lawsuits.
“It’s a wild gamut,” City Attorney Mark Stiles said. “A lot of them were interesting to read.”
When an incident occurs involving a private resident and a city entity, such as the police or a construction crew, the person must file a “notice of claim” within six months to seek reimbursement. Risk Management investigates and decides whether to cut a check.
If the person disagrees with the department’s decision, he or she can appeal or file a lawsuit.
Many of the incidents occur on the road. Some stem from run-ins with the law, such as one in which a man said police sullied his carpet while using black fingerprint-dusting powder during a robbery investigation. In another case, two people said their cellphones were broken while they were being arrested.
Over six months ending on Feb. 28, the city paid out $45,623. That included $95 to a homeowner whose sprinkler system was damaged by a city fire truck, more than $10,000 for a sewage backup into a woman’s home, and nearly $500 to a driver whose tire rim was damaged by a pothole on Davis Street.
But sometimes the city says no way.
One man wanted payment for a car wash – and for the mileage to get there – after he said construction workers at the Oceanfront left dusty hand prints on his vehicle. Another woman wanted her car repaired after she drove over an orange traffic barrel.
The city declined both claims, Risk Management Administrator John Grook said.
Michael Goodove, a personal injury attorney who has represented clients in petitions against the city, said Virginia Beach typically responds quickly and fairly.
“I think the city always tries to do right by its citizens,” city attorney Stiles said. “I think we also have an obligation to the taxpayer not to pay claims for which there is no legal responsibility, and I think Risk Management does a good job of finding the appropriate balance of those two.”
Kathy Adams, 757-222-5155, email@example.com
In a personal injury case stemming from a motor vehicle collision, a recent mediation with a retired Judge resulted in a top offer of $10,000 from State Farm Insurance Company. The case was tried in Virginia Beach Circuit Court for 2 days resulting in a jury verdict in the amount of $150,000. State Farm made a final offer of $20,000 during the first day of trial, but it was rejected and the case was tried to verdict. In addition to paying the full amount of the verdict, Michael Goodove also held State Farm responsible for court costs. State Farm hired a local orthopaedic surgeon to testify that our client’s injuries were not accident related. Goodove established through cross examination that State Farm’s expert had received excessive compensation and uncovered the expert’s relationship with State Farm and other insurance companies. The trial team consisted of Michael Goodove and Elizabeth Ufkes.
By Kathy Adams
© May 10, 2012
For more than two months, police and bail bondsmen have searched for 23-year-old Cameron Paul Crockett, who didn’t show up for sentencing after a jury convicted him of manslaughter in the drunken-driving death of a friend.
Now, federal authorities say they’ve joined the hunt.
The U.S. Marshals Service, which works to find fugitives believed to have crossed state lines or fled the country, is investigating Crockett’s case, spokeswoman Carolyn Gwathmey said Wednesday in an email. The marshals’ Capital Area Regional Fugitive Task Force and its International Investigations Branch are involved, she said.
Mike Rowland of Lucky Seven Bail Bonds, who posted Crockett’s $20,000 bail, on Wednesday in Circuit Court received another 150 days per state law to find the fugitive before possibly forfeiting the money.
“We’re steadily working on it,” Rowland said. He declined to comment on where he believed Crockett might be.
Meanwhile, Crockett’s friends and family have launched a campaign professing his innocence on YouTube and Facebook. A Facebook profile that appears to belong to Crockett has changed several times since his disappearance, including the profile photo changing once before being deleted.
Crockett has maintained he was not driving the night of Dec. 28, 2008, when 20-year-old John “Jack” Korte Jr. died in a crash on Wolfsnare Road.
In October, Crockett’s insurance company settled a wrongful-death suit with Korte’s family for $150,000. They initially had sought $10 million.
“I can assure you that the family was never motivated at all by any of the monetary aspects of it,” said Michael Goodove, the Kortes’ attorney. “This allowed them to force somebody to accept accountability and to give them some closure, which has been long overdue.”
Then, on March 1, a jury found Crockett guilty of involuntary manslaughter in Korte’s death. Although he did not show up for sentencing four days later, the jury recommended he serve five years in prison, half the maximum.
The conviction was Crockett’s third on charges connected to Korte’s death.
A judge threw out an earlier manslaughter conviction when the jury couldn’t agree on a sentencing recommendation.
Crockett still is awaiting trial on additional charges in the case, including drunken driving and intimidating a witness.
Now he’s also charged with misdemeanor and felony failures to appear. The misdemeanor carries a maximum penalty of a year in jail; the felony, five years in prison.
If Crockett fled the state, he also could face federal prosecution.
Prosecutors unsuccessfully tried several times to convince a judge to revoke Crockett’s bond, arguing he had violated his release conditions, said Macie Pridgen, a spokeswoman for the Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office.
Although Crockett had to surrender his passport, he still could have hopped a flight to another state or country, said Steve Sterling, director of airport operations at Norfolk International Airport. He said airlines are required to check only that a passenger is not on the Transportation Security Administration’s no-fly list.
“I’m certain that people who have warrants against them fly all over the country all the time,” Sterling said. “There’s not a system in place to check a wanted status on someone when they fly.”
Crockett’s attorney, Andrew Sacks, said Crockett has not contacted him since he didn’t show up for court.
“We’re extremely disappointed that Mr. Crockett has still not presented himself,” Sacks said. “We strongly urge him to do the responsible thing, so that his case can be appropriately concluded.”
Kathy Adams, 757-222-5155, firstname.lastname@example.org
For another year in a row, Michael Goodove and Franklin Swartz have been selected as 2012 Super Lawyers. Michael Goodove was selected as a Super Lawyer in the field of Plaintiff’s Personal Injury. Franklin Swartz was selected as a Super Lawyer in the field of White Collar Criminal Defense. Only 5% of Virginia attorneys are chosen every year and Goodove and Swartz were selected based upon evaluation by other top lawyers and independant research of the candidates. Goodove and Swartz will be contained in the 2012 Super Lawyers Magazine as well as in hte 2012 November/December issue of Hampton Roads magazine.
On January 1, 2012, Swartz, Taliaferro, Swartz & Goodove, P.C. relocated to its new law office building in historic downtown Norfolk. The firm continues its practice in the areas of personal injury, criminal and trial law. The new address is 220 West Freemason Street, Norfolk, VA 23510. We are located on the corner of Freemason and Duke Street in historic downtown Norfolk and handle cases all throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia. We are located within blocks of both the Norfolk Federal Courthouse and the Norfolk Circuit, General District and Juvenile and Domestic Relations Courts.
by David Ham
RICHMOND — People with their first DUI conviction could have to pass a breath test before starting the engine, if laws pass the Va. General Assembly and are signed by Gov. Bob McDonnell.
Senate Bill 378 and House Bill 279 require a person with one DUI to blow into an breathalyzer before the car can start. Right now, that’s only required for repeat offenders or when a person’s blood alcohol level is above .15 percent.
Mothers Against Drunk Driving Virginia says the bills were drafted twice to increase the chances of getting at least one passed.
Governor McDonnell supports the bill as a “common-sense measure to make roadways safer and reduce DUI-related injuries and deaths,” a spokesperson said.
“It eliminates judicial discretion when it comes to the cases of low BAC (blood alcohol content) first-time offenders,” argues Sarah Longwell, managing director of the American Beverage Institute, a restaurant trade organization that represents more than 250 restaurants in Virginia.
Longwell worries the legislation could eventually lead to breathalyzers in all vehicles.
“There is technology that has already been developed that is already in the implementation phase that is much more sophisticated that detects alcohol through air in the cabin of the car through low light lasers,” she notes.
Attorney and MADD member Mike Goodove states the bills won’t infringe on the rights of drivers with no DUIs.
“We’re talking about the people who have been convicted of a DUI and they want a restricted license,” he explains.
If the General Assembly passes legislation and the governor signs it, the law would take effect July 1.
For Immediate Release
For another year in a row, Michael Goodove and Franklin Swartz have been selected as 2011 Super Lawyers. Michael Goodove was selected as a Super Lawyer in the field of Plaintiff’s Personal Injury. Franklin Swartz was selected as a Super Lawyer in the field of White Collar Criminal Defense. Only 5% of Virginia attorneys are chosen every year and Goodove and Swartz were selected based upon evaluation by other lawyers and independant research of the candidates.
For Immediate Release:
Michael L. Goodove, Esq. has been nominated and selected to “The Top 100 Trial Lawyers” by the American Association of Trial Lawyers. Membership is obtained through special invitation and is extended only to those attorneys who exemplify superior qualifications. Michael Goodove specializes in personal injury law and has assisted thousands of clients in almost every area of personal injury law including but not limited to automobile cases, products liability, medical malpractice, worker’s compensation, legal malpractice and actively practices on both State and Federal Courts.
Michael Goodove interviewed Radio Program about Impaired Driving