Case Description: Skiing Accident
Court/Date: Nelson County Circuit Court, Virginia, 2003
Outcome: $150,000.00 Verdict
Firm Attorney, Rosalyn Hughes, Paralegal,
CW, an experienced skier, was enjoying a day of skiing at the Wintergreen Ski Resort. While on the expert ski slope, CW went to board the ski lift with a friend. While waiting for the ski lift chair to come up behind her, Wintergreen's employees permitted a snowboarder to attempt to join CW and her friend on the three-chair ski lift. The chair lift struck the snowboarder and CW was then struck by the snowboarder and ski lift. As a result, CW suffered a tear of her anterior prussic ligament in her knee and required surgery to repair the same. Fortunately, she only lost approximately two weeks from work and has had a full recovery with very few residual problems.
Key Legal Strategy:
Wintergreen Ski Resort aggressively defended the case attempting to blame the Plaintiff and relied on the defense of assumption of risk, and the argument that all skiiers assume these risks when skiing. The Plaintiff was able to show through the Defendant's own corporate representative that there was no particular risk involved in waiting for the ski lift and the trial judge ultimately did not permit Wintergreen to rely on the defense of assumption of risk.
The case was tried and the jury returned a verdict for $150,000.00, plus interest and costs. No settlement offer was ever made before the verdict.