Michael Hodor v. William Kooyker and Terence R. Kooyker
Type of Injury
NECK INJURY AND FUSION
New York, New York
The parties negotiated a pretrial settlement. The defendants’ insurer agreed to pay $5.5 million.
At about 1 a.m. on July 18, 2009, plaintiff Michael Hodor, 30, a technologist, was a passenger of a car that was being driven by Terence Kooyker, who was traveling on Amsterdam Avenue, near its intersection at West 72nd Street, in Manhattan. Kooyker lost control of the vehicle, and the vehicle mounted a sidewalk and struck a lamppost. Hodor claimed that he sustained an injury of his neck.
Hodor sued Kooyker and the vehicle’s owner, Willem Kooyker. Hodor alleged that Terence Kooyker was negligent in the operation of his vehicle. Hodor further alleged that Willem Kooyker was vicariously liable for Terence Kooyker’s actions.
Hodor claimed that the accident occurred during wet conditions. He further claimed that Terence Kooyker was speeding and not exercising due caution.
Kooyker claimed that he lost control while attempting to avoid a taxi that had veered into the immediate path of his car. Defense counsel attempted to invoke the emergency doctrine, which prevents the attachment of liability to motorists who reasonably and prudently respond to a sudden, unexpected emergency that necessitates a speedy reaction.