Back in 1990, pop singer Gloria Estefan and her husband, Emilio, and their then 9-year-old son were all involved in a serious bus accident. Although this accident happened over 30 years ago, because of the details surrounding the accident and the outcome of the settlement, it was a memorable one.
The bus accident occurred near Scranton, Pennsylvania, in poor road conditions during the winter. Estefan, who was 32-years-old at the time of the accident, sustained a broken vertebra as a direct result of the accident. While not paralyzed, she still suffered from numbness in the tops of her feet and ankle weakness. This was a result of the additional pressure of the spinal cord. The singer eventually required an extensive four-hour back operation to stabilize her spine with metal rods.
Emilio Estefan sustained minor injuries, including a cut on his hand and bruising on his head. Their son, Nayib Estefan, sustained a shoulder fracture as a result of the accident. Other passengers on the bus also sustained various injuries, including broken ribs.
The accident occurred when a tractor-trailer on the road jackknifed, which caused a roadblock and traffic congestion. This caused the bus to stop, which was then rear-ended by another tractor-trailer that skidded out of control because of the snow.
Even though the singer’s surgery was a success, she had a long road to recovery ahead, and required additional physical therapy as part of her treatment plan. It was eventually determined that the trucker who hit Estefan’s tour bus was driving too fast for the current weather conditions. Because of his negligence, Estefan pursued a personal injury lawsuit to compensate for pain and suffering, medical costs, and loss of wages because she had to cancel her upcoming concerts.
In fact, she reportedly had to take an entire year off from performing to focus on her recovery; members of her band were also hospitalized due to the crash. In light of these various details surrounding her case, her legal team filed a lawsuit in federal court, seeking more than $50,000 in damages. However, upon further investigation and examination of the details surrounding the case, Estefan was eventually awarded a settlement of $8.95 million.
What makes the Gloria Estefan bus accident case somewhat unique is that the transport group who awarded the settlement to Estefan countersued the truck driver, as well as a repair company, to recover this money. The transport company claims that the tractor-trailer was not properly maintained and repaired and that ultimately, that was the cause of the accident.
When plaintiffs are awarded monetary settlements of this magnitude and other, they are often in the form of a structured settlement. This means that instead of receiving their entire monetary award in a single lump sum payment, they receive smaller installments over a specific period of time. This payment structure can work out for many people, but after a while, it may become inconvenient. After all, this is money they are entitled to, and for one reason or another, they need access to it sooner. In many cases, Plaintiffs are able to sell some (or all) of their future payments and receive a lump sum. Some people decide to sell only some of their future payments, while others might decide to liquidate their entire structured settlement for a lump sum of money. They might use that money to pay for education, buy a house, renovate a house, buy a car, take care of bills, and for other purposes.
If you received a structured settlement as a result of an accident case or other type of personal injury lawsuit, DRB Capital is here to help. Contact us today to learn more about getting some money sooner than payments over time.