Notable Cases

Fighting for Their Clients Nationwide

The attorneys of Boyle Brasher LLC have successfully handled thousands of cases on behalf of the firm's clients. The following are a sampling of the firm's Notable Cases listed by individual attorney.

To locate an individual attorney's notable cases, please click on a name or scroll down.

Richard E. Boyle

Belleville, Illinois
Phone: 618-277-9000 Ext. 218
Fax: 618-277-4594
E-mail: rboyle@boylebrasher.com
Learn more about Mr. Boyle by clicking here

Plaintiff v. Aircraft Manufacturer. United States District Court for the Southern District of Illinois. Products Liability. Mr. Boyle defended an aircraft manufacturer in a products liability jury trial in a lawsuit brought by a pilot and his four children. A verdict was returned for Mr. Boyle's client.

Plaintiff v. Cigarette Manufacturer. Circuit Court of St. Clair County, Illinois. Tobacco liability. Mr. Boyle participated as trial counsel for a large cigarette manufacturer in a lengthy lung cancer trial that resulted in a verdict in favor of the cigarette manufacturer.

Plaintiff v. Physician, Circuit Court of St. Clair County, Illinois. Medical Malpractice. Mr. Boyle obtained a jury verdict in favor of an ophthalmologist in a medical malpractice suit that involved an unsuccessful cataract operation.

Plaintiff v. Manufacturer. United States District Court for the Southern District of Illinois. Mr. Boyle successfully defended a chemical manufacturer in a suit by a plaintiff who lost both of his eyes.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. Illinois Supreme Court. While defending a case on behalf of a railroad client Mr. Boyle's client took an appeal to the Illinois Supreme Court. Mr. Boyle briefed and argued the case on behalf of his client in the Illinois Supreme Court and obtained an opinion from the Court that eliminated "the nature, extent and duration" of an injury from the Illinois Pattern Jury Instructions as a separate element of damages for which a plaintiff can recover.

Plaintiff v Railroad. Illinois Supreme Court. FELA. Plaintiff employee of a railroad sued his employer in an FELA case in the Circuit Court of Madison County, Illinois when the defendant did not conduct its usual and customary business activities in Madison County. Mr. Boyle argued that the case should be transferred to another Circuit Court but the trial court denied the motion. The case was appealed to the Illinois Supreme Court, and Mr. Boyle briefed and argued the case on behalf of the railroad. The Illinois Supreme Court issued an opinion in support of the position taken by Mr. Boyle's client and ruled that "doing business" in Illinois is a more stringent standard for venue than for jurisdiction. This ruling remains a case of major precedential value in Illinois courts with regards to whether a venue is appropriate.

Plaintiff v. Construction Company. Circuit Court of Madison County, Illinois. Construction Company liability. Mr. Boyle successfully defended a major construction company in a suit for mold exposure arising from a large building project.

Plaintiff v. Attorney. United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. Legal Malpractice. Mr. Boyle briefed, argued and successfully obtained an opinion from the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals to limit the damages in a legal malpractice case to the collectability of the underlying judgment.

back to top


William A. Brasher

St. Louis, Missouri
Phone: 314-621-7700 Ext. 216
Fax: 618-621-1088
E-mail: wbrasher@boylebrasher.com
Learn more about Mr. Brasher by clicking here

Plaintiff v. Railroad. After five-days of trial in the City of St. Louis beginning on April 1st and ending on April 5th a jury returned a verdict in favor of a Boyle Brasher client being sued for over $1 million dollars.

Plaintiff, a railroad conductor sued his employer for injuries allegedly sustained in three separate on-the-job incidents. Subsequently, plaintiff underwent a lumbar fusion at L4-L5 with internal fixation and a cervical fusion at C3-C4 with internal fixation and did not return to work.

The jury was out for approximately two and a half house and returned a verdict of no negligence on all three incidents, finding plaintiff 100% at fault. The jury also found no damages in any of the incidents.

Bill Brasher handled the defense of this case on behalf of the railroad.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. After a week-long trial that included a claim for punitive damages which started April 22, 2013 in the Circuit Court of Marion County at Hannibal, Missouri, the jury returned a verdict for our railroad client.

Plaintiff, age 38, was profoundly injured on March 23, 2007, when he was struck by a train on a bridge in Hannibal, Missouri. The basis for the claim against the railroad was that the train crew should have identified the plaintiff in time to stop or slow the train prior to striking him. Although Plaintiff was called to testify, he was in essence unable to testify given a closed head injury and paralysis that impacted his entire right side which significantly precluded any understandable speech. Plaintiff is mostly confined to a wheel chair but could, with great difficult, ambulate short distances awkwardly and precariously with a quad cane. In addition, plaintiff had bladder and bowel issues, difficulty swallowing and choking issues, painful contractions of his arm and hand, and virtually no use of his right hand, arm and leg. He also sustained fractures of the lumbar and cervical spine, shoulder, clavicle and tibia. Because of his injuries he needs assistance with virtually all activities of daily living including dressing and bathing. The life care plan ranged from $1.8M to $5.6M. Past medical expenses were approximately $460K.

After two and a half hours of deliberation the jury determined that the railroad client was not at fault and that plaintiff was 100% at fault. Bill Brasher tried the case for the railroad.

Mr. Brasher successfully defended the railroad in a grade crossing accident involving a train vehicular collision in which a seventeen (17) year-old passenger in the vehicle sustained significant injuries including brain damage. Because of the severity of the injuries and damages which included a life care plan in excess of ten ($10) million dollars was sought. Following a lengthy trial, the jury returned a verdict for the railroad in less than an hour

Riverboat Casino v. City. Mr. Brasher successfully challenged a city ordinance prohibiting political contributions by casinos or their officers or shareholders as invalid under the state constitution and state campaign finance disclosure law protecting fundamental constitutional rights.

Hospital Corporation v. County. Atlanta Georgia. Reimbursement for Hospital treatment from County Government. Mr. Brasher represented a national hospital corporation that sought reimbursement from a county government of medical bills incurred by the county for treatment of individuals in custody in the county jail. Boyle Brasher LLC successfully obtained a significant six figure reimbursement for its client from the county. The county had declined responsibility for the prisoner hospital charges. Thorough investigation by Mr. Brasher and aggressive negotiations with a serious threat of litigation prompted the county to negotiate payment.

Surviving Parents/Wrongful Death Plaintiffs v. Railroad. U.S. District Court Eastern District of Missouri. Early morning trespass by plaintiffs, adult son on the railroad's right of way. The trespasser was struck and killed by a train. Plaintiffs' asserted the railroad negligently allowed residents to traverse its tracks, failed to fence the right of way, failed to provide warnings, and failed to patrol the right of way in congested areas. Through aggressive early pre-discovery investigation Mr. Brasher of Boyle Brasher LLC established that the trespasser was intoxicated, that he had been sitting between the rails of the track prior to being struck, and that he had been drinking before the accident at a bar owned by his parents, the plaintiffs. After these facts were disclosed to plaintiffs' counsel, the case was voluntarily dismissed with prejudice at a very early stage with no payments of any kind by the defendant railroad to plaintiffs.

Client v. Multiple Excess Insurance Companies. Mr. Brasher was lead counsel in lawsuit against several excess insurance companies on behalf of a corporate client to recover settlements paid to plaintiffs in underlying lawsuits against the corporation. Insurance companies confronted with antitrust and related claims capitulated and settled which resulted in the recovery of approximately $50 million for the client.

Client v. Multiple Excess Insurance Companies. In another lawsuit filed on behalf of a corporate client to recover payment of monies paid in connection with environmental cleanup costs including problems caused by tenants, Mr. Brasher was successful in recovering millions of dollars from insurers who provided occurrence coverage for such losses but initially denied such claims.

Client v. Multiple Excess Insurance Companies. Mr. Brasher has also been involved in other excess insurance litigation on behalf of a corporate client in which the client sought to recover monies paid to employees with asbestos and hearing loss claims. These cases resulted in the recovery of very significant sums for the client.

Multiple Plaintiffs v. Multiple Railroads. Mr. Brasher has been a pioneer in the development of the federal preemption defense in which Mr. Brasher's clients have been successful in establishing that federal law preempts cases in which a federal statute covers a particular subject matter which forms the basis for plaintiff injury claim, and in which the defendant has complied with the applicable federal law. Plaintiffs' claims are preempted or precluded. Mr. Brasher has been involved in the development of this defense through his writings and assistance in many cases in which this issue was raised before state and federal courts, including various U.S. Courts of Appeal and the U.S. Supreme Court.

Corporation v. State Department of Revenue. Mr. Brasher's corporate client challenged a state's assessment of taxes, interest and penalties for failure to pay use taxes on certain maintenance equipment used in interstate commerce. Before the Missouri Supreme Court Mr. Brasher successfully argued that the tax was wrongly imposed. The Missouri Supreme Court reversed a ruling against Mr. Brasher's client, overruled a decision by the Missouri Department of Revenue and ordered that all taxes, interest and penalties be reimbursed to the corporation.

Plaintiff v. Corporation. Plaintiff's claim for damages was dismissed for failure to assert a counterclaim against a corporation represented by Mr. Brasher in a prior case involving the same parties. The court reaffirmed that all claims arising our of the same incident must be pursued in the same action. The appellate court affirmed the dismissal of the case against Boyle Brasher LLC's client.

Corporation v. Motor Carrier. Corporation sued motor carrier represented by Mr. Brasher for breach of contract and antitrust violations arising out of a failed purchase of a trucking company. Following a two week trial in state court in Indiana, a jury returned a verdict in favor of Mr. Brasher's client, the motor carrier.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. Circuit Court of City of St. Louis, Missouri. FELA. Plaintiff sued railroad for hearing loss sustained as a result of noise exposure from train operations. Following a week trial in the City of St. Louis, a jury returned a verdict for Mr. Brasher's client.

Corporation v. Elevator Company. Mr. Brasher successfully represented a corporation in arbitration proceeding in which an employee of the client was injured when an elevator suddenly dropped without warning. The elevator manufacturer, which also maintained the elevator, denied liability and the case proceeded to arbitration between a three judge panel which ruled in favor of the corporation.

Plaintiff v. Railroad . Circuit Court of St. Louis County, Missouri. FELA. Plaintiff sued railroad for knee and back injuries, as well as cancer allegedly caused by exposure to cumulative trauma and diesel exhaust at work. Following a lengthy trial, the jury returned a verdict for the railroad.

back to top


Thomas R. Peters

Belleville, Illinois
Phone: 618-277-9000 Ext. 244
Fax: 618-277-4594
E-mail: tpeters@boylebrasher.com
Learn more about Mr. Peters by clicking here

Plaintiff Estate v. Railroad. Circuit Court of Shelby County, Memphis, Tennessee. Wrongful death case. Plaintiff's decedent was an employee of a grain company who was fatally injured while moving grain cars. Mr. Peters and Ms. Reifers of Boyle Brasher LLC represented a railroad in the jury trial of this case. The railroad dropped off empty cars and picked up loaded cars at the grain company, but was not present at the time of the incident. The grain company instructed its employees including the deceased to move empty railcars with a front-end loader so the cars could be loaded with grain. During the movement, the decedent fell from one of the railcars and was fatally injured. Among other theories, Plaintiff argued that the railcars were defective in violation of the Federal Safety Appliance Act. Following a jury trial, the jury entered a verdict in favor of the railroad finding that the railroad was not at fault.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. Mr. Peters tried this wrongful death claim in Jackson, Tennessee in 2010. It involved a traumatic, fatal accident. Mr. Peters successfully obtained a verdict in favor of the defendant.

Plaintiff v. Manufacturer/Railroad Defendants. Mr. Peters successfully represented his railroad client in a case involving a plaintiff who suffered from mesothelioma as a result of exposure to asbestos. Mr. Peters obtained a verdict on behalf of his railroad defendant. The plaintiff received a verdict in excess of $21 million against the remaining defendants.

Plaintiff v. Manufacturer/Railroad Defendants. Mr. Peters successfully represented a railroad in another case involving a plaintiff who suffered from mesothelioma as a result of exposure to asbestos. Mr. Peters obtained a verdict on behalf of his defendant railroad. The plaintiff received a verdict in excess of $1 million against the other defendants.

Plaintiff v. Manufacturer/Railroad Defendants. Mr. Peters successfully represented a railroad in a case involving a plaintiff suffering from mesothelioma as a result of exposure to asbestos. Mr. Peters obtained a verdict on behalf of the Railroad. The plaintiff received a verdict of $74 million against remaining defendants.

Plaintiff v. Manufacturer/Railroad Defendant. Mr. Peters has tried other mesothelioma cases in which he obtained a jury verdict for his clients while verdicts for Plaintiff were in excess of $1 million and entered against the remaining defendants.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. FELA. Asbestos. Mesothelioma. Summary judgment granted in favor of Boyle Brasher LLC's railroad client on plaintiff's claim that her husband developed mesothelioma as a result of occupational exposure to asbestos. The court held that a prior release agreement barred the claim since the alleged possibility of developing mesothelioma in the future was a known risk the parties intended to originally release.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. After discovering that a plaintiff had died before filing a lawsuit against a railroad client, Boyle Brasher LLC successfully appealed a trial court order allowing substitution of the personal representative of the plaintiff's estate. As a matter of first impression in the State of Tennessee, the Tennessee Court of Appeals held that a lawsuit filed by a deceased individual is a nullity subject to dismissal, and that such nullity may not be avoided through substitution of the parties.

back to top


Charles J. Swartwout

Belleville, Illinois
Phone: 618-277-9000 Ext. 221
Fax: 618-277-4594
E-mail: cswartwout@boylebrasher.com
Learn more about Mr. Swartwout by clicking here

Plaintiff v. Doctor 1 and Doctor 2 and his Corporation. Mr. Swartwout secured dismissals for two emergency room physicians and corporation. Plaintiff’s claim is that all of the defendants failed to properly diagnose the spinal tumor which resulted in the injuries to his spinal cord and his resulting paraplegia. Further, plaintiff’s counsel claimed that if any of the doctors, including our insured, had requested an MRI, looked at his previous MRI, asked plaintiff if he had trouble sleeping at night or could not lie flat, or took a complete history of symptoms and prior care, that would have triggered a different analysis of his back pain beyond what was repeatedly diagnosed, that of pain believed to be caused by a bulging disc. Plaintiff’s counsel compared the actions of the defendant physicians to that of the physicians at Barnes who simply sent plaintiff to have an MRI, which immediately and unquestionably showed a large spinal tumor that had done significant damage to the spine.

Defense counsel obtained a dismissal with prejudice for Doctor 1 on October 19, 2012, due to being improperly named as a defendant. Defense counsel established through preparation of Doctor 2 and through causation defenses that plaintiff’s tumor was not at such a stage as to cause the destructive damage to his spine at the time Doctor 2 saw plaintiff. Therefore, on November 14, 2014, defense counsel obtained a dismissal with prejudice for Doctor 2 and his Corporation. Plaintiff’s counsel obtained a settlement against other defendants in the value of approximately $7 million.

Plaintiffs v. Multiple Doctors. Mr. Swartwout secured a dismissal for an emergency room physician. This case involves a 20-year-old pregnant (gravida IV) woman who had otitis media and visited numerous emergency rooms and clinics from 1/18/2009 to 5/1//2009 for care to resolve the pain in her right ear. The pain was caused by an ear infection that eventually led to a brain abscess with resulting brain herniation. The patient had to undergo a subocciptial craniectomy as a result of the brain abscess and herniation. At the time plaintiff started treatment she was pregnant. During the course of the treatment for the complications resulting from the brain abscess she lost the fetus. She also had a severe infection in her abdomen during her hospital stay which led to additional surgeries to purge the infection and its effects on her tissues. The scarring is significant. She clearly has suffered severe cognitive deficits and physical control deficits due to the brain involvement.

Our insured was one of the ER physicians who saw the plaintiff when she had complaints of ear pain. Defense counsel established through extensive preparation of the doctor for his deposition and through extensive expert disclosures that our insured’s treatment met the standard of care with what was in his visit in that the infection that caused the problems was not present at the time he saw the patient. A dismissal with prejudice was obtained for our insured on June 22, 2015. It is our understanding our insured is the only physician who was dismissed without paying or without going to trial.

Plaintiffs v. Doctor. Mr. Swartwout secured a dismissal for an emergency room physician. Plaintiff visited ERs in the Benton area repeatedly complaining of a bloody nose. The insured saw her, sent her home, and later that day she went to another ER where she was diagnosed as having a stroke. Defense counsel moved for summary judgment because plaintiff failed to properly disclose experts. Plaintiff moved for dismissal, which was granted on December 20, 2013.

Jane Doe and John Doe v. Doctor. Mr. Swartwout secured a dismissal for a physician. Plaintiff, a nurse, claimed that she was exposed to AIDS because the disease protocol was not put in place when she suffered a needle prick to her finger. Further, she claimed our insured refused to allow her to proceed with the protocol. After discovery our insured was dismissed on April 2, 2014.

Decedent’s Estate v. Doctor and his Corporation. Mr. Swartwout secured a dismissal for an emergency room physician and his corporation. Plaintiff’s decedent, a psychiatric patient, left the ER and committed suicide by allowing herself to be struck by a train on the tracks next to the hospital. Claim against insured physician was for failure to monitor patient and properly assess patient. After extensive discovery, the case against Doctor and his Corporation was dismissed.

Hartman v. Railroad. A St. Clair County jury returned a defense verdict in favor of defendant railroad and against plaintiff in an FELA case. Plaintiff claimed a severe knee injury when, at the age of 51, he allegedly tripped over debris in the railroad yard. Plaintiff claimed the yard was unsafe and that defendant was aware of the unsafe conditions prior to the injury. Plaintiff had not worked since his alleged injury and was disqualified from returning to railroad work by his physician. Plaintiff had right total knee replacement. Plaintiff's attorney asked for $700,000 in lost wages and over $1,000,000 in total damages. Charlie Swartwout of our Belleville office successfully countered plaintiff's account of the incident by putting on co-worker testimony that the yard was safe. In addition, defense counsel secured medical testimony that plaintiff had end-stage osteoarthritis and that he would have needed a total knee replacement regardless of the alleged incident. Testimony regarding the railroad’s vocational rehabilitation program was also introduced effectively.

Moore v. Railroad. Mr. Swartwout secured a defense verdict in favor of a sole defendant class I railroad in this case involving the traumatic loss of plaintiff's leg and a portion of his torso caused by the plaintiff being coupled by a railroad car. Plaintiff's wife sought claims for loss of consortium and economic losses. This case was tried to a jury in Madison County, Illinois.

Jones v. Railroad. Mr. Swartwout was involved in obtaining a defense verdict on behalf of a sole defendant railroad in a crossbucks only grade crossing accident. Plaintiff's husband suffered catastrophic brain damage and plaintiff's wife claimed loss of consortium and income loss. Following a lengthy trial in the Federal Court of the Western District of Tennessee, the jury returned a verdict in favor of the railroad.

Steinsultz v. Physician. Mr. Swartwout defended an orthopedic surgeon in a multiple count and multiple surgery case tried to a jury in Saline County, Illinois. Plaintiff claimed medical malpractice occurred in the surgical treatment and care of a tibia fracture, ankle fracture and wrist fracture. Mr. Swartwout secured a defense verdict on behalf of the orthopedic surgeon on all counts.

Patient v. Physician. Mr. Swartwout secured a dismissal prior to trial without payment of any settlement for a gastroenterologist who allegedly allowed cancer which otherwise would have been treatable to metastasize to other organs of the body. Plaintiff's allegations included failure to properly perform the colonoscopy and failure to follow appropriate guidelines, treatment and testing for symptomatology indicative of colon cancer.

Coleman v. Hospital. Mr. Swartwout obtained the dismissal in this obstetrical case (brain damaged infant) for a hospital that had been sued for alleged negligence of the hospital administration and the hospital staff as well as negligence of a doctor who had privileges at the hospital. After obtaining the hospital's dismissal on all counts, without payment of any settlement, the case went to trial against the co-defendant, resulting in a $19.4 million dollar verdict.

Roland v. Hospital. Mr. Swartwout obtained the dismissal of his client hospital in this catastrophic brain injury birthing case.

Leonard v. Nursing Home. Mr. Swartwout represented a nursing home in this wrongful death case tried to a jury in Montgomery County, Illinois. Plaintiff alleged that plaintiff's decedent was caused to suffer a comminuted fracture of her femur and subsequent death as a result of the nursing home resident being dropped by a nurse during a patient lift which required, by the nursing home's own rule, the involvement of two nurses. A defense verdict was obtained from the jury.

Peach v. Defendant. Plaintiff alleged cervical disc herniations and lumbar disc herniations as a result of defendant's failure to provide a safe place to work and to use safe work practices. Plaintiff had orthopedic surgery with multiple vertebral fusions. The case was tried to a jury in Madison County, Illinois and a defense verdict was obtained.

Hughes v. Railroad. Plaintiff alleged catastrophic brain injury in this Federal Employers' Liability Act case. During the course of his duties, plaintiff alleged that he was riding on a box car and was struck in the head by a piece of equipment when passing railroad cars on an adjoining track. Prior to jury selection, the Court ruled that the case should go to the jury on damages only. After a one and a half week jury trial, the jury was only out for three hours prior to the Court declaring a hung jury.

Estate v. Physician. Mr. Swartwout and his partner co-tried this wrongful death case on behalf of an ENT physician who had removed a patient's nasal polyps. The pathology subsequently showed that brain tissue had been removed. Plaintiff's estate sought damages for the death of a 26-year-old wife and mother of two. Plaintiff's experts faulted the sole defendant physician for allegedly rupturing the plaintiff's decedent's cribriform plate. The plaintiff's decedent's medical records revealed that the decedent had suffered from meningitis on at least two occasions. Plaintiff's experts discounted any significance of the meningitis. Mr. Swartwout was aware that meningitis was an indicator of communication between the brain and the outside world. Mr. Swartwout dug deep into the plaintiff's decedent's records and discovered that as a child she had been running with a toy arrow and had fallen, causing the toy arrow to go up her nose. Subsequently, Mr. Swartwout hired a highly qualified pathologist who was able to date the growth of the nasal epithelium to the meninges which, when subtracted from her age, matched the year in which she had fallen on the toy arrow. The expert pathologist was able to discern that the arrow had ruptured the cribriform plate and that over time the brain had diseased down through the cribriform plate and grown into the nasal epithelium. During trial, plaintiff's experts then attempted to fault Mr. Swartwout's client for failure to conduct an MRI prior to removal of the nasal polyps and for failure to recognize the historical import of two prior bouts of meningitis. In his pre-trial workup, Mr. Swartwout had obtained the MRIs taken at the time of the two separate historical bouts of meningitis and had obtained an ENT expert to prove to the jury, frame by frame, that neither MRI was sensitive enough to show the defect in the cribriform plate. The jury could not reach a verdict for the plaintiff at the conclusion of a lengthy trial and the matter was subsequently resolved for nuisance value.

back to top


Memphis, Tennessee
Phone: 901-521-2860 Ext. 222
Fax: 901-521-2861
E-mail: creifers@boylebrasher.com
Learn more about Ms. Reifers by clicking here

Plaintiff v. Railroad. Circuit Court of Shelby County, Memphis, Tennessee. Wrongful Death. The estate of a deceased grain company employee brought suit against a railroad defendant. The deceased was fatally injured while moving grain cars. Ms. Reifers and Mr. Peters of Boyle Brasher LLC represented and tried this case for the railroad defendant. The railroad dropped off empty cars and picked up loaded cars, but was not present during the incident. The grain company instructed the decedent and other grain company employees to move empty railcars with a front-end loader so that the cars could be loaded with grain. During the movement, the decedent fell from one of the railcars and was fatally injured. Among other theories, Plaintiff argued that the railcars were defective in violation of the Federal Safety Appliance Act. Following a jury trial, the jury entered a verdict for the defendant finding that the railroad was not at fault.

Plaintiff v Railroad. Circuit Court of Shelby County, Memphis, Tennessee. FELA. Ms. Reifers represented the defendant railroad. The Plaintiff alleged cumulative trauma injuries to his knees and back as a result of his employment with the railroad for over three decades. During the jury trial, the defendant railroad was granted a directed verdict at the close of plaintiff's proof as to plaintiff's alleged back injuries. At the close of the entire case, the jury returned a defense verdict. More particularly, the jury found that the plaintiff had failed to file his claim within the three-year statute of limitations period with regard to his left knee and found that the railroad was not negligent with regard to the alleged injuries to his right knee.

Plaintiff v Railroad. Circuit Court of Shelby County, Memphis, Tennessee. FELA. Ms. Reifers represented the railroad defendant. The plaintiff, who worked as a transportation clerk, alleged cumulative trauma injuries to his back which he claimed were caused by tasks he performed at work (e.g., lifting garbage bags and boxes of bottled water). After a hearing, the trial court granted the defendant's motion for summary judgment based on the plaintiff's failure to offer expert testimony by a medical physician or ergonomics expert within the time prescribed by the controlling scheduling order, and failure to offer evidence that his job tasks were unsafe or that the railroad was negligent.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. Circuit Court of Shelby County, Memphis, Tennessee. FELA. Ms. Reifers represented the railroad defendant. The plaintiff sued his railroad employer and alleged a hip injury which he claimed was caused by his work activities, including getting in and out of a high-rail truck. The defendant moved to exclude the plaintiff's medical causation expert based on the plaintiff's failure to timely disclose his opinions prior to trial. After the trial court granted the defendant's motion, the defendant moved for summary judgment based on plaintiff's inability to provide medical causation evidence to support his claims. The plaintiff offered no opposition to summary judgment which the trial court granted in favor of the railroad just days before a jury trial was set to begin.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. Circuit Court of Shelby County, Memphis, Tennessee. FELA. Ms. Reifers represented the railroad defendant. The plaintiff sued his railroad employer alleging cumulative trauma injuries to numerous parts of his body, including carpal tunnel syndrome, which he claimed were caused by repetitive tasks as a trackman over many years. The defendant moved for summary judgment pursuant to the FELA's 3-year statute of limitations based on the plaintiff's medical records and plaintiff's admissions concerning his injuries. Prior to the hearing on defendant's motion to dismiss, the plaintiff agreed to voluntarily dismiss the case with prejudice.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. Circuit Court of Shelby County, Memphis, Tennessee. FELA. Ms. Reifers represented the railroad defendant. The plaintiff railroad employee sued his railroad employer alleging traumatic and cumulative injuries to his back, shoulder, and knees. The defendant railroad moved for summary judgment based on the plaintiff's inability to present expert testimony on liability and causation, and, alternatively, based on the FELA statute of limitations. The trial court granted the defendant's motion and dismissed the case with prejudice.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. Circuit Court of Shelby County, Memphis, Tennessee. FELA. Ms. Reifers represented the railroad defendant. The plaintiff railroad employee sued his railroad employer and alleged a hand injury which he claimed occurred while working for the defendant railroad. At a jury trial, the defendant pointed to evidence that the plaintiff's injury was unrelated to his railroad work and that he had actually injured his hand at a previous job and aggravated it by an off duty incident. The jury found the plaintiff to be 75% at fault and awarded him no future lost earning capacity damages.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. Circuit Court of Shelby County, Memphis, Tennessee. FELA. Ms. Reifers represented the railroad defendant in a suit brought by a railroad employee. The defendant railroad renewed its motion to dismiss based on forum non conveniens after conducting thorough discovery. The defendant argued that Shelby County, Tennessee was not a proper forum because the plaintiff worked in Mississippi and Louisiana where the overwhelming majority of potential witnesses were located, and he had never received medical treatment in Tennessee. The trial court granted the motion and dismissed the case without prejudice.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. Circuit Court of Shelby County, Memphis, Tennessee. FELA. Ms. Reifers represented the railroad defendant. The defendant railroad moved for dismissal based on forum non conveniens in response to the plaintiff's claimed work-related injury which allegedly occurred in Mississippi. The defendant argued that the applicable law did not favor a Tennessee forum for the litigation based on the non-residency of both parties, the Mississippi locations of potential trial witnesses and plaintiff's medical providers, and other private and public interest factors. The trial court granted the defendant's motion and ordered that the case be dismissed without prejudice.

back to top


Richard M. Roessler

Belleville, Illinois
Phone: 618-277-6000 Ext. 217
Fax: 618-277-4594
E-mail: rroessler@boylebrasher.com
Learn more about Mr. Roessler by clicking here

Salvage Company v. Railroad. Arbitration. Mr. Roessler and Boyle Brasher LLC represented the Railroad. A salvage company tried to recoup claimed losses from the railroad in this arbitration after removing a deck from a railroad bridge. The salvage company sought arbitration claiming it was entitled to increases in the cost of demolition allegedly caused by the railroad. After completing the project and being paid, the salvage company/claimant demanded that the Railroad reimburse it for alleged additional losses on the job. Following the hearing and legal submissions, the arbitrator decided in favor of Mr. Roessler's railroad client. The arbitrator adopted the entirety of the railroad's and Boyle Brasher LLC's position and wrote in his decision that acceptance of final payment, including the final waiver of all claims, liens or other demands by the salvage company, had the effect of the salvage company releasing its claim for additional losses against the Railroad.

Plaintiff v. Doctor. Medical Malpractice. Jury trial. Mr. Roessler defended a doctor. Plaintiff underwent a hysterectomy and developed a post-operative infection. Plaintiff was allergic to all normal antibiotics and was treated with a very potent antibiotic, chloromycetin. She developed aplastic anemia.. Aplastic anemia was a known risk of treating with chloromycetin. Mr. Roessler and Boyle Brasher LLC successfully defended the case on the basis that the risk of death from an untreated abdominal infection outweighed the risk that plaintiff would develop aplastic anemia as a result of Boyle Brasher LLC's client prescribing chloromycetin.

Plaintiff v. Doctor. Medical Malpractice. Jury trial. Mr. Roessler defended a pediatrician. An infant, six months of age, was treated by a pediatrician for a period of one week for a viral infection. The child developed symptoms of bacterial meningitis and was treated by another doctor. The child ended up without brain function and died at the age of 1-1/2 years. Mr. Roessler and Boyle Brasher LLC defended this case on the basis that viral infections often precede the development of meningitis and that there is nothing that the pediatrician could have done to predict that the child would develop bacterial meningitis or prevent this from occurring. This resulted in a verdict for Mr. Roessler's client.

Plaintiff v. Medical Laboratory. Medical Malpractice. Jury trial. Plaintiff filed suit against a medical laboratory represented by Mr. Roessler and Boyle Brasher LLC and a pathologist who contracted services with Boyle Brasher LLC's client. Plaintiff alleged that defendants misdiagnosed cancer resulting in unnecessary surgery, resulting in permanent disability. Plaintiff retained the chief of pathology of a major hospital who testified that the biopsy had been misdiagnosed as cancer. Mr. Roessler retained a pathologist from a major teaching hospital as an expert who testified that the biopsy showed cancer and the surgery was necessary. The jury returned a verdict in favor of all defendants.

Plaintiff v. Doctor. Medical Malpractice. Jury trial. Mr. Roessler and Boyle Brasher LLC represented an orthopedic surgeon. Plaintiff alleged that the orthopedic surgeon negligently reduced a fracture of the left tibia and fibula resulting in a permanent leg deformity and defect. The medical expert located, retained and prepared by Mr. Roessler and testified that the orthopedic surgeon met the standard of care in performing the surgical reduction of the fractures. This resulted in a defendant's verdict on behalf of Boyle Brasher LLC's client.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. Retaliatory Discharge case. Mr. Roessler represented the defendant railroad. The defendant obtained a dismissal of the retaliatory discharge case in the trial court on the basis that it was a minor dispute and preempted by the Railway Labor Act. This case was affirmed by the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals and certiorari was denied by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Plaintiff v. Surgeon. Medical Malpractice. Mr. Roessler defended a surgeon who performed vascular surgery on plaintiff's leg. Complications resulted in amputation of the leg. Mr. Roessler located and presented the testimony of a highly qualified and respected vascular surgeon that the procedure met accepted standards and the complication was a result of a blockage which could not be corrected. This resulted in a defendant's verdict for the vascular surgeon.

Plaintiff v. Surgeon. Medical malpractice. Mr. Roessler represented a plastic surgeon who performed an excision of a cyst resulting in a post-operative infection. Expert testimony from a nationally known plastic surgeon was presented that this was a complication which could occur no matter how carefully the surgery was performed, which resulted in a defendant's verdict for Mr. Roessler's client.

Plaintiff v. OB-GYN. Medical malpractice. Mr. Roessler represented an ob-gyn who had performed a third degree episiotomy during the delivery of Plaintiff's child. This resulted in the complication of a fistula. A local ob-gyn testified on behalf of the defendant that the fistula was caused by post-operative infection due to plaintiff's failure to follow instructions. This resulted in a defendant's verdict.

Plaintiff v. Doctor. Medical malpractice. Plaintiff (a minor) developed pneumococcal bacterial meningitis. Suit was filed against Mr. Roessler's client, a doctor who treated the child for a pre-existing viral infection. The child suffered profound deafness as a result of the pneumococcal bacterial meningitis. Plaintiff tried to contend that the child had cognitive problems which was disputed. Multiple defendants had experts, pediatric neurologists, who testified that the defendants met the standard of care in their care and treatment of the child, which resulted in a defense verdict.

Plaintiff v. Doctor. Medical malpractice. Plaintiff filed suit against the defendant (ob-gyn) represented by Mr. Roessler alleging negligent performance of a tubal ligation resulting in an unwanted pregnancy. Mr. Roessler presented expert testimony from a well known ob-gyn from a nationally-ranked medical school who testified that no matter how carefully a tubal ligation is performed, a certain percentage of cases will result in patency of the fallopian tubes and unwanted pregnancy. The jury returned a verdict in favor of Mr. Roessler's client, the defendant ob-gyn.

Plaintiff v. Doctor. Medical Malpractice. Mr. Roessler's client, a urologist, performed prostate surgery which resulted in a post-operative infection and sepsis causing plaintiff's death. Expert testimony was presented that the urologist met all accepted medical standards and that the risk of infection existed no matter how carefully the prostate surgery was performed. The jury returned a verdict in favor of the doctor/defendant.

Plaintiff v. Doctor. Medical malpractice. Plaintiff alleged that defendant, a radiologist failed to diagnose a calcified disc resulting in permanent disability. Mr. Roessler presented expert testimony refuting these allegations resulting in a defendant's verdict.

Plaintiff v. Surgeon. Medical malpractice. Mr. Roessler's client, a general surgeon, performed hernia surgery on a patient who died of a heart attack during the surgery. Plaintiff contended that the surgeon should have had a cardiologist examine the patient before performing the surgery. Plaintiff had a history of high blood pressure but no history of heart disease. Mr. Roessler presented evidence that the plaintiff was examined by the anesthesiologist and that the surgeon had met the standard of care in the examination that he performed. This resulted in a defendant's verdict for Mr. Roessler's client.

Plaintiff v. Doctor. Medical malpractice. Plaintiff alleged that Mr. Roessler's client, a general practitioner, failed to diagnose acute appendicitis and failed to refer plaintiff to a surgeon. Mr. Roessler was able to develop the facts from the surgeon that the appendix was not involved in the case and that the patient developed sepsis resulting in death. The jury returned a verdict in favor of defendant.

Plaintiff v. Doctor. Medical malpractice. Mr. Roessler's client, an ob-gyn, performed a c-section resulting in a post-operative infection which led to her death. The defense expert witness testified that the patient developed thrombocytopenia to the extent that it was untreatable. There was testimony that the ob-gyn client met the accepted standard of care. This resulted in a verdict for Mr. Roessler's client, the ob-gyn.

back to top


Mark Kurz

Belleville, Illinois
Phone: 618-277-9000 Ext. 251
Fax: 618-277-4594
E-mail: mkurz@boylebrasher.com
Learn more about Mr. Kurz by clicking here

Plaintiff v. Manufacturer/Railroad Defendants. Circuit Court of McLean County, Illinois. FELA asbestos case. Mr. Kurz defended a railroad company in a lawsuit involving a claim of mesothelioma as a result of exposure to asbestos. The trial proceeded against four defendants and lasted a total of six weeks in Bloomington, Illinois. Mr. Kurz obtained a directed verdict on behalf of his railroad client at the close of plaintiff's evidence.

Plaintiff v. Manufacturer/Railroad Defendants. Mr. Kurz represented a railroad company in a lawsuit that involved a claim of mesothelioma as a result of exposure to asbestos. Four other defendants were involved in the trial. The railroad company received a verdict in its favor. A jury verdict in excess of $2.5 million was returned against several other defendants.

Plaintiff v. Manufacturer/Railroad Defendants. Mr. Kurz represented a railroad company in a case involving a claim of mesothelioma as a result of exposure to asbestos. Mr. Kurz' railroad client received a jury verdict in its favor. Plaintiff obtained a verdict in excess of $6 Million against the remaining defendants.

Plaintiff v. Railroad et al. Mr.Kurz represented several railroad defendants and railroad employees in a lawsuit that involved a railroad highway grade crossing accident with severe injuries to the plaintiff. After extensive discovery, Mr. Kurz obtained summary judgment on behalf of the defendant railroad and against plaintiff on the issue of sole proximate cause. The court determined that the fault for the accident rested exclusively with the plaintiff.

Various Plaintiffs v. Railroad. Mr. Kurz has obtained several voluntary dismissals and/or involuntary dismissals for occupational exposure claims brought against railroads based upon prior releases or statute of limitations.

back to top


James Bax

St. Louis, Missouri
Phone: 314-621-7700 Ext. 219
Fax: 314-621-1088
Email: jbax@boylebrasher.com
Learn more about Mr. Bax by clicking here

Employee Plaintiff v. Railroad. Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois. FELA. Plaintiff claimed that he permanently injured his knee when he stepped on snow covered debris in Defendant's yard. Plaintiff had surgery on his knee and later developed blood clots in his leg necessitating the implantation of a filter in the vena cava. Mr. Bax represented the defendant railroad. After Mr. Bax obtained several favorable rulings on pretrial motions including the exclusion of plaintiff's expert witness, the case settled prior to jury selection for the amount that the defendant had offered a year earlier.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. Circuit Court of Fayette County, Illinois. Vehicle/train collision. Mr. Bax represented the defendant railroad. Plaintiff was backing up when her vehicle became stuck in a snow bank next to the railroad tracks and was struck by a passing train. Plaintiff suffered numerous injuries. She ultimately had a cervical spinal fusion. Plaintiff alleged that the railroad was negligent in not barricading its right of way. The jury returned a verdict of not guilty in favor of defendant.

Employee Plaintiff v. Defendant Railroad and Intermodal Company. Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois. Employee claimed that defendants failed to properly protect a railroad crossing within the yard that allegedly led to a collision between plaintiff's vehicle and a train operating in the yard. Mr. Bax defended both the intermodal company and the railroad. After a six day jury trial the jury returned a defense verdict for the intermodal company and awarded an amount to plaintiff that was substantially less than the amount he demanded to settle the case.

Employee Plaintiff v. Railroad. Circuit Court of St. Clair County, Illinois. Mr. Bax represented the defendant railroad. Plaintiff, a carman, claimed he injured his back when he stepped into a hole in the floor of defendant's car shop while carrying an eighty pound object. Plaintiff suffered a herniated disc which required a lumbar fusion which failed to relieve any of plaintiff's pain. The case was tried to a jury. Evidence was introduced that the hole in the floor of the railroad's building had been present for nearly 20 years and that the defendant railroad had been aware of the hole for many years. Plaintiff claimed over eight hundred thousand dollars in lost wages. The jury returned a verdict for an amount substantially less than Plaintiff's lowest settlement demand.

Employee Plaintiff v. Railroad. Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois. FELA. Employee was a conductor working for defendant railroad in its Chicago yard. Plaintiff claimed he was injured when the ground gave way beneath his feet during a switching operation injuring his ankle. Plaintiff had two surgeries to fuse different bones in his left foot. Mr. Bax defended the railroad by arguing a lack of notice and that plaintiff had failed to mitigate his damages. After a five day trial the jury returned a verdict for less than the amount the defendant railroad had offered to plaintiff to settle the case.

back to top


St. Louis, Missouri
Phone: 314-621-7700 Ext. 221
Fax: 314-621-1088
E-mail: tbell@boylebrasher.com

Plaintiff v. Railroad. After five-days of trial in the City of St. Louis beginning on April 1st and ending on April 5th a jury returned a verdict in favor of a Boyle Brasher client being sued for over $1 million dollars.

Plaintiff, a railroad conductor sued his employer for injuries allegedly sustained in three separate on-the-job incidents. Subsequently, plaintiff underwent a lumbar fusion at L4-L5 with internal fixation and a cervical fusion at C3-C4 with internal fixation and did not return to work.

The jury was out for approximately two and a half house and returned a verdict of no negligence on all three incidents, finding plaintiff 100% at fault. The jury also found no damages in any of the incidents.

Bill Brasher handled the defense of this case on behalf of the railroad.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. After a week-long trial that included a claim for punitive damages which started April 22, 2013 in the Circuit Court of Marion County at Hannibal, Missouri, the jury returned a verdict for our railroad client.

Plaintiff, age 38, was profoundly injured on March 23, 2007, when he was struck by a train on a bridge in Hannibal, Missouri. The basis for the claim against the railroad was that the train crew should have identified the plaintiff in time to stop or slow the train prior to striking him. Although Plaintiff was called to testify, he was in essence unable to testify given a closed head injury and paralysis that impacted his entire right side which significantly precluded any understandable speech. Plaintiff is mostly confined to a wheel chair but could, with great difficult, ambulate short distances awkwardly and precariously with a quad cane. In addition, plaintiff had bladder and bowel issues, difficulty swallowing and choking issues, painful contractions of his arm and hand, and virtually no use of his right hand, arm and leg. He also sustained fractures of the lumbar and cervical spine, shoulder, clavicle and tibia. Because of his injuries he needs assistance with virtually all activities of daily living including dressing and bathing. The life care plan ranged from $1.8M to $5.6M. Past medical expenses were approximately $460K.

After two and a half hours of deliberation the jury determined that the railroad client was not at fault and that plaintiff was 100% at fault. Bill Brasher tried the case for the railroad.

back to top


Andrew Corkery

Belleville, Illinois
Phone: 618-277-9000 Ext. 219
Fax: 618-277-4594
E-mail: acorkery@boylebrasher.com
Learn more about Mr. Corkery by clicking here

Plaintiff v. Railroad. A St. Clair County jury returned a defense verdict in favor of a Boyle Brasher client and against a plaintiff in an FELA case. Plaintiff claimed a severe knee injury when, at the age of 51, he allegedly tripped over debris on railroad property in 2004. Plaintiff claimed the yard was unsafe and that defendant was aware of the unsafe condition prior to the injury. Plaintiff had not worked since that date and was disqualified from returning to railroad work by a physician. Plaintiff had right total knee replacement. Plaintiff's attorney asked for $700,000 in lost wages and over $1,000,000 in total damages.

Charlie Swartwout and Andy Corkery of our Belleville office successfully countered plaintiff's account of the incident by putting on co-worker testimony that the yard was not full of debris and tripping hazards. In addition, defense counsel secured medical testimony that plaintiff had end-stage osteoarthritis and that he would have needed a total knee replacement regardless of the alleged incident. Charlie and Andy also introduced testimony regarding the vocational rehabilitation program that was available to plaintiff which plaintiff failed to avail himself of.

Congratulations to Charlie Swartwout and Andy Corkery on another defense verdict.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. Circuit Court of Madison County, Illinois. Mr. Corkery was co-counsel with Charles Swartwout of Boyle Brasher LLC at trial. Plaintiff sustained a traumatic amputation of a leg and part of his torso as a result of being crushed between a railcar and a piece of machinery. Jury trial in Madison County Illinois. Plaintiff's counsel asked for 30 million dollars in closing argument. The jury returned a defense verdict, and Boyle Brasher LLC prevailed on post trial motions.

Hinkle v. Railroad. Circuit Court of the City of St. Louis, Missouri. Third Party trespasser claim against two railroads. Boyle Brasher LLC represented both defendant Railroads. The case involved a 13 year old boy who sustained a leg amputation while trespassing on the railroad's track. Through an indemnity agreement Mr. Corkery was one of the attorneys representing both railroads, the railroad that operated the train and the railroad on whose track the incident occurred. Mr. Corkery prepared and filed Motions for Summary Judgment for both railroads. In response to these motions plaintiff voluntarily dismissed his claims which resulted in a dismissal with prejudice of all claims against both railroads.

Plaintiffs v. Nursing Home. Mr. Corkery briefed appeals to the Illinois Court of Appeals and to the Illinois Supreme Court to protect a defense verdict obtained by Charles Swartwout of Boyle Brasher LLC. The case involved a wrongful death claim in which plaintiffs claimed that their decedent's death was the result of the decedent being dropped at a nursing home. The Appellate Court affirmed the verdict won by Boyle Brasher LLC, and the Supreme Court of Illinois denied plaintiff's petition for leave to appeal.

Plaintiff v. Doctor. Mr. Corkery prepared appellate briefs filed in the Illinois Court of Appeals and in the Illinois Supreme Court. The case (along with a companion case in another Illinois Court of Appeals) established that a plaintiff in a medical malpractice case is not entitled to an extension of the statutory time limit within which to file an affidavit (certificate of merit) in support of a claim after plaintiff takes a voluntary dismissal. The Appellate Court upheld the dismissal of the defendant doctor represented by Boyle Brasher LLC, and the Illinois Supreme Court denied plaintiff's petition for leave to appeal.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. Mr. Corkery was co-counsel with Charles Swartwout of Boyle Brasher LLC in this jury trial in the Circuit Court of Madison County, Illinois in which plaintiff alleged catastrophic brain injury as a result of hitting his head on a moving railcar. The trial court ruled that the case would be tried to the jury on damages only. The trial resulted in a hung jury, and the Railroad was subsequently able to negotiate a favorable settlement.

Vehicular Accident. In a jury trial resulting from a vehicular collision tried in the Circuit Court of St. Clair County, Illinois, Mr. Corkery obtained a directed verdict for the defendant at the close of evidence. The court granted the directed verdict based upon Boyle Brasher LLC's argument that another vehicle was the intervening superseding proximate cause of the accident.

back to top


James R. Garrison

Belleville, Illinois
Phone: 618-277-9000
Fax: 618-277-4594
E-mail: jgarrison@boylebrasher.com
Learn more about Mr. Garrison by clicking here

Plaintiff v. Passenger Railroad. Circuit Court of City of St. Louis, Missouri. Railroad Grade Crossing Case. This case arose out of a collision between a passenger train and a passenger vehicle at a railroad crossing in the City of St. Louis. The defense of the claim was challenging because there had been several other train/vehicle collisions at the same crossing including a prior accident in which Plaintiff's attorney had represented the decedent's heirs. In this case plaintiff claimed a major brain injury and other serious physical injuries. Plaintiff denied any recollection of the events surrounding the accident. Mr. Garrison with the assistance of a Boyle Brasher LLC paralegal conducted thorough medical discovery while simultaneously conducting a rigorous internet investigation of plaintiff's background. As a result of those efforts, Boyle Brasher LLC was able to discover plaintiff's social networking posts as well as posts to some body building websites. Those posts revealed information that would have been devastating to plaintiff at trial, including several direct and significant contradictions to plaintiff's deposition testimony and several direct and significant contradictions to his medical records. After building this discovery record for more than a year, Mr. Garrison produced thousands of pages of internet printouts, photographs and a detailed summary to plaintiff's attorney documenting plaintiff's contradictions with his sworn testimony and medical records. The case was settled in an amount extremely advantageous to Boyle Brasher LLC's client shortly after these disclosures.

back to top


Ralph Godsy

St. Louis, Missouri
Phone: 314-621-7700
Fax: 314-621-1088
E-mail: rgodsy@boylebrasher.com
Learn more about Mr. Godsy by clicking here

Estate v. Short Line Railroad. U.S. District Court for Western District of Missouri; Circuit Court of Jackson County, Missouri. Wrongful death/railroad grade crossing case. Plaintiffs' decedent died at a railroad highway crossing. Mr. Godsy represented a short line railroad and a railroad holding company. The case was dismissed in federal court for lack of jurisdiction and refiled in state court. Mr. Godsy prepared and argued a motion to dismiss the case on the theory that the named plaintiffs lacked standing to sue. The motion to dismiss was granted and the case was dismissed with prejudice on all counts.

Estate v. Short Line Railroad (II). Mr. Godsy co-authored the Response Brief to Plaintiff's Appeal and successfully represented all defendants at oral argument before the Missouri Court of Appeals, Western District. Dismissal of Plaintiff's case with prejudice was affirmed.

Employee v. Railroad. Circuit Court of St. Louis County, Missouri. FELA (asbestos). Mr. Godsy analyzed plaintiff's prior claims and the settlement documents for those matters, Mr. Godsy successfully argued prior release of the asbestos claims in a motion for summary judgment. After the summary judgment motion was filed, plaintiff voluntarily dismissed this case on the eve of the hearing on the summary judgment motion.

Injured Motorist v. Trucking Company. Personal injury claim filed in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri, Southwest Division. Motorist alleged he was injured in accident with client trucking company. Mr. Godsy moved to dismiss the case as a result of plaintiff's numerous violations of discovery orders. The court agreed with this position and ordered the case against Boyle Brasher LLC's client dismissed.

Railroad Employee v. Class I Railroad (I). Circuit Court of St. Louis County, Missouri. FELA (toxic exposure/cancer and cumulative trauma to knees and spine). Mr. Godsy conducted all the discovery and prepared the case for trial. He also co-tried this case with Mr. Brasher of Boyle Brasher LLC. The jury rendered a verdict in favor of Boyle Brasher LLC's client.

Railroad Employee v. Class I Railroad (II). Missouri Court of Appeals, Eastern District of Missouri. Mr. Godsy assisted in drafting the response brief and successfully represented the railroad during oral arguments to the Court of Appeals. Verdict in favor of BBLF's client was affirmed.

Injured passengers v. Trucking Company . U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri. Injured passengers brought suit against defendant trucking company and deceased driver in state court. Mr. Godsy removed this case from Jefferson County, Missouri Circuit Court and successfully argued against remand with the theory that the decedent and defendant ad-litem, both Missouri residents, were not parties at interest in the litigation and that the proper party to consider for diversity consideration was the insurance company, a non-Missouri resident. This matter proceeded to a jury trial where Mr. Godsy was the trucking company's lead trial counsel. The jury returned a defense verdict in favor of the trucking company.

back to top


David B. Schneidewind

Belleville, Illinois
Phone: 618-277-9000 Ext. 338
Fax: 618-277-4594
Email: dschneidewind@boylebrasher.com
Learn more about Mr. Schneidewind by clicking here

Plaintiff v. Nursing Home. Circuit Court of Montgomery County, Illinois. Wrongful Death Case. Mr. Schneidewind second chaired in the trial of this case representing a nursing home. The plaintiff alleged that plaintiff's decedent suffered a comminuted fracture of her femur and subsequent death as a result of being dropped by a nursing home employee. Jury verdict for Boyle Brasher LLC's client.

Organization v. Farming Corporation. Mr. Schneidewind second chaired and represented the defendant, a large farming corporation, in this jury trial which involved a property dispute and water rights action tried in the Circuit Court of Clinton County, Illinois. Plaintiff alleged that it suffered harm from defendant clearing trees for farming purposes and directing water upon its property. A defense verdict was obtained from the jury.

FELA Plaintiff v. Railroad. Kentucky. Mr. Schneidewind successfully obtained a dismissal of plaintiff's case which sought damages for plaintiff's cancer which was allegedly caused by radiation exposure while employed by the railroad defendant. Boyle Brasher LLC successfully argued that plaintiff's claim was outside the time in which suit could be filed under the applicable statute of limitations. Mr. Schneidewind handled the appeal and was successful in obtaining an affirmation of the lower court's ruling. He was also able to file pleadings that persuaded the Kentucky Supreme Court to decline discretionary review of the lower courts' decisions.

FELA Plaintiff v. Railroad. Kentucky. Mr. Schneidewind successfully obtained the dismissal of two causes of action seeking damages arising from alleged occupational exposure to asbestos for plaintiff's failure to prosecute the causes of action. On appeal Mr. Schneidewind was successful in obtaining a ruling from the Kentucky Court of Appeals affirming the lower court's decision.

Local Municipal Representation. Mr. Schneidewind successfully negotiated on behalf of several local municipal entities to obtain concessions from a hauler of equipment that weighed in excess of 1,000,000 lbs. across municipally controlled roadways.

back to top


Tom McDermott

St. Louis, Missouri
Phone: 314-621-7700 Ext. 229
Fax: 314-621-1088
E-mail: tmcdermott@boylebrasher.com
Learn more about Mr. McDermott by clicking here

Plaintiff v. Railroad. Circuit Court of City of St. Louis, MO. FELA. A forty-four year old maintenance of way railroad worker sued the railroad alleging that his acute lymphocytic leukemia was caused by exposure to herbicides used by Boyle Brasher LLC's railroad defendant to spray for vegetation control along its right of way. Plaintiff alleged he was exposed to herbicide on one occasion when a spray truck was spraying close to where he was working and on other occasions when herbicide residue was left on equipment that plaintiff had to maintain and repair. Investigation at the suggestion of Mr. McDermott and Mr. Brasher showed that the spray trucks were not in the area at the time plaintiff claimed he was exposed. The investigation also revealed plaster dust from a nearby factory, not herbicide. At another location the recommended investigation disclosed that a large water truck from a quarry drove by where plaintiff had been working and sprayed water to settle the dust. The water spray and quarry dust, not herbicide, left a residue on the equipment. In addition an analysis of plaintiff's medical records by Boyle Brasher LLC revealed that plaintiff''s symptoms which he thought were reactions to chemical exposure were in fact likely manifestations of plaintiff's undiagnosed leukemia. Further research by Mr. McDermott into specific chemicals in the herbicides sprayed on the railroad right of way confirmed that none of the chemicals were associated with the development of acute lymphocytic leukemia. Following proper diagnosis of his leukemia, plaintiff underwent a bone marrow transplant that left his leukemia in remission. Plaintiff recovered and returned to work for the railroad. The cancer subsequently returned and led to plaintiff's death. By establishing that plaintiff's condition was due to causes other than negligence or exposure on the railroad, the Boyle Brasher LLC's railroad client was able to resolve this matter at far less than originally anticipated by plaintiff and his attorney.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. Circuit Court of City of St. Louis. Locomotive Inspection Act and FELA. Locomotive engineer claimed he injured his back when he allegedly slipped in oil and rainwater on a locomotive walkway. After a thorough analysis of plaintiff's medical records, Mr. McDermott established that plaintiff failed to advise his doctor of several key facts including a previous ruptured lumbar disc caused by an off duty injury. Boyle Brasher LLC was also able to establish that plaintiff had failed to make any real effort to find gainful employment to mitigate his damages. The railroad defendant was able to achieve a very favorable settlement during court ordered mediation.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. Circuit Court of City of St. Louis. FELA. A furloughed machinist from the railroad represented by Boyle Brasher LLC found employment with another company as a truck driver while he was furloughed from the railroad. The plaintiff sued the railroad alleging cumulative trauma injuries while he was employed there which caused bilateral carpal tunnel syndrome and problems with his low back. Plaintiff had no surgeries for any of those conditions. After an altogether unrelated medical condition left him unable to work as a truck driver, plaintiff asserted that his railroad injuries left him disabled. Through discovery of prior complaints related to plaintiff's back Mr. McDermott and Mr. Brasher were able to uncover that plaintiff had become aware of his job related physical problems prior to three years before his court petition was filed which was the applicable Statute of Limitations. Plaintiff testified that he was aware of problems with his wrists and hands that he thought were related to his work on the railroad as far back as 10 years before filing his lawsuit against the railroad. Boyle Brasher LLC filed a motion for summary judgment on behalf of the railroad. While the motion was pending, the court ordered the parties to mediation. At mediation plaintiff sought an excessive amount to settle his claim. Defendant filed an additional motion for summary judgment asserting there was no cumulative trauma. Plaintiff's attorney was advised that the railroad would aggressively pursue both motions. The stalled negotiations resumed and the case was settled for an amount very favorable to the railroad.

Multiple Plaintiffs v. Railroad. In four FELA cumulative trauma cases, plaintiff's' attorney did not respond to discovery, did not provide medical records or authorizations and did not take other steps to pursue the cases filed in the City of St. Louis. After filing motions to compel and motions to dismiss for failure to prosecute, plaintiff voluntarily dismissed the four cumulative trauma cases. Subsequently, in one case plaintiff hired other counsel who filed a motion to reopen his case or in the alternative to file a new case. Plaintiff's motion to reopen the previous case in the City of St. Louis was denied. Upon motion to transfer venue, the new case was transferred to St. Louis County. Mr. McDermott and Boyle Brasher LLC filed a motion for summary judgment, and the case was dismissed on the grounds that the statute of limitations had run.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. A 50- year old shop worker claimed cumulative trauma from his work at the railroad was responsible for problems in his right and left wrists and elbows. Plaintiff returned to work after surgery on both his wrists and elbows. Plaintiff then claimed injuries to his back when he lost his grip climbing down from a work platform. Thorough review of the medical records led to discovery of undisclosed prior injuries to the back unrelated to work. During cross-examination in deposition, plaintiff's expert witness was unable to assert that plaintiff's incident at work did anything more than aggravate a pre-existing condition. Surveillance revealed plaintiff playing golf and doing other activities in no apparent distress. Investigation uncovered a prior bankruptcy filing that plaintiff had not disclosed in his FELA lawsuit. Likewise, plaintiff had not disclosed his FELA lawsuit in his bankruptcy filing. The bankruptcy court reopened plaintiff's case and the bankruptcy trustee was appointed administrator of the lawsuit. The case went to trial in the City of St. Louis. In a thorough cross examination of plaintiff's main witness, the witness agreed that the railroad had done everything it could to make plaintiff's workplace a safe place to work. Plaintiff's attorney obtained approval to settle the case on the second day of trial in an amount very favorable to Boyle Brasher LLC's client.

back to top


Plaintiff v. Railroad . October 2010. Circuit Court of McLean County, Illinois. FELA asbestos exposure case. Plaintiff alleged that she contracted mesothelioma from take home asbestos exposure. Plaintiff claimed the railroad negligently transported asbestos to a plant where her father worked in the 1950's, and he brought the fibers home. At trial the railroad obtained a directed verdict after Plaintiff presented her evidence and rested.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. Circuit Court of McLean County, Illinois. Jury trial. Plaintiff alleged that she contracted mesothelioma from asbestos exposure. Plaintiff claimed the railroad negligently transported asbestos to a plant where plaintiff was employed in the 1960's. Boyle Brasher LLC's railroad client obtained a jury verdict.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. Circuit Court of McLean County, Illinois. Plaintiff alleged that she contracted mesothelioma from take home asbestos exposure. Plaintiff claimed the railroad negligently transported asbestos to a plant where her ex-husband worked in the 1950's, and he brought the fibers home. The railroad obtained a jury verdict.

back to top


Mark M. Favazza

St. Louis, Missouri
Phone: 314-621-7700 Ext. 212
Fax: 314-621-1088
E-mail: mfavazza@boylebrasher.com
Learn more about Mr. Favazza by clicking here

Plaintiff v. Passenger Railroad. Court granted Boyle Brasher LLC's motion to dismiss this suit which alleged that a railroad passenger with dementia was injured when he exited a train through an unlocked door and wandered along the track or in defendant's rail yard. Court held that the passenger railroad's decision to keep doors unlocked was not the proximate, or legal, cause of the passenger's injuries and recognized that keeping the doors unlocked was necessary to allow exit in an emergency. Boyle Brasher LLC also won dismissal of the passenger's companion's claim for negligent infliction of emotional distress.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. FELA. Boyle Brasher LLC represented the defendant Railroad. Plaintiff was a maintenance of way employee alleging injuries due to cumulative trauma. Plaintiff filed his FELA claim in a jurisdiction with a history of large verdicts for plaintiffs. Defendant obtained a dismissal of Plaintiff's FELA claim based on the doctrine of forum non conveniens.

Plaintiff Railroad Passenger v. Passenger Railroad. U.S. District Court, Central District of Illinois. Plaintiff railroad passenger, suffering from onset of Alzheimer's disease, walked off a cross-country train before it reached the rail yard in Salt Lake City. He was later found with lacerations and a broken foot. Plaintiff alleged that the railroad was negligent in failing to keep its doors locked while the train was in motion. In a case of first impression in the Central District, the court dismissed Plaintiff's claim with prejudice early in the litigation and adopted the position advocated in Boyle Brasher LLC's brief written by Mr. Boyle and Mr. Favazza. The court ruled that the unlocked doors cannot be the legal or proximate cause of plaintiff's injuries.

Plaintiff Driver v. Railroad. Circuit Court of Fayette County, Illinois. Jury Trial. While leaving a parking lot adjacent to railroad tracks, Plaintiff backed her vehicle into the path of the defendant railroad's train which collided with her vehicle. Plaintiff suffered significant injuries and brought claims for negligence, willful and wanton misconduct, and spoliation of evidence. Plaintiff also sought punitive damages. After a three-day trial which Mr. Favazza second-chaired with lead attorney Mr. Bax, the jury returned a verdict in favor of the railroad defendant on all counts. During the jury instruction conference, Mr. Favazza, over strong objection by Plaintiff's counsel, successfully advocated for a non-pattern jury instruction on the driver's duty to avoid collisions while on private property which Mr. Bax was then able to stress to the jury during his closing argument. The trial court denied Plaintiff's post trial motion and there was no appeal.

Plaintiff Employee v. Railroad. Circuit Court of Knox County, Illinois. FELA. Plaintiff employee operated a high-rail vehicle on the defendant's railroad tracks and collided with the rear car of a train stopped ahead of him. The railroad defendant represented by Boyle Brasher LLC brought a counterclaim against plaintiff for significant damages because of his failure to keep a proper lookout while driving a high-rail vehicle. Plaintiff, relying on a recent decision from the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois, filed a motion to dismiss the counterclaim contending that counterclaims against employees are barred by the FELA. In the absence of Illinois case law on this important issue, Mr. Favazza of Boyle Brasher LLC submitted a thorough brief on behalf of the railroad detailing the history of counterclaims against employees in pre-FELA common law and FELA case law from other jurisdiction. The court denied Plaintiff's motion to dismiss the counterclaim.

Plaintiff Employee v. Railroad. Circuit Court of Madison County, Illinois. FELA. Plaintiff, a Nebraska resident and maintenance of way worker, filed his FELA lawsuit in Madison County, Illinois. On behalf of the railroad defendant, Mr. Favazza and Mr. Nash filed a motion to dismiss based on the doctrine of forum non conveniens. The court granted the motion to dismiss.

Plaintiffs, Automobile Driver and Passenger v. Trucking Company and Driver. Circuit Court of Madison County, Illinois. The deceased automobile driver's estate and the surviving passenger who suffered severe spinal injuries with quadriplegia and a traumatic brain injury sued the driver of a tractor trailer and the trucking company as a result of a collision between the automobile and a tractor trailer as the tractor trailer backed out of a logistics company driveway onto a public street. Mr. Favazza assisted Mr. Brasher and Mr. Nash in defending the trucking company and truck driver and prosecuting a counterclaim against the driver's estate and a third-party claim against the logistics company. By deposing an employee of the logistic company, Mr. Favazza established that the automobile driver was speeding at the time of the collision. Mr. Favazza also obtained the decedent driver's cellular phone records and deposed an employee of the wireless communication company which resulted in evidence that the automobile driver was talking on the phone with a friend seconds before the collision. Mr. Favazza researched and wrote several winning briefs and argued before the trial court on issues which led to resolution of the claims below plaintiffs' expectations.

back to top


Brooks E. Kostakis

Memphis, Tennessee
Phone: 901-521-2860 Ext. 225
Fax: 901-521-2861
E-mail: bkostakis@boylebrasher.com
Learn more about Mr. Kostakis by clicking here

Plaintiff v. Railroad. FELA. The plaintiff, who worked as a transportation clerk, alleged cumulative trauma injuries to his back which he claimed were caused by tasks he performed at work for the defendant railroad (e.g., lifting garbage bags and boxes of bottled water) Boyle Brasher LLC represented the defendant railroad. After a hearing, the trial court granted the defendant's motion for summary judgment based on the plaintiff's failure to offer expert testimony by a medical physician or ergonomics expert within the time prescribed by the controlling scheduling order, and failure to offer evidence that his job tasks were unsafe or that the railroad was negligent.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. FELA. The plaintiff alleged a hip injury which he claimed was caused by his work activities, including getting in and out of a high-rail truck. The defendant railroad, represented by Boyle Brasher LLC, moved to exclude the plaintiff's medical causation expert basis on the plaintiff's failure to timely disclose his opinions prior to trial. After the trial court granted the defendant's motion, the defendant moved for summary judgment based on plaintiff's inability to provide medical causation evidence to support his claims. The plaintiff offered no opposition to summary judgment, which the trial court granted in favor of the railroad just days before a jury trial was set to begin.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. FELA. The plaintiff sued his employer alleging cumulative trauma injuries to numerous parts of his body, including carpal tunnel syndrome, which he claimed were caused by repetitive tasks as a trackman over the years. The defendant railroad, represented by Boyle Brasher LLC, moved for summary judgment pursuant to the FELA's 3-year statute of limitations, based on the plaintiff's medical records and own admissions concerning his injuries. Prior to hearing on defendant's motion, the plaintiff agreed to voluntarily dismiss the case with prejudice.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. FELA. The plaintiff sued his railroad employer alleging traumatic and cumulative injuries to his back, shoulder, and knees. The defendant railroad, represented by Boyle Brasher LLC, moved for summary judgment based on the plaintiff's inability to present expert testimony on liability and causation, and alternatively, the FELA statute of limitations. The trial court granted the defendant's motion and dismissed the case with prejudice.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. FELA. The Plaintiff alleged a hand injury which he claimed occurred while working for the defendant railroad which was represented by Boyle Brasher LLC. At a jury trial, the defendant pointed to evidence that the plaintiff's injury was unrelated to his railroad work, but instead that he had injured it at a previous job and aggravated it by an off- duty incident. The jury found the plaintiff to be 75% at fault and awarded him to no future lost earning capacity damages.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. FELA. The defendant railroad, represented by Boyle Brasher LLC, renewed its motion to dismiss on forum non conveniens after conducting thorough discovery. The defendant argued that Shelby County, Tennessee was not a proper forum because the plaintiff worked in Mississippi and Louisiana, where the overwhelming majority of potential witnesses were located, and he had never received medical treatment in Tennessee. The trial court granted the motion and dismissed the case without prejudice.

Plaintiff v. Railroad. FELA. The defendant railroad, represented by Boyle Brasher LLC, moved for dismissal based on forum non conveniens, in response to the plaintiff's claimed work-related injury which allegedly occurred in Mississippi. The defendant argued that the applicable law did not favor a Tennessee forum for the litigation, based on the non-residency of both parties, the Mississippi locations of potential trial witnesses and plaintiff's medical providers, and other private and public interest factors. The trial court granted the defendant's motion and ordered that the case be dismissed without prejudice.

back to top


Richard I. Woolf

St. Louis, Missouri
Phone: 314-621-7700
Fax: 314-621-1088
E-mail: rwoolf@boylebrasher.com
Learn more about Mr. Woolf by clicking here

Church v. Company. Circuit Court of City of St. Louis. Plaintiff sued company for negligent monitoring of the church's alarm system. Mr. Woolf conducted significant discovery, overcame Defendant's summary judgment and second-chaired a week long trial in which his client obtained a jury verdict.

Plaintiffs v. Defendants. Toxic Exposure. Plaintiffs sued Defendants alleging that as a result of home renovations, lead dust emanating from defendant's property crossed a street and came to rest on plaintiff's home. As a result plaintiff claimed significant property damage and personal injuries, including allegations that plaintiff's husband had contracted Parkinson's Disease and plaintiff's child sustained brain damage. After winning summary judgment on the issue of husband's Parkinson's Disease, the case went to trial where Mr. Woolf, on behalf of his defendant clients, successfully argued and obtained a directed verdict after opening statements.

back to top