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Author Archives: Sharon McCloskey

Wachovia loses case, cash (access required)

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Buddy Brand and three of his broker colleagues at the Florence, S.C., office of Wachovia Securities already had one foot out the door when Wachovia fired them in June 2008. Together they’d been planning to open an office in Florence for competitor Stifel Nicolaus & Co. But Wachovia went after them, filing an arbitration claim with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority the very next day, alleging that the group had breached their respective contracts with Wachovia, had taken confidential information, and were soliciting existing Wachovia clients.

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Cell phone use leads to $2.5 million settlement (access required)

An 82-year-old North Carolina retiree, returning home from an antique car show in Kentucky on July 4, 2010, miraculously survived a collision with a tractor-trailer on Interstate 81 in Wythe County, Va. The driver of the tractor-trailer had been driving recklessly and following too close just prior to the accident. He was charged with driving while distracted after he admitted using of his cell phone just prior to the accident. (Plaintiff attorney Dan Firth pictured above.)

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Interlock Gridlock (access required)

In January, Smart Start Inc. proudly announced its entrée into North Carolina as the first provider of breath alcohol interlock ignition devices to be certified under new DMV standards and procedures. The devices, known by the acronym BAIID, disable a car’s ignition if the driver blows a breath alcohol concentration above a set limit. But the company may have to shut down just as quickly as it started up.

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Eminent domain class action gets Appeals Court hearing (access required)

The state’s Map Act was front and center Wednesday afternoon as the Court of Appeals heard arguments in Beroth Oil Co. v. NCDOT, the proposed class action pending in Forsyth County. The case focuses on the state Department of Transportation’s delay in acquiring property along the proposed Northern Beltway, and the impact that delay has had on affected property owners.

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Young father’s death results in $2M settlement (access required)

Quick investigative work lead to a pretrial settlement and payment of the policy limits of $2 million in a Duplin County wrongful death case. In June 2011, the defendant was driving 63 mph in a 55 mph zone on Highway 117 in Duplin County. He crossed a double yellow line to pass a car stopped in front of him at an intersection and collided head-on with a car approaching from the opposite direction, killing the 21-year-old driver, and injuring his 20-year-old wife and three-year-old daughter.

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