Client Stories

We meet our clients on the worst days of their lives. No one expects to lose a member of their family to a senseless tragedy like a truck crash. No one wants to believe their aging loved one is being neglected by their nursing home. No one wants to fight with their insurance company for what is rightfully theirs after a catastrophic injury.

You need someone by your side who not only knows the ins and outs of the law. More importantly, you need someone who understands what you are going through and how, if at all possible, to make it better.

Our team becomes more than attorneys to our clients. We become part of their family. Once the trial is over or a settlement has been reached, our relationship with our clients doesn’t end. We keep up with how they are doing. We support the foundations or causes they form to ensure what happened to their loved one doesn’t happen to anyone else. We fight alongside them at the state and national government level to create better, safer policies and procedures.

Your voice for change.

Truck Crashes

Susan Slattery & Sons, Peter & Matthew

On a beautiful, sunny day, Aug. 16, 2010, Susan Slattery and her two sons, Peter and Matthew, were returning from a family reunion in Ohio to their home in Baltimore, Md. on the Ohio Turnpike. When Mrs. Slattery slowed for a construction zone where traffic was reduced to one lane, a semitruck owned by Estes Express Lines, pulling three fully-loaded trailers, smashed into the back of the Slattery car at high speed, pushing it into the tractor-trailer in front of her. The driver, who had fallen asleep, caused fatal injuries to Mrs. Slattery and severely injured her two children. Matthew, 12, suffered a traumatic brain injury that left him in a coma. Peter, 15, sustained multiple fractures, including multiple facial fractures.


With the help of Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe, the plaintiffs brought suit against the defendant driver and the trucking company, alleging negligence that caused the death of Susan Slattery and catastrophic injuries to her two sons.


The defendants denied the allegations and disputed the nature and extent of the plaintiffs’ injuries and damages. The parties engaged in extensive informal discovery and participated in two mediation sessions before agreeing to a settlement of all the plaintiffs’ claims for the total sum of $40,800,000. No amount of money will take the place of Mrs. Slattery. While Peter will make a full recovery, Matthew is confined to an electric wheelchair and suffers from aphasia and speech impairment. He suffers from severe learning disabilities due to the brain injury and will require around-the-clock care for the rest of his life.

It’s important to contact us immediately if you or a loved one has been the victim of a truck crash. Investigating crime scenes and preserving critical evidence needs to be done as quickly as possible, ideally within 48 hours of the crash. We can often be on a plane the next day after we’re contacted. Initial consultations are free of charge and we work solely on a contingency basis.

John Fletcher

On Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2012, assistant foreman John Fletcher was supervising repairs on a bridge deck in Toledo, Ohio. Despite two lanes being closed to traffic, multiple warning signs, cones and flashing lights, a large tanker truck owned by Kenan Advantage Group (KAG) plowed through traffic cones, three trucks and repair equipment, slamming into Fletcher and two other turnpike workers who were standing on the roadway. Fletcher was the lone fatality, while the other men were seriously injured. The negligent driver of the truck, who claimed to have no memory of the crash, later pleaded guilty to vehicular homicide and was sentenced to jail time and license suspension. Fletcher is survived by his wife, Amy, and three young children.


With the help of Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe, the plaintiffs brought suit against the defendant driver and the trucking company, alleging negligence that caused the death of John Fletcher.


The details of the case and settlement are confidential.


“Jeff helped to make sure the kids and I are going to be okay despite our family’s devastation. I know he has genuine concern for victims and families because he cried along with me and genuinely felt my pain. I think of him not only as a trusted advisor, but more importantly, a friend.”

Read the Full Letter From Amy Fletcher

Pamela and Daniel Becker

On Nov. 21, 2006, Pamela Becker, 42, and her son, Daniel Becker, 19, were traveling southbound on I-85, near the South Carolina/Georgia state line. A semi pulling double trailers operated by Oliver Mitchell was traveling north on I-85 when he lost control of the vehicle. The unusually long combination vehicle traveled across the median, through the cable barrier, and struck the Becker vehicle, killing Daniel instantly and grievously injuring Pamela, who also later died.

Although Pamela was taken by Life Flight to a nearby hospital and treated for a closed head injury, multiple facial fractures, multiple open upper extremity fractures and other injuries, she died two days later on Thanksgiving Day as a result of the injuries she received in this horrific crash.


With the help of Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe, surviving spouse and father Jeff Becker brought an action against the driver and the motor carrier for the wrongful deaths, including claims for negligence, negligent entrustment and negligent hiring, supervision and retention.

Both defendants raised the affirmative defense of “sudden medical incapacity,” claiming the driver failed to control the commercial motor vehicle because he experienced the “sudden incapacity” of cough syncope, which caused him to “black out” and “be unable to control the tractor-trailer.”

The accident investigation team hired by DBB&H later determined that at the time of the collision it had been raining, and the wiper positions in the vehicles were on. In addition to poor road conditions and darkness, it was discovered that the driver was operating the truck on cruise control, received two calls on his cellphone moments before the crash and was also on the CB radio.

The driver told law enforcement personnel on the scene that he coughed, started choking, got lightheaded and passed out, but gave several differing descriptions of the cough event to health care providers and other witnesses. Plaintiff argued that the driver was distracted, was driving too fast for conditions and lost control of the vehicle.

Plaintiff withstood a Motion for Summary Judgment on the negligent entrustment and negligent hiring, retention and supervision causes of action. The defense claimed such causes of action were not allowable based on the defense’s admission of the driver’s employment status and the fact no alcohol was involved in any alleged negligent entrustment.

Plaintiff cited evidence that the motor carrier was aware that Mitchell was having “personal problems that he can’t handle and/or medical problems” that affected his driving duties. He had been having multiple logging problems that were not usual for him, and had caused a prior preventable crash just 11 days before the current crash. Plaintiff alleged the prior crash was also at a time when the driver was on the phone. Plaintiff claimed these facts established the carrier not only should have known, but did, in fact, know that Mr. Mitchell was suffering from personal problems and/or medical problems that affected his driving duties and that allowing Mr. Mitchell to use the tractor-trailer created an unreasonable risk of harm to others.


The case settled at mediation for $7 million. Additional terms of the recovery include the defendant motor carrier’s agreement to hire an independent safety consultant to make recommendations on implementing a Driver Assessment Program for existing drivers, policies and procedures that ensure safety is part of every driver’s job, and implementing a company management statement on safety


”I would hate to think of another family having to go through what my family has, but I’ve learned that crashes like the one that took Pam and Daniel happen on a regular basis. I would recommend using an attorney with years of trucking litigation experience, which we found in Jeff Burns of Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe.

“From the time I first met with Jeff, I felt he had a deep, personal concern for how Justin and I were doing, and he always treated us with great care. He conducted a thorough investigation of how the crash happened, and was fully prepared to try the case when we received the offer to settle.

“Safety on our nation’s highways is important to Jeff Burns and, after he determines the cause of a crash, he works to change the safety practices of the trucking company involved. Jeff Burns has forced safety management changes to many of the trucking companies and that has translated, in my opinion, to making it safer for everyone to drive on our highways.”

Virginia Baker

Virginia was traveling westbound on I-70 in Lafayette County, Mo., when she entered a patch of dense fog. Two tractor-trailers and four other vehicles were either stopped or had been involved in a crash in front of her vehicle. Another tractor-trailer then drove into the clump of vehicles, igniting a horrific fire, which ultimately engulfed Virginia’s entire vehicle, injuring her fatally.


With the help of Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe, Virginia’s three children, Lisa, Harrison and Truman, brought an action against the three trucking companies and their drivers for the wrongful death of their mother.


Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe reached a favorable confidential recovery agreement with each of the three trucking companies on behalf of the surviving children.


“I very much appreciate the patience that Tim Becker and his staff had with me. I am a very inquisitive person and seemed to have questions about every step. Tim never made me feel my questions were ridiculous or unnecessary. He always answered my questions, eased my mind, and listened sympathetically to my hurt and outrage. Tim is very compassionate and determined. I knew that fairness would surface because Tim was on our side! No amount of money could ever bring our mom back. However, I now know that my son’s future can be taken care of and I’m happy that my mom still has a part in her grandson’s education because of the caring law office of Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe.”

Luke Hausmann

On Jan. 8, 2008, Luke Hausmann, 23, and his siblings, Ethan, Anna and Julia, were driving northbound on I-35 in Texas, on their way home to Atchison, Kan. after a family vacation. Two rear tires from a southbound tractor-trailer broke free, traveled across the highway and struck Luke’s vehicle in the driver’s windshield, pulling the roof away from the car. Luke was killed instantly. Ethan, Anna and Julia suffered serious but non-life-threatening injuries. Dollar, Burns & Becker later determined that the trucking company had been cited on numerous occasions for violations of regulations relating to equipment failure and maintenance in the two years preceding the incident.

Luke would have described himself as an ordinary young man. His family and friends knew he was anything but ordinary. During his short lifetime, Luke dedicated himself to the service of God and to helping those in need. Luke also had a tremendous curiosity about the world around him. Those two interests were combined when he began going on mission trips. The first trip took him to Russia at the age of 16.

By the time he was 23, he had also traveled to Cambodia and Thailand, where he cared for orphaned children of AIDS victims and taught English to adults and children. Luke earned money to support his own trips to the mission field, but also financially supported those missions after he returned home.

At the time of his death, Luke was finishing the refurbishment of a home in his native town of Atchison, Kan., hoping the proceeds from the sale would finance a planned mission trip to northern Afghanistan, a country whose people have been ravaged from decades of conflict. Luke’s life was dedicated to spreading God’s word, easing pain and suffering, improving people’s lives, and bringing smiles to the faces of children wherever he traveled.


Luke’s parents, David and Karen Hausmann, retained Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe and sued United Truck Lines, Inc. for causing the death of their son, Luke, and for the injuries to their surviving children, Ethan, Anna and Julia.


Not only was a significant financial recovery reached with the trucking company, but the negligent firm was also forced to surrender its Department of Transportation operating authority and dissolve its business.


“After this horrific tragedy, we found strength through our faith, but it was with the help of our attorneys that we found justice for our son, Luke. Tim Dollar and Tim Becker carefully explained everything involved in bringing a lawsuit. They listened to us, respected our wishes, and answered all of our questions throughout the process. It was a comfort to know that someone was looking out for our family, giving us time to put our lives back together after such a devastating loss.”

Justin Coffman

Justin Coffman, 28, died after a tractor-trailer crossed the median of Highway K-10 in Johnson County, Kan. and struck Coffman’s oncoming vehicle. The defendant truck driver claimed he drifted across the median when he reached down to retrieve a dropped cup of coffee. The case was filed in Jackson County, Mo. by Dollar, Burns & Becker and venue and jurisdictional issues were appealed to the Missouri Supreme Court, but ultimately upheld in favor of the surviving family. The parties also disputed whether the $250,000 Kansas cap on noneconomic damages would apply. Justin was survived by his wife, Tara; his 2 ½-month-old son, Gabriel; his 9-year-old daughter, Brianna; and his mother, Sheryl.


On behalf of Justin Coffman’s surviving wife and family, DBB&H filed a lawsuit against the trucking company and its driver for causing Justin’s death.


A substantial monetary recovery was reached with the trucking company on behalf of Coffman’s family, which included payments above and beyond the limits of the defendants’ available insurance coverage. His widow granted the defendant trucking company permission to use her recovery DVD as part of their management training in the hope of saving other families from this kind of tragedy.


”Tim Dollar and Tim Becker came highly recommended, and they did not disappoint us. From their first representation to us after the accident, we could tell they were true professionals and very much in command of the situation, and this gave us comfort. Throughout the process they were excellent lawyers to work with. My family and I always felt that they were very responsive to us and kept us in the loop the whole time. My being a single parent posed a challenge in arranging times for meetings with my lawyers, and so they would come out to meet me after work hours or on weekends. Everyone in the office has been friendly and helpful. I couldn’t have asked for better lawyers or assistance during a really difficult time.”

Shelly and Kiara

Shelly was driving her 2003 Honda Pilot on U.S. Highway 71 with her 8-year-old daughter Kiara as a passenger in the back seat. Because of congestion, traffic was slowing and Shelly had come to a complete stop on the highway. Shortly thereafter, a distracted trucker crashed his tractor-trailer directly into the back of Shelly’s vehicle. Witnesses indicated that while other traffic was slowing, the driver of the tractor-trailer continued to travel between 60-65 mph. One witness stated that “he didn’t even try to slow down.” The tractor-trailer rear-ended Shelly’s vehicle at full speed and her vehicle burst into flames. Shelly lost consciousness and had to be pulled from the burning vehicle by witnesses at the scene. However, the collision caused the trunk and backseat to be pushed up into the front seat, pinning Kiara’s legs. The vehicle continued to burn and several firefighters arrived and bravely struggled to free Kiara before the interior became engulfed in flames. As flames rolled into what remained of the passenger compartment, fire fighters were finally able to free Kiara’s shattered leg and pull her from the vehicle.


With the help of the attorneys at Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe, Shelly and her husband Carl filed suit against the trucking company and its driver for the personal injuries sustained by Shelly and Kiara.


A substantial financial recovery agreement was reached with the trucking company on behalf of Shelly and Kiara.


“I want to thank you for all of your hard work, your efficiency, your dedication and your care and kindness to our family. I am so thankful for you and your team and know that we are blessed to have you working for us. I am just amazed at how quickly this case has been resolved, and even more amazed by the amount of money we are being awarded … I am in awe.”


“Thank you for all you have done for me as I have matured. Your selflessness and generousity has not gone unnoticed.”

– from a letter sent in October 2018

Danny Hall

Danny Hall and his wife, Laura, owned and operated a canine breeding and brokerage business in La Belle, Missouri, and routinely transported litters of puppies for shipment across the United States. In order to provide for the health and comfort of the animals, the Halls purchased a 2001 Ford Van with modifications including extension of the cargo base and installation of a generator to provide air temperature regulation for the cargo hold of the van. A second fuel tank, needed to power the generator, was installed in the crush zone in the back of the vehicle.

On August 27, 2007 at approximately 5:30 p.m., Danny Hall, 58, was traveling to Kansas City International Airport, carrying a load of puppies for shipment. He was traveling westbound on U.S. 36 in Macon County when he encountered slow traffic, and properly reduced speed on his vehicle. According to the State Highway Patrol, it was a clear, sunny day, the roadway was dry, and sight distance was almost a mile.

Traffic had slowed due to an accident, and Mr. Hall obeyed the rules of the road by reducing his speed, as conditions demanded. Tragically, Matt Engen, a truck driver employed by W.W. Transport, who was traveling behind the Hall vehicle, failed to reduce his speed. Though he had a clear line of sight ahead, Mr. Engen allowed his attention to lapse, and as a result was traveling much too fast for conditions. The semi-tractor violently struck the rear of Hall’s vehicle, pushing it into a bridge railing, where it overturned. The fuel lines servicing Hall’s generator were breached in the impact, and the vehicle caught fire, trapping him inside. The medical examiner later determined the cause of death was not as a result of the impact, but of the resulting fire.


With the help of Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe, Danny’s wife, Laura, and his children, Ricky, Lorie, and Leeanett sued W.W. Transport and Matt Engen for wrongful death.


In partial return for a financial recovery of $5 million with W.W. Transport and Matt Engen prior to trial, the Hall family gave W.W. Transport the right to seek contribution from various parties involved in the modification and installation of the generator, fuel tank, and fuel supply lines in the cargo hold in the van. In addition, W.W. Transport agreed to implement the “Smith System”, a program designed to establish and maintain safety management programs for trucking companies.


“Our experience with Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe has been the finest example of follow-through we could have asked for. They were extremely professional, showed compassion and above all else, cared about us. Our calls were always promptly returned and any concerns or questions were patiently explained and answered. Tim Dollar’s invaluable expertise and knowledge of the legalities of trucking law provided a positive outcome and makes our highways safer for all our families. They delicately and personally handled our case without ever forgetting the magnitude of our loss at any time. I would highly recommend Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe to anyone. They truly set the standards all law firms should be held to, and went unquestionably above and beyond the call of duty.”

Deborah and Michael Munroe

Deborah and Michael Munroe were involved in a truck crash accident on U.S. 50 in Lee’s Summit, MO.rah and Michael Munroe were driving westbound on U.S. 50 in Lee’s Summit, Mo. A tractor-trailer driven by a student driver taking his commercial driver’s license examination was headed eastbound. The student driver suddenly steered the tractor-trailer across the median and into the path of the Munroes’ vehicle, causing a violent collision. Both Deborah and Michael were injured in the crash, with Deborah’s injuries being serious and life-threatening.


With the help of Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe, Deborah and Michael Munroe brought an action against the trucking company that owned the tractor-trailer and operated the driving school where the student driver received his truck driving training.


Deborah Munroe’s past medical expenses totaled nearly $700,000. Her doctors testified that she would have to undergo numerous additional surgeries and continued medical treatment throughout her lifetime due to the injuries she sustained in the crash. Both Deborah and Michael missed work due to their injuries and were forced to retire from their careers, Deborah because of her disability and Michael in order to care for Deborah. The recovery proceeds ensured that Deborah and Michael could satisfy past medical expenses and would have the means to provide for future medical needs, and provided compensation for their inability to continue their careers.

In addition to the financial recovery, the truck driving school planned to raise its standard minimum requirements that a student must meet before being permitted to take the CDL examination.


”The day I met Jeff Burns I immediately knew that I was going to hire Dollar, Burns & Becker to represent Debbie and me,” said Michael. “Jeff made me feel at ease from the moment we shook hands, and I had the same feeling when I met Tim Dollar. The lawyers and their staff gave Debbie and me the feeling that they really cared about us as individuals. They worked tirelessly getting our case ready for trial. As the trial date approached, I talked to Jeff nearly every day. He was often at the office until late in the evening working on our case. Debbie and I also appreciate the firm’s volunteer involvement with Parents Against Tired Truckers (P.A.T.T.) and Citizens for Reliable and Safe Highways (CRASH). It speaks volumes about their care and interest in the people they represent.”

Jeff and Laura Amano

After having been involved in a minor traffic accident, Laura Amano and her brother Jeff were in a vehicle stopped in a construction zone on I-80 near Grand Island, Neb. The driver of an 18-wheeler tanker truck ignored or didn’t see the warnings of the upcoming construction zone and rear-ended Laura Amano’s vehicle at a high speed. Shockingly, the driver admitted he could have veered toward the ditch to avoid the crash but was more concerned about losing his load. The truck landed on top of Laura’s car and a fire broke out. Laura and Jeff died in the subsequent fire although they survived the impact of the collision.


With the help of Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe, the children’s mother, Kim Amano, filed a lawsuit against the trucking company and its driver for causing the death of her only children.


Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe reached a substantial monetary recovery with the trucking company on behalf of Laura and Jeff Amano.


“I am truly grateful for everything you have done. You held people accountable, which brought justice and dignity to my children. You took care of the anger I was carrying around and that gave me the strength to move on. The security you have established for me has created a path with many avenues and has taken away that feeling of being lost. I have found peace within.”

Noah Leake

Eighteen-year-old Noah Leake was driving on I-70 at the Benton Curve in Kansas City, Mo. on his way to work at the family business. The driver of a tractor-trailer owned and operated by Gainey Transportation Services, Inc. drove too fast around the curve and lost control of his truck. The fully loaded trailer landed squarely on top of Noah’s car. Noah was pinned underneath the trailer and a fire erupted. Noah may have survived his injuries but instead died of smoke inhalation. It was later learned that the truck driver had no fewer than 10 prior speeding convictions.


With the help of Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe, Noah Leake’s parents, Anthony and Michelle Leake, sued Gainey Transportation Services, Inc. and its driver for causing the death of their son.


A favorable financial recovery was reached with the trucking company. Noah was the second of 10 children born to Anthony and Michelle Leake and no amount of money can bring their son back. However, Tony and Michelle have found comfort in knowing they now have the financial security to provide for their family’s future needs. In addition, as part of the recovery agreement, Gainey Transportation agreed to revise its company policy requiring biannual checks of its drivers’ motor vehicle records.


“We experienced every parent’s worst fear – the death of a child. Our faith sustained us, helping us deal with the devastating loss of our son. Our attorneys guided us through the legal process, so that we could focus on healing. But we wanted justice for our son, and our attorneys helped us to achieve that goal.”

Dorris Edwards

Dorris Edwards was on her way home to Kansas City from Tennessee at the close of a Thanksgiving weekend. She was stopped in traffic on I-70 between St. Louis and Kansas City due to an accident up ahead. Her Jeep Cherokee was struck from behind by a tractor-trailer owned and operated by Werner Enterprises, Inc., killing her in the process. The driver was a trainee who had been driving for seven hours without a break (a violation of company policy) while his trainer slept in the sleeper berth. The driver admitted he did not apply his brakes or steer toward the shoulder to avoid the collision.


With the help of Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe, Steve Edwards, Dorris’ only son, filed a lawsuit against Werner Enterprises, Inc. and its driver.


In addition to a substantial financial settlement, this lawsuit resulted in Werner Enterprises, Inc. agreeing to institute changes to its driver training program that can potentially save lives on the nation’s highways.


“I had never been a party to a lawsuit. My mother was my whole life – my whole family. I wanted to find out what happened to her. Jeff Burns and Tim Dollar came to my home in Chicago to meet with me and explained the entire legal process. I felt relieved to know they would be looking out for my legal rights and those of my mother. It gave me the time I needed to absorb and comprehend the sudden loss of my mom and best friend. Not only did my lawyers achieve a great financial result, they succeeded in persuading a major trucking company to change its policies for the good of the public.”

Michael Hawkins

Michael Hawkins was stopped in traffic on I-26 near Asheville, N.C. A driver for Haas Carriage, Inc. collided with the rear end of Hawkins’ SUV. The collision pushed Michael’s vehicle forward into the back of another vehicle, crushing Michael inside. He suffered multiple traumatic injuries requiring 26 surgeries. His medical bills totaled $383,000, not including future medical treatment he will require.


With the help of Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe, Michael Hawkins brought an action against the trucking company and its driver for causing the crash, citing driver fatigue and negligence.


Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe reached a favorable financial recovery with the trucking company, providing the necessary funds to pay past and future medical expenses as well as providing compensation for his permanent disability resulting from his injuries.


“I experienced a nightmare when a tractor-trailer struck me from behind and nearly crushed me to death. Six weeks later, I awoke in the hospital not knowing what hit me. I learned that Attorney Jeff Burns specialized in tractor-trailer cases and I decided that he would be the man that could best counsel and represent me. Jeff and the others in his firm put forth a monumental effort over two years fighting for me. They did such outstanding work that my family will never have to worry about our financial needs again. Most importantly, I have a friend for life in Jeff, who truly cares about not only my family, but all of his clients as well as the safety of our highways.”

Nursing Homes

Victim of Sexual Assault

Helen was an 81-year-old with a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s and dementia. She did not have any living relatives, but a friend from church cared for her until Helen’s disease progressed beyond her ability to do so. Helen required skilled nursing care in a long-term facility, but soon after moving to the home, she was the victim of sexual assault by another resident.


When her friend learned what had happened, she called one of our experienced attorneys to represent Helen’s rights. A lawsuit was filed by our firm on behalf of the victim against the nursing home operator alleging they failed to protect the victim from the other resident, even after receiving notice he had a propensity toward sexual aggression.


Even though Helen passed away before the case was concluded, the friend pursued this case with our help to its successful resolution. The impact of this tragedy led to severe penalties being leveled against ownership by the state where the crime occurred. In addition, the local media shed light on this nursing home for knowingly allowing a prior sex offender in their facility to potentially prey on Helen and other residents.


“It was obvious from the start, Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe chooses to represent people like Helen because they believe victims are entitled to a voice. They helped me be Helen’s voice and the result proved to me the nursing home listened loud and clear. Their experienced attorneys, along with the rest of their staff, showed compassion, expertise and energy. Throughout the case, they demonstrated an understanding of why this case needed to be prosecuted even though Helen was no longer with us.”

If this case sounds familiar, call one of our experienced attorneys immediately. Initial consultations are free of charge and we work solely on a contingency basis. You may also visit our nursing home injuries practice center to learn more, and we encourage you to call us if you have questions that are not answered.


Berniece was 86 years old when she entered Hillview Nursing Center. She needed 24-hour care and monitoring due to her deteriorating health. Her doctor ordered the nursing home to provide a lap cushion to help prevent Berniece from falling out of her wheelchair. Despite its effectiveness, the nursing home decided to remove the cushion. Berniece was allowed to suffer three falls within a 20-day time period. She died as a result of her injuries just five days after her final fall.


Berniece’s 91-year-old husband, Jim, and daughter, Sue, enlisted Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe to pursue a claim on their behalf along with Berniece’s estate. A lawsuit was filed against the nursing home operator and Health Systems Inc., a company that manages a chain of more than 50 nursing homes in the area.


Our experienced attorneys tried the case and obtained a judgment on behalf of Jim and Sue for the wrongful death of their loved one. When a sizable judgment was awarded, the management company insisted it did not have the assets to pay. Ignoring that, we continued their fight for justice and the judgment was ultimately paid. The best news is that as a result of the considerable proceeds, Jim will likely never need to place his welfare in the hands of this or any other nursing home.


“It was clear from the onset of our case this firm had the necessary experience in handling cases against nursing homes. I witnessed their superior background work and trial skills during the presentation of our case. The nursing home could not match their knowledge, hard work and ability as trial lawyers. Our attorneys were several steps ahead of the defense during the entire process. I know I could not have selected better attorneys to represent our family.”

Catastrophic Injury

John Douglas Wixom III

Wixom and his boss drove Wixom’s truck and a trailer full of construction debris into a landfill facility to unload the materials. As the two were preparing to unhitch the trailer, a landfill employee was maneuvering a 3·90C Trashmaster, a compactor weighing more than 100,000 pounds, through the facility to assist with the unloading.

The Trashmaster was supposed to be in reverse so that Wixom could maneuver between the back of the trailer and the front of the Trashmaster to attach chains and pull the trailer off the hitch. Instead, the machine heaved forward and pinned Wixom between the trailer and the Trashmaster. Wixom’s injuries included severe injuries to his right leg and a crushed pelvis.


Facing nearly $2 million in medical expenses and nearly a million in lost income, Wixom teamed with Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe in a personal injury lawsuit.


Noting that the “defendant fell below the standard of care by failing to implement safety policies and procedures for its employees and by improperly using machinery in a defective and unreasonably dangerously condition,” attorney Tim Dollar secured an $18 million dollar settlement for Wixom.