According to court documents, Meghan Brown was injured in February 2015 when a glass entrance door at 271 Madison Avenue, New York, shattered on top of her.

A Manhattan jury awarded a woman more than $35 million after she sustained life-altering injuries due to a shattered commercial glass door. Meghan Brown, a former JP Morgan analyst, received the favorable ruling following a three-week trial. According to court documents, Brown was injured in February 2015 when a glass entrance door at 271 Madison Avenue, New York, shattered on top of her.

Security footage shows that Brown was on her phone when she pushed the door open with her shoulder. A man then placed his hand on the door, which caused the door to shatter. Brown stumbled into the building lobby and collapsed after the door disintegrated.

In court documents, Brown claimed she was injured due to “fractures and/or weaknesses in the glass; that the door was not properly installed, maintained, serviced, repaired and/or inspected; and that the door was in a condition allowing it to shatter with ordinary usage.”

She further claimed that the defendant, 271 Madison Co., was negligent in its operation, inspection, maintenance, repair and service of the door. She also argued that an inspection of the glass would have revealed chips, weaknesses and other defects that could have caused the door to shatter. The location was no stranger to broken glass doors. Doors had shattered twice previously, in 2010 and 2014.

The New York Law Journal reports that attorneys representing 271 Madison Co. claimed Brown used the door improperly by not using the handle—thus shifting negligence onto her. Frequent cleaning to remove handprints from the glass disputed that claim. The outlet adds that a glass and ceramics engineering expert testified that two people pushing on the glass door simultaneously could not have caused it to break without a defect.

The six-panel jury sided with Brown, finding 271 Madison Co. negligent and 100% liable for her injuries. They awarded Brown $1.75 million for past pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life, $20 million for future pain and suffering and enjoyment of life and $13.4 million for future medical needs.

The New York Law Journal says Brown has suffered daily since the incident. Now 36, she lives with extensive loss of executive function, impaired cognitive ability, memory loss, sensitivity to light and noise, vertigo and other symptoms due to the injury.

Brown’s suit originally included the glass door manufacturer, Bronx Westchester Tempering, and the installer, Fox Glass of Brooklyn; however, they were dismissed from the case in the summary judgment phase.

 

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