Past Case Results

Past results depend on the particular facts of that case. Each case must be evaluated on its merits. Past results should not be considered a promise or guarantee of similar results in your case.

Tommy Hastings has tried and settled numerous cases to a successful conclusion that has resulted in the recovery of millions of dollars for his clients. All of the following cases resulted in successful recoveries for his clients. These cases are just a sample of the many cases successfully handled by this firm.

Medical Malpractice

Jackson v. Conte, et. al. — Wrongful Prescription Practices

Tommy Hastings handled this case against the owners and operators of a “pill mill” in the Houston, Texas, area. The clinic owners set up a practice that catered to providing narcotics for pain management. The real purpose of the clinic was to reap profits from the case of the prescriptions to addicts and drug dealers. The family of Michael Skorpenske sued the clinic after Skorpenske died of an accidental overdose on medications he received from the clinic. The jury awarded damages in the amount of $10.7 million. The case received national attention as being the first verdict in the United States against a pill mill.

Knotts v. Wright, et. al. — Unnecessary surgery

Tommy Hastings handled this case against a surgeon and radiologist. The Plaintiff, George Knotts, alleged that the radiologist mistakenly read an ultrasound as having a diseased gallbladder. The surgeon performed surgery based on this reading, but never independently reviewed the ultrasound. During the surgery, it was discovered that Mr. Knotts did not have a gallbladder and that the procedure was totally unnecessary. Mr. Knotts sustained an incisional infection and pain after the surgery. The jury found that both the radiologist and surgeon were negligent and awarded damages of approximately 10 times the amount offered before trial.

Failure To Diagnose/Brain Damage

Tommy Hastings handled this medical malpractice case against physicians and a hospital in the Houston area involving the failure to diagnose whooping cough in an infant. Even though the pneumonia was clearly depicted on an X-ray, the physician pulled up the wrong X-ray on the computer to review. Furthermore, the hospital failed to follow up with the mother when the mistake was caught later that morning. The baby suffered a stroke as a result of the delay in treatment. Working with expert witnesses from the top children’s hospitals in Houston, Colorado and Utah, Tommy was able to secure a significant settlement for the child’s future needs.

Failure To Diagnose/Amputation

Tommy Hastings handled this medical malpractice case involving the failure to diagnose an arterial occlusion. Ms. Leandro underwent a total knee replacement at the age of 80. Following the surgery, she developed a blood clot in her lower leg. Her doctor failed to act when he was notified by the nurses about the condition. As a result, Ms. Leandro’s leg was amputated above the knee. The case was tried to a jury in March, 2005. While the jury was deliberating, the case settled for 20 times the pretrial offer.

Britten v. St. Luke’s

Tommy Hastings and Joe Stephens handled this medical malpractice case involving a patient who fell during physical therapy. Tommy and Joe alleged that the hospital was negligent in allowing a student to perform the exercises while the supervisor was occupied with computer work. The patient suffered a broken ankle as a result of her fall and more importantly, was outraged at the manner in which the hospital refused to apologize for the incident. Tommy and Joe never made a monetary demand on the hospital and took the case to a jury trial in Harris County, Texas. The jury returned an 11-1 verdict in favor of the Plaintiff.

Negligent Bladder Surgery

Tommy Hastings handled this medical malpractice case. The Plaintiff underwent a cystoscopy for a bladder obstruction. During the procedure, the urologist negligently resected the ureters causing scarring and blockage. Following the procedure, the Plaintiff returned to his family physician complaining of uncontrollable blood pressure. Blood tests showed that the kidney function was twice the normal reading. However, the family physician failed to recognize that the Plaintiff was suffering from kidney failure. The Plaintiff had his right kidney removed as a result. Suit was brought against the urologist and family physician. The case settled shortly before trial for a confidential amount.

Inadequate Nursing Care

Tommy Hastings handled this medical malpractice case. The Plaintiff underwent heart surgery at a prominent Houston hospital. Following the surgery, the Plaintiff developed a large bedsore on her sacrum. The nursing staff admitted that it failed to follow standard procedures to prevent bedsores. One nurse even admitted that she was unaware the hospital had such procedures even though she had been working on the same floor for over 20 years. As a result of the lawsuit, she is now aware of those procedures. The case settled before trial for a confidential amount.

Negligent Neck Surgery/Follow-Up Care

Tommy Hastings handled this medical malpractice case. The Plaintiff underwent a neck surgery. Following the surgery, the Plaintiff developed neurological deficits, but the surgeon never performed any tests to determine the cause. It was learned during the lawsuit that the physician had been disciplined by the Board of Medical Examiners in at least two states. The case settled before trial for a confidential amount. During subsequent actions before the Texas Board of Medical Examiners, our client’s case was cited as one of the factors leading to the revocation of the physician’s license.

Failure To Diagnose Spinal Infection

Tommy Hastings handled this medical malpractice case. The Plaintiff suffered paralysis as a result of the failure to diagnose a spinal infection known as an epidural abscess. The case settled following the Defendant’s deposition for a confidential amount. As a result of the settlement, the Plaintiff was able to make her home wheelchair-accessible and hire professional nursing staff. Her quality of life has been significantly improved.

Failure To Diagnose Stroke

Tommy Hastings handled this medical malpractice case. The Plaintiff presented to his family physician with signs of a stroke. The Defendant ruled out a stroke and told the Plaintiff to lose weight. The Plaintiff later suffered a stroke that was more serious than it would have been were he immediately hospitalized after seeing the Defendant. Suit was filed against the physician and the clinic. The case settled for a confidential amount.

Negligent Cataract Surgery

Tommy Hastings handled this medical malpractice case. The Plaintiff underwent cataract surgery that resulted in partial loss of vision. The case settled shortly before trial.

Nursing Home Neglect

Case Name Confidential

Tommy Hastings handled this nursing home negligence case. The resident was placed upright in a wheelchair without the proper safety equipment. She was then left alone by the staff. She was found face first on the floor, but the staff did not notify a physician for over six hours about the fall. The resident suffered a cerebral hematoma and broken clavicle. She died as a result of her injuries within a month. The case settled for a confidential amount and one of the nurses involved agreed to surrender her license to the State Board of Nursing.

Case Name Confidential

Tommy Hastings handled this nursing home negligence case. The Plaintiff’s mother was a resident at a nursing home. On the afternoon before her death, the resident vomited and had high blood sugar. She was found dead the next morning. The Plaintiff alleged that the nursing home failed to properly monitor the resident’s blood sugar, which caused her death. The Defendant disputed the cause of death because no autopsy had been done. The case settled for a confidential amount.

Auto Collisions

Ottison v. Hebert

Tommy Hastings handled this personal injury case involving a bicyclist who was hit by a car on the shoulder of the road. The Plaintiff was paralyzed from the waist down. A jury in Liberty County found for the Plaintiffs and awarded damages as reported by the Houston Chronicle.

Willenburg v. Putsch

Tommy Hastings handled this automobile accident case. The Plaintiff was injured when a man driving a large RV pulled in front of the Plaintiff’s lane of traffic. The Plaintiff required neck surgery and had a shoulder injury. Following his neck surgery, the Plaintiff developed a serious spinal infection that threatened his life. The case settled for a confidential amount. As a result of the settlement, the Plaintiff was able to avoid bankruptcy and losing his home and vehicles.

Gonzales v. Haidon

Tommy Hastings handled this case involving an automobile collision caused by a drunk driver. The driver and passenger went to a social event for the evening. Despite being the designated driver, the Defendant became intoxicated and drove the car into a median in the Houston Galleria. The passenger sued for injuries sustained in the wreck. At trial, every juror in the panel stated they could not award punitive damages to a passenger in such a situation. After three days of trial, the jury not only awarded punitive damages, but found the passenger was not at fault in any way for the accident.

Drunk Driver

Tommy Hastings handled this case where the Plaintiff was crossing the street and was hit by a drunk driver. The driver fled the scene and the Houston Police Department was unable to secure charges or a conviction. However, Hastings Law Firm ensured that the Defendant was held responsible through a civil action. The case settled for a confidential amount.

Zuraw v. Torres

Tommy Hastings handled this rear-end collision case involving a delivery driver. Mr. Zuraw sustained injuries in the collision that were not detectable on radiology films. The Defendant argued that he was not entitled to compensation for these “invisible injuries” and refused to pay. Following trial, the insurance company agreed to pay six times the policy limits while the jury was deliberating.

Case Name Confidential

Tommy Hastings handled this automobile accident case that occurred in Idaho. Tommy’s clients were working as farmhands when the truck they were occupying was hit by a commercial vehicle. Two men sustained significant injuries. Within days of filing suit, the Defendant’s insurance carrier agreed to pay all damages recoverable under Idaho law.

Belcher v. Persall

Tommy Hastings handled this automobile accident case involving a drunk driver who attempted to flee the scene after causing two accidents. The driver’s insurance policy excluded punitive damages. The case was settled for almost 14 times the medical bills after suit was filed.

Products Liability

Smith v. CAS Medical, et. al.

Tommy Hastings handled this case involving a defective medical device. The Plaintiff was an infant who was prescribed a breathing frequency monitor due to a family history of SIDS. During a life critical event, the alarm failed to sound on the device and the baby suffered a prolonged period without oxygen resulting in significant brain damage. Using a team of device engineers, software engineers and physicians, Tommy was able to show that the software in the device was poorly designed and maintained. It was further uncovered that dozens of complaints had been sent to the company about alarm problems. Shortly before trial, the defendants settled.

Case Name Confidential

Tommy Hastings handled this products liability case involving a defective knee implant. The Plaintiff alleged the rim of her knee implant was not properly constructed. As a result, the Plaintiff had to undergo a revision surgery. The case presented complicated legal issues involving the interaction between state and federal law. Tommy Hastings was able to argue that regulations from the FDA did not apply to this particular device. As a result, the case settled for a confidential amount and the Defendant withdrew its motions to have the case dismissed under federal law.

Duhig v. Memorial Hermann, et. al.

Tommy Hastings handled this adulterated food products case after his clients’ husband and father died from consuming an undercooked oyster from a hospital cafeteria. The Plaintiffs alleged that the hospital cafeteria was acting as a public restaurant, not as a health care provider and were therefore strictly liable for the undercooked food. The Plaintiffs also alleged that the manufacturer failed to use safer processing methods to destroy bacteria present in the oyster. The case was settled for a confidential sum prior to trial.

Maritime Injury

Oil Platform Injury

Tommy Hastings handled this maritime case with the assistance of local counsel in New Orleans. The Plaintiff was injured while dismantling an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico. During the operations, the Plaintiff was thrown from the work site into the gulf. He sustained injuries to his back. The case settled for a confidential amount.

Shipyard Accident

Tommy Hastings handled this maritime case. The Plaintiff was injured while working in a shipyard as a welder. While unmooring from the dock, the Plaintiff’s head was pinched between the dock and a transport vessel. The Plaintiff sustained a traumatic head injury. Initially, the Plaintiff’s claim for personal injuries was denied on the basis that he could not recover due to the fact that he was working for a contractor, which was covered under the LHWCA. The firm was able to dig deeper and engaged in extensive discovery, which uncovered contracts that voided this defense. As a result, the Plaintiff received a substantial confidential settlement.

Tug Boat Accident

Tommy Hastings handled this maritime case. The Plaintiff was injured when a winch allowed a tug to bob in the water. The Plaintiff injured his back. The case settled after extensive work in Federal Admiralty Court, Federal Bankruptcy Court and a Texas District Court.

Shrimp Boat Accident

Tommy Hastings handled this maritime case. The Plaintiff sustained a significant injury to his back while shrimping in the Gulf of Mexico. The case settled for a confidential amount.

Premises Liability

Case Name Confidential

Tommy Hastings handled this case where the Plaintiff sustained a serious injury while touring a home under construction. The building crew had forgotten to install a safety rail at the top of the steps. The Plaintiff fell over eight feet onto a concrete floor. The case settled for a confidential amount.

Pazdro v. Capodice

Tommy Hastings handled this case where the Plaintiff sustained neck and back injuries after slipping in a puddle of water in the home’s entrance. The case was settled for the policy limits of the homeowner.

Other Litigation For Plaintiffs

Employment Discrimination

Case Name Confidential

Tommy Hastings handled this complex age discrimination case where the Plaintiffs were part of a massive reduction in force at a Houston area refinery. Tommy’s clients were longtime employees of the refinery that had exemplary work records. It was discovered that out of the 59 persons selected for the layoff, all but one were over the age of 40 and most were over the age of 50. Tommy successfully argued to the EEOC to make a rare finding of age discrimination. Tommy also successfully argued in federal court to have a release declared invalid as a matter of law. The Defendant argued that it obtained releases from all of the Plaintiffs in exchange for severance pay. Tommy was successful in having the release declared void and the case was settled for a confidential amount shortly thereafter.

Case Name Confidential

Tommy Hastings handled this sexual harassment case where a female employee was subject to constant off-color jokes about her appearance, lewd emails and sexual advances by her superior. Tommy successfully handled the case and obtained a settlement for his client prior to filing suit.

Homeowners Rights

Clemsen, et. al. v. Entergy

This complex case involved the construction of a high voltage power line beside a residential neighborhood in The Woodlands, Texas. The Plaintiffs sought to enjoin construction of the lines alleging that it violated the deed restrictions for the neighborhood and constituted a nuisance. Tommy Hastings was able to obtain a Temporary Injunction following a two-day evidentiary hearing attended by hundreds of homeowners. Ultimately, the case was tried with a mixed verdict on the issue of nuisance.

Civil Rights

Hall v. Adams

This is a civil rights case involving the denial of proper medical care to a prisoner. The Defendant sought to have the case dismissed, but was unable to convince the District Judge to dismiss. The case was then appealed to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in New Orleans, LA. Tommy Hastings handled the brief and argument on appeal. In August, 2004, the Court of Appeals ruled for the Plaintiff and held that dismissal was inappropriate.