Elliott M. Buckner

Partner

Seasoned Richmond, VA Personal Injury Attorney

When clients have suffered a severe injury in a complex situation, there’s one Richmond personal injury lawyer they can turn to—Attorney Elliott M. Buckner at Cantor Stoneburner Ford Grana & Buckner. Elliott has represented cases in every kind of catastrophic injury claim, including traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, tractor-trailer crashes, car collisions, and other harmful circumstances. He also handles wrongful death claims on behalf of families who have experienced loss due to negligence.

No matter the situation, Elliott works tirelessly to ensure his clients receive the support and compensation they deserve. He has secured more than 33 verdicts and settlements larger than $1 million, changing the lives of dozens of clients and their family members. His track record of successful verdicts has formed a reputation that allows him to demand rightful compensation more effectively—resulting in larger settlements.

Part of what makes Elliott such an effective attorney is his experience as an insurance defense attorney. In his previous practice, he stood on the other side of the court from injury victims, building cases to protect insurance companies from liability. Once he decided that he would rather serve the injured than work against them, he brought with him a wealth of experience and insight into how insurance litigators work. As a result, Elliott brings strategic power to every case he is involved in.

Elliott is widely recognized by his peers for his relentless and effective approach to litigation. He has been named to the list of Best Lawyers in America, been AV® Preeminent™ Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell®, included in the list of “Legal Elite” by Virginia Business Magazine, and has been annually selected to the Virginia Super Lawyers® list (on the Rising Star list and as a regular selection) for 10 years. He has also been regularly selected to the “Top 100 Virginia Super Lawyers” and “Top 50 Richmond Super Lawyers” lists. These selections mark Elliott as one of the very best Richmond personal injury attorneys, and among the top litigators in all of Virginia.

In addition to his trial work, Elliott often contributes to the legal community through lectures, articles, and presentations to other lawyers about effective trial representation.

Contact Elliott: ebuckner@virginiatrialfirm.com

Education

  • J.D., College of William and Mary (2000), Moot Court, Order of the Barristers
  • B.B.A., University of Richmond (1993)

Bar Admission

  • Virginia
  • New York

Court Admissions

  • Virginia Supreme Court
  • 4th Circuit Court of Appeals
  • U.S. District Courts for the Eastern and Western Districts of Virginia

Previous Experience

  • CantorArkema, P.C., Partner (2002-2009)
  • Harman Claytor Corrigan & Wellman, Associate (2000-2002)

Honors

  • AV® Preeminent™ Peer Review Rated, Martindale-Hubbell’s highest rating for legal ability and ethical standards
  • American Lawyer Media and Martindale-Hubbell “Top Rated Lawyer” (2012)
  • Best Lawyers in America, in the category of Personal Injury Litigation (2011-present)
  • Virginia Super Lawyers® (2016-2012), selected by Law & Politics.
    • "Top 100 Virginia Super Lawyers" (2016, 2015, 2014, 2012)
    • "Top 50 Richmond Area Super Lawyers" (2016, 2015, 2014, 2012)
    • Virginia Super Lawyers “Rising Star” (2007-2011)
  • “Legal Elite - Civil Litigation,” Virginia Business magazine (2013, 2015)
  • “Legal Elite - Young Lawyer,” Virginia Business magazine (2005-2006, 2008, 2010)
  • American Bar Association National Appellate Advocacy Competition, Winner (2000)

Professional Associations

  • Virginia Trial Lawyers Association, Vice President (2015), Treasurer (2014), Legislative Chair (2012, 2013, 2015)
  • Brain Injury Association of America, National Legal Conference Co-Chair
  • American Association for Justice (formerly Association of Trial Lawyers of America)
  • Lewis F. Powell Inn of Court
  • City of Richmond Bar Association
  • Henrico Bar Association
  • Virginia Bar Association

Publications/Presentations

  • “What Keeps Plaintiffs Lawyers Awake at Night,” Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys Annual Conference (2015)
  • “After the Winning Verdict,” Virginia CLE (2015)
  • “Handling Personal Injury Cases,” Virginia State Bar ‘First Day in Practice’ annual seminar (2012, 2013, 2014)
  • “Medpay,” VTLA Sources of Coverage (2014)
  • “Tort Law Update,” VTLA Annual Paralegal Seminar (2013)
  • “Pointers and Pitfalls of the Settlement Agreement and Release,” VTLA Annual Convention (2011)
  • “How to Use and Disclose Medical Literature,” VTLA Advanced Auto Retreat (2010)
  • "Small Firm David Socks Insurer Goliath in PI Cases," 4th Annual Solo & Small Firm Institute, Virginia CLE (2009)
  • "Preparing the Client for Depositions," American Association of Justice Annual Conference (2009)
  • "Initial Case Management and Intake," National Business Institute Paralegal Seminar (2008)
  • "Defeating Colossus, 2nd Annual Solo & Small Firm Institute," Virginia CLE (2007)
  • "Assisting with Settlement Negotiations," National Business Institute Paralegal Seminar (2007)
  • Medical Malpractice Verdict

    $9 Million

    In this medical malpractice case, a 10 year-old boy suffering from an intellectual disability and cerebral palsy due to a hypoxic ischemic brain injury at birth, as a result of a delayed decision to perform a C-section, was awarded $9,077,500. $5,500,000 in compensatory damages plus $3,577,500 in interest was awarded by a jury after 4 days of testimony.

    (Stephanie Grana, Elliott Buckner, Irv Cantor)

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  • Auto Accident

    $5 million

    The husband-driver of the motorcycle, age 48, suffered severe left leg injuries resulting in an above the knee amputation. He was in excellent health and extremely active prior to the crash. He suffers from intermittent phantom pain and depression. The wife-passenger, age 47, suffered a fractured clavicle, fractured great toe, tendon injury to her knee and a large laceration of her lower leg. She suffers from significant lost mobility, pain and anxiety. The plaintiffs are a very attractive couple, who had been married for just over one year at the time of the crash. The severe injuries the couple suffered in the crash were obviously life-altering in nature. Plaintiff’s counsel conducted a mock trial and performed a survey of demographic and jury verdict research prior to settling the case. The case settled subsequent to a mediation.

    Type of Action: Motorcycle collision

    Style of Case: Confidential

    Court: Spotsylvania County Circuit

    Award or Settlement: Settlement

    Amount: $5,000,000

    Amount of Specials: Husband; driver - $116,265.14 in past medical bills, $737,472.16 future medical bills, and $381.665.50 in past and future wage loss. Wife,; passenger - $64,815.87 in past medical bills and $25,116.25 in future medical bills, and $10,316.80 in past wage loss.

    Attorneys for plaintiff: Stephanie E. Grana, Irvin V. Cantor, and Elliott M. Buckner, Cantor Stoneburner Ford Grana & Buckner, P.C., Richmond, Va.

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  • Medical Malpractice

    $4 Million

    The plaintiff, a 34 year old, young mother, was scheduled for a repeat C-section, but went into labor 9 days early on August 1, 2010. Labor progressed quickly. She delivered a healthy baby girl vaginally, with no complications.

    After delivery, plaintiff complained of sharp, abdominal pain and 10/10 pain unrelieved by morphine. Moderate bleeding was then noted. The obstetrician came bedside and decided to perform a manual exploration and curette procedure. After this procedure, he ruled out uterine scar rupture, which is a risk for any patient who delivers vaginally following a previous C-section delivery (“VBAC”), and continued to treat plaintiff for uterine atony or a loss in tone of the uterus. No blood products were ordered or transfused and the plaintiff was not taken to the operating room for exploratory surgery. For the next 1 ½ hours, plaintiff was consistently hypotensive (low blood pressure) and tachycardia (fast pulse) and the two nurses who remained bedside noted “moderate” bleeding. The obstetrician acknowledged that he was kept apprised and a blood draw revealed lower hemoglobin and hematocrit values than prior to delivery, but not abnormal for a postpartum patient. When the obstetrician came bedside, the plaintiff was becoming restless and short of breath. She coded within minutes thereafter.

    After resuscitation, the plaintiff received her first blood transfusion and a second obstetrician took over her care. For the next 4 ½ -5 hours, the plaintiff was monitored closely and received 7 units of packed red blood cells and 7 units of fresh frozen plasma. Her blood draws revealed low hemoglobin and hematocrit values and her bleeding was noted “off and on” during this entire time frame. This bleeding was contested by defendant and their experts. When the plaintiff was finally taken to the operating room for a hysterectomy, a procedure that plaintiff’s experts testified should have been performed hours earlier; she coded again and had to be resuscitated. The surgery continued and by the time of completion, the plaintiff had received a total of 14 units of packed red blood cells and 14 units of fresh frozen plasma, along with other products. Following the performance of the hysterectomy, the plaintiff had no further bleeding. Plaintiff suffered 2 additional codes while in the hospital.

    The hysterectomy operative report noted a uterine scar “defect” from the prior C-section scar. Defendant and their experts argued for the first time at trial that plaintiff’s injury was a prior uterine scar “dehiscence” and not a complete rupture and that conservative measures were appropriately administered prior to the hysterectomy or treatment of “last resort.” Plaintiff’s experts argued that the defect was referred to as a prior uterine scar “rupture” or “dehiscence” interchangeably in the medical records and was the source of plaintiff’s bleeding and subsequent hemorrhagic shock.

    Plaintiff remained on a ventilator for 9 days, suffering from renal failure and adrenal insufficiency. Plaintiff slowly improved, but she has no memory of giving birth to her daughter or the events thereafter. Upon discharge, the plaintiff had to be transferred to a rehab facility to re-learn how to walk, talk, walk up stairs, write and regain her strength to hold her children. She remained on dialysis for another month. 3 months later, the plaintiff was able to return to her job as high school biology and anatomy teacher.

    Approximately 9 months later, the plaintiff learned that her kidney injury was permanent. She was evaluated and placed on the national list for a kidney transplant. A little over 1 year after the delivery and the events giving rise to the lawsuit, the plaintiff underwent a kidney transplant from a cadaver donor. Plaintiff recovered and returned to her job 3 months later.

    Due to her age, plaintiff’s experts testified that she will require at least 2 additional kidney transplants. For life, she needs routine medical follow-up, is a risk for various complications related to the transplant and remains on daily immunosuppressant medications – taking 22 pills per day. Plaintiff is a wonderful lady and a “fighter” and made an excellent witness before the jury.

    This was a no offer case. After 5 days of trial, the jury awarded the plaintiff 4 million dollars. The judgment, as reduced to the statutory cap by the Court, has been satisfied.

    Plaintiff thanks Amicus Visual Solutions for their assistance at trial.

    Type of action: Medical Malpractice case involving a uterine scar rupture and permanent kidney loss to a young mother of two daughters

    Style of case: Sally S. Arbogast v. Summit Health Care, Inc.

    Court: County of Chesterfield Circuit Court

    Judge: Honorable Steven C. McCallum

    Verdict or settlement: Jury verdict

    Amount: $4,000,000.00 (reduced to the cap of $2,000,000.00 pursuant to Virginia Code § 8.01-581.15)

    Amount of specials: $731,787,14 - past medicals and lost wages, $1,671,851.90 – life care plan

    Attorneys for plaintiff: Irvin V. Cantor, Stephanie E. Grana,and Elliott M. Buckner, Cantor Stoneburner Ford Grana & Buckner, P.C., Richmond, VA

    Plaintiff’s experts: Obstetricians, Critical Care Surgeon, Transplant Surgeon, Nephrologist, Life Care Planner

    Defendant’s experts: Obstetricians, Hematologist/Oncologist

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  • Auto Accident

    $2.98 Million

    Automobile accident, in which a woman sustained a mild brain injury and orthopedic injuries.

    (Irv Cantor, Elliott Buckner)

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  • Wrongful Death

    $2.975 Million

    Wrongful death case.

    (Irv Cantor, Stephanie Grana, Elliott Buckner)

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  • Wrongful Death

    $2.85 Million

    Wrongful death case.

    (Irv Cantor, Stephanie Grana, Elliott Buckner)

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  • Brain Injury

    $2.8 Million

    n 2006, the plaintiff, a 13-year-old teenage boy, was injured when the automobile in which he was a passenger was struck by an SUV that failed to stop at a stop sign.

    The plaintiff was taken by ambulance to the hospital, where it was discovered that he had suffered a head injury with an epidural hematoma, requiring a craniotomy to evacuate the blood. The surgery was successful and the plaintiff was released from the hospital after a 3-day admission.

    The plaintiff was able to return to school, ultimately completing his middle school and high school without disruption. However, the plaintiff struggled throughout his schooling with headaches, sleep difficulties, tinnitus, and difficulties with concentration, attention and memory. He also had occasional lapse spells, where he experienced short periods of time where he lost awareness of his surroundings. Notwithstanding these difficulties, the plaintiff was able to complete high school with a grade point average of over 3.0.

    After high school, the plaintiff matriculated to VCU, where he completed his first two years. His grades at VCU have been markedly lower than his high school grades. Plaintiff’s experts explained that when the plaintiff left the structured environment of high school for the more challenging environment of college, the plaintiff was unable to adapt satisfactorily due to his multiple cognitive deficits.

    Plaintiff’s physicians ordered numerous EEG studies because of their suspicion that he was suffering from a complex partial seizure disorder. The EEG studies were largely unremarkable, except for subtle abnormalities noted on a digital dense - array EEG and a subsequent sleep deprived EEG. The plaintiff also underwent a PET Scan and Diffusion Tensor Imaging (“DTI”) study that showed some evidence of persistent brain dysfunction.

    The defendant’s experts contested the extent of the plaintiff’s brain injury, emphasizing plaintiff’s successful academic record as evidence of his functional abilities. The defendant’s neuroradiologist disputed the findings of the plaintiff’s neuroradiologist regarding the PET and DTI studies, stating that there was no detectable asymmetry in either the white matter tracts of the DTI or the metabolic activity of the PET Scan. The defense experts also disputed that the plaintiff would need any of the items included in the Life Care Plan.

    The parties settled the case at a mediation conducted prior to trial. The plaintiff’s settlement proceeds were paid in cash and a structured settlement, with an estimated lifetime payout of almost $4,500,000.

    Type of case: Traumatic Brain Injury by Auto Accident

    Name of case: Confidential

    Court: York County Circuit Court

    Verdict or settlement: Settlement

    Amount of settlement: $2,800,000

    Date of settlement: June 21, 2013

    Special damages: Medical expenses: $145,305; Life care plan total: $901,431

    Attorneys for plaintiff: Irvin V. Cantor, Stephanie E. Grana,and Elliott M. Buckner, Cantor Stoneburner Ford Grana & Buckner, P.C., Richmond, VA, and Michael Maguire, Yorktown, VA

    Plaintiff’s experts: Neurosurgeon, Neurologist, Neuropsychiatrist, Neuropsychologist, Neuroradiologist, Life Care Planner

    Defendant’s experts: Neurologist, Neuropsychologist, Neuroradiologist

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  • Medical Malpractice

    $2.7 Million

    Plaintiff was arrested for public intoxication and taken to a regional jail, to be released upon his own recognizance once sober. Several hours after being booked and while still in custody, plaintiff began experiencing seizures consistent with alcohol withdrawal. Over the course of approximately two hours, guards and nurses with the jail witnessed plaintiff undergo multiple seizures of sustained duration that resulted in, among other things, incoherency, bleeding from the mouth, and loss of bowel function. Despite plaintiff’s deteriorating medical condition 911 was not called until after a magistrate agreed to sign a release order. Upon arrival at the hospital, plaintiff suffered a heart attack as a result of severe metabolic acidosis caused by his seizures and alcohol withdrawal, which in turn resulted in oxygen deprivation and, ultimately, permanent hypoxic encephalopathy.

    (Mark Dix, Elliott Buckner, Irv Cantor, Scott Bucci, Stephanie Grana)

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  • Wrongful Death

    $2.4 Million

    The decedent was a registered nurse, wife and mother of two who fell on the steps at a commercial facility. The plaintiff alleged that the steps were not built according to the building code, such that the defendants were negligent per se. Plaintiff further alleged the defendants were negligent per se. Plaintiff further alleged the defendants were negligent pursuant to common law because they had prior notice of defects in the steps, which had not been properly repaired. The cause of the fall was complicated by the decedent’s death, since she could not testify. The plaintiff planned to prove proximate cause through two eyewitnesses who saw the fall. Statements of the decedent to those witnesses at the time of her fall, as well as in her own handwriting in medical records, was admissible under the Dead Man’s Statue as an exception to the hearsay rule.

    The primary issue in the case involved whether the decedent died as a result of the fall. At the time of the fall, she suffered a trimalleolar fracture of her ankle, which was surgically repaired and casted. She was then non-weight bearing and essentially immobile for two months during the healing process.

    After the decedent had her cast removed, she underwent out-patient surgery to have the screws removed and began physical therapy. Eight days after the second surgery, and approximately nine weeks after her fall, the decedent became suddenly critically ill and died. No autopsy was performed.

    The plaintiff claimed the decedent died from the pulmonary embolus, caused by a deep vein thrombosis which had formed in her leg as a result of her injury and post-surgery immobility.

    The defendants claimed that the decedent died as a result of cardiac arrest unrelated to her fall. They contended that the decedent had risk factors for cardiac disease, primarily because she was a diabetic and obese.

    Causation was strongly contested. Decedent’s treating physicians including the ER doctor, her two family physicians, an internist who treated her during the hospitalization at the time of her first surgery and the orthopedist who performed her two surgeries, testified that the decedent died as a result of a pulmonary embolus caused by her initial injuries from her fall. In addition, the plaintiff had two independent cardiologists and one independent orthopedist review all of the records and depositions in the case. The three experts agreed that the decedent had died as a result of a pulmonary embolus caused by her injuries, resulting treatment and immobility after the fall.

    The defendants retained a cardiologist an orthopedist and a pulmonologist, who opined that the decedent had died from an unrelated heart attack.

    Depositions were taken from all of the decedent’s health care providers and experts, and from the factual witnesses and family members who witnesses the decedent’s fall and who were aware of her condition leading up to and at the time of her death. Rescue squad personnel also provided important factual information critical to the diagnosis of pulmonary embolus being the cause of death.

    The case was ultimately resolved at the mediation approximately two months prior to trial.

    Type of Action: Slip & fall

    Injuries alleged: Wrongful death

    Special damages: $73,668 in medical bills; $10,491 in funeral bills; $788,081 in contested loss of earnings and loss of services to the family

    Verdict or Settlement: Settlement

    Amount: $2,400,000

    Attorneys for plaintiff: Irvin V. Cantor, Stephanie E. Grana and Elliott M. Buckner, Richmond, Va.

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  • Auto Accident

    $2.35 Million

    Automobile collision case, in which a young woman suffered a mild brain injury.

    (Irv Cantor, Elliott Buckner)

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  • Wrongful Death

    $2.3 Million

    The Decedent was driving an automobile that was in the process of making a left turn into a driveway when the defendant, driving a tractor-trailer, struck the automobile as the tractor-trailer was attempting to pass the automobile. The tractor-trailer initiated its pass around the automobile in a passing zone, but the actual impact between the vehicles was in a no-passing zone.

    Liability was hotly contested between the parties. The defense contended that the Decedent was contributorily negligent, claiming that he failed to give a visible turn signal as required by Virginia Code Sections 46.2-848 and 849 based primarily upon the testimony of an eyewitness on the side of the road that the Decedent activated his turn signal only a short distance (less than the required 100 feet) from where he initiated his turn.

    The Decedent died at the scene of the crash. The statutory beneficiaries of the Decedent were his wife and two adult sons. The Decedent was an appliance repair technician.

    Type of case: Wrongful death

    Name of case: Confidential

    Verdict or settlement: Settlement

    Amount of settlement: $2,300,000

    Attorneys for plaintiff: Irvin V. Cantor, Elliott M. Buckner, Stephanie E. Grana, Cantor Stoneburner Ford Grana & Buckner, P.C., Richmond, Va.

    Plaintiff’s experts: Economist, Accident Reconstructionist

    Defendant’s experts: Economist, Accident Reconstructionist

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  • Wrongful Death

    $2.2 Million

    Wrongful death of 70 year old in tractor- trailer collision.

    (Irv Cantor, Stephanie Grana, Elliott Buckner)

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  • Auto Accident

    $2 Million

    Automobile accident case involving a brain injury suffered by our client.

    (Irv Cantor, Aubrey Ford, Stephanie Grana, Elliott Buckner)

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  • Medical Malpractice

    $2 Million

    Plaintiff, a fifteen year old male, with mild persistent asthma, was negligently diagnosed with cystic fibrosis (“CF”) and pancreatic insufficiency (“PI”) at the age of five and treated for the diseases until shortly before his thirteenth birthday. His diagnoses were never properly confirmed by available testing. After seven and a half years of treatment, Defendant’s physician employee conducted proper testing and reversed the diagnoses.

    Cystic fibrosis is an incurable disease which results in progressive pulmonary and pancreatic dysfunction, sterility and an early death. The average life expectancy for CF was approximately 30 years old at the time of the plaintiff’s diagnosis. The plaintiff learned from a young age that he would undergo daily treatment, eventual bilateral lung transplants, sterility and a premature death. Plaintiff put on evidence that the child underwent over 3,000 hours of unnecessary chest physiotherapy, which was administered everyday. He ingested almost 40,000 doses of pancreatic enzymes, underwent 26 unnecessary chest x-rays, consumed 23 different types of medications, in addition to enduring other medically invasive treatments including a bronchoscopy, deep throat cultures, blood draws and intravenous administration of unnecessary antibiotics. In addition, the plaintiff called a child psychologist who testified as to the psychological impact of the diagnosis, and its reversal, on the child.

    Two of the Defendant’s physician employees testified as adverse witnesses for the Plaintiff. The doctor who reversed the diagnosis testified as the Plaintiff’s first witness. He conceded that the child had never been properly tested, had mild symptoms consistent with asthma, and that the testing he performed definitively ruled out CF and PI. The Plaintiff also called adversely the current Director of the MCV CF Center, who agreed with the reversal of the diagnosis.

    The case was defended on both the standard of care and causation. The Defendant relied on the fact that the plaintiff had some initial test results which raised the suspicion of CF and mild symptoms that could have been consistent with asthma or CF. Under these circumstances, the Defendant contended treatment was reasonable. In terms of causation, the Defendant argued the plaintiff suffered no known side effects from unnecessary medications and therapies and should be relieved by the fact that he did not have the diseases.

    Type of Action: Medical Malpractice

    Injuries alleged: Misdiagnosis resulting in negligent treatment and emotional harm

    Name of Case Physicians: Johnson v. MCV Associated

    Verdict or Settlement: Jury Verdict

    Date: March 22, 2012

    Judge: Hon. Melvin R. Hughes. Jr.

    Amount: $2,000,000

    Last offer $210,000

    Attorneys for Defendant: Kimberly Satterwhite, Tanner Smith

    Attorneys for plaintiff: Lewis T. Stoneburner, Bellamy Stoneburner, Cantor Stoneburner Ford Grana & Buckner, P.C., Richmond, Va.

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  • Brain Injury

    $2 Million Settlement

    Automobile accident case involving a brain injury suffered by our client.

    (Irv Cantor, Aubrey Ford, Stephanie Grana, Elliott Buckner)

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  • Brain Injury

    $1.95 Million

    Plaintiff, a 53 year old man, had previously suffered an odontoid fracture in 2001 which required a spinal fusion from C1 to C5. He had done well and was employed as a supervisor for 30 years. When he developed some difficulty walking with secondary bilateral leg weakness, he was admitted into the hospital by his neurosurgeon for a re-do occiput to C5 instrumentation and fusion. The anesthesia pre-procedure consult noted specific concerns for anesthesia including severely limited neck motion due to cervical traction in neutral position and a limited mouth opening. A subsequent pre-procedure consult note indicated a more normal assessment. Given the plaintiff’s presentation to the hospital, his symptoms, the requirement of cervical traction to ameliorate those symptoms and his past surgical history, plaintiff’s experts were of the opinion that the first evaluation was more accurate and the plaintiff needed a fiberoptic intubation. Prior to the commencement of the surgery, the anesthesia providers provided some sedation while the monitor and oxygen were applied. A transtracheal block was performed. Two minutes later, the plaintiff was induced with Lidocaine and Propofol. The combination of these drugs can cause a patient to become apneic which can normally be cared for. The records noted that the plaintiff’s mask ventilation was difficult and that he had a period of apnea following ventilation within minutes. Two oral attempts were then made with a fiberoptic bronchoscope, but were unsuccessful. It was noted that the plaintiff remained spontaneously breathing, but required pressure support via mask between attempts.

    Despite these noted difficulties, it was next decided to administer Rocuronium to assist with the ventilation/intubation. Rocuronium is an intermediate-acting muscle relaxant, which is not reversible for at least 20 to 30 minutes. Essentially, the plaintiff was paralyzed at this point and could no longer breathe for himself. The anesthesia providers no longer had the option of being able to immediately awaken their patient. A third attempt at fiberoptic intubation was unsuccessful. The plaintiff then became difficult and then, impossible to mask ventilate with two providers and an oral airway. The next maneuver attempted was a direct laryngoscopy, but failed. An attempt at supraglottic airway was made, but failed as well. The plaintiff was now bradycardic while still maintaining a blood pressure. An angiocatheter was placed through the neck into his trachea and oxygen was insufflated through the catheter. This helped for a short period of time, but became clotted and no further oxygenation was possible. At this time, the anesthesia providers decided to place a tracheostomy. An incision was made in the plaintiff’s neck and dissected down to the trachea. Unfortunately, multiple attempts made to place the tracheostomy were unsuccessful. An ENT physician then entered the operating room to further assist. The plaintiff became more bradycardic and eventually, no palpable pulses were felt. CPR commenced and he received approximately 4 minutes of chest compressions. The plaintiff was finally intubated via direct laryngoscopy while the ENT was working on the tracheotomy. Immediately after the patient was successfully intubated, his oxygen saturations returned to more normal levels. Shortly thereafter, the providers were able to re-establish a cardiac rhythm and blood pressure. The neurosurgeon deemed that his patient was grossly unstable from a pulmonary and cardiovascular standpoint the planned neurosurgical procedure was aborted.

    Despite various medical interventions that followed, the plaintiff remained neurologically devastated and did not have any spontaneous movement or response to painful stimuli. An EEG was performed and noted a pattern typically seen following anoxic injury after cardiac arrest, suggestive of a poor prognosis. Plaintiff’s brain imaging was indicative of a global hypoxic-ischemic injury. He was taken for a tracheostomy and PEG tube placement. Plaintiff’s experts were of the opinion that the induction of anesthesia and intubation sequence did not meet the standard of care directly resulting in the plaintiff’s permanent injuries.

    After more than a month in the hospital, the plaintiff was discharged to a long-term care facility where he remains today. Although he has been weaned from the ventilator, the plaintiff remains unable to care for himself independently, unable to walk and unable to communicate verbally. He is currently being cared for by his parents and 5 siblings who all live locally. At the time of settlement, less than two years after the date of injury, the plaintiff’s incurred medical bills totaled almost one million dollars.

    Type of action: Medical malpractice case involving permanent anoxic brain injury requiring a lifetime of care.

    Injuries alleged: Permanent anoxic brain injury.

    Court: Settlement

    Verdict or settlement: Settlement (pre-suit)

    Amount: $1,950,000.00

    Amount of specials: $1,000,000.00

    Date of settlement: November 2015

    Attorneys for plaintiff: Stephanie E. Grana, Irvin V. Cantor, and Elliott M. Buckner, Cantor Stoneburner Ford Grana & Buckner, P.C., Richmond, VA, Jeffrey A. Breit, Breit Drescher Imprevento, P.C., Virginia Beach,VA

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  • Medical Malpractice

    $1.95 Million

    Medical malpractice case.

    (Irv Cantor, Stephanie Grana, Elliott Buckner)

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  • Wrongful Death

    $1.95 Million

    Verdict in wrongful death case.

    (Irv Cantor, Elliott Buckner, Stephanie Grana)

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  • Auto Accident

    $1.9 Million

    Automobile accident case, in which our client sustained a mild traumatic brain injury.

    (Irv Cantor, Elliott Buckner)

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  • Medical Malpractice

    $1.7 Million

    Plaintiff was an independent and healthy 27 year old who was injured in a car accident in December 2011 and underwent surgery for multiple orthopedic injuries. Plaintiff tolerated the surgery well. At the close of the surgery, Plaintiff exhibited airway difficulties following extubation by the CRNA. Plaintiff further alleged inappropriate medical management with regard to Plaintiff’s airway in the PACU by the attending anesthesiologist and Plaintiff’s experts were prepared to offer opinions with regard to negligent re-intubation and oxygenation. There were additional allegations of missing equipment. Due to inadequate oxygenation, Plaintiff suffered a severe and permanent anoxic brain injury and is unable to care for himself independently, cannot walk and cannot communicate verbally. Following 24 hour nursing home care for the first year following the injury, Plaintiff is now cared for by his mother in her home full-time, with the assistance of home health care.

    Type of case: Medical Malpractice

    Injuries alleged: Permanent anoxic brain injury requiring a lifetime of care.

    Court: Settlement – case settled 3 ½ months prior to trial.

    Name of case: Confidential

    Verdict or settlement: Settlement

    Amount of settlement: $1,700,000

    Amount of specials: $670,000

    Date of settlement: August 2014

    Attorneys for plaintiff: Stephanie E. Grana,Irvin V. Cantor, Elliott M. Buckner, Cantor Stoneburner Ford Grana & Buckner, P.C., Richmond, Va.

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  • Motor Vehicle Accident

    $1.65 Million

    The plaintiff sustained a mild traumatic brain injury and injuries to her neck and shoulder in a motor vehicle accident. Plaintiff’s brain injury resulted in numerous deficits including problems with short-term memory, inattention, executive dysfunction and mood dysfunction including depression, apathy, and anxiety, all of which were further exacerbated due to chronic pain from the neck and shoulder injuries. Plaintiff was treated by a family physician who was prepared to testify that he knew plaintiff well before and after the subject accident and that plaintiff was a very different person after the accident. Plaintiff was also treated by a neuropsychiatrist, a neurologist, and a physiatrist.

    Type of action: Motor vehicle accident

    Injuries alleged: Mild traumatic brain injury; injuries to neck and shoulder

    Name of case: Confidential

    Verdict or settlement: Settlement

    Amount: $1,650,000

    Special damages: $80,000 in medical expenses; $160,000 in lost wages; disputed life care plan expenses

    Attorneys for plaintiff: Elliot M. Buckner, Irvin V. Cantor, and Stephanie E. Grana, Richmond, Va.

    This case result appeared in the 01.02.12 issue of Virginia Lawyers Weekly.

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  • Auto Accident

    $1.6 Million

    Automobile accident, involving mild brain injury suffered by our client.

    (Elliott Buckner, Irv Cantor, Stephanie Grana)

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  • Motor Vehicle Accident

    $1.51 Million

    The plaintiff, age 56, suffered an upper cervical fracture and mild brain injury in a motor vehicle collision. The plaintiff underwent cervical fusion surgery but continued to have pain after the operation.

    Plaintiff’s neurosurgeon referred the plaintiff to a psychiatrist, who prescribed a regimen of steroid injections and medications to manage her chronic pain.

    Several months after cervical surgery, the plaintiff continued to complain of memory loss and problems with concentration and attention. She was eventually diagnosed by a neurologist as having suffered a mild traumatic brain injury.

    The defense experts-a neurologist, psychiatrist and neuropsychologist-all took the position that the plaintiff had not suffered a brain injury in the collision and that her cognitive problems were all a result of a pre-existing narcotic dependence, developed as a result of unrelated gastrointestinal issues.

    (Irv Cantor, Stephanie Grana, Elliott Buckner)

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  • Motor Vehicle Accident

    $1.44 Million

    Motor vehicle collision injury case.

    (Irv Cantor, Stephanie Grana, Elliott Buckner).

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  • Wrongful Death

    $1.35 Million

    As of December 2012, the plaintiff, age 83, was a husband and primary caretaker to his wife of over 60 years and their mentally challenged adult son. He was a retired Air Force chaplain who had been awarded a Bronze Star for meritorious service in Vietnam and a retired community minister. Despite his age, plaintiff was a generally healthy and independent man who was responsible for shopping, preparing meals, housekeeping, laundry and transportation. Following a car accident that resulted in major front end damage to his vehicle, plaintiff was taken the emergency room. The x-ray report noted advanced degenerative changes with no fractures. Shortly thereafter, he was released home via a taxi. The next morning, plaintiff was unable to move his arms and legs. He was returned to the same emergency room and the CT revealed a transverse fracture through C6. Upon review, the fracture had been visible on the x-rays from the day before. Subsequent surgery was performed but plaintiff remained paralyzed. Plaintiff’s wife had to be moved to a nursing home on a permanent basis as her husband was unable to care for her. Plaintiff spent the next year enduring physical therapy and attempted recovery at various nursing homes, rehabilitation facilities and hospitals. Unfortunately, he was unable to fully recover from the injuries associated with the delayed diagnosis of his C6 fracture and resultant paralysis. He died just over one year after the initial emergency room admission and is survived by his wife and two adult children. Several sizeable liens existed as a result of plaintiff’s extensive medical care.

    Type of case: Wrongful Death/Medical Malpractice

    Injuries alleged: Delayed diagnosis of neck fracture resulting in improper hospital discharge and subsequent paralysis and death.

    Court: Settlement

    Verdict or settlement: Settlement

    Amount of settlement: $1,350,000

    Date of settlement: May 2015

    Attorneys for plaintiff: Stephanie E. Grana, Elliott M. Buckner, Irvin V. Cantor, Cantor Stoneburner Ford Grana & Buckner, P.C., Richmond, Va.

    Experts: Case settled before experts were named. Plaintiff’s experts included the specialties of radiology, emergency room medicine, pulmonology, critical care medicine and orthopedic spine surgery.

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  • Motor Vehicle Accident

    $1.3 Million

    Motor vehicle collision, in which an elderly couple suffered serious orthopedic injuries.

    (Stephanie Grana, Elliott Buckner, Irv Cantor)

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  • Wrongful Death

    $1.3 Million

    Wrongful death of a 14 year old in a school bus accident in a rural Virginia county.

    (Irv Cantor, Elliott Buckner)

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  • Motor Vehicle Accident

    $1.295 Million

    Motor vehicle collision injury case.

    (Irv Cantor, Stephanie Grana, Elliott Buckner)

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  • Wrongful Death

    $1.14 Million

    Plaintiffs were the administrator and the family/beneficiaries of the estate of an 18 year old college student killed in a motor vehicle accident. The family secured a judgment against the driver of the car the decedent was riding in for $1,900,000. The present suit was a coverage case against the Commonwealth seeking satisfaction of the judgment pursuant to the Commonwealth’s Risk Management Plan. The case was very fact-specific and largely turned on agency issues. The case was vigorously defended by the Attorney General’s office. After more than a year of litigation and discovery the case settled approximately one month before trial.

    Type of Action: Coverage litigation after wrongful death verdict

    Style of Case: Confidential

    Court: Henrico County Circuit Court

    Award or Settlement: Settlement

    Amount: $1,140,000

    Amount of Specials: Underlying verdict of $1,900,000

    Attorneys for plaintiff: Irvin V. Cantor, Elliott M. Buckner and Stephanie E. Grana, Cantor Stoneburner Ford Grana & Buckner, P.C., Richmond, Va.

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  • Brain Injury

    $1.125 Million

    Premises case, in which a man suffered a mild brain injury when a display rack fell on him.

    (Irv Cantor, Elliott Buckner)

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  • Medical Malpractice

    $1.1 Million

    Plaintiff was a 54 year old female college professor without any history of urologic problems who underwent a craniotomy to resect a meningioma. Plaintiff tolerated the surgery well and a Foley remained in place. Nurses were to monitor Plaintiff’s input and output after the Foley was discontinued. The nursing notes were incomplete and void totals were not always recorded. Eventually, the Plaintiff was “straight-cathed” with a return of a large amount of urine. Despite the nursing monitoring, Plaintiff was again scanned and noted to have retention of over 1.5 liters of urine after a Foley was inserted. There was also a significant discrepancy between the recollection of the nurses and the Plaintiff and her husband. Plaintiff was discharged with a Foley in place. Despite follow-up care and time, Plaintiff’s overdistention bladder injury remained permanent. At present, Plaintiff remains unable to void on her own and must self-catheterize every 4 hours.

    Type of Action: Medical malpractice

    Injuries alleged: Permanent neurogenic bladder requiring a lifetime of self-catheterization

    Court: Case was settled pre-litigation

    Verdict or settlement: Settlement

    Date resolved: April 2013

    Amount: $1,100,000

    Attorneys for plaintiff: Stephanie E. Grana, Irvin V. Cantor, and Elliott Buckner, Cantor Stoneburner Ford Grana & Buckner, P.C., Richmond, Va.

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  • Wrongful Death

    $1.1 Million

    Wrongful death case arising from the death of an unmarried woman with one adult and one teenage child.

    (Irv Cantor, Elliott Buckner, Stephanie Grana)

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  • Brain Injury

    $1.025 Million

    Plaintiff was a 20 year old college student who suffered a traumatic brain injury in a motor vehicle collision in January, 2010 on Interstate 95 in Greensville County, Virginia. Plaintiff was a passenger in a car that collided with a tractor-trailer when the driver of the car changed lanes and lost control of his vehicle, resulting in a collision between the two vehicles. It was snowing at the time of the collision and the surface of the highway was slippery.

    As a result of his brain injury, the plaintiff was forced to miss one semester of college while he recuperated from his injuries. He returned to college and, after changing his major, graduated from college. Despite his successful completion of college, the plaintiff still suffered from sequelae of his brain injury that included: partial loss of hearing in one ear; sleep disorder; and some problems with concentration, attention, memory, and emotionality. Plaintiff’s incurred medical expenses were $214,967.05.

    Plaintiff brought suit against both the driver of his vehicle, who was a close friend, and the tractor-trailer driver and his employer. The parties each designated multiple experts to testify regarding the extent of the plaintiff’s brain injury. The case eventually settled at mediation a few weeks before trial for the total sum of $1,025,000, comprised of payments from the insurance carriers for both defendants.

    Type of Action: Traumatic Brain Injury - Tractor-Trailer Accident

    Style of case: Confidential

    Court: Greensville County Circuit Court

    Award or Settlement: Settlement

    Amount: $1,025,000

    Attorneys for plaintiff: Irvin V. Cantor, Elliott M. Buckner, and Stephanie E. Grana, Cantor, Stoneburner, Ford, Grana & Buckner, P.C., Richmond, Va.

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  • Medical Malpractice

    $1 Million

    Plaintiff, age 44, was married, a father of three young children and employed full time in a position that required travel across Virginia. He had a long history of minor neck pain for which he underwent conservative treatments, physical therapy and injections. Due to an exacerbation of symptoms, plaintiff was referred to a surgeon. A cervical MRI was done noting a herniated disc at C6-C7 with foraminal narrowing. Consequently, an anterior cervical decompression and fusion (“ACDF”) at C6-C7 was scheduled and performed in November 2012. The pre- and post-operative notes all indicated a surgical level of C6-C7. However, the radiology report for the C-spine following surgery described the surgical level as C7-T1. Plaintiff continued to treat with the defendant surgeon for 6 months and serial x-rays and an MRI were taken. Despite continued complaints of pain and headaches resistant to pain medication and physical therapy and follow-up x-rays continually reporting “status post ACDF from C7-T1”, the surgeon did not advise the plaintiff of any surgical complications or that he had operated at the wrong level. In late May 2013, the surgeon released plaintiff from his care advising him that there was nothing surgically wrong with his spine and that the pain had to be coming from something else.

    Plaintiff continued his use of pain medications, alternative methods of pain relief and limited his work and home activities. At one year out from surgery, plaintiff consulted with an orthopedic surgeon and an MRI was repeated which showed that the ACDF had been performed at C7-T1. Plaintiff reiterated that he had been advised that his surgery had been performed at the level of C6-C7. Unfortunately, the imaging studies also noted a central disc bulge at C6-C7 that was unchanged from 2012. Plaintiff had no choice but to undergo a second and more extensive spinal surgery in 2014 at C6-C7 with a posterior spinal fusion with instrumentation at C6-C7.

    Type of case: Medical Malpractice

    Injuries alleged: Wrong level spinal surgery resulting in second surgery and permanent injuries.

    Court: Settlement

    Verdict or settlement: Settlement

    Amount of settlement: $1,000,000

    Amount of specials: Approximately $225,000 related to second surgery.

    Date of settlement: January 2015

    Attorneys for plaintiff: Stephanie E. Grana, Irvin V. Cantor, Elliott M. Buckner, Cantor Stoneburner Ford Grana & Buckner, P.C., Richmond, Va.

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  • Medical Malpractice

    $1 Million

    As of 2009, plaintiff, a 51 year old insurance specialist, was suffering from an undiagnosed trigeminal schwannoma. In April 2009, she started to complain of blurred and double vision (diplopia), pressure behind the eyes and headaches. Based upon the initial evaluation by her ophthalmologist and 2 follow-up appointments, plaintiff was advised that she had adult strabismus and prism glasses were prescribed. Thyroid testing was negative. A cause of the diplopia was not determined. By March 2011, the vision difficulties and headaches had increased. Plaintiff returned to her ophthalmologist and was offered computer glasses. 8 days later, plaintiff was seen by her primary care physician with continued complaints and an MRI was finally ordered. Unfortunately, her trigeminal schwannoma had increased in size to 3.9 x 3.6 cm and was compressing the optic nerve. Tumor resection surgery was quickly performed in April 2011. Plaintiff suffers from 3rd, 4th and 5th cranial nerve deficits, constant diplopia in left eye with limited vision such that the left eyeglass is frosted, limited movement of left eye, ptosis of left upper eye lid, left sided neuropathic facial pain, left sided facial numbness, memory loss and profound fatigue.

    Type of case: Medical malpractice

    Court: Virginia

    Verdict or settlement: Settlement. Case settled 3 ½ months prior to trial.

    Date of settlement: October, 2013

    Amount: $1,000,000

    Amount of specials: $559,712.32 - Past medicals.

    Attorneys for plaintiff: Stephanie E. Grana, Irvin V. Cantor, and Elliott M. Buckner, Cantor Stoneburner Ford Grana & Buckner, P.C., Richmond, Va.

    Experts: Case settled before experts were named. Plaintiff’s experts included the specialties of pediatric ophthalmology, neurosurgery, neuropsychiatry and life care planning.

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