Discuss some of your most memorable cases.

Discuss some of your most…

You know all of them are memorable, but I’ll give you a couple of examples. A very interesting case, since we’re here sitting in the state of hockey, Minnesota. Years ago I represented 14 topflight amateur players who formed a team to go to Sun Valley, Idaho, which was kind of famous at that time for hosting amateur hockey tournaments in the evening where the skiers at the end of the day had something to do at Sun Valley Resort and they’d go watch the games.

Unfortunately for our 14 hockey players in their last game at Sun Valley that year someone thought it was a little too cold outside so they closed the ventilation to the arena and ran the Zamboni as usual between games and between every period, flooding the arena with nitrogen dioxide gas, which is highly caustic, poisonous to the respiratory system. 

In the aftermath of that game one of the players had to be airlifted to Billings, Montana, for a treatment there, survived, but with lung injuries, and all of the other 13 players suffered lung injuries. We ultimately had to go out and try that case. That was one of those instances where a defendant finally admitted that they were at fault at the end to try to make them look like good guys to the jury, but they didn’t offer enough money for these injuries. So we tried the case in Boise, Idaho, in Federal court there, and we ended up getting five times what the last offer was. So it was a very satisfying case.

But another very memorable case was the work that my firm and other plaintiffs’ law firms, trial lawyers did on behalf of the I-35 bridge victims. Everyone here in Minnesota knows that on August 1, 2007, the I-35 bridge went down and in the aftermath of that I called the president of our trial lawyers association who was a good friend of mine and former partner and said I think we should ban together to provide free legal representation to all those who were injured on the bridge or the 13 families that lost family members. And we did that. 

And ultimately the state offered some money and we represented all of our clients, over 100 of them with a consortium of plaintiffs’ lawyers, represented all 100 of them over 100 in making claims with the state and putting together information regarding what they had been through, all the harms and the losses they had suffered. And then ultimately we’re part of that same consortium in bringing a lawsuit against a company that inspected the bridge shortly before it went down and missed some of the critical things that could have saved all these people. 

And we, Conlin Law Firm, represented a gentleman who was in an old Ford Explorer that dropped 60 feet and landed upright, but he did sustain injuries. And coincidentally just yesterday he showed up in our office with a section of the torn metal from the bridge trusses as a gift to us for our representation of him in those cases. We’re going to have it put together in a case that everybody can see it.

In the aftermath of that bridge tragedy all of those who were on the bridge or who lost loved ones who were on the bridge were given access to the wreckage of that bridge and they could take little pieces. And so we now have a piece upstairs.

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