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$338,000 Award in Malpractice Case

EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. (CN) - A Madison County jury awarded $338,000 to an injured worker in a legal malpractice case. Frank Krusz of St. Louis sued Ann Dalton and her firm of Hammond, Shinners, Turcotte, Larrew and Young. Krusz claimed he would have received $397,000 in worker's compensation benefits if the defendants had handled his case properly.

Krusz injured his shoulder and neck while working at the Lanter Co. in August 2001. He hired Dalton in November 2001 to represent him, and claimed Dalton allowed the Illinois Industrial Commission to dismiss his case for lack of prosecution in August 2005, and that Dalton failed to timely file for its reinstatement. Krusz also claims Dalton failed to tell him of the dismissal until November 2006, more than a year after the claim was permanently barred.

Krusz was granted summary judgment by Circuit Judge Dave Hylla before trial. The jury deliberated on the level of Krusz's disability. The defense argued that Krusz was only partially disabled, which would entitle him to just $75,000, but the jury found that Krusz was totally disabled and awarded him the larger amount.

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