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Corboy & Demetrio Obtains $2.3 Million for Illinois Man Injured in Weightlifting Machine Malfunction

Corboy & Demetrio has obtained a settlement of $2.3 million on behalf of a Cook County man who was injured after a belt snapped on a piece of weightlifting equipment he was using in a Chicago Heights gym.

On September 20, 2016, Plaintiff, Jerry Clay, 62, was exercising on a seated lateral pull weight machine at Franciscan Fitness Center (f/k/a St. James Health & Wellness Institute) when the belt connecting the weight to the handle snapped.  Jerry fell to the ground and struck his back.  The machine was maintained by Midwest Services and Installation, inc.  The gym was owned by Franciscan Alliance, Inc. and managed by Mett Medical Fitness, Inc. 

The lawsuit, filed on behalf of Clay in Cook Co. Circuit Court, named as defendants, Franciscan Alliance, Inc., Midwest Alliance, Inc., Midwest Service & Installation, Inc., and Mett Medical Fitness.  The lawsuit alleged the belt was made of an improper material and had not been replaced annually per manufacturer recommendations.  The defendants contested liability, causation, and the nature and extent of damages.

Clay suffered an aggravation of previous spinal issues, a herniated disc L2-4 necessitating surgeries.

All the Defendants moved for summary judgment, attempting to get the lawsuit dismissed based on a liability waiver signed by Clay.  But all were unsuccessful.

Clay was represented by Corboy & Demetrio lawyers Michael K. Demetrio and Michael D. Ditore.

“This settlement will hopefully bring closure to Jerry and his family and allow them to focus on his recovery knowing justice was done,”  Ditore said.


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