The Levy Case Lawyers Likely to Get More than $65 million
As the Levy case draws to a close, this post talks a little about the lawyers involved in the Nikita Levy case. In the event you are from Baltimore but live under a rock underneath the harbor tunnel, or if maybe you are not from Baltimore, the “Levy Case” is about former Johns Hopkins gynocologyst Nikita Levy.
The case is Jane Doe No. 1 v. The John Hopkins Hospital, 24-C-13-001041, Circuit Court for Baltimore City, Maryland.
For an extended period of time, the doctor used a concealed camera pen, secretly recording over 1,200 videos and 140 images of women without their knowledge or consent. Photos of 62 children were found also on Levy’s home computer. There were additional allegations that Levy touched patients inappropriately and conducted unnecessary pelvic exams. Levy was fired after a colleague reported her suspicions of the situation. Levy committed suicide before any criminal prosecution could occur.
On July 21, 2014, the Johns Hopkins Health System Corp. agreed to a preliminary $190 million settlement with about 8,000 patients who were secretly photographed and videotaped by gynecologist and obstetrician Dr. Nikita A. Levy.
Objections to Settlement
Represented by renowned plaintiff and medical malpractice firm Salsbury, Clements, Bekman, Marder & Adkins LLC, 25 of those former patients filed an objection to the settlement, saying the proposed legal fees of up to 35% are “extraordinarily unreasonable.” In addition to Bekman’s 25 clients, 2 more objections were filed – one by a patient representing herself and the other represented by personal injury lawyer Barry J. Diamond.
As was widely reported, Bekman’s objection lost. Now the Daily Record is reporting the Diamond objection is moving forward.
3 Main Objections
The case was deemed a mandatory class-action, meaning prospective plaintiffs more or less needed to join the class. This has multiple consequences when considering payout.
Objections also criticize the evaluation process used to distribute the payout money. Each plaintiff will be interviewed by a team of female psychiatrists and attorneys and placed into a category based on the trauma level each patient sustained. The category will help determine the monetary value of each patient’s payment. According to the Associated Press, objection reads, “The proposed Agreement fails to specify the high and low range of recovery for each category…Therefore, claimants have no ability to assess the fairness and reasonableness of the likely recovery to which they may be entitled.”
Additionally, objections claim that the steering committee did not assume enough litigation risk or trial preparation expenses for the 35% to be reasonable. If the 35% stands, counsel stands to pocket, all told, more than $65 million.
The rest of the nearly $125 million would be split among roughly 8,000 victims.
Schochor, Federico and Staton P.A. (Plaintiff, Steering Committee)
Attorneys: Jonathan Schochor, Philip C. Federico & Kerry D. Staton
The Schochor, Federico and Staton firm has tried multiple cases against Johns Hopkins in the past 5 years. The hospitals and health care providers the firm sued were many, with Greater Baltimore Medical Center Inc., Northwest Hospital Center Inc., and St. Joseph Medical Center Inc. appearing more than a few times. Schochor, Frederico and Staton have filed more medical negligence cases than any other lawyer or firm in Maryland.
Janet, Jenner & Suggs LLC (Plaintiff, Steering Committee)
Attorney: Howard A. Janet
Janet, Jenner & Suggs does not have other cases against Johns Hopkins in the past 5 years; they have worked primarily on cases against St. Joseph Medical Center Inc. This stems from the stent issues. The firm concentrates in cases concerning cerebral palsy and injury from unsafe products.
The Cochran Firm
Attorney: David E. Haynes
Haynes has filed 12 tort claims and 12 civil claims in the Maryland Judiciary system since 2012.
Wais, Vogelstein and Forman
Attorney: Gary A. Wais
Since 2008, Wais has filed 15 tort claims and 3 medical malpractice claims in the Maryland Judiciary system.
Silverman, Thompson, Slutkin, and White
Attorney: Andrew G. Slutkin
Slutkin has filed more than 20 tort claims and more than 16 medical malpractice claims since 2008.
Cardaro and Peek, LLC
Attorney: Thomas C. Cardaro
Cardaro has filed more than 35 tort claims and 34 medical malpractice claims since 2008.
Snyder and Snyder
Attorney: Stephen L. Snyder
Since 2008, Snyder has had 6 medical malpractice claims and 9 tort claims.
A. Dwight Pettit, P.A.
Attorney: A. Dwight Pettit
Pettit has done a wide variety of cases since 2008, most of which is criminal, tort or contract.
Salsbury, Clements, Bekman, Marder & Adkins LLC (Plaintiff, Objection)
Attorneys: Paul D. Bekman & Laurence A. Marder
Like the other two plaintiff firms, the Salsbury, Clements, Bekman, Marder & Adkins firm handles personal injury, medical malpractice, and product liability cases. Medical malpractices cases the firm has handled include suits against Greater Baltimore Medical Center, Franklin Square Hospital Center Inc., Frederick Memorial Hospital Inc., and EMCare of Maryland LLC, among many others.
Barry J. Diamond (Plaintiff, Objection)
Attorney: Barry J. Diamond
Diamond has represented clients in over 350 cases of almost exclusively tort and contract cases since 2008 in the Maryland court system.
Goodell, DeVries, Leech & Dann, LLP (Defendant)
Attorneys: Donald L. DeVries Jr., Marianne DePaulo Plant, K. Nichole Nesbitt & Meghan Hatfield Yancek
Goodell, DeCries, Leech & Dann is located in both Baltimore and Philadelphia. The firm handles a wide variety of practice areas, including medical malpractice defense, professional negligence defense, and insurance defense.
Pepper Hamilton LLP (Defendant)
Attorneys: Laurence Z. Shiekman, Jan P. Levine & Frank H. Griffin VI
Pepper Hamilton LLP is a national firm with over 500 lawyers, offering representation to large businesses, governmental entities, and nonprofits.