Jennifer Connell, the Manhattan woman who sued her young nephew for breaking her wrist with an enthusiastic hug, didn’t want to file the $127,000 suit, her lawyer says, but the insurance company left her “no choice.”
The firm representing her, Jainchill and Beckert, said in a statement that “prior to the trial, the insurance company offered her one dollar. Unfortunately, due to Connecticut law, the homeowner’s insurance company could not be identified as the defendant.”
Filing the claim obliged Connell to take the responsible party—who happened to be 12—to court.
“From the start, this was a case was about one thing: getting medical bills paid by homeowner’s insurance,” her lawyers’ statement said,“Our client was very reluctant to pursue this case, but in the end she had no choice … Her hand was forced by the insurance company. We are disappointed in the outcome, but we understand the verdict.”
The firm didn’t name Connell’s insurance company, but the homeowner’s policy that covered Sean was apparently with Travelers. Their local counsel represented Sean in the case.
“We think the verdict speaks for itself. We don’t have anything to add about this case,” a representative from Travelers said in an email to Gawker.
Now Connell will have to move on without the insurance money, and she’s looking at more surgery on her busted wrist.
“Our client is being attacked on social media,” Jainchill and Beckert said, “She suffered a horrific injury. She had two surgeries and is potentially facing a third. Our client has been through enough.”
As horrible as a woman suing a child—a relative, at that—sounds on paper, a healthcare system where a corporation can force her into that situation to address her injuries sounds even worse.