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Personal Injury Verdicts & Awards

Settlement More Than $3.5 million In Ruddy Death Case


Staff Writer

A compromise and settlement totaling over $3.5 million in a wrongful death case of a former Dunmore High School football star was approved Tuesday by Lackawanna County President Judge James Walsh.

Plaintiffs in the case were Robert and Rose Ruddy, individually, and Mrs. Ruddy as parent and as administratrix of the estate of William ruddy.

Defendants were identified as Commonwealth Pennsylvania State System of Education; Mansfield University; Hamilton trucking incorporated; Robert M. Jones and Raymond Braque, trading as Jones & Braque Mining Company; and Donald C. Jackson, original defendants; and Frank Andrew Butsko, Ralphs Service Center Incorporated and Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, additional defendants.

The case involved Robert Ruddy, the plaintiff, and William Ruddy, the decedents, twin sons of Rose Ruddy of 1518 Clay Avenue, Dunmore, who were passengers in a car operated by Frank Andrew Butsko, a football coach at Mansfield University, while the vehicle was traveling on Route 6, Tioga county.

Donald Jackson, one of the defendants, was operating an autocar truck while employed for Hamilton Trucking company, when the vehicles collided.

The collision resulted in the death of William Ruddy, 19 and left his mother the person entitled to recover damages for his wrongful death.

The agreement was reached on May 17th, just after testimonies had begun to be heard by a jury.

Robert Ruddy will receive initial cash payments, together periodic future payments over the course of his lifetime, in the amount of $2,639,622.00.

His mother, Rose, an administratrix of the estate will receive over the remainder of her life the sum of $1,350,204.00.

The initial payments included the payment of consul fees and the reimbursement of all cost attendance to the litigation.

The settlement agreement calls for ROSE Ruddy, an administratrix of the estate of her deceased son to receive $5,000 for funeral expenses; as wrongful death beneficiary to receive an initial cash payment of $550,000 and monthly payments in the amount of $1,743 starting on July 25th, 1989 until her death or until 120 monthly payments have been made.

Robert Ruddy will receive the sum of $368,571.00 in monthly payments of $1020.00 starting June 26th, 1989, until his death or until 360 payments have been made.

The payments shall increase on each annual anniversary of the first month by three percent compounded annually.

He will also receive $500 per month starting June 25th of this year until his death or until 360 payments have been made.
The payments shall also increase annually by three percent compounded annually.

He will also receive the sum of $10,000 on or before August 15th, 1990 and an additional $10,000 each year up to 1993 on the August date.

In May of 1994 he will receive $20,000; followed by $30,000 on or before May 26th, 1999; additional $45,000 on or before may 26th, 2004; an $65,000 on or before may 26th, 2009.

Attorney Joseph A. Quinn Jr. of the law firm of Hourigan Kluger Spohrer & Quinn, Wilkes-Barre, was attorney for the petitioners.

PLEASE NOTE: Every case is fact specific, and these results do not guaranty the same results will be obtained in a different case.

About HKQ Law

Hourigan, Kluger & Quinn is considered one of the top civil litigation and commercial law firms that has had the privilege of representing more families in the courtroom than any other NEPA firm. The attorneys at HKQ Law have been honored as Super Lawyers, Best Lawyers, Best Law Firms by US News and World Report, and have received the AV Preeminent Rating by Martindale-Hubbel. HKQ Law was recently recognized for one of the top 20 Verdicts in Pennsylvania.

The firm’s Personal Injury Team, led by Attorney Joe Quinn, Jr., has won some of the largest verdicts and settlements in the region's history. The Personal Injury Team focuses on a wide array of personal injury claims and civil litigation, including medical malpractice, auto and truck accidents, aviation accidents, unsafe vehicles, dangerous or defective products, workplace injuries (worker's compensation), construction site accidents, claim denials by insurance companies, dangerous drugs, defective children's products, nursing home abuse and neglect, and falls due to unsafe conditions (slip and fall).

Attorney Joseph A Quinn, Jr. is one of only 100 attorneys in the United States (and one of only three in Pennsylvania) honored with membership in the Inner Circle of Trial Advocates, and one of only 500 attorneys worldwide chosen to be a Fellow of the International Academy of Trial Lawyers. He has been a Pennsylvania Super Lawyer every year since the program began and has been listed in The Best Lawyers in America every year since the publication was established in 1987. Best Lawyers also named him top personal injury attorney for Northeastern Pennsylvania and the Lehigh Valley. In addition, Best Lawyers, in conjunction with U.S. News & World Report, has designated HKQ a Tier 1 Best Law Firm across multiple categories in Northeastern Pennsylvania and the Lehigh Valley.

Since the inception of the firm, the Commercial / Corporate Team led by Attorney Allan Kluger has provided comprehensive, integrated legal services to many of Northeastern and Eastern Pennsylvania's largest corporations, businesses, banks, non-profits and institutions, handling matters involving labor and employment, wills, trusts and estate planning, estate administration, elder law, commercial transactions, residential and commercial real estate, zoning, land use and development, telecommunications, mediations and arbitrations, commercial litigation, title insurance, business planning and business succession, corporate/business structuring, employment discrimination law for employers, banking, creditor’s rights, finance, lender liability defense, covenants not to compete, construction law, mergers and acquisitions and other business matters.

Additional information can be found at or by calling (800) 760-1529.



As Hourigan, Kluger and Quinn addresses the concerns raised by COVID-19, the health and safety of our clients, employees and friends of the firm remain our top priority.

These are very difficult and scary times and we hope that you and your loved ones are safe and symptom free. We recognize that so many of you are understandably anxious about your health, the economic impact of this pandemic and all of the consequences of social isolation.

We also recognize that many of you are anxious about how the coronavirus is impacting the Court systems, our firm and your cases. Although all of our offices are closed, our firm has remained fully operational and we have initiated procedures that allow all of our attorneys and staff to work remotely from their homes. Each of us and our staff will respond to any emails and calls about your cases as quickly as possible.

Our Federal and State Courts have instituted significant changes in their calendars as a result of the coronavirus. Although most courthouses are closed to the public, and Hearings and Trials will be delayed for some time, there are matters that can proceed telephonically and by video. Despite these changes in the Court calendars, we are working diligently on your cases and are determined to do whatever we possibly can to assure an early and just recovery for you and your loved ones. Even under these difficult circumstances, we believe that "Nobody will work harder for you than we will."

With regard to new potential clients, we are not in a position to have an in-person new client meeting, but we will be conducting these initial meetings via phone. New potential clients should call us for a free telephone consultation at (570) 287-3000.


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