Holly Averyt, a Wyoming truck driver, was awarded $15 million for personal injury after she suffered an injury while making a delivery to a Wal-Mart in Greeley, Colorado.
On December 13th, 2007, Averyt allegedly slipped on some grease and ice on a receiving dock. Averyt filed suit and on November 5th of the following year, she was awarded $15 million dollars; which was then reduced to $9.8 million due to the statutory cap for noneconomic damages.
The late disclosure of a memo from the city along with an excessive amount of damages has led Weld County District Judge, William West, to grant Wal-Mart a retrial.
The memo, a particularly important piece of the puzzle, is titled the “Wal-Mart Grease Interceptor Issue.” It contains information about a grease spill originating from a manhole near the Greeley Wal-Mart parking lot. The memo was sent just one day before Holy Averyt’s accident; and received by the plantiff’s attorneys on the first day of the trial.
However, Judge West felt the memo was not revealed to the court in a timely fashion, thus entitling Wal-Mart to a retrial. Judge West added, “in this modern day of full and liberal discovery and disclosure rules, these types of things are not supposed to happen.”
Holly Averyt sustained serious injuries from the fall, requiring approximately $500,000 in surgeries for her shoulder and spinal cord. According to her attorneys, she now must walk with a cane.