Cantor Fitzgerald, an investment firm that was housed in the North Tower of the World Trade Center on September 11, 2011, finally settled litigation against American Airlines last month. While families of the employees previously received proceeds from insurance, Cantor Fitzgerald sued the airlines for over a billion dollars claiming that the carrier bears responsibility for the deaths of its employees for not preventing the terrorists who hijacked their airliner on that day. The trial judge refused to allow recovery for wrongful death finding that an employer cannot recover for its workers’ deaths. That right apparently is limited to the families of those who lost their lives.
Instead the settlement represents Cantor Fitzgerald’s loss of property, business interruption and loss of special talents provided by its personnel. The firm declined the option to make a claim from a special fund set up for workers who lost their lives or got injured on that day responding to the calamity. The firm tragically lost 638 of its employees in the attacks.
American Airlines claimed they merely failed to do what government security at airports could not do: stop the terrorists from boarding the plane with items (box cutters) that at the time were allowed by authorities. Their attorneys argued that they should, therefore, not bear legal responsibility for a security lapse that was not of their own making. After the Judge allowed some of Canter Fitzgerald’s claims to survive, the airlines, reached a settlement with the firm after and avoided the risk of exposure from a jury trial.
The attorneys at Giddens & Gatton Law, P.C. represent individuals in personal injury suits in New Mexico. Giddens & Gatton Law, P.C. is located at 10400 Academy Road N.E., Suite 350 in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Call the office at (505) 633-6298 to set up an appointment or visit the firm’s website at giddenslaw.com.