O'shea v. Riverway Towing Co.

677 F.2d 1194 (7th Cir. 1982)


O'Shea (P) was a cook on a towboat. She was coming off duty and was being brought to shore by a harbor boat operated by Riverway Towing Co. (D). While getting off the boat, P fell, suffering injuries. P sued D for damages. The district judge found D negligent and P free from contributory negligence and awarded P damages in excess of $150,000. D appealed; disputing the amount awarded P for lost future wages. The amount awarded P took inflation into account, assuming an annual increase. The economist totaled up P's future earnings, including inflation, up to the end of P's estimated working career, then discounted it to reflect the present value of the award. D claimed that inflation should not have been used in this calculation. Further, P did not work since the accident and D claimed that she should have gotten a position at some wage which should have been deducted from the award.