$900,000 for Auto Injuries

Riker v. Wisniewski: Under a structured settlement reached Dec. 22, a Toms River woman injured in a car crash will receive $500,000 in cash and regular payments from an annuity currently worth $400,000

The plaintiff, Tina Riker, alleged in a Middlesex County Superior Court complaint that she suffered spinal damage - requiring seven surgeries - when her car was struck from behind at a light in Dover Township on March 30, 1997.

Her attorney, Douglas Hanna of Wall's Hanna & Anderson, says the case settled shortly before it was scheduled to be tried by Superior Court Judge Douglas Wolfson. Under the settlement, Riker or her beneficiary is guaranteed $800,000 from the annuity, Hanna says.

Hanna, who was assisted by panner Robert Anderson, says the defense had evidence that Riker's spinal injuries were caused by a prior accident. Lawrence Magro, an associate in the office of Joan Sherman in Somerset who represented defendant driver Jules Wisniewski of Toms River, did not return a telephone call seeking comment. - By Henry Gottlieb