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FURIA v. PHILADELPHIA (11/16/55)

November 16, 1955

FURIA
v.
PHILADELPHIA, APPELLANT.



Appeal, No. 162, Oct. T., 1955, from judgment of Court of Common Pleas No. 3 of Philadelphia County, Dec. T., 1953, No. 3977, in case of Edward W. Furia and Alfred Pirolli v. City of Philadelphia. Judgment affirmed.

COUNSEL

Levy Anderson, Deputy City Solicitor, with him Israel K. Levy, Assistant City Solicitor, Jerome J. Shestack, First Deputy City Solicitor, and Abraham L. Freedman, City Solicitor, for appellant.

Joseph G. Feldman, with him Furia & DiCintio, for appellees.

Before Rhodes, P.j., Hirt, Ross, Gunther, Wright, and Ervin, JJ. (woodside, J., absent).

Author: Ervin

[ 180 Pa. Super. Page 51]

OPINION BY ERVIN, J.

This is an appeal from a declaratory judgment entered by the court below by which it was determined

[ 180 Pa. Super. Page 52]

    that the city's claim for subrogation, arising out of wage payments made by it to an injured policeman under the Act of June 28, 1935, P.L. 477, as amended, 53 PS § 327, was subject to the payment of a reasonable fee to the attorney who was instrumental in producing the fund.

Alfred Pirolli, a policeman employed by the City of Philadelphia, was injured on March 29, 1952, when a police car he was operating was struck by an automobile owned and operated by one Forrest L. Garrison, Jr. As a result of the injuries sustained, Pirolli was unable to perform his police duties for a period of 24 days. During this period the city paid him full wages at the rate of $10.99 per day or a total of $263.75, pursuant to the provisions of said act.

Pirolli thereafter retained Edward W. Furia, Esq., a member of the Philadelphia bar, to represent him in his claim against Garrison for damages for personal injuries sustained in the accident. Mr. Furia made an investigation into the circumstances of the accident, and also procured hospital and medical reports to ascertain the extent of Pirolli's injuries.

Mr. Furia advised the city solicitor of his representation of Pirolli, and was in turn informed by the city solicitor of the city's subrogation claim in the amount of $263.75. Furia then wrote to the city solicitor that the city's subrogation claim would be protected, subject to his usual attorney's fee. This letter was not answered by the city.

Negotiations were commenced between Furia and the Farm Bureau Mutual Automobile Insurance Company, which insured Garrison against liability, and the claim was finally settled for the sum of $850.00 in May, 1953, no suit having been instituted. On May 12, 1953, Furia advised the city solicitor that the case had been settled, and informed him that he would be

[ 180 Pa. Super. Page 53]

    willing to accept $87.92, or one-third, from the amount of the city's subrogation claim as a fee for his services, and would remit to the city the balance of $175.83. Mr. Furia was advised by the city solicitor that the city would not agree to any deduction from the amount due the city as a fee for his services, and that the city ...


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