Catherine Powers v. Benjamin Vargas et al

Parties Involved

  • Plaintiff(s): Catherine Powers
  • Counsel for Plaintiff: Adam D. Ferrare | Messier Massad Burdick & Assoc. LLC
  • Experts for Plaintiff(s): Jeffrey Miller


  • Defendant(s): Benjamin Vargas | B. JAGS Electric, LLC
  • Counsel for Defendants: Meehan Di Palma Roberts & Turret Law Office

Verdict Information

  • Verdict Date: June 3, 2024
  • Damages awarded to Plaintiff: $21,927.87 (20% deducted for liability)
    • For  past medical expenses: $13,882.24
    •  For past lost wages: $6,021.60
    • Non-economic damages: $7,500

About the Case


Catherine Powers, a Niantic resident, filed a personal injury lawsuit against Benjamin Vargas and his employer, B. JAGS Electric, LLC, over a rear-end collision in East Lyme on March 17, 2021. That day, Powers was driving her 2012 Subaru Outback southbound on Flanders Road near 112 Flanders Road’s driveway. Simultaneously, Vargas, a Waterford resident, was operating a 2016 Ford F250 owned by his Mystic-based employer, B. JAGS Electric, directly behind Powers.

As Vargas approached Powers’ Subaru, he lost control of the Ford F250, violently striking her vehicle’s rear. The impact’s force caused Powers to sustain serious, potentially permanent injuries to her neck, shoulders, upper extremities, and chest. Powers alleged Vargas was negligent by failing to maintain a reasonable following distance per Connecticut statute, being inattentive, lacking vehicle control, failing to avoid the collision through due care, improperly operating his vehicle, and not warning of the impending crash.

In the second count, Powers claimed B. JAGS Electric was vicariously liable for Vargas’s negligence under the state’s vicarious liability law. She asserted the company maintained, furnished, and controlled the Ford F250 Vargas operated within his employment scope and authority at the collision time. As a result of Vargas’s negligence, Powers endured physical injuries, emotional distress, medical expenses, inability to perform normal activities, lost wages, and impaired earning capacity. Consequently, she sought compensatory damages, legal costs, and appropriate relief from both defendants.


As a direct and proximate result of Vargas’s negligence, Powers claimed she suffered physical injuries. She also endured great pain, anxiety, nervousness, and mental anguish. Powers incurred expenses for hospital care, medical treatment, medications, and related costs. She will likely continue to accrue such expenses in the future.

The injuries prevented Powers from performing and enjoying her normal physical activities. Her recreational and social activities were also affected. She was unable to continue her usual employment. This resulted in lost wages and an impairment to her earning capacity.


Consequently, Powers sought compensatory damages from both defendants to compensate her for her injuries, losses, and damages. She also requested the costs of the legal action and any other relief the court deemed just and equitable.

Jury Verdict

The jury reached a verdict in favor of the plaintiff, Catherine Powers, against the defendants, Benjamin Vargas and B. JAGS Electric, LLC. The jury determined that Vargas and B. JAGS Electric were 80% liable for the incident. Powers held 20% liability. The jury awarded Powers damages totaling $27,409.84. This included $13,882.24 for past medical expenses, $6,021.60 for past lost wages, and $7,500 for non-economic damages like pain and suffering. To account for Powers’ 20% liability, the final award amount was reduced accordingly. After this reduction for the plaintiff’s percentage of liability, the ultimate award to Catherine Powers was $21,927.87 from the defendants, Benjamin Vargas and B. JAGS Electric, LLC.

Court Documents:


Jury Verdict