Jury Trial Verdict - Our client, a young professional, did not initially appear to have severe injuries from the rear-end auto accident in which he had been involved. However, after several months of conservative chiropractic care and physical therapy did not resolve his symptoms -- in fact, the symptoms were worsening over time -- it eventually turned out that he did have more serious problems including spinal facet joint injuries and a damaged disc in his neck that had to be surgically replaced with an artificial disc. A major point of contention was the degree to which the injuries were interfering with our client's ability to work currently and into the future. He had just begun his specialty dental practice, and we argued that his neck symptoms would significantly impair his ability to work and support his family in the future. Extensive expert testimony was presented from his surgeon, a pain management doctor, a vocational rehabilitation expert, and an economist. Our client also hired an experienced physiatrist to observe our client’s motions and movements at work so she could determine his functional limitations. After two weeks of trial, the jury returned a verdict of $3,600,000, in addition to which more than $550,000 in pre-judgment interest was added for the repeated failure of the defendant's insurance to accept our client's earlier statutory offer of settlement.
Jury Trial Verdict - Our client is a young woman, approximately 26 years old, who was involved in a collision in December 2010 when another driver failed to stop at a stop sign. Our client had immediate neck, back, knee and leg pain. Our client’s knees had struck the interior of the vehicle upon impact. Initial medical treatment from the Emergency Room where our client was taken to via ambulance from the accident scene was directed to her legs and knees which were bruised, swollen and painful. She went to an emergency room a few days later with complaints that her legs were unable to bear her weight. Medical attention to her legs and knees were provided. Since our client had no medical insurance, she presented at a low-income medical clinic for treatment. While neck and back issues were raised with this medical provider, treatment was initially directed to her ongoing knee and leg pain. Eight months after the collision, her medical provider referred her to a chiropractor for treatment of her low back and neck complaints. Since the low back symptoms had not resolved, she obtained an MRI which indicated an alarming disc herniation blocking 80% of her spinal canal. However, since the client did not have medical insurance, she was unable to immediately obtain the surgery that was recommended. Months later an emergency surgical intervention occurred as the client had the onset of cauda equina syndrome - loss of sensation that can lead to complete paralysis. In addition, after the collision, the client developed an acute fear of driving or riding in vehicles, sustained panic attacks, and experienced sleep disturbance. In addition, she had a loss of memory. The insurance carrier for the individual who ran the stop sign admitted liability for the collision. However, it was their contention that the disc herniation was not related to the collision and rejected payment of their policy limits of $100,000.00. Additionally, the insurance carrier argued that as the client was unemployed at the time of the collision this negated our client's claim for lost wages. Our client had been employed for 5 years prior to the accident with a dental lab before being laid off the year before the collision. Our client’s medical bills and wage loss at the time of trial was $298,759.00.
Motor vehicle collision - Our client was rear-ended at high speed by a van, which was rear-ended by a school bus at 50 mph. Our client suffered five-level disc bulges in the cervical spine and two-level disc bulges in the lumbar spine impinging upon the spinal cord.
Multi-motor vehicle collision - Our client was rear-ended and pushed into oncoming traffic, and as a result, suffered T9-12 disc protrusions with cord compression at T11-12.
Minor Rear End Automobile Collision – Neck and Back Injuries - Our client suffered neck and back injuries in a relatively minor rear-end motor vehicle collision. Following the accident, our client’s physician told him that because of “cord compression” in his neck he would probably benefit from surgery to alleviate his pain. We demanded that the at-fault party pay for the surgery our client was told he should have to help with his pain. Attorneys for the at-fault driver attempted to low ball our client by initially offering only $75,000. We filed a lawsuit on our client’s behalf and ultimately agreed to settle for $1,300,000.00 just prior to trial.
Motor Vehicle Collision - Our client was driving home from work in his Toyota SUV and had just stopped at a stop sign. A drunk driver in a full-size truck rear-ended our client. The impact caused traumatic injuries to our client and his vehicle was totaled. Following the impact, the intoxicated truck driver fled from the scene of the auto accident and began a two-hour stand-off with the police before he surrendered to law enforcement. Our client was taken from the scene of the incident by ambulance to the emergency room for a head injury as well as back and neck injury. Once stabilized and following his discharge from the hospital, our client began a long medical journey which included physical therapy, DTI Brain studies, pain management and injections, and finally a surgical recommendation to correct multiple disc bulges from his C2-C7 cervical levels. After being given a paltry settlement offer at the pre-litigation stage, a lawsuit was filed by our personal injury attorney. After some discovery and depositions of the parties, the third-party insurance carrier tendered both the underlying policy of $250,000 along with an umbrella policy of $1,000,000.
Motor Vehicle Collision - Our client, a 43-year-old electrician, sustained severe burn injuries in a two-collision accident. His vehicle was disabled by the first collision, then was subsequently hit again by a commercial vehicle, causing our client’s vehicle to erupt in flames. We were able to obtain the full policies of both insurance involved insurance companies in short order, for a settlement of $1,050,000.
Motor Vehicle Collision - Our client suffered a central and right-sided disc herniation at C4-C5 touching the spinal cord and disc protrusions at C3-4, C5-6 with radiculopathy into extremities.
Motor Vehicle Collision Settlement - Our client, a 39-year-old house cleaner, was violently rear-ended by the defendant’s Dodge Ram 2500 truck, which pushed her vehicle into the car in front of her. The injuries our client sustained ultimately resulted in surgery to fuse her cervical vertebrae after years of conservative treatment, including physical therapy, chiropractic, injections, and acupuncture, failed. The defense in the case argued that our client had a pre-existing degenerative spine condition and would have had neck surgery regardless of the car crash. They offered $450,000 at mediation and said they’d never come off that figure. Ever. Our offices hired excellent experts including an economist, a life care planner, a vocational rehab specialist, a physiatrist who evaluated residual functional capacity and a bio-mechanic. The case settled 3 days before the trial was to begin for $5000 less than policy limits of $1 million.
Pickup Truck vs. SUV Collision - This highly contested case involved our client, a young single mother, in a moderate motor vehicle collision injuring her lower back. She subsequently had surgery to fuse vertebrae in her lumbar spine, and a year and a half later had a second surgery. Defense, in this case, disputed liability and contended that our client had a pre-existing condition known as spondylolisthesis which would have necessitated surgery whether or not the vehicle collision occurred. The defense was unwilling to make an offer to settle the case until the eve of trial.
Motor vehicle collision involving a drunk driver - Our client suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI) resulting in post-concussive syndrome with cognitive impairment, speech, and vision changes and difficulties; damage to tissues and structures of the cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spine including disc herniation/tearing at C5-6 and C6-7 requiring multi-level fusion and plating procedure.
Minor Impact Auto Accident – Lumbar Back Injury - Our client was injured in a relatively minor rear-end collision. Many months later he ended up having back surgery. The defense, in this case, disputed that the back injury and subsequent surgery was caused by the collision and contended that our client’s back problems, specifically a herniated lumbar disc, pre-existed the minor motor vehicle collision. The defense in the case argued that our client was going to eventually have surgery regardless of the collision. We litigated our client’s case and ultimately obtained a settlement just prior to trial.
Motor vehicle collision involving a drunk driver - Client suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI) resulting in post-concussive syndrome with cognitive impairment, speech, and vision changes and difficulties; damage to tissues and structures of the cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spine including disc herniation/tearing at C5-6 and C6-7 requiring multi-level fusion and plating procedure.
Two-Vehicle Minor Rear-End Auto Collision - Neck Injury and Concussion - Our client was involved in a very minor rear-end collision. Photographs of the damage to either vehicle were barely visible. Our client suffered neck pain as a result of the car crash. After treating several months with chiropractic care and physical therapy, our client was referred for a neck (cervical) MRI. The MRI showed a small disc protrusion at the C4-5 level in his spine. Our client eventually decided to undergo a surgical procedure to remove the damaged disc in his neck, hoping this would alleviate his pain. Defense counsel, in this case, argued that our client could not have suffered such a severe neck injury requiring surgery given the very low impact of the collision, and very minor property damage to the vehicles involved. For over a year, defense counsel refused to make any reasonable offer to settle our client’s personal injury case, but on the eve of trial, defense counsel tendered the total insurance available: $750,000.
Rideshare Vehicle Collision - Our client was operating his vehicle as a Lyft driver and transporting a passenger to her destination. A vehicle driven by the at-fault party collided with our client in a head-on collision. Suddenly, a third vehicle that was unable to stop in time, collided with our client’s vehicle causing two separate accidents just moments apart. The vehicle belonging to our client was totaled. Despite a diligent accident investigation, neither vehicle that collided with our Lyft driver client was insured. A formal demand for Uninsured Motorist Arbitration was initiated with the Lyft insurance carrier. Our client suffered serious injuries as a result of this car accident. He was taken from the scene of the Lyft crash by ambulance to the hospital. He suffered a head injury, neck and back injury, and hip injury. He had a facial laceration and a head laceration both requiring stitches prior to being released from emergency care. He underwent a long recovery period including physical therapy, multiple pain management injections, and ultimately surgery requiring a bilateral sacroiliac joint fusion. Despite the obvious value of our client’s injuries (both current and future), the policy was limited to $1,000,000 single limit and our Client was transporting a passenger with serious injuries and a wage loss claim. After multiple negotiation attempts with all parties and the carrier, the case was settled for $725,000.
Motor Vehicle Collision - Our client, an elderly house cleaner, was involved in a relatively minor motor vehicle collision which caused injury to her neck. She tried conservative treatment for almost three years (chiropractic care, physical therapy, and medications) before the pain became too overwhelming and forced her to undergo spine surgery. The defense in the case argued that she had a pre-existing degenerative spine condition and would have had neck surgery regardless of the car crash. With the assistance of auto reconstruction and bio-mechanic experts, we proved that the car accident at least exacerbated an asymptomatic condition, as well as likely, caused new injuries, that led to her surgery. The case settled within days of trial in Sacramento County.
$675,000 Settlement at Mediation
Motor Vehicle Collision - Our client, in what the defense in this case classified as a very minor "fender bender" collision, injured her neck and eventually underwent cervical disc replacement surgery. The defense was unwilling to offer any real settlement because they argued our client could not have been injured in such a minor impact. On the eve of trial, we negotiated and secured a $675,000.00 settlement.
$650,000 Settlement at Mediation
Minor Rear-End Motor Vehicle Collision – Pre-Existing Neck Pain - Our client, a long-time sufferer of neck pain, exacerbated her neck symptoms following a minor rear-end collision. Many months after the collision our client ended up having surgery on her cervical spine, specifically the removal of a disc and fusion of her vertebrae. The defense, in this case, argued that our client’s neck problems pre-existed the minor rear-end collision and that she was going to end up having cervical (neck) surgery regardless of the auto accident. Nevertheless, thru the use of medical experts who consulted with us on this case we were able to convince the defense that the collision played a significant part in causing our client to ultimately have neck surgery.
Motor Vehicle Collision - Our client suffered significant central and right-sided disc herniation at C4-C5 and disc protrusions at C3-4, C5-6 with radiculopathy into extremities; intervertebral disc derangement and internal disc disruption at multiple levels; bilateral brachial plexus stretch injuries; exacerbation of pre-existing lumbosacral sprain and sciatic nerve stretch with resultant annular tear and progression to internal disc disruption in the lumbar spine.
Motor Vehicle Collision: Binding Arbitration Award (Spine Injury): Our client suffered an exacerbated spine injury in a relatively minor motor vehicle collision. Prior to the collision our client had suffered back problems for years and had a previous surgery. She had another surgery after our collision which the defense argued was not due to the collision, but rather a natural progression of a pre-existing condition. Our medical experts proved otherwise at arbitration and the arbitrator sided with us.
Confidential Settlement Figure
Auto vs Auto - Our client was driving to work. At the same time, another driver was driving at an erratic rate of speed. Several eyewitnesses interviewed by CHP officers said that the at-fault driver was traveling at 80-90 mph on the wrong side of the road divider. A head-on collision occurred. Ultimately, our client succumbed to her injuries and was pronounced dead when the emergency medical technicians arrived.
Two-Vehicle Rear-End Motor Vehicle Collision - Our client was driving for Lyft when she was involved in a rear-end auto accident while in stop-and-go traffic causing injury to her low back. After a few weeks of chiropractic treatment, her symptoms diminished to a point where she didn’t feel additional treatment was needed. After a few months, our client’s low back symptoms progressively worsened and she sought help from her primary care physician who in turn referred her to a spine specialist. The spine specialist recommended a lumbar MRI which revealed a very small posterior disc bulge in her low back (lumbar spine), as well as anterolisthesis (when an upper vertebral body is positioned abnormally compared to the vertebral body below it). Our client continued to endure relatively minor low back pain with some sciatica into her leg for over a year when eventually she agreed, per a recommendation from a neurosurgeon, to undergo a procedure to remove the bulging disc in her low back. Defense counsel argued that other factors, most significantly our client’s advanced age and naturally occurring degeneration in her spine, were the main culprits of back pain and not the very minor motor vehicle collision that had occurred over two years earlier.
Motor Vehicle Collision - Our client suffered acute cervical acceleration/deceleration injury with sprain/strain of the cervical, thoracic and lumbar regions.
Motor Vehicle Collision - Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy - Our client, unfortunately, did not have auto insurance and therefore could not recover pain and suffering damages. She suffered a wrist injury in an auto collision which eventually progressed into RSD, or Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, in her arm. We arranged for her to be examined by one of the leading Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy experts in California who helped us determine our client's potential future medical needs and costs. Our work led to the adverse insurance company tendering their total insurance monies available.
Auto vs. Tractor (Sulfur Duster) - Our client was a 63-year-old male who worked at a vineyard. At the collision, he was driving a sulfur duster on the main road, traveling from one portion of the vineyard he was working on to another part of the vineyard. While on the main highway, he was violently rear-ended by a pickup. The pickup was driven and owned by another nearby vineyard owner. The impact resulted in the sulfur duster our client was driving to roll over. The vehicle rolled several times off the roadway and landed in the vineyard. The client was ejected from the sulfur duster and sustained a broken femur and a fractured right tibula. Surgical intervention was required, including placing a metal rod for stabilization. Due to this severe injury, the client had to remain in a care center for several months upon discharge from the hospital. Physical therapy was also provided until our client regained strength and mobility. His injuries prevented him from ever returning to work. This claim was ultimately resolved at mediation.