Personal Injury Case Results – Car Accidents
Head-on Collision; $1.125 Million
The plaintiff, then 17 years old, was a front-seat passenger in a vehicle. The operator of that vehicle crossed over the double yellow lines and struck another vehicle head-on. The force of the front impact was significant. The plaintiff lost consciousness at the scene and had obvious severe injuries.
EMTs arrived and transported her to the nearest hospital, but when imaging studies revealed an L5 burst fracture, she was emergently transported to a Boston Children’s Hospital.
The plaintiff had other serious injuries including a compound fracture to her right ankle, dislocated right ankle, displaced fracture to her left ankle, pulmonary contusions, right kidney injury, and a large laceration to her left thigh.
She underwent surgery to repair her ankles the following day. Both ankles required open reduction with internal fixation; yet, her right ankle fractures required pins, screws, and wire to fixate the fractures in place. Also, given the open nature of her right ankle fracture, an Irrigation and Debridement was carried out in the OR at the same time.
The plaintiff was admitted to the ICU following her orthopedic surgery to monitor her spine injuries. The plaintiff was taken to the OR four days later to repair her spine injuries. She underwent a fusion from L4-S2 with L5 vertebral decompression. During the procedure, it was noted that she had tears of the dura (the protective covering around the spinal cord), and she was re-admitted to the ICU following her surgery for continued monitoring of her neurological status.
Her post-operative recovery was extremely difficult given her multiple injuries. Physical therapy worked with the plaintiff twice daily to help her learn to safely transfer using her left leg. She was non-weight bearing on her right side for several weeks following her surgery.
Pain management was a problem and concern during her post-operative hospital stay. She was discharged to Spaulding after nearly 2 weeks in the ICU for further rehabilitation and therapy. She remained in-patient at Spaulding for two weeks during which time they helped prepare her for her discharge, including how to safely bathe, dress, and make transfers. She initially required assistance with all these tasks.
Following her discharge from Spaulding Rehab, she received daily visits from a visiting nurse association, and then eventually, she was well enough to receive outpatient physical therapy.
At the time of the crash, the plaintiff was entering her senior year of high school. Because of her injuries, she missed almost the entire fall semester and had to work very hard to make up her missed work, so she could graduate on time with her friends. This was extremely difficult since she was also managing chronic pain from her injuries and various medical appointments and therapy sessions as well.
The plaintiff worked very hard at therapy to regain as much mobility as she could in her back and ankles despite all the hardware that was implanted. However, despite her best efforts, she still has significant limitations with many physical activities due to her implanted hardware.
This resolution of this claim was complicated by the fact that there was another seriously injured claimant seeking compensation from the available insurance.
Mediation was conducted between the plaintiff and the other injured party in an attempt to reach consensus on the division of the available insurance limits, which was successful.
Pedestrian Struck by Motor Vehicle; $202,000
One evening, the plaintiff, a 34-year-old, self-employed construction worker, finished a contracted job at a client’s house in Wilmington. In an attempt to help one of the trucks pull out of a driveway onto the busy main road, the plaintiff walked to the end of the driveway and stood on the side of the road. He then began to direct the truck out of the driveway and onto the main road. As he was standing on the side of the road, a vehicle operated by the defendant struck the plaintiff. The defendant denied seeing the plaintiff prior to the impact. As a result of being struck by the defendant’s vehicle, the plaintiff suffered serious injuries to his left foot.
Motor Vehicle Accident – Motor vehicle accident in New Hampshire; $100,000
The plaintiff was operating her vehicle with the right of way along Rte 102 in New Hampshire when a vehicle operated by the defendant, which was pulled over to the side of the road, attempted to re-enter traffic, causing the vehicles to collide. The plaintiff’s vehicle was totaled as a result of the accident.
Woman Suffers Severe Head, Neck and Knee Injuries, Resulting in Payment of $1.35 Million
While at a complete stop with her turn signal activated, preparing to execute a left turn, the plaintiff, a 50-year-old, child abuse prevention counselor, was struck from behind by a passenger van operated by the defendant. The impact forced the plaintiff’s vehicle into a nearby ditch, abutting the main roadway. Police and emergency personnel arrived at the scene and the plaintiff was transported to the hospital by ambulance. Although no loss of consciousness was reported, the plaintiff was confused and disoriented, heightening the suspicion of a closed head injury. In addition to her cognitive complaints, the plaintiff also complained of severe neck, back, wrist, and knee pain. Subsequent diagnostic studies revealed large posterior disc herniations at the C4-C5, C5-C6, and C6-C7 levels, with impingement upon the thecal sac and proximate spinal cord, with bilateral C5-6 radiculopathy, right greater than left, with superimposed bilateral median neuropathy (carpal tunnel syndrome) at the wrist.
In addition to her cervical herniations, the plaintiff also suffered a complex tear of the posterior horn of her medial meniscus, and a partial tear of the anterior cruciate ligament in her left knee, requiring surgical repair. The plaintiff ultimately went-on to require a total knee replacement, which was complicated by a post-operative wound infection (staph aureus) of her left knee, resulting in multiple subsequent surgical procedures, including an explanation of her total left knee arthroplasty and implantation of antibiotic cement and a spacer blocker.
In addition to the foregoing, the plaintiff also suffered from profound depression and memory impairment following the accident.
Medical bills totaled approximately $230,000.
The case was successfully resolved following two days of extensive mediation presentations by both parties.
Car Accident – Head-On Collision by Unlicensed Motorist; $1.02 Million
The plaintiff was a 33-year-old public school teacher who was struck head-on by an unlicensed automobile operator, traveling in the opposite direction at a high rate of speed. The plaintiff suffered scarring to his face, fractures of his maxillary sinuses, a fractured nasal plate, and a left frontal skull fracture. The case was settled by Parker Scheer following two days of mediation.
Pedestrian Car Accident – Hit While Crossing The Street; $725,000
On an early winter morning, the plaintiff’s decedent was walking in her suburban residential neighborhood in Massachusetts. At approximately 6:00 A.M., a witness recalled seeing the defendant’s vehicle accelerate as it passed him. The witness was familiar with the vehicle from his routine early morning walks and – on several prior occasions – motioned to the driver to slow down. A short time later, the witness heard a loud crash.
Auto Accident – Partial Thickness Rotator Cuff Tear; $105,000
The plaintiff injured her shoulder in an auto vehicle incident in which she was rear-ended by the defendant in Newton, Massachusetts. Diagnostic testing confirmed that the plaintiff had sustained a partial thickness rotator cuff tear. The plaintiff underwent several months of courses of physical therapy, which was unsuccessful in managing her pain. As a result, the plaintiff’s orthopedic surgeon recommended surgical repair, and the plaintiff underwent the surgical procedure. Although the procedure was largely successful, the plaintiff, an avid tennis player, continues to some residual pain. The case settled prior to trial.
Car Accident Resulting in Closed-Head Injury; $150,000
The plaintiff, an 11-year-old boy, was struck by the defendant while riding his bicycle through a residential neighborhood in Malden. The plaintiff sustained a closed head injury and underwent several months of rehabilitation and occupational therapy. The defendant disputed liability as both he and a neutral eye-witness were prepared to testify that the plaintiff turned suddenly to the left and into the defendant’s path of travel. The defendant also disputed that not all of the plaintiff’s neurological injuries were related to the accident, but rather attributable to a prior cognitive disability diagnosis. The case settled after one day of mediation.
Car Accident Resulting in Torn LT ligament, Requiring Surgical Repair; $135,000
The plaintiff was the restrained front-seat passenger in a Dodge Caravan auto operated by her husband, traveling South on Neponset Street in Norwood, Massachusetts. At the same time, the Defendant, in the course of his employment, was operating his vehicle westerly on Access Road in Norwood, Massachusetts. As the plaintiff approached the intersection of Neponset Street and Access Road, the defendant proceeded through a stop sign and directly into the plaintiffs’ path of travel. As the defendant’s auto struck the Plaintiff’s auto, the plaintiff braced herself for the impact by placing her feet on the dashboard. The impact was violent, causing the plaintiff’s upper body to be thrown violently forward into the dashboard. As a result of the impact, the plaintiff’s vehicle was declared a total loss.
The plaintiff was ultimately diagnosed as suffering a torn retinaculum; a torn lunotriquetral ligament and a partial tear of her ulnar collateral ligament, requiring two surgeries to repair. Medical expenses resulting from the auto accident totaled $13,343.
Car Accident Involving Pedestrian – Fractured Leg; $270,000
The Plaintiff, a 58-year-old Brighton, Massachusetts woman, was a pedestrian lawfully crossing Winship Street, within the marked crosswalk, at the intersection of Union and Winship Streets in Brighton. At approximately 1:54 p.m., while the plaintiff was within the marked crosswalk, the defendant’s auto made a left turn from Union Street onto Winship Street and struck the plaintiff as she crossed. At the time of the incident, the defendant was operating her personal auto pursuant to her work-related responsibilities. As a direct result of the impact, the plaintiff’s body was thrown over the top of the defendant’s auto before landing on the roadway. Boston Police arrived on the scene and EMS transported the plaintiff to the hospital.
Thereafter, the plaintiff’s orthopedic surgeon determined that the plaintiff had suffered severe trauma to the lateral side of her left knee, resulting in valgus stress and a depressed tibial plateau fracture.
According to the operative report, the plaintiff had sustained a central depressed tibial plateau fracture. Plaintiff’s surgeon performed an open reduction with internal fixation, elevation of the plateau, and an allograft on the injured left knee.
At the time of the incident, the plaintiff was unemployed and the primary caregiver to her 90-year-old mother.
Total incident-related special damages were approximately $29,000.
Auto Accident Resulting in Fractured Ankle; $660,000
The plaintiff was an automobile operator, traveling northbound on Route 1A in Walpole, Massachusetts. At the same time, the defendant, a temporary employee of the defendant truck rental company, was operating a rental truck southbound on Route 1A. As the two vehicles approached one another, the defendant made a sudden left turn, directly in front of the plaintiff, causing the two autos to collide. As a result of the impact, the plaintiff suffered a pilon fracture of the right distal tibia with multiple fracture fragments, a non-displaced fracture of the right fibula, and a compression fracture of the medial dome of the talus.
The plaintiff was airlifted to Massachusetts General Hospital where he underwent open reduction with internal fixation of his right tibial pilon fracture with the plating of the fibula and the application of uniplanar external fixator.
Following his discharge from MGH, the plaintiff was immediately admitted to Braintree Rehabilitation Hospital where he underwent a two-week course of physical and occupational therapy.
At the time of the incident, the plaintiff earned approximately $570 per week as an accounts receivable administrator. As a result of his auto accident-related injuries and treatment, the plaintiff remained out of work for approximately seven weeks. Total medical bills resulting from the auto accident were approximately $87,000.
The case settled just before trial for $660,000.
Car Accident Resulting in Fractured Clavicle; $170,000
he plaintiff, a 30-year-old professional consultant, was traveling northbound on Route 3 near Hingham, Massachusetts in his 1997 Range Rover Discovery auto. At the same time, the defendant’s auto vehicle, traveling in the same direction as the plaintiff, lost its rear axle, causing the defendant to lose control of his vehicle and strike the plaintiff’s vehicle at high speed. The impact caused the plaintiff’s auto to roll over several times before coming to rest in the left lane of Route 3.
As a result of the incident, the plaintiff sustained multiple trauma, including a left clavicular fracture. In addition, the plaintiff sustained an abrasion to his left cheek and left elbow and a distal tip abrasion with flap avulsion to his right fourth finger.
Over the months that followed, the plaintiff continued to experience marked weakness in his left arm and was ultimately diagnosed as suffering traumatically induced, left axillary nerve palsy with resolving paralysis of the deltoid musculature.
The plaintiff’s total auto accident-related medical bills were approximately $16,000.
Auto Accident Resulting in Closed Head Injury; $340,000
The plaintiff, a 76-year-old Chinese immigrant, suffered a closed head injury after being struck by the defendant’s auto vehicle while crossing Commonwealth Avenue in Brighton, Massachusetts. The plaintiff was prepared to offer evidence at trial that the plaintiff was struck while crossing within the pedestrian crosswalk and was nearing the sidewalk when he was struck by the defendant’s car. The defendant contended that he (the defendant) had a green light controlling traffic in his direction and that the plaintiff violated the defendant’s “right of way”. As a result of the impact, the plaintiff suffered a closed head injury as well as a fractured left fibula. The case was settled just prior to trial.
Car Accident involving Pedestrian, Multiple Bone Fractures; $575,015.22
The plaintiff, an 84-year-old Haitian immigrant, attempted to cross Washington Street after exiting church services in Hyde Park in order to return to her husband’s parked car. While in the process of crossing the Street, she was struck by a car, forcing her body over the hood of the car before landing on the roadway. The plaintiff suffered fractures of her left femur, tibia, fibula, left humerus, clavicle, and scapula, as well as fractures of her 1st, 5th, 6th, and 7th ribs; a right AC joint separation; and a post-operative pulmonary embolism. Medical bills incurred by the plaintiff as a result of her accident-related injuries totaled approximately $75,000. An award of $575,015.22 was entered by the court following a hearing on the plaintiff’s motion for assessment of damages.
Auto Accident Resulting in Broken Leg, Broken Finger; $250.000 (policy limits)
The plaintiff was struck by a traveling car while lawfully crossing a road within a marked crosswalk. The force of the impact caused the plaintiff to be thrown over the hood of the defendant’s car, before landing on the pavement several yards from the point of impact. As a result of the impact, the plaintiff suffered a comminuted fracture of his mid-fibular shaft and a comminuted fracture of his tibia.
Car / Truck Accident Resulting in Death; $850,000
The plaintiff, a 57-year-old retired firefighter, who had recently taken a job as part-time auto parts delivery-man to supplement his retirement income, was struck from behind while stopped in traffic waiting to make a left turn. The defendant, a commercial trucker, operating a large gravel truck, apparently never saw the plaintiff and slammed into the rear of the plaintiff’s pick-up, at full speed, forcing the plaintiff’s car forward and into a nearby tree. The force of the impact resulted in mechanical asphyxia due to compression of the chest caused by the impact. The deceased was entrapped in the wreckage in a position that severely compromised chest wall movement, leading to cardiac arrest and death.
State and local police investigations into the happening of the incident revealed that the defendant simply never saw the plaintiff’s vehicle prior to impact, and accident reconstruction experts reported no evidence of braking prior to impact.
The plaintiff left behind a wife, four adult children, and five grandchildren.
Car Accident – Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy of lower extremities; $100,000 (policy limit)
While assisting a stranded motorist, the plaintiff, a 39-year-old husband, and father of two teenage daughters suffered serious injuries after being struck by a heavily intoxicated Massachusetts state employee, who was operating a personal vehicle on a day off. The injuries resulting from the car accident left the plaintiff confined to a wheelchair, with a diagnosis of Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (R.S.D.). Despite the implantation of a spinal cord simulator, the plaintiff continues to experience debilitating pain and is not expected to walk again.
The case was settled prior to litigation for the limits of the defendant’s bodily injury coverage. The plaintiff had no additional under-insurance coverage.
Car Accident involving a Bicycle – Wrongful Death; $250,000 (policy limit)
The decedent, an 18-year-old freshman at St. Lawrence University, and lifelong resident of Newton, Massachusetts, set out with his 20-year-old brother on their daily bike ride. As the decedent proceeded West on Commonwealth Avenue in Newton, at the intersection with Morton Street, a car, operated by the defendant, executed a left turn from Commonwealth Avenue onto Morton Street, resulting in a collision between the defendant’s car and the decedent, killing the decedent on impact.
According to statements given by the defendant to the police at the scene of the incident, the defendant had executed his left turn after being waived-on by a second motor vehicle, traveling in the opposite direction on Commonwealth Avenue, and operated by the second defendant.
The plaintiff contends that defendant No.2, who waived-on defendant No. 1, was jointly liable in that defendant No.2 failed to take reasonable and necessary steps to observe the presence of the plaintiff’s decedent before waiving the plaintiff’s “right of way” in favor of defendant No. 1. In short, defendant No.2 had no legal right or authority to compromise the plaintiff’s decedent’s right of way over Defendant No. 1, and doing so was a substantial contributing factor in the death of the plaintiff’s decedent.
The plaintiff reached an agreement in principal to settle all claims as against defendant No. 1, for the full limits of defendant No. 1’s policy limits of $250,000. The plaintiff’s claims against defendant No. 2 are pending.
Auto Accident involving Pedestrian – Right Tibial Shaft Fracture; $100,000 (Maximum Coverage Available)
The plaintiff, a 22-year-old female pedestrian, suffered a right tibial shaft fracture after being struck by a motor vehicle in Chelsea, Massachusetts. As a result of this accident, the plaintiff underwent an open surgical procedure at which time a LISS plate was placed to stabilize the fractured tibia.
Auto Accident – Exacerbation back pain; $250,000
The plaintiff, a 61-year-old female, was the restrained operator of a motor vehicle traveling Southbound on Concord Street in Framingham, Massachusetts. As the plaintiff proceeded straight on Concord Street, the Defendant, operating a commercial van, cut directly into the plaintiff’s path of travel and struck her vehicle. The force of the collision resulted in a “roll-over” of the defendant’s vehicle, and significant damage to the plaintiff’s vehicle.
Auto Accident – Fractured Fingers; $110,000
One night, at approximately 1:30 a.m., the plaintiff, a 21-year-old, graduating Harvard College senior, was a restrained front-seat passenger of a motor vehicle operated by the defendant. Upon entering a controlled intersection in Cambridge, the defendant negligently disregarded a red traffic signal, causing his vehicle to collide with a second vehicle which was in the process of making a left-hand turn. Upon impact, the passenger-side airbag deployed, causing injury to the plaintiff’s hands and her right arm. She was transported by ambulance to Massachusetts General Hospital for emergency medical treatment.
Auto Accident involving Pedestrian – Multiple Fractures; $100,000 (policy limit)
The pedestrian plaintiff, a 59-year-old male, suffered a comminuted fracture of the left distal tibia and fibula after being struck by an automobile in Quincy, Massachusetts. As a result of this accident, a permanent intramedullary rod was placed in the plaintiff’s left lower leg to stabilize the fractured tibia.
Plaintiff’s counsel successfully convinced the liability carrier of the seriousness of the plaintiff’s injuries and was able to have the proceeds from the liability carrier disbursed long before any health lien was placed on the case, thus maximizing the net proceeds to the plaintiff. The case in its entirety was resolved within three and a half months of the auto accident.
Auto accident-related medical expenses totaled approximately $10,000.
Auto Accident – Ankle Fracture; $100,000
The plaintiff, a 31-year-old male, was a pedestrian seated on a curb in Lowell, Massachusetts. The defendant attempted to back out of a parking spot but instead accelerated forwarded striking the plaintiff’s legs, and pinning his left ankle and leg between the car and the curb.
Motor Vehicle Negligence- Fractured Femur; $177,500
The plaintiff, a 47-year-old woman, was celebrating her birthday with friends when she agreed to take a short ride as a passenger on a friend’s motorcycle. While the friend was riding straight on a road, an operator of a motor vehicle turned left in front of the motorcycle causing a collision. The force of the impact caused both the driver and the plaintiff to be thrown from the motorcycle. The plaintiff was seriously injured and was taken to a local trauma hospital for medical treatment.
The plaintiff required surgery to repair her leg fractures. Her surgeon used plates and screws to keep the fractures in alignment. The plaintiff was non-weight-bearing for several months while her leg fractures healed.
The plaintiff filed a claim against the operator of the motor vehicle and the operator of the motorcycle for failing to do more to prevent the accident. The insurer for the motorcycle operator initially denied the claim and relied on a state police accident reconstruction report that found the motor vehicle operator responsible for the crash.
Counsel for the plaintiff retained an accident reconstruction expert who reviewed the information relied on by the Massachusetts state police and the state police report. Specifically, the state police did not believe that the motorcycle operator was speeding at the time of the crash. The plaintiff’s expert was ready to testify, however, that the data obtained at the crash site concluded that the motorcycle operator was speeding and had he not been speeding he would have avoided the collision because he would not have traveled to the point of impact at the same time as the vehicle. Based on the expert’s report, the insurer for the motorcycle operator agreed to pay the maximum available to the plaintiff for the collision.
The plaintiff next sought coverage under the motor vehicle operator’s policy. The motor vehicle operator’s insurer was an out-of-state policy and thus the claimants had to either agree on a division of the policy or arbitrate the claim. Unfortunately, the policy was insufficient to fully compensate for either claimant. Fortunately, however, the parties were able to agree to a division and avoid the added time and expense associated with the arbitration.
Motor Vehicle Negligence- Emotional Distress; $155,000
The plaintiff, a 31-year-old woman, was a front-seat passenger in a motor vehicle that was struck from behind by another vehicle. The force of the impact caused her to hit her head and she may have lost consciousness for a brief period of time. When she came to, she felt as though she was in a haze and had difficulty hearing people that were right next to her.
Subdural hematoma; multiple fractures; $600,000
The plaintiff was struck by a motor vehicle while walking home on an unlit road on a rainy night after drinking at a local tavern for most of the night.
He was transported to a local hospital where he was found to be in grave condition: in need of brain surgery, which the hospital was not equipped to perform. He was rushed to Massachusetts General Hospital, where his life was saved. He was subsequently discharged to a rehabilitation hospital where he remained for several weeks before his discharge home. He subsequently was able to resume his employment in his father’s bakery.
The driver of the motor vehicle testified at her deposition that she had little to drink that night. Plaintiff’s attorney, however, obtained copies of her medical records from the same hospital as she was injured in the subsequent crash of the vehicle. These records indicated a blood alcohol content of more than the legal maximum, several hours after the accident in question.
The insurance company for the vehicle involved brought a declaratory judgment action seeking to avoid coverage on the grounds that the used car dealer had improperly registered the car to the mother of the driver’s boyfriend and, therefore, remained the owner of the vehicle. Plaintiff’s counsel then added that dealer to the lawsuit alleging that it was vicariously liable under M.G. L. c. 231, 85A.
The cases against all of the parties settled for $ 600,000.00 after a full day’s mediation.
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- Woman Suffers Severe Head, Neck and Knee Injuries; $1.35 Million
- Car Accident Resulting in Closed-Head Injury; $340,000
- Car Accident Resulting in Torn LT ligament, Requiring Surgical Repair; $135,000
- Car Accident Involving Pedestrian – Fractured Leg; $270,000
- Auto Accident Resulting in Fractured Ankle; $660,000
- Car Accident Resulting in Fractured Clavicle; $170,000
- Auto Accident Resulting in Broken Leg, Broken Finger; $250.000 (policy limits)
- Car / Truck Accident Resulting in Death; $850,000
- Car Accident – Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy of Lower Extremities; $100,000 (policy limit)
- Car Accident involving a Bicycle – Wrongful Death; $250,000 (policy limit)
- Auto Accident – Exacerbation back pain; $250,000
- Auto Accident – Fractured Fingers; $100,000
- Auto Accident – Ankle Fracture; $100,000
- Pedestrian Struck by Motor Vehicle; $202,000
- Motor Vehicle Negligence; $177,500
- Motor Vehicle Negligence Resulting in Emotional Distress; $155,000