Northern California Rear-End Accident Results in $2.9M Damages Award for Injured Plaintiff

car accidentA jury in Sacramento recently awarded an injured plaintiff nearly $2.9 million in damages for the injuries the plaintiff suffered in a serious rear-end accident (Case 34-2013-00149232-CU-PA-GDS). The plaintiff’s evidence was enough to convince the jury that the harm from the accident had caused numerous serious injuries and forever altered the life of the very active 26-year-old plaintiff.

The plaintiff in this case was a physically active dog groomer and trainer who was stopped in heavy traffic in Sacramento. While she was stopped, a man in a Ford F-250 pickup truck rear-ended her vehicle. The truck was hauling two tons of equipment on a trailer behind it. The impact caused the woman to suffer a wide array of injuries, including to her teeth, face, neck, shoulders, back, hips, and knees. The woman sued the truck’s driver, and, since the man was in the course of performing his job when the accident occurred, she also sued his employer.

Even though the woman did not, as part of her lawsuit, present claims for loss of future wages or loss of future earning capacity, she still contended that the harm she’d suffered was major. The plaintiff’s dental/facial treatment included two bone grafts on her lower jaw, followed by dental implant surgery. Later, the plaintiff’s doctors implanted a permanent five-tooth prosthetic bridge.

Her case also contended that she’d need future pain management therapy in the form of epidural treatments and would also, at some point in the future, need spinal fusion therapy. Allegedly, the accident also prevented her from returning to the pre-accident lifestyle that she had led. Before the accident, the woman engaged in trail-running, hiking, and weightlifting, but allegedly she could not participate in those activities because of her injuries.

The truck driver was 100% at fault, and the accident caused all of her injuries, according to the woman. The defendants took issue with the latter half of this assertion. They argued that, while the accident caused the harm the woman suffered to her face and teeth, the harm to the woman’s back was unrelated to the accident. In support of this position, the defense pointed out that none of the woman’s medical care providers, from the emergency responders at the accident to the woman’s primary doctors, documented any problems or complaints related to the woman’s lower back area until six weeks after the accident.

As also happens with some injury cases, the plaintiff faced a defense that was able to go to considerable lengths to oppose the plaintiff’s case. In this case, the defense surveilled the plaintiff, racking up more than 60 hours of video footage. The defense introduced at trial a video showing the woman working out on an elliptical trainer.

In the end, though, the jury was persuaded by the plaintiff’s case and entered a verdict in favor of her. The total damages awarded amounted to almost $2.9 million. The largest components of this award were the woman’s future medical care ($900,000) and future pain and suffering ($1.75 million).

In a case in which you are hit by a truck, the harm that the crash inflicts upon you can be substantial. That’s why you need experienced counsel on your side to help you present your case and successfully prove all of your damages. The skilled and knowledgeable San Mateo truck accident attorneys at the Law Offices of Galine, Frye & Fitting have been representing injured people in California for many years and have the experience and abilities to help you. To set up a free consultation with one of our attorneys, contact us at 650-345-8484 or through our website.

More Blog Posts:

California Trucker’s $241K Jury Verdict Survives Defense Claim of Juror Misconduct, San Mateo Injury Lawyers Blog, published Feb. 3, 2017

Unfair Surprises at Trial and Your California Truck Accident Case, San Mateo Injury Lawyers Blog, published Aug. 19, 2016