$100,000: Policy Limit Settlement Reached for Vehicular Accident into Center Divide

CASE DESCRIPTION: On February 18, 2009 at approximately 7:00 a.m., Plaintiff, John M. was traveling westbound on State Route 91 in the HOV lane during his regular morning commute to work. Suddenly and without warning, Defendant David K., driving a Chevy Avalanche, crossed over from the number one lane into the HOV lane, sideswiping Plaintiff’s vehicle and forcing it into the center median. Mr. M’s Suburban suffered significant damage as a result of these multiple impacts. At the scene of the vehicular accident, the Defendant admitted to investigating officers that he allowed his vehicle to drive into the car pool lane “for an unknown reason.” Mr. K was found at fault for causing the collision, and making an unsafe lane change which is a violation of California’s Vehicle Code.

Days following the accident, John’s injuries began to worsen. On the 4th day, the pain in the Plaintiff’s right shoulder became so severe that he was unable to lift his arm. He decided to see his family care doctor on February 22, 2009. After x-rays and a complete examination, John M. was diagnosed with a right shoulder injury and left ankle injury and was ordered to undergo physical therapy.

On March 4, 2009, his symptoms had failed to improve, and, in fact, had worsened, causing him to seek an orthopedic evaluation. After a thorough examination, the doctor confirmed a diagnosis of right shoulder impingement versus labrum tear.

John M. commenced a three month period of conservative treatment, including therapy, examinations, MRIs and medication, which failed to provide John any relief for his shoulder symptoms. As a result, John underwent shoulder surgery on June 5, 2009.

PLAINTIFF’S CONTENTIONS AS TO LIABILITY: Plaintiff contended that the Defendant caused the collision and Plaintiff’s injuries, by improperly entering Plaintiff’s lane of traffic and pushing Plaintiff’s vehicle into the center median.

RESULT: $100,000 policy limits settlement

TYPE OF CASE: Auto, personal injury

INJURIES: Plaintiff John M. suffered contusions to both ankles and was diagnosed with a right shoulder tear for which he underwent repair of the SLAP lesion and arthroscopic subacromial decompression.  Plaintiff has made a full recovery from his injuries.

DATE & LOCATION OF INCIDENT: February 18, 2009 in Orange, California.

PLAINTIFF’S AGE: John M., 45; Tracey M., 42

OCCUPATION: Parking Director / Photographer