$1,900,000 Settlement for Driver Hit at Intersection by Another Vehicle

Our client, a 47-year-old union plumber, was driving in Brooklyn with his daughter in the passenger seat when he was hit by another vehicle that failed to yield despite our client having the right of way. The impact of the collision was heavy, and our client suffered a herniated cervical disc at C6/7, which required surgery. Represented by Block O'Toole & Murphy, he received a $1.9 million settlement.

Court and County
Kings County, Supreme Court

Plaintiff Description
Our client was a union plumber who was on worker's compensation from a prior accident when this collision occurred. He was 47 at the time. He also worked as the superintendent of his building, a role he had to miss for three months as a consequence of the injuries he suffered in this collision.

Description of Case
This motor vehicle accident occurred in the Bay Ridge area of Brooklyn at the intersection of 88th Street and Colonial Road. Our client was driving on Colonial Road with his 19-year-old daughter in the front passenger seat when he was struck by a Defendant motorist who had stopped at a stop sign on 88th Street, but then proceeded and hit our client although he didn't have the right-of-way.

Both our client and his daughter were wearing seatbelts when the collision occurred. The heavy impact deployed the vehicle's airbags and caused our client's body to violently snap forward and backward. Unable to exit the vehicle on his own, he had to be extricated by emergency personnel. Both vehicles were towed from the scene. Our client's vehicle sustained significant damage to the front passenger side.

Summary Judgment regarding liability was granted to our client as a result of the Defendant's failure to yield the right-of-way.

Injuries
After the accident occurred, our client began feeling pain in his neck. He was brought via ambulance to the emergency room at Lutheran Medical Center where he complained that his neck pain was getting worse. Our client was soon discharged from the hospital and began a course of physical therapy three times a week at a local physical medicine and rehabilitation facility. When conservative treatment including therapy and pain management failed to relieve our client's neck pain, he was referred for an MRI of the cervical spine.

The MRI revealed a herniated cervical disc at C6/7. He also underwent an EMG study of the upper extremities that revealed evidence of radiculopathy at the C7 disc. After conservative treatment failed, including multiple epidural steroid injections, our client underwent a cervical fusion surgery at C6/7.

The radiology expert for the Defendant claimed that all diagnostic studies illustrated pre-existing and long-standing degenerative conditions and that there were no acute traumatic conditions found and no herniations found on the post-accident radiology studies. Further, Defendant's Orthopedic Surgeon argued that our client does not require further treatment. Defendant's Life Care Planner argued that our client would be able to perform light-to-medium full-time work until his normal retirement age.

Settlement Amount
$1,900,000

Handling Attorneys
This matter was handled by Michael J. Hurwitz and Stephen J. Murphy.