Woman Collects $450,000 for Neck Injury from Car Crash
In Connecticut drivers and owners of motor vehicles are required to disclose how much insurance they have to cover the injuries and damages which they cause to another individual.
This includes not only the insurance coverage on a vehicle involved in a car crash but also any additional coverage which exists, such as umbrella or excess liability insurance. At Tremont Sheldon P.C. we always make sure to find out the total amount of available insurance. A good example of such a case is one that Attorney Bob Sheldon of our office recently settled.
Our client, Mary, was 40 years of age. She was married and had two children. She worked part time as a tutor and her goal was to return to work full time once her children were older. In October, 2009 in the early morning, after dropping off one of her sons at school, Mary’s vehicle was struck in the rear while it was stopped behind other traffic and was pushed into the car in front of her. The damage to the vehicles was significant.
Mary had no complaints at the accident scene but later that evening she began to experience headaches and nausea. Within several days she started having neck pain and pain in her shoulders. Her husband took her to a local hospital where she was diagnosed with a neck strain, given an injection for her pain, and told to follow up with her own physician. Unfortunately, her neck pain got worse. Her doctor prescribed medication and referred her for physical therapy but this conservative treatment did not help her. Eventually, an MRI was done which showed that she had a large herniated disc in her neck. Mary consulted with three different orthopedic surgeons, all of whom recommended surgery. She underwent an operation which involved a fusion and insertion of a titanium plate in her neck.
Following this operation Mary had additional physical therapy and also underwent a number of trigger point injections, epidural injections and facet blocks. Despite this treatment she has continued to experience daily neck and shoulder pain, limited range of motion, and tingling and numbness in her right arm and hand. In the opinion of her treating surgeon, as a result of this accident, Mary has a 15% permanent disability of her neck. Her injuries have prevented her from returning to work and also affect her in many of her daily activities. She incurred more than $100,000 in medical expenses, most of which were covered by her husband’s insurance through his employer.
Through disclosure we learned that the responsible driver was insured with Travelers Insurance and had $250,000 in coverage. We also discovered that this driver had an umbrella policy with another company that afforded additional insurance coverage. After a lengthy mediation with a retired judge just before trial was scheduled to start, Attorney Sheldon was able to resolve this matter for $450,000, an excellent result for this type of injury.