Rachel Lawrence and Joe Hillebrand settled a Kansas car accident case for $300,000. Our client was driving her teenage daughter to high school in January 2018 when another vehicle slid into the rear of her car on an icy exit ramp. After the collision, our client suffered injuries to her upper back and neck but her presentation was complicated by the fact she had experienced symptoms in the same areas, and had obtained medical treatment for those problems stretching back more than ten years before the collision.
Consequently, the defense understandably took the position that, although the client’s pre-existing condition was aggravated for the typical 6-8 weeks, anything beyond that was due to her long standing prior condition. The defense had our client submit to a defense medical exam and their examiner was going to testify that the only related treatment was the ER visit and 8-10 visits to a chiropractor.
In reality, the client underwent multiple MRIs, PT, massage therapy, prescribed medications, injections, and radiofrequency ablations before finally undergoing a cervical fusion in May 2021 for a herniated disc at C7-T1. Unfortunately, there were three MRIs performed between the time of the crash and May 2021. The first two MRIs showed no injury to the spine, which fed into the defense’s theory that it was all part of the ongoing degenerative process.
To complicate matters, the pain management doctor did not testify well at his deposition and the spine surgeon was outwardly hostile/reluctant to get involved at all. Neither boded well in proving causation. The defense’s top offer at mediation last Spring was $60,000.
Given all of the potential landmines with proving causation, and not really knowing what the surgeon would say regarding the relationship between the collision and the surgery 3.5 years later, we reopened negotiations last week. When we told the client that we settled her case for $300,000 and avoided a trial, which she admitted kept her awake at night.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, get help from a Kansas city auto accident attorney at Brown & Crouppen Law Firm. Get started with your case by calling (816) 670-4701 to request a free case evaluation. Our personal injury attorneys work on a contingency basis, meaning there are no upfront costs or legal fees – we only get paid if we win.