Case Conclusion Date: April 3, 2006
Practice Area: Car / Auto Accident
Outcome: $346,000.00 Jury Verdict
Description: Our client emigrated from Russia in 1992 and began a career working for local Tampa Shipyards on a contract basis. During the Christmas break he was visiting local auto body shops in an attempt to find work in the auto body business. As he slowed to make a right turn into a prospective employer he was struck from behind by a flatbed tow truck. Evidence established that the driver who worked for a local towing service had been intermittently looking down after hearing an intermittent warning buzzer for low oil pressure when he struck our client's Chevy S-10 pickup truck. Our client sustained a herniated disc at C6-7 in his neck and he chose not to have surgery but instead pursue more conservative procedures through his pain management doctor. The defendant was insured with Allstate through a $300,000.00 liability insurance policy. Allstate filed a $100,000 offer of judgment and after two failed mediations, made a final offer of $125,000 to our client. We continued to demand the policy limits and warned Allstate that should the verdict exceed the policy limits, our client would collect the additional award directly from their insured. After a four day trial our client prevailed with a $346,000 verdict from the jury Allstate countered with a barrage of experts including an orthopedic surgeon to say there was no herniated disc and no abnormality other than the degenerative process of aging responsible for our client's complaints. They also hired a psychologist who opined our client had not suffered any closed head injury and that batteries of testing proved he was malingering. Allstate brought in a private law firm to try the case. After a four day trial, our client prevailed with a $346,000 verdict from the jury. After we filed post trial motions seeking a new trial on a portion of the award Allstate finally offered the policy limits of $300,000. Our client rejected this amount, and further negotiations resulted in Allstate paying $400,000. This amount was $100,000 more than the policy limits of $300,000. The entire amount was paid by Allstate.