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Does my best friend have a case?

Sheboygan, WI |

My best friend was hit by a car while walking through a crosswalk in December 2012. The accident caused her to suffer a knee injury which required physical therapy and was out of work for 2 months. After almost a year, her current lawyer says she does not have case because her doctor didn't verify that her knee injury was caused from the accident. She has had no prior knee injuries and was sent to the hospital via ambulance the day of the accident. (The girl who hit her was is uninsured) Do you think my friend has a case and should get a new lawyer?

Attorney Answers 6


  1. She may want to get a second opinion from a personal injury attorney. It sounds like the doctor may not want to get involved in litigation. That is not uncommon. There may be a lot that needs to be done in order to do justice for your friend. Good luck!

    Sending an email or posting a question does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney client privilege. The comments and opinions expressed in Jon Groth's comments are intended for informational purposes only and do not constitute legal advice. Reading or using the information in this blog does not create the existence of an attorney-client privilege. Due to the changing nature of the law, the blog posts may contain dated material. For an update on the current law and the application of the law to your particular facts and circumstances, consult a legal advisor. The information contained herein is not a substitute for obtaining legal advice from a qualified attorney licensed in your state.


  2. It sounds like your friend has a case, but may need an expert witness to testify as to causation. This can be expensive and paying for an expert may not be cost effective in smaller cases or cases where collection of a judgment is unlikely/uncertain, as here where an uninsured individual would be paying for a judgment out of pocket.

    This answer does not constitute legal advice and no attorney client relationship has been formed. Before choosing a course of action, it is always advisable to seek the advice of an attorney in your area.


  3. Your friend either has a knee injury (or some other injury) or she doesn't. The lawyer is right to the extent that even if you can prove the driver was negligent there is no claim unless there was some injury. From your question, it appears your friend does have some knee injury but the doctor is unwilling to connect it to the collision. YOu do not provide enough information to determine what the injury is and why the doctor is not connecting it--which is understandable--how would you really know this. YOur friend needs explore this issue with her doctor and/or she needs to see another doctor or her attorney needs to have those records reviewed by another doctor or the lawyer needs to send her to a doctor for an independent medical examination. I suspect that the fact the driver does not have insurance may be playing a role in lawyer's opinion in this case.

    If you feel this is the "best" answer or is "helpful," please indicate. Since I am limited to the information you provide, I cannot guarantee the accuracy of the answer. You should seek the advise of an attorney who can explore all aspects of your question. This communication does not form an attorney client relationship.


  4. Sounds like an apprehensive lawyer who is afraid to get his teeth kicked in at trial. Get a better lawyer. Avvo has a terrific "find a lawyer" tool.


  5. If the question is does she have a legally viable case, it would seem that the answer is probably yes. The real question may be economic viability. Since the driver who struck her was uninsured, even if your friend succeeds in getting a judgment, she will still have to collect it. Her lawyer may be unwilling to invest the time and expense to try and get a judgment that is going to be difficult or impossible to collect upon. Since the accident was only ten months ago, she still has plenty of time to shop around for a lawyer who may be willing to take a chance on the case.

    This answer is provided for general information only. No legal advice can be given without a consult as to the specifics of the case.


  6. Your friend should get a second opinion from another personal injury lawyer. Treating doctors often refuse to give opinions about whether an injury is caused by a wreck/accident. This does not mean that the injury and the wreck are not connected - only that the doctor is unwilling to give an opinion.

    Many doctors do not want to get involved in legal proceedings.

    I suggest having another lawyer review the case and outline potential options for your friend. Good luck.

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