Medical Expert Key To $3.5 Million Settlement Of Motor Vehicle Accident Claim

 By: J. Hernandez
In the event that a car accident case involves fairly modest injuries and will probably be resolved with a rather modest settlement or award the economics involved make it unlikely that either side will retain an expert witness. The cost of using an expert witness might turn out to exceed the amount likely to be recovered in the claim. In claims with significant injuries and enough insurance or assets are available for a significant recovery and the defense is denying responsibility, though, getting the right expert may make all the difference.

Let's analyse the report of a vehicle accident claim in which a bicyclist was seriously injured. The driver of the car involved in the vehicle accident was an elderly gentleman. As he was driving he lost control of his vehicle. After this the car slammed into the plaintiff and was stopped when it hit a telephone pole. The bicyclist was aged 40 and a father of two. The driver died before any medical personnel responded. He sustained heavy chest trauma in the accident.

From the accident the plaintiff sustained a head trauma and went into a coma. He came out of the coma only to be diagnosed with brain damage. With this disability he was not able to go back home to be with his two daughters. He was could not go back to work. The bicyclist probably will require permanent care in a rehabilitation facility or institution. As of the time the case was reported the cost of his medical care had already reached more than $500,000.

It was determined that the defendant had suffered a heart attack. The defense used this information to claim that the reason the driver lost control of the car was because of the heart attack. As this amounted to a medical emergency the defense argued that the defendant had not been careless and thus the bicyclist was not due any money. As a result the insurance company would not need to pay any money to the victim. Given the situation many law firms would not have continued with the lawsuit at this point. The plaintiff was lucky to have retained a law firm that was prepared to check deeper. In order to figure out a heart attack caused the accident the law firm retained a medical expert.

Slides of the defendant's heart tissue were analyzed by a medical expert retained by the law firm helping the plaintiff. The medical expert established that the heart attack did not happen until after the accident. In fact, the medical expert determined that it was the trauma the driver sustained to the chest as a result of slamming into the telephone pole which triggered the heart attack. By bringing in the medical expert the law firm was able to show the fault of the driver.

As per the law firm's report once fault was verified the defense chose to settle the case for $3,500,000. This amount included $1,000,000 for the loss of consortium claim by the man's wife.
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