A car’s driver ran through the grass median of a four-lane road in Norfolk, Virginia (VA), and hit the back of our client’s vehicle. The impact caused our client’s vehicle to spin and move into the path of an oncoming 18-wheeler. The resulting head-on collision with the tractor-trailer inflicted serious physical injuries and sent our client into a coma.
The at-fault car driver initially fled the scene of the accident but later turned himself in and was charged with felony hit-and-run. The person operating the semi was not found to have any fault for causing the crash.
Our client underwent several emergency surgeries at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, and she remained in a coma for three weeks with no movement on her left side. After our client regained consciousness, she could only speak with difficulty.
Multiple follow-up surgeries restored function to her left leg, but her left arm stayed paralyzed and without sensation. A neuropsychiatrist at EVMS diagnosed her with permanent partial memory loss and an irreversible traumatic brain injury.
Our client requires significant physical therapy for the rest of her life, and she continues to receive surgical interventions. Her permanent disability required her to stop working altogether, and she had incurred more than $200,000 in medical expenses before we took her case.
Key Legal Strategy
The hit-and-run driver’s insurance company offered our client a settlement for $25,000. This was all the liability coverage the at-fault driver carried.
Knowing this would not suffice to cover our client’s past medical bills and future care needs, we retained an accident reconstruction expert and hired a neuropsychiatrist to evaluate the extent of our client’s brain damage. This evidence allowed our Virginia personal injury law firm to file claims for underinsured motorist coverage under our client’s own insurance policy and under a separate insurance policy covering the vehicle driven by the hit-and-run driver, which belonged to a member of his family.
You can learn more about our work on behalf of TBI victims in Virginia by clicking here. We also devote this webpage to explaining why carrying uninsured motorist and underinsured motorist coverage is essential.
Staff: Richard N. Shapiro, attorney