Our client was a 17-year-old high school junior driving home on a snowy evening in New Kent County, Virginia. The other driver traveling in the opposite direction on the same highway missed a turn, pulled into a driveway and was backing up onto the highway. Our client applied her brakes, steered left, but the two vehicles collided. Our client's car careened off the road. Her pain level slowly increased so she went to the ER five days later with neck, back, and shoulder complaints. She was diagnosed with neck strain and advised to follow up with her primary care physician (PCP).
Our client saw her primary care doctor approximately two and one-half weeks later with continuing complaints of serious pain and discomfort. The doctor prescribed anti-inflammatories and muscle relaxers and a course of physical therapy. Over the following four years, our saw her PCP on several occasions each year with complaints related to the collision, underwent several rounds of physical therapy, and was prescribed a TENS unit.
Key Legal Strategies
Our Virginia car accident law firm was retained. We sent notice to the at-fault driver’s insurance company and attempted negotiations to work towards a settlement, but the insurance company would not offer reasonable compensation. Therefore, our law firm filed suit in New Kent County Circuit Court. The case went to a jury trial in 2018. Our client and her PCP both agreed that following each round of physical therapy, she felt better; however, the benefit dissipated over time, requiring additional back or neck care. Our client's medical bills totaled approximately $18,500.
The defendant admitted liability for causing the wreck, but not until the morning of trial and claimed only $5,582.00 of our client’s bill were related to the crash. The at-fault driver’s attorney offered the testimony of a rehabilitation medicine physician, who never treated our client, but reviewed her medical records and testified that only $5,582.00 of her bills were related to the wreck.
We offered the testimony of her mother, the deputy sheriff who saw the scene and damaged vehicles, as well as her PCP, Dr. Brian McCormick. The New Kent County jury returned a verdict in favor of our client in the amount of $43,522.00, rejecting the at fault driver’s arguments, and lending credence to our client’s claims.
$43,522.00 jury verdict
Attorneys and Staff
Randall E. Appleton, Attorney; Becky W, Paralegal
New Kent County Circuit Court, 2018