A T-bone accident which allegedly left a man with a herniated disc resulted in a $200,000 verdict from a St. Louis County jury.
“Two hundred thousand was a great result in this case, given the issues,” said Tarun Rana of Rana Law Group, an attorney for the plaintiff.
The October 2019 incident occurred when motorist Sean Davidson attempted to make a left at a solid green light just behind a delivery truck. He struck a vehicle operated by Charles Lambert, who then hit a light pole after the impact.
Rana said the defense argued that Davidson’s visibility was impeded by the truck in front of him, and that the plaintiff didn’t mention back troubles to some of the medical staff he saw and instead complained mostly of leg and ankle problems. He did talk about back pain to his chiropractor.
“That was the other big contention that if this guy had a back injury from this crash, why didn’t he mention it in the ambulance, the ER or at the orthopedist that he saw a couple weeks later?” Rana said.
The plaintiff’s physical condition was another issue.
“We had a plaintiff who was overweight, which is always tough when you have a spine injury,” he said. “I think people tend to put negative attribution on an overweight person.”
Rana said the defense pointed to gaps in treatment and argued that the plaintiff’s herniated disc may have been unrelated.
“I think the big thing [jurors] struggled with was if he is as hurt as he says he is, why hasn’t he had care in a year or year and a half?” he said.
Jurors eventually settled on a figure of $200,000, which Rana said pleased his client.
“It was a good result for this case,” he noted.
Jeffrey Hine of Osburn, Hine & Yates, an attorney for the defendant, did not return a request for comment.
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Motor vehicle collision
Venue: St. Louis County Circuit Court
Case Number/Date: 20SL-CC02428/Nov. 8, 2022
Judge: Joseph Walsh III
Plaintiffs’ Experts: Thomas Lee, St. Louis (medical)
Special Damages: $140,000 in future surgery
Last Pretrial Demand: $100,000
Last Pretrial Offer: $35,000
Insurer: Progressive Casualty Insurance Company
Caption: Charles Lambert v. Sean Davidson
Plaintiff’s Attorney: Tarun Rana, Rana Law Group, St. Louis
Defendant’s Attorney: Jeffrey Hine, Osburn, Hine & Yates, Cape Girardeau