TRAILER ACCIDENT VICTIM SEEKS OUT-OF-STATE LITIGATION FOR BACK INJURIES
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As the victim in an Arizona auto accident, T.L. secured the services of an Arizona accident attorney to help him with his claim. Final settlement was not reached in Arizona in the matter of T.L., a 50-year-old man who was injured in a highway collision. Despite suffering recurrent back pain and treatment totaling over $13,000, the top settlement offer was $4,000 and the case subsequently went to litigation in Missouri. It was unfortunate that the victim in this case was unable to obtain an adequate award in Arizona.
It was 6:15 on the evening of September 9, 2015. T.L., a resident of Arizona, was driving his 2015 GM Husky Box Truck with a trailer attached. He was carrying one passenger. T.L. was headed westbound on interstate 44 in Franklin County, Missouri, nearing mile marker 252 in the number two lane. The at-fault driver was behind T.L. in the number two lane when he decided to pass T.L. on the left. The at-fault driver lost control of his vehicle and struck the rear driver’s side of the trailer T.L. was towing.
The Missouri State Highway Patrol responded to the scene of the accident and conducted an investigation. Highway Patrol spoke to both drivers and determined that the at-fault driver was following too closely and made and improper lane change. None of the involved parties required immediate medical attention. The at-fault driver’s vehicle was towed, but T.L. was able to drive his vehicle and trailer from the scene of the accident.
The day following the collision, T.L. presented to Mercy Hospital where he was diagnosed with cervicalgia and lumbago. He was prescribed pain medication.
Treatment and Medical Expenses
As his pain persisted, T.L. presented to Dr. James Lieber about two weeks after the accident. Dr. James Lieber diagnosed him with tension-type headaches and cervicalgia, and referred him for physical therapy.
Following Dr. James Lieber’s recommendation, T.L. presented to HealthSource Chiropractic where he was diagnosed with cervicalgia, sprain of ligaments of cervical spine, thoracic spine pain, cramp and spasms, low back pain and limb pain. He was treated with a course of chiropractic therapy.
Due to complaints of anxiety and mood dysregulation, T.L. presented to Arizona Trauma Counseling where he was diagnosed with acute stress disorder. He was advised to undergo cognitive behavioral therapy.
Further, T.L. presented to HealthSource of Chandler South and was assessed with sprain of ligaments of cervical and lumbar spines, left shoulder pain, knee pain and muscle spasms. He was treated with physical therapy.
T.L. then presented to Eric Cerre, NMD where he was diagnosed with cervical sprain/strain, thoracic lumbar sprain/strain, lumbar sprain/strain, sacroiliac sprain/strain, left shoulder sprain/strain, acute traumatic headaches, left knee sprain/strain and myofascitis. In order to control his pain, Dr. Cerre administered five trigger point injections. He was advised to continue his chiropractic therapy.
T.L. treated with Dr. Cerre for a total of 6 visits over the course of about a month. He treated with HealthSource of Chandler South for a total of 12 visits over the course of about six weeks and with Arizona Trauma Counseling for a total of five visits over the course of about two months. T.L. treated with HealthSource Chiropractic for a total of 21 visits over the course of about 10 weeks.
T.L.’s medical bills totaled $13,358.98.
T.L. made a claim for lost wages as a result of this accident because he was forced to take time off work due to his pain and suffering and to seek the necessary treatment for his injuries.
T.L. had health insurance at the time of the accident and used that health insurance to defray some of the costs of treating his injuries. The health insurance provider will receive reimbursement for their payments from T.L.’s bodily injury settlement.
T.L. had car insurance at the time of the accident through State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company. T.L. used his car insurance’s medical payment policy to defray some of the costs of treatment as a result of this accident.
The at-fault driver had car insurance at the time of the accident through Grinnell Mutual Reinsurance Company. Grinnell Mutual accepted full liability in this case.
Final settlement was never reached in this matter. Despite accepting liability, Grinnell Mutual Reinsurance Company was unwilling to make a reasonable offer to settle this claim on behalf of their insured’s negligence. The top offer made was $4,000. As such it was necessary to initiate litigation.
This case resulted in T.L. finding counsel in Missouri, the state where the accident occurred. Despite T.L. being a resident of Arizona, because the accident took place in Missouri, the litigation also had to take place in Missouri. When it became clear that Grinnell Mutual was not going to make a reasonable offer of settlement, T.L. disengaged with this firm and hired local counsel that was licensed to practice law in the State of Missouri.