Motor Vehicle Accident--Plaintiff Suffered Multiple Fracture, On-Going Disability
Plaintiff was a 31-year-old healthy young man who was traveling to the gym in his pick-up truck when he was struck head-on by defendant’s employee who had asleep at the wheel after taking over-the-counter cold medication. As a result of this motor vehicle accident, plaintiff suffered a major tibial plateau compression fracture, fractured eye socket, and fractured ribs. He underwent emergency surgery on his leg fractures. Following a lengthy period of rehabilitation, plaintiff attempted return to his job as a construction supervisor. Unfortunately he was unable to perform the physical aspects of his job due to his ongoing disability and he stopped working after four months. Plaintiff will likely require knee replacement surgery and will require retraining in a career which involves little if any manual labor.
Plaintiff was evaluated by a defendant’s vocational expert who opined that plaintiff will be employable in many capacities such that he will not suffer a significant loss of earning capacity. Plaintiff’s vocational expert disagreed and opined that although plaintiff is able to work he will have limited employment prospects due to the injuries he sustained in the car accident and due to his limited education. As a result, plaintiff’s loss of earning capacity will be significant.
Defendant’s insurer initially offered $175,000.00 at a time when plaintiff’s medical bills exceeded $100,000.00. Three months before the scheduled trial date, the offer was increased to $400,000.00. Each succeeding month thereafter leading to the trial date the insurer increased its offer by $100,000.0 making a final offer of $700,000.00 just before trial. When the trial date was continued on two occasions, due to the Court’s calendar, the parties agreed to submit the case to binding arbitration with full interest on top of any arbitration award granted in the case. The arbitration award, with interest, amounted to approximately $1,100,000.00.
The accident occurred in Carver, Plymouth County, Massachusetts.
Plaintiff filed a G.L. c. 93A action against defendant’s insurer, Commerce Insurance Company. Discovery on that case is ongoing. Plaintiff is seeking triple damages for the bad faith insurance settlement practices of Commerce Insurance Company.
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