John Farmer Obtains Favorable Verdict In Alleyway Accident Case

John Farmer returned to the familiar Van Nuys courthouse in October, 2017, for the trial of an angular collision case which occurred in an alleyway in a business district in San Gabriel.  The firm’s client was leaving his place of work, requiring him to pull out from a small parking area into an alleyway leading to an arterial street.  The plaintiff was traveling in the alleyway at 15 MPH, and had the right of way.  She was driving into the early morning sun without sunglasses, in the middle of the alleyway, and her view of the defendant’s pickup truck was obscured by a concrete block dumpster enclosure.  Plaintiff argued that the defendant was 100% liable for the accident, while the defense asked the jury to allocate fault 50/50 between the parties.  Plaintiff claimed neck and back injuries, necessitating extensive chiropractic, MRI’s epidural injections and a surgical recommendation.

Defense experts opined that the injuries were of a sprain/strain nature, such that the mostly attorney-referred, lien-based treatment received was medically unnecessary.  Defense experts also explained the extensive billing irregularities in the bills from the lien-based providers.  The claimed medicals were approximately $55,000, but by the time of closing arguments, plaintiff’s counsel had to concede a lower amount – $33,328.  Plaintiff’s counsel asked the jury to award $224,853.  The jury agreed with the defense and awarded $16,665, and found plaintiff to be 51% at fault, yielding a net verdict of $8,166, less than the last pre-trial offer of $10,000.