Abels & Annes work on car accident cases on a regular basis. This week we resolved a claim out of court. The accident occurred on February 24, 2012 at approximately 2:41 p.m. The plaintiff was injured when an inattentive caused a multiple car collision.
Our client was a passenger in a vehicle driven by a friend. The car was traveling westbound on Cermak Road in Berwyn, Illinois. As they approached the intersection with Grove Avenue, they signaled to turn left and came to a stop, waiting for traffic to clear. The vehicle behind the plaintiff’s came to a stop as well.
The defendant was also driving westbound on Cermak Road. The driver failed to slow and/or stop his vehicle and struck a vehicle in front of him, which in turn caused a collision with our vehicle. The force of the collision was significant.
Our office often deals with rear-end accidents. This type of crash can occur when a driver is following too close, or is not paying attention or is distracted by something like a cell phone call or a text.
The Berwyn Police Department responded to the scene of the collision. After speaking with all parties, the responding officer determined the defendant was at fault for failing to reduce his speed to avoid a crash. The responding officer issued a citation for driving too fast for conditions.
Following the collision, the client had an immediate onset of neck and back pain.
Shortly after the collision, she sought treatment at Westlake Hospital’s Emergency Department. Upon arrival at the Emergency Department, a history was taken and she was examined. She complained of back pain that radiated to her head. Doctors examined her and ordered several tests, including x-rays of her cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spines. Her x-rays revealed straightening of the normal cerical lordosis of her spine. Due to excruciating pain and tenderness in her abdomen, doctors ordered an emergency CT scan of her pelvis, which was negative. She was prescribed pain medication and was diagnosed with neck and back sprain and strain. She was instructed to seek follow up medical care and was discharged.
Unfortunately, the client’s pain did not subside. She sought follow up treatment from a doctor on March 2, 2012 where she complained of sharp pains in her neck and back with some headaches and pain between her shoulder blades. Her pain was significant and prevented her from sleeping. She could not sit or stand for more than a few minutes without pain and discomfort, a condition noted by the physician during his examination. She also experienced instances where her entire back would spasm and cause serious pain. A history was taken and she was examined. It was noted that she was in distress and had marked tenderness to palpation over the entire course of her cervical, thoracic, and lumbar paraspinal musculature, as well as tenderness to her bilateral trapezuis muscles. She also had reduced range of motion in her cervical and lumbar spines. She was diagnosed with severe whiplash, muscle spasms, lumbar facet syndrome, and thoracic strain/sprain. Pain medication was prescribed and she was instructed to begin a course of therapy.
Pursuant to doctor’s instructions, she began a course of therapy at in March, 2012. She engaged in activities designed to return her to her pre-collision condition and allow her to return to work with limited pain. She engaged in twenty (20) sessions before being discharged in May.
The plaintiff was discharged having reached maximum medical improvement.
The claim settled out of court for just over $18,500, saving our client the cost of litigation. Our office had previously settled the claim of another passenger in the car for just over $7,200.
If you have been injured in an accident and you have questions, call our office for a free, no obligation consultation at 855-LAW-CHICAGO.