Pre-Existing Condition – Rear-End Collision – Degenerative Disc Disease

The Peterson Bernard Team obtained a successful verdict in a jury trial involving an auto accident in Palm Beach County, Florida. The client admitted responsibility for causing the rear-end collision and the case was tried on damages only. The Plaintiff claimed multiple disc herniations to the cervical spine and underwent three surgeries following the accident. The plaintiff’s past medical bills were over $250K, and she claimed a need for extensive future treatment and pain and suffering. The plaintiff requested over $1 million in damages during closing arguments. We argued that the MRI films showed long-standing degenerative disc disease and spurring that was not caused by the accident, and that at most the plaintiff sustained a muscle strain to the neck as a result of the accident that required no surgery. The jury agreed and awarded a verdict of $24K, prior to the $10K PIP set-off. The jury awarded no amount for future medicals or pain and suffering. Attorney’s fees and costs will be sought from the plaintiff pursuant to proposals for settlement that were filed in the case.