Left-turn collision results in neck, back injuries. $152K. Los Angeles County.


Liability is accepted but causation is disputed owing to plaintiff's prior injury accidents.

The Case

  • Case Name: Victor Hernandez v. Cheryl Hyland
  • Court and Case Number: Los Angeles Superior Court / BC615394
  • Date of Verdict or Judgment: Thursday, May 17, 2018
  • Date Action was Filed: Tuesday, November 08, 2016
  • Type of Case: Vehicles - Auto vs. Auto, Vehicles - Left Turn
  • Judge or Arbitrator(s): Hon. Mark Borenstein
  • Plaintiffs:
    Victor Hernandez, 52, maintenance supervisor for the City of LA.
  • Defendants:
    Cheryl Hyland
  • Type of Result: Jury Verdict

The Result

  • Gross Verdict or Award: $152,000
  • Economic Damages:

    Past medical expenses: $33,000

  • Non-Economic Damages:

    Past: $22,000

    Future: $97,000

  • Trial or Arbitration Time: 5 days.
  • Jury Deliberation Time: 3 hours.
  • Jury Polls: Not polled.
  • Post Trial Motions & Post-Verdict Settlements: Plaintiff CCP 998 costs of approximately $35,000.

The Attorneys

  • Attorney for the Plaintiff:

    Bisnar | Chase, LLP by H. Gavin Long, Newport Beach.

    Paris Law Firm by Eric Paris, Chino Hills.

  • Attorney for the Defendant:

    McClaugherty & Associates by Jay S. McClaugherty, Arcadia.

The Experts

  • Plaintiff’s Medical Expert(s):

    Frank Giacobetti, M.D., orthopedic surgery, Manhattan Beach.

    Hormoz Zahiri, M.D., orthopedic surgery, Los Angeles.

  • Defendant's Medical Expert(s):

    Babak Barcohana, M.D., orthopedic surgery, Van Nuys.

Facts and Background

  • Facts and Background:

    Defendant was traveling down El Segundo Boulevard, and made a left-hand turn into a business driveway, colliding with plaintiff as plaintiff was traveling on El Segundo Boulevard in the opposite direction.

  • Plaintiff's Contentions:

    That defendant violated plaintiff's right-of-way. That plaintiff suffered injuries as a result of defendant driver's negligence in causing the collision.

  • Defendant's Contentions:

    That plaintiff was involved in three prior accidents. Plaintiff was involved in the last prior accident one year before the accident at issue. Defendant argued the accident was not a substantial factor in causing harm to plaintiff. If it was, plaintiff suffered soft tissue injuries which should have resolved in 6-8 weeks. Plaintiff had numerous gaps in treatment including not receiving the injections until two years after they were recommended.

Injuries and Other Damages

  • Physical Injuries claimed by Plaintiff:

    Neck and back injuries. Facet injury requiring physical therapy and two injections.

Special Damages

  • Special Damages Claimed - Past Medical: $33,000

Demands and Offers

  • Plaintiff §998 Demand: $50,000 policy limits.
  • Defendant §998 Offer: $25,000

Additional Notes

On the eve of trial the defense tendered the $50,000 policy. Plaintiff refused to accept this late settlement offer. Allstate was defendant's insurance carrier.