Both liability and causation are questioned after accident at restaurant valet.
- Case Name: Mark Williams v. Geoffrey's Malibu
- Court and Case Number: Los Angeles Superior Court / BC550003
- Date of Verdict or Judgment: Tuesday, May 07, 2019
- Date Action was Filed: Thursday, June 26, 2014
- Type of Case: Negligence
- Judge or Arbitrator(s): Hon. Margaret Oldendorf
Plaintiffs: Mark Williams
Defendants: Geoffrey's Malibu
- Type of Result: Jury Verdict
- Gross Verdict or Award: Defense verdict.
- Trial or Arbitration Time: 3 weeks.
Attorney for the Plaintiff:
McElfish Law Firm by Raymond McElfish and Mitchell Berman, West Hollywood.
Hamed Yazdanpanah, Beverly Hills.
Attorney for the Defendant:
Veatch Carlson, LLP by Robert Mackey and Gregory Selarz, Los Angeles.
Plaintiff’s Medical Expert(s):
Fardad Mobin, M.D., neurosurgery, Beverly Hills.
Adam Weitzman, M.D., pain management, Redondo Beach.
Edmond Provder, life care planning.
Defendant's Medical Expert(s):
Robert Wilson, M.D., orthopedic surgery.
Facts and Background
Facts and Background:
On July 1, 2012 plaintiff was leaving defendant restaurant after dining with his spouse. The valet returned his vehicle, a classic 1966 Mustang, but as plaintiff attempted to sit down in the car the vehicle rolled backwards, resulting in plaintiff falling to the ground.
Plaintiff claimed injury and underwent conservative treatment, which ultimately led to a two-level lumbar fusion.
That defendant's valet was negligent for either improperly parking the vehicle and/or returning the car on an incline; that defendants violated their own safety policy that had been in effect for over 15 years requiring valets to make sure customers were safely in their cars with their doors closed. That this negligence resulted in injuries and treatment including a two-level lumbar fusion. That plaintiff would need a future surgery and would suffer loss of future earning capacity.
That the valet properly returned the car on flat terrain, but that the 1966 car had a defect which caused the emergency brake and/or gear shifter not to work properly.
As to damages, that any injury would have been soft tissue which should have resolved within a few months of the accident, therefore making the lumbar fusion surgery unnecessary and/or not related. Also, there was no evidence that plaintiff had lost any income or would lose income in the future.
Please see Additional Notes section below.
Injuries and Other Damages
Physical Injuries claimed by Plaintiff:
Two-level, lumbar fusion with a claimed future surgery.
Loss of future earning capacity.
- Special Damages Claimed - Past Medical: $149,000
- Special Damages Claimed - Future Medical: $180,000 per defense counsel; $160,000 per plaintiff's counsel.
- Special Damages Claimed - Future Lost Earnings: $300,000 + per defense counsel; $167,885 per plaintiff's counsel.
Demands and Offers
- Plaintiff §998 Demand: $1,000,000
- Defendant §998 Offer: $300,000