Plaintiff delays treatment for spine injury after U-turn crash. $1.14M. Los Angeles County.


Driver making U-turn interferes with plaintiff's right-of-way.

The Case

  • Case Name: James Prince v. Jonathan Bailey
  • Court and Case Number: Los Angeles Superior Court / 19STCV19332
  • Date of Verdict or Judgment: Friday, June 23, 2023
  • Date Action was Filed: Monday, June 03, 2019
  • Type of Case: Vehicles - Auto vs. Auto
  • Judge or Arbitrator(s): Hon. Michael Harwin
  • Plaintiffs:
    James Prince, 60, president of a non-profit international development organization.
  • Defendants:
    Jonathan Bailey, 19, college student and intern.
  • Type of Result: Jury Verdict

The Result

  • Gross Verdict or Award: $1,141,000
  • Contributory/Comparative Negligence: None.
  • Economic Damages:

    Future : $216,000 

  • Non-Economic Damages:

    Past: $225,000

    Future: $700,000

  • Trial or Arbitration Time: 6 days
  • Jury Deliberation Time: 3 1/2 hours
  • Jury Polls: 10-2 substantial factor; 9-3 non-economic.
  • Post Trial Motions & Post-Verdict Settlements: Waived by stipulation. Judgment paid.

The Attorneys

  • Attorney for the Plaintiff:

    Law Office of Andrew Zeytuntsyan by Andrew Zeytuntsyan and Avetis Nalbandyan, Burbank.

    BV Law Group, APLC by Rouben Varozian, Encino.

  • Attorney for the Defendant:

    Calendo Puckett Sheedy LLP by Christopher Sheedy and Sossie Martin, Glendale.

The Experts

  • Plaintiff’s Medical Expert(s):

    Douglas Brown M.D., radiology.

    Stepan Kasimian M.D., orthopedic spine surgery.

  • Defendant's Medical Expert(s):

    Brian King M.D., neuroradiology.

    Steven Nagelberg M.D., orthopedic spine surgery.

Facts and Background

  • Facts and Background:

    June 8, 2017, plaintiff, was traveling eastbound on Pico Blvd., approaching Kerwood Ave., in the city of Los Angeles, when defendant traveling westbound on Pico attempted to make a U-turn, cutting off plaintiff’s path (right-of-way). After the collision, plaintiff went to the emergency room and reported headaches and shoulder pain. Plaintiff did not report neck pain until two months after, on August 16, 2017, when he started physical therapy and only reported “stiffness.”

    Not until eight months later, in February 2018, did plaintiff report radiating pain to his doctor, Dr. Wolf. Dr. Wolf recommended he see a pain management doctor, Dr. Lavian, who ultimately performed two epidural injections – one on 9/5/18 and the second on 1/28/19. Plaintiff also saw some other surgeons through his health insurance plan, including Dr. Kasimian, who recommended surgery with an artificial disc replacement at two levels (C4/5 and C5/6), 

    At trial, plaintiff waived past medical special damages and only sought future medical special damages for the surgical recommendation.  

  • Plaintiff's Contentions:

    Plaintiff contended that the crash was the cause of all the injuries, including the radiating symptoms, for which he needed surgery.

  • Defendant's Contentions:

    Defendant initially denied liability, but admitted liability prior to trial, and denied causing the injuries requiring surgery. Defendant further contended that there were gaps of one year within plaintiff’s treatment plan and that he had not had the surgery for over six years. Defendant asked the jury to find “NO” for the substantial factor question on the jury verdict form as defendant denied causing the injuries.

Injuries and Other Damages

  • Physical Injuries claimed by Plaintiff:

    Neck pain with radiating symptoms.

Special Damages

  • Special Damages Claimed - Past Medical: Waived
  • Special Damages Claimed - Future Medical: $216,000

Demands and Offers

  • Plaintiff §998 Demand: $250,000
  • Plaintiff Demand during Trial: $425,000
  • Defendant §998 Offer: $50,000

Additional Notes

Insurer: National General