First Party (PIP) and Uninsured Motorist Benefits (UM)

Court/Case No: Wayne County Circuit Court/15-013957-NI

Tried/Argued Before: Judge

Demand: $155,000.00 (PIP) and $100,000.00 (UM)

Verdict: $0 – No Cause of Action

Name of Judge(s): Honorable Daniel Hathaway

Keys to the Case:

The plaintiff alleged serious injuries arising out of a clear-liability motor vehicle accident involving an uninsured driver, including lumbar spine herniations with discectomies performed at two levels by Dr. J. Alan Robertson. The plaintiff’s medical bills were paid for nine months by the PIP insurer before benefits were suspended pursuant to a PM&R IME and a re-read of the MRIs by a board-certified radiologist. The plaintiff underwent two discectomies with Dr. J. Alan Robertson post-suspension, which Dr. Steven Kalkanis and Dr. Samer Saqqa testified were not warranted or related to the accident.

The plaintiff sought PIP benefits in the form of medical bills, household replacement services, attendant care, and medical mileage.  She also sought policy limits on a UM claim based on the serious impairment standard.  The plaintiff was observed performing the activities she alleged she could no longer do just days before her deposition.  The deposition testimony of the plaintiff and her alleged caregiver was repeatedly contradicted by their trial testimony.

The jury found that the plaintiff was not entitled to any additional PIP benefits beyond what had been paid and that she did not meet her burden of proof as to the serious impairment standard. After six days of trial and testimony from 15 lay and expert witnesses, the jury found in favor of the defendant and returned a verdict of No Cause of Action as to both counts after deliberating for 45 minutes.

Defense SW attorney(s) Involved in Case: Renee T. Townsend

Result Date: 03/20/2018
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