It was 10:30 a.m. on a beautiful February morning in Arlington, Texas. The weather was clear and the sun was shining. Gloria was on her way to meet with clients when she suddenly hears an incredibly loud impact. The last thing she remembered before experiencing her car rolling over once and landing on its side was the sheer horror of absolute helplessness.
When Gloria came to, she was hanging partially upside down in her car unable to move or get out of her car. It took several seconds if not minutes for her to fully understand that she had been in a terrible car wreck. She could almost feel the crushed roof just inches from her skull. It would be 20 minutes before the first responders arrived and able to extricate her from her car after using the jaws of life.
The Accident and Aftermath
Gloria had been T-boned by another driver, a young woman who failed to even slow much less stop at a red light before slamming into the side of Gloria’s car.
Gloria was taken to Medical Center in Arlington where she was diagnosed with closed head traumatic brain injury, lacerations and contusions. There was extreme concern about possible thoracic spine fractures which fortunately turned out to not to be the case.
After being discharged from the hospital after a few days, it still took Gloria weeks to recover from her physical injuries which included undergoing several epidural steroid injections for her neck. The most distressing injury however would not seem to improve. Gloria suffered from almost constant vertigo, dizziness, memory loss, depression, erratic sleep behavior and extreme emotional swings. She was treated and evaluated for over three years by neurologists, psychologists and other health professionals and therapists. Fortunately her symptoms slowly improved and many of them resolved. Notwithstanding, Gloria continues to this day with memory loss and post-concussion syndrome and faces a lifetime of medications to control her symptoms.
Gloria found us through a friend of a friend. Upon being retained my team and I immediately began to gather facts and investigate the crash as well as the young woman driver. As clear as liability and Gloria’s injuries seemed to be, the automobile insurance company for the other driver contested Gloria’s injuries. They took the position that Gloria’s closed head injury was nebulous and uncertain. In short they were basically accusing her of faking her symptoms.
Investigating the Negligent Driver
We typically try and resolve our client’s cases without filing suit if at all possible. However, once we learned of the absurd position of the insurance company we immediately filed suit against the other driver. Through discovery and depositions we learned that the young woman that slammed into Gloria had a long history of psychiatric problems. On the day of the accident she was in a “world” of “hearing things and seeing things” and was “very distracted.” She further testified that she had not been taking care of herself and felt very “sleep deprived.”
After learning these facts we focused on not only the young woman’s conduct in driving but her parents conduct in allowing her to drive at all. We pursued a negligent entrustment claim against the parents for allowing an unfit driver to drive their car. We were able to demonstrate that not only were they fully aware of their daughter’s long history of psychiatric problems but they were fully aware of her recent deteriorating condition but let her drive the car nonetheless.
Demonstrating the Severity of Gloria’s Injury
We also focused on fully documenting Gloria’s medical issues, need for future and continued treatment as well as the significant loss of income due to the fact that she not only missed substantial time on the job, but she had to give up her 30 year career as a manager for a telecom company due to her inability to no longer perform at the level required by her employer.
Fortunately for Gloria there was more than sufficient insurance coverage to compensate her for her injuries and losses. We pursued the litigation, documented her losses, developed the clear lines of liability of both the young driver and her parents and achieved a very fair settlement of her claim short of trial.
It was incredible the lengths to which the insurance carrier fought us on every issue at every turn. There is no doubt that had we not been as aggressive and thorough in the preparation of Gloria’s case that the insurance carrier would not have settled with us. Then it was only on the eve of trial.
This unfortunately is not all that unusual. Insurance companies do not make money paying claims. Thus they do everything in their power to minimize the value of the claim, including attempting to bully and demean the those that have been innocently injured by their insured’s negligence in the hopes that they just give up and accept a meager settlement. At Parker Law Firm, we do our utmost best to see that they are not successful in those attempts with our clients.
If you or a loved one has been seriously injured or died in a car crash in the DFW area or any part of Texas, give us a call at 817-440-3888 or download our Free Guide to Everything You Need To Know About Auto Accidents, Personal Injuries and Wrongful Death Lawsuits,