Judgment for Defendant in UM Case

Posted in Newsletters, Newsletters - 2020, Verdicts and Settlements on January 7, 2020

Ed Herndon, a partner in the firm’s Tallahassee office, obtained a judgment in an underinsured motorist case. The case was tried non-jury in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Florida before the Hon. Roger Vinson.
The Plaintiff claimed that she suffered permanent neck and back injuries as the result of a minor rear end accident that occurred in 2013 in Destin, Florida. The carrier for the allegedly at fault driver had previously tendered its $10,000 bodily injury limits. With respect to the impact between the two vehicles, the evidence offered by the defense at trial revealed that there was no damage to the rear of plaintiff’s vehicle and that the at fault driver, at the time of the accident, was unaware that an accident had taken place. With respect to damages, the evidence established that, in the 18 months prior to the accident, the plaintiff had over 110 chiropractic treatments and adjustments for cervical pain and discomfort and also inconsistencies in the plaintiff’s testimony regarding her post accident treatment and her accident related complaints.
In a 26 page opinion, Judge Vinson found that virtually none of the plaintiff’s testimony regarding the nature of the impact and her alleged injuries stemming from the impact was credible, and, as a consequence, the defendant was entitled to a judgment in its favor.