On January 13 and 14, 2020, Rick Steinmetz, a partner with Baldwin, Briscoe & Steinmetz, P.C.,  secured a significant win on behalf of our client with a personal injury jury verdict in Prince George’s County Circuit Court. Our client, “JB” was injured in a car crash in Waldorf, MD. Our client was a passenger in her daughter’s car and was in traffic on Route 301. The vehicle was struck violently by the defendant who failed to slow down or stop for traffic. There was significant damage to the vehicle and personal injuries to our client..

The case was complicated because while our client suffered injuries to her neck, back and knees in the car crash, the client had significant pre-existing conditions. At issue in the case was our client’s total knee replacement surgery which took place just a few months prior to trial. The defense argued that the knee replacement was necessitated by our client’s arthritis that existed previous to the crash. Our client had seen a Rheumatologist and tried physical therapy prior to having the knee replacement performed. In addition, our client had previously had surgery in which she had a disc removed from her neck.

The defendant hired an orthopedic doctor in an attempt to discredit our client’s claim. Their doctor said that our client’s personal injuries were minor, that she had some minor strains and sprains and scraped up her knees and that all of those injuries had healed. The defense claimed that the significant personal injuries that our client was claiming were not caused by the car crash. They also claimed that she had fully recovered from the car crash without any residual impact or disability.

The case went to trial and the defendant tried to make a big deal out of the fact that our client waited four years to have knee surgery. We told the jury in closing that this made sense because she had, in the mean time, exhausted all of the more conservative treatment options that were available to her, such as pain medication, injections and physical therapy.

One key to our case was the testimony of our client’s doctor. He explained to the jury that it makes sense that some of the degenerative changes that our client experienced would take weeks or even months to become apparent and that because they were not immediately visible after the car crash did not mean they weren’t related to the car crash. Our client’s doctor testified that in his opinion, the trauma she suffered in the car crash accelerated the arthritic problems, requiring her to need surgery sooner in time.

The defendant admitted to causing the car crash and testified that prior to the car crash, he couldn’t have been going more than twenty to twenty-five miles per hour! I thought this was a gift and broke that down into feet per second when I made my closing arguments to the jury.

In closing, the defendant argued to the jury that the knee injury and surgery was not causally related to the car crash. He argued that eventually she would have needed surgery and that the jury shouldn’t compensate the plaintiff for the surgery. The defense attorney suggested that the jury award $20,000 to $25,000 in damages “for relatively minor injuries”.

Prior to trial the defendant’s insurance company had offered just $20,000 to settle the case. The jury was out for less than an hour. The jury returned a verdict in the amount of $200,000, thus fairly compensating our client for her injuries.

If you have personal injuries as a result of a car crash, slip and fall, or accident of any kind, you can contact our firm for a free, no-obligation consultation with one of our personal injury attorneys.

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Baldwin, Briscoe & Steinmetz, P.C. is a personal injury firm serving clients in the following areas: Lexington Park, Leonardtown, Hollywood, Prince Frederick, La Plata, Waldorf, Hughesville, Mechanicsville, California, White Plains, Chaptico, Callaway, Charlotte Hall, Cheltenham, Clements, Cobb Island, Coltons Point, Compton, Dameron, Dowell, Drayen, Faulkner, Great Mills, Helen, Hollywood, Hughesville, Huntington, Indian Head, Ironsides, Issue, Loveville, Lusby, Marbury, Morganza, Mount Victoria, Nanjemoy, Newburg, Park Hall, Patuxent River, Piney Point, Pomfret, Port Republic, Port Tobacco, Ridge, Rock Point, Saint Inigoes, St. Leonard, Saint Mary’s City, Scotland, Solomons, Sunderland, Tall Timbers, Valley Lee, Welcome, Chesapeake Beach, Owings,