Auto Accident – $25,000 Settlement
Attorneys: Adam Smith and Christina Stone
According to the official police investigation, our client’s unoccupied vehicle was parked on the street in front of his house where it was clipped by a drunk driver, causing minor damage. According to our client, he was actually in his vehicle, bent over in the passenger seat looking for his wallet. He fortunately did not appear injured and needed no medical attention, so he never felt the need to ask the police to amend the report. By the time we were retained, it was too late to request an amendment to the report. We submitted a demand to the insurance carrier, arguing that our client was entitled to punitive damages even if he was not injured. The insurance company denied and claimed they had an independent witness that would testify that our client was not in his vehicle at the time of collision, and that he had in fact run out to the vehicle after hearing the collision. They refused to share the identity of this witness. We filed suit and the defense attorney revealed the identity of their “independent witness.” We contacted this “witness” and she denied having observed the collision. In the course of discovery we requested copies of the defendant’s call logs, to determine if and when he had spoken to this witness. We learned that the defendant driver had actually called his sister immediately after the collision. Before we could subpoena the defendant’s sister as to the contents of their conversation, the insurance company reached out to us and asked to negotiate. The defendant’s insurance policy provided for minimum limits coverage of $30,000 per person, and we were able to get the claim resolved with them for $25,000. We settled this claim within 3 months of filing suit.