Case details

Plaintiff claimed highway accident caused herniated discs




Mediated Settlement

Result type

Not present

annular tear, back, herniated disc, neck
On April 15, 2015, plaintiff Krystian Orlinski, 58, a journalist, was driving on the eastbound side of U.S. Route 101, also known as the Ventura Freeway, near the interchange for southbound Interstate 405, also known as the San Diego Freeway. While he was stopped in traffic, his sport utility vehicle was rear-ended by a tractor-trailer driven by Jorge Falcon. Orlinski claimed to his neck and back. Orlinski sued Falcon and Falcon’s employer, West Central Produce Inc., which also owned the tractor-trailer. Orlinski alleged that Falcon was negligent in the operation of his vehicle and that West Central was vicariously liable for Falcon’s actions. The defendants did not dispute liability., Orlinski claimed that he sustained small disc herniations at the C5-6 and C6-7 levels. He also claimed that he sustained herniated discs with annular tears at the L4-5 and L5-S1 levels. Orlinski did not require an ambulance, but he went from the scene to Sherman Oaks Hospital, where he was treated and released. He then underwent two months of physical therapy through June 2015. After a five-month gap in treatment, Orlinski returned for eight more months of physical therapy. He also received pain management treatment and trigger point injections in 2017. During that time, he also met with a neurologist and an orthopedic surgeon, both of whom he continued to see through 2018. In addition, after the eight months of regular physical therapy, Orlinski continued with physical therapy on and off through the end of 2018. Orlinski was recommended for epidural injections of a steroid-based painkiller in 2016. He was also recommended for a lumbar laminectomy in August 2018. However, he did not have either of those procedures. Orlinski missed some work after the crash. He claimed that when he did return to his job, he had to start using a lighter camera to document stories because he could no longer carry heavy equipment. He also claimed that because of his , he has to be more cautious when playing with his children. He further claimed that he used to enjoy swimming, but that he had to temporarily give up that activity following the accident. Orlinski sought recovery of past and future medical expenses, and damages for his past and future pain and suffering. Defense counsel disputed the severity of the alleged by pointing out the gaps in Orlinski’s treatment. Counsel also asserted that Orlinski’s treatment increased after he hired counsel for the lawsuit. In addition, defense counsel pointed to Orlinski’s age and the fact that Orlinski used to carry around a 50-pound camera at work as being the cause of Orlinski’s . Thus, counsel maintained that Orlinski’s were degenerative and/or pre-existing.
Superior Court of Los Angeles County, Los Angeles, CA

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