Case details

Plaintiff claimed rear-end collision caused injuries





Result type

Not present

back, knee, neck, soft-tissue injuries
On Sept. 4, 2012, plaintiff Erika Hanson, 32, a public relations employee, was stopped her Toyota Highlander at the intersection of southbound Orange Drive and Fountain Avenue. Hanson intended to make a right turn onto Fountain Avenue, but her vehicle was rear-ended by a 1995 Mercury Marquis operated by Zus Matusevich. Hanson claimed to her neck, back, and left knee. Hanson sued Zus Matusevich and the owner of the vehicle, Aleksander Matusevich. Hanson alleged that Zus Matusevich was negligent in the operation of the Mercury Marquis and that Aleksander Matusevich was vicariously liable for Zus Matusevich’s actions. Galina Davidzon and Sentry Control Systems Inc. were also initially named as defendants, but they were ultimately let out of the case, as they were incorrect parties. In addition, Aleksander Matusevich was dismissed for a waiver of costs before trial. Thus, the matter continued against Zus Matusevich only. Zus Matusevich contested liability, claiming that Hanson stopped her vehicle at the intersection, started to go, and then suddenly stopped again, causing the impact., Hanson claimed soft tissue to her knee, neck and back. She subsequently presented to an urgent care center after the collision. Hanson had a history of neck and back complaints before the collision, and had received chiropractic maintenance for the last 15 years. However, she claimed that her underlying issues were aggravated by the collision, as she was more susceptible to injury. On Sept. 13, 2012, Hanson presented to her treating physician. She then presented to Back 2 Health Physical Therapy and Aquatic Rehabilitation, in West Hollywood, on Sept. 18, 2012, and began four months of treatment for her neck, back and knee. She also underwent MRIs of her neck, lower back and left knee. All treatment was on a lien. Hanson claimed that her knee pain resolved within weeks and that her other later resolved. Thus, she made a full recovery. Plaintiff’s counsel asked the jury to award Hanson $75,000 in total damages, including $10,730 in past medical costs. Defense counsel contended that there was only $500 in property damage to Hanson’s vehicle. Thus, counsel argued that there was no mechanism of injury.
Superior Court of Los Angeles County, Los Angeles, CA

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