Case details

Plaintiff claimed rear-ender caused lumbar disc herniation





Result type

Not present

back, cervical, herniated disc, neck, strain
On April 15, 2009, plaintiff Francys Oliva, 25, a cashier, came to a sudden stop on the 3400 block of Fairfax Road in Bakersfield due to a dog running out in front of her vehicle. Subsequently, a few seconds later, her vehicle was rear-ended by a vehicle operated by Meloni Queen. Oliva claimed spinal from the accident. Oliva sued Ms. Queen and the owner of the vehicle, Anthony Queen. She alleged that Ms. Queen was negligent in the operation of her vehicle and that Mr. Queen was vicariously liable for Ms. Queen’s actions. Ms. Queen claimed that she was traveling at a safe speed and was following at a safe distance when Oliva came to a sudden and unexpected stop., Oliva was eight months pregnant at the time crash. As a result, she was rushed to an emergency room, where she was treated for lower back pain and neck pain. Oliva then began treating with doctors three months after the accident. An MRI taken seven months post-accident revealed an 11-millimeter lumbar disc herniation at L5-S1. Oliva also claimed a cervical strain and contended that the disc herniation was caused by the collision. Oliva claimed that although she was unemployed at the time of the accident, the accident altered her ability to provide household services and engage in daily life activities, such as sports and dancing. She also claimed that the herniation would eventually require surgical repair. Thus, she claimed $25,000 in past medical costs, an unspecified amount in lost earning capacity, $278,000 in future medical expenses for a microdecompression surgery and a lumbar disc fusion, and an unspecified amount for her future pain and suffering. Defense counsel contended that the disc herniation was not caused by the automobile collision and argued that the alleged future surgery was not necessary. However, counsel never provided an alternate explanation as to what caused the disc herniation.
Superior Court of Kern County, Bakersfield, CA

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