Case details

Plaintiff claimed shoulder and neck injuries caused by crash





Result type

Not present

bulging disc, cervical, neck
On June 10, 2011, plaintiff Ricky Griffin, 50, an electrical engineer, was in his 2001 Chevrolet Suburban, stuck in stop-and-go traffic, in a construction zone on southbound Interstate 405 in Los Angeles. While stopped, his vehicle was rear-ended by a 2003 Dodge Grand Caravan driven by Rupinder Singh Johal, who was reportedly traveling 20 to 35 miles per hour. The impact subsequently pushed Griffin’s vehicle into the vehicle in front of him. As a result, Griffin claimed to neck and shoulder . Griffin sued Rupinder Singh Johal and the owner of the vehicle, Baljit Singh Johal, the driver’s father. Griffin alleged that Rupinder Singh Johal was negligent for failing to use reasonable care in the operation of his vehicle. He also initially alleged that Baljit Singh Johal was vicariously liable for his son’s actions, but he was ultimately dismissed from the case after it was confirmed that his son was covered under his insurance policy. According to plaintiff’s counsel, Rupinder Singh Johal admitted that he was looking down at his iPod charger, which was plugged into his vehicle, when he rear-ended Griffin’s vehicle. However, Johal did not admit negligence in the collision., Griffin claimed he injured his neck and left shoulder in the accident. However, he did not seek immediate medical treatment and waited over the weekend, until Monday, June 13, 2011, to present to an orthopedic doctor. An MRI was then performed the next day, which reportedly showed that Griffin had sustained a 5-millimeter cervical disc bulge at the C5-6 level. He was also diagnosed as having sustained a partial thickness tear to the rotator cuff in his left shoulder, per an MRI performed in May 2013. Griffin did not undergo any surgery for his , but plaintiff’s counsel argued that Griffin would require an anterior cervical fusion in the future. Thus, plaintiff’s counsel asked the jury to award Griffin $16,304 in past medical expenses, which the defense stipulated to, and a range of $65,100 to $216,100 in future medical expenses, as well as $5,615.38 to $44,923.04 for Griffin’s future lost earnings. Plaintiff’s counsel did not ask the jury to award a specific amount for Griffin’s past and future non-economic damages, instead left it up to the jury to decide what to award. However, plaintiff’s counsel suggested that the jury should award Griffin $1 million to $1.5 million in total damages. Defense counsel argued that Griffin’s alleged were pre-existing and not caused by the accident, contending that Griffin had at least a 23-year history of prior back and shoulder complaints. Counsel also disputed the future medical care Griffin claimed he need, arguing that Griffin was not a candidate for any surgery.
Superior Court of Los Angeles County, Santa Monica, CA

Recommended Experts


Get a FREE consultation for your case