Case details

Plaintiff: Crash aggravated spine and caused hip injuries




Mediated Settlement

Result type

Not present

back, degenerative disc condition, exacerbation of, femoral, fracture, hip, lower back, neck, right hip, right shoulder
On the afternoon of May 11, 2011, plaintiff Robert Hofmann, 65, a construction superintendent, was stopped for a red light on Victory Boulevard, at the intersection with Ben Avenue in Burbank, when he was rear-ended by a truck operated by Cynthia De La Mora. The impact then pushed Hofmann’s vehicle into the lead vehicle at the traffic light, and Hofmann claimed to his right hip, right shoulder, neck, and lower back. Hofmann sued De La Mora; De La Mora’s employer and owner of the truck, O’Reilly Automotive Stores Inc.; and O’Reilly’s parent company, CSK Auto Inc. Hofmann alleged that De La Mora was negligent in the operation of the truck and that O’Reilly and CSK were vicariously liable for De La Mora’s actions. Hofmann contended that De La Mora was inattentive to traffic and that De La Mora failed to slow and stop her vehicle in time to avoid the impact. The defendants admitted liability for the accident, and the matter proceeded to a trial on damages., On the night of the accident, Hofmann went to a Kaiser urgent care facility with complaints of pain in his neck, back, right hip, and right shoulder. He ultimately underwent MRIs that revealed an exacerbation of degenerative changes in his lumbar spine, as well as a non-displaced femoral neck fracture and a labral tear of his right leg/hip. Hofmann treated with physical therapy and periodic steroid injections to relieve inflammation in his right hip. Hofmann claimed that his neck, lower back, and right shoulder have mostly resolved, but that he still experiences residual hip pain, discomfort and reduced range of motion. He also claimed he has missed some time from work due to flare-ups of his hip. Thus, Hofmann claimed that his doctor considers him a candidate for a future total right hip replacement. Hofmann sought recovery of $33,000 in past medical costs, $50,000 in future medical costs for the total hip replacement, and $5,000 to $6,000 in future lost earnings for missed work during his recovery from surgery. He also sought recovery of damages for his past and future pain and suffering. Defense counsel argued that Hofmann’s alleged hip injury and need for a total hip replacement was unrelated to the subject accident. Counsel argued that, instead, the hip condition was a normal progression of Hofmann’s pre-existing congenital/degenerative arthritic condition.
Superior Court of Los Angeles County, Los Angeles, CA

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