Case details

Plaintiff’s chiropractic care was unnecessary, defense argued





Result type

Not present

contusion foot, epidermis, foot, heel, knee
On May 29, 2009, plaintiff Charles Newman, 50, a paralegal student, was walking north on the sidewalk along Sycamore Avenue in Los Angeles when he was struck by a 2005 Ford Crown Victoria taxi, which was operated by Hakob Manukyan and owned by Suren Sarkisyan. The taxi was pulling out of an alley in an attempt to turn right onto southbound Sycamore Avenue. Newman claimed to his left foot, ankle and knee, as well as to his lower back and hip. Newman sued Manukyan and Sarkisyan. He alleged that Manukyan was negligent in the operation of the vehicle and that Sarkisyan was vicariously liable for Manukyan’s actions. The defendants admitted liability, and that matter proceeded to an expedited jury trial in which the parties stipulated to an eight-person jury. Plaintiff’s counsel noted that, over objection, Newman’s three prior felony convictions were admitted into evidence., Newman was transported by ambulance from the scene and brought to Hollywood Presbyterian Hospital in Hollywood, where he complained of pain in his left knee and foot. However, X-rays taken at the hospital revealed no fractures. Newman was ultimately diagnosed with contusions to his left knee and left foot, and he was released the same day. Thereafter, Newman received chiropractic care and therapy on 24 occasions between June 9, 2009, and Aug. 4, 2009, for pain in his lower back, left hip, left ankle and left foot. The therapy consisted of massages, electric stimulation, diathermy, ultrasound and hot and cold packs. Newman had no residual complaints at trial. Thus, he claimed past medical expenses including $1,067 for the ambulance/paramedics, $1,511 for the hospital and $3,360 for chiropractic care. The plaintiff’s treating emergency physician expert testified that the medical services rendered to Newman were reasonable and necessary and that the charges were reasonable. Newman did not seek recovery for property damage, loss of earnings or loss of earning capacity. The defense’s expert in orthopedic surgery testified that most of the chiropractic services rendered to Newman were neither reasonable nor necessary, and that the charges were excessive.
Superior Court of Los Angeles County, Los Angeles, CA

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