Case details

Plaintiffs claimed rear-ender caused soft-tissue injuries





Result type

Not present

elbow, lateral epicondylitis
On July 2, 2010, at 4 p.m., plaintiff Martimiano Miguel, 48, a hotel worker, was driving his sport utility vehicle on Olympic Boulevard, west of Windsor, with his wife, plaintiff Asuncion Miguel, 46, a housekeeper, in the passenger seat. As the Miguels were stopped due to traffic on Olympic Boulevard, they were rear-ended by a vehicle operated by Chan Hee Nam. The force of the collision subsequently pushed the Miguels’ SUV into the vehicle in front of them. The Miguels sued Nam, alleging motor vehicle negligence. Specifically, they claimed that Nam was distracted by people moving out of a house to his left, failed to slow down and crashed into the rear of the their SUV. Nam conceded liability., The Miguels both claimed soft-tissue to their neck and back. Mr. Miguel also claimed lateral epicondylitis, or tennis elbow, in his left, non-dominant elbow as a result of the crash. They did not see a physician for 18 days following the collision and next saw a physician a month after their initial physician visit. The Miguels ultimately received six weeks of chiropractic care and were released due to significant improvement. A year later, the plaintiffs saw an orthopedic doctor after they continued to complain of soreness and achy, dull pain in their neck and lower back. Mr. Miguel also claimed he continued to experience tightness in his left elbow. The plaintiffs were ultimately diagnosed with chronic pain syndrome, even though their respective MRIs were normal. Defense counsel argued that the plaintiffs’ should have heeled after six weeks and that anything beyond that is either psychosymatic or claimed for monetary gain. Counsel also argued that Mr. Miguel’s tennis elbow was caused by repetative movements at work and was unrelated to the subject accident.
Superior Court of Los Angeles County, Los Angeles, CA

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