Attorneys Lauren Frederick and Brian Catrinar Obtain No Cause of Action Verdict in First-Party No-Fault Case


Attorneys Lauren A. Frederick and Brian A. Catrinar, both members of Collins Einhorn’s General and Automotive Liability Group, recently obtained a defense verdict in a Wayne County first-party no-fault case.

On November 25, 2014, Plaintiff was travelling as a restrained back seat passenger from her home in Free Soil, Michigan, to Beverly Hills, Michigan. While travelling through Okemos, the vehicle in which she was travelling was rear-ended. The plaintiff did not seek medical treatment immediately following the accident, nor did anyone else involved in the accident.

For the next seven days, plaintiff participated in her normal daily activities. However, on December 2, 2014, plaintiff suddenly experienced severe chest pain while feeding her horses. Plaintiff’s daughter took her to the hospital, where she was diagnosed with an aortic dissection and rushed into emergency surgery.

Home-Owners argued that plaintiff’s injuries did not arise out of the November 25, 2014 motor vehicle accident. To support their theory of the case, Home-Owners offered the testimony of cardiothoracic surgeon Eric Hanson, MD. Dr. Hanson testified that, to a reasonable degree of medical certainty, plaintiff’s aortic dissection occurred on December 2, 2014, not the day of the accident. Home-Owners also offered the testimony of biomedical engineer Steve Rundell, Ph.D., P.E. Dr. Rundell calculated the forces that plaintiff experienced in this accident, and explained why those forces were not significantly associated with the risk of aortic injury.

After a seven-day jury trial, the jury returned a unanimous verdict of no cause of action, finding that plaintiff’s claimed accidental bodily injuries, including her aortic dissection, did not arise out of the motor vehicle accident.

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