2013 Case Settlement Involving Moderate to Severe Brain Injury
Our client was in a serious accident while driving his motorcycle in Lewiston, Maine. He and another motorcycle operator (the defendant) were driving at night after having left a bar in Auburn. The defendant was operating his motorcycle behind our client and swerved for an unknown reason, coming into contact with our client's back wheel. The contact resulted in our client veering off to the side of the road, hitting a curb, and then running into a wall.
How the accident was seriously disputed. Our client's parents contacted our firm immediately after the accident happened, permitting us to start investigating the matter immediately. This decision to retain an attorney was fortunate because, although not known at the time when they contacted us, the defendant's insurance company was taking the position that there had not been any contact between the two motorcycles and that our client simply lost control. By starting the investigation quickly, we were able to obtain good quality photographs of the skid marks in the roadway--skid marks that would have been lost (or at least seriously deteriorated) in the weeks that followed the accident. These skid marks turned out to be critical in establishing that there had been contact between the motorcycles.
As our client recuperated from his injuries, his own health insurance company started denying claims for rehabilitative services he needed. We appealed those denials with the assistance of the treating doctors and successfully overturned the denials. As a result, our client received over $100,000 in additional care that he needed. Attorney Thompson's long-time involvement as a board member of the Brain Injury Association of Maine was instrumental in getting the support from the medical community necessary to fight our client's HMO. In addition, his knowledge of brain injuries and brain injury treatment through working with the Association and having helped many brain injury survivors over his 20 years in practice enabled him to competently respond to the HMO's doctors' claims that our client did not need additional rehabilitative services.
Another significant battle we encountered in this case was establishing that our client was unable to work. Because our client received vocational rehabilitative services and was placed in a work environment as part of that rehabilitation, the defendant's insurance company took the position that he was able to be gainfully employed. We hired a vocational expert to demonstrate that the type of work he was doing in his rehabilitation was largely assisted and was not similar to a real work setting where his performance would be constantly evaluated. Testing was done to show that his cognitive and motor skills were diminished to the point where even the simplest manual labor was beyond his ability, at least when compared to a person who does not have similar physical and mental limitations. This expert testimony was very important in getting the defendant's insurance company to offer and fair and reasonable settlement in this case. Our client and his family were very happy with the settlement. (The settlement amount cannot be disclosed due to a confidentiality agreement.)