Attorneys Kenneth Amos and William Gula of our St. Petersburg, Florida office represented the Defendant driver in a rear-end collision during a five (5) day jury trial in Tampa, Hillsborough County, Florida, which resulted in a zero verdict for the defense despite the Defendant admitting that he was at fault for the accident.
The Plaintiff, who was making a claim for personal injuries, which included past medical bills, future medical bills, and pain and suffering, was rear-ended by the Defendant at dusk shortly after a rain storm. The Plaintiff admitted at the accident scene that she braked suddenly because she saw a flashing yellow light. The Defendant admitted at the accident scene that he was at fault for rear-ending the Plaintiff because he briefly took his eyes off the road to check on his one (1) year old daughter in the car seat behind him. When he saw the Plaintiff’s break lights illuminate in front of him, he immediately turned his attention to the Plaintiff’s vehicle, hit his brakes, and hydroplaned into the rear-end of her vehicle. The Plaintiff requested more than $170,000.00 in past and future medical bills at trial. The Plaintiff refused to put a number on the pain and suffering and left it up to the jury to decide.
After conducting a thorough investigation with regard to the liability and causation issues to be presented at trial, the Defense learned that the Plaintiff had a Restriction A on her driver’s license at the time of the accident, which required her to wear corrective lenses. Approximately fourteen (14) months after the auto accident, a medical record was generated by an ophthalmologist, at which time the Plaintiff advised the eye doctor that she had trouble with glare while driving at night and also had trouble with flashing lights, at which time she indicated to her eye doctor that she needed to wear eyeglasses while operating a motor vehicle at night. However, during the Plaintiff’s deposition prior to trial she denied having to wear glasses while operating a motor vehicle. She denied eye problems as a result of any glare at the time of the accident. She denied seeing a flashing yellow light immediately prior to the accident.
At trial, the Plaintiff was cross-examined with regard to her utilization of corrective lenses while operating a motor vehicle. She testified to the jury that she did not understand why the eye doctor documented her records with regard to the glare and wearing eye glasses. She denied that the records were a true and accurate statement. Furthermore, she denied that she had to wear corrective lenses while operating a motor vehicle. In defense of her denials, the Defendant called her minor child to the stand, at which time the child testified that her mother always wears glasses while operating a motor vehicle.
Despite the Plaintiff hiring two (2) retained experts with regard to liability and causation, the jury returned a verdict of no liability on behalf of the Defendant after five (5) full days of trial and testimony from twenty (20) witnesses.