Cook County Jury Verdict for Rear-End Stop Light Crash Exceeds Insurance Policy Limits

A Cook County jury returned a $21,762 verdict for a 68-year-old man who was stopped at a red light on southbound Harlem Avenue at Jackson Boulevard in Chicago. Tehudulio Roman was waiting for the traffic light to change when his car was rear-ended by the defendant, 18-year-old Daniel Garcia, in a high-force impact crash.

Roman was unable to drive from the scene and his wife came to drive him and the car back to their home. 

Roman began treatment one week after the crash, and was diagnosed with disc protrusions at L4-5 and L5-S1.  This required Roman to undergo six months of physical therapy.

The defendant Garcia chose not to show up at the trial. The defendant denied causation of any of the injuries complained about by Roman. The jury’s verdict of $21,762 was made up of the following damages:

  • $9,000 for pain and suffering;
  • $12,762 for medical expenses.

The verdict exceeded the defendant’s insurance policy limits of $20,000.In Illinois, the minimum required liability insurance for a noncommercial vehicle is $20,000. This insurance policy was at the lowest level. Plaintiff’s counsel, Steven Tschiggfrie, offered a demand to settle of $18,000 before trial.The defendant’s offer to settle before trial was $5,000. The plaintiff’s counsel asked the jury to return a verdict in the range of $21,762 to $26,762. 

Tehudulio Luna Roman v. Daniel Garcia, No. 12 L 1201 (Cook County).

Kreisman Law Offices has been handling automobile and car crashes for individuals and families who have been harmed, injured or died as a result of the carelessness or negligence of another for more than 37 years in and around Chicago, Cook County and its surrounding areas, including Lincolnshire, Lincolnwood, Berkeley, Hillside, Elmhurst, Elk Grove Village, Stickney, Cicero, Joliet, Waukegan, Chicago (Austin), Chicago (Polish Village), Chicago (Irving Park), Itasca, Villa Park and Chicago (Bucktown), Ill.

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