On June 22, 2011, Pei Ru Guo, a 54 year old home health aide, was a passenger in her husband’s car when it was struck at an intersection in Whitestone by a car driven by a 17 year old. Ms. Guo sustained injuries and sued the driver and owner of the other vehicle.
A Queens jury determined that the other driver was fully at fault and awarded plaintiff pain and suffering damages in the sum of $200,000 ($100,000 past – seven years, $100,000 future – 10 years). Defendants appealed both the liability and the future damages verdicts.
In Guo v. Efkarpidis (2d Dept. 2020) both the liability and damages verdicts have been affirmed.
Here are the injury details:
- 10 fractured ribs
- pneumothorax and hemothorax, requiring fluid drainage procedure
- hospitalized for nine days
- unable to return to work for five months
- eight months physical therapy
- continuing pain, spasms and limited ranges of motion and function of neck, lower back and shoulder
Defendants’ expert orthopedic surgeon opined that plaintiff had fully recovered from her injuries
- Plaintiff settled with her husband’s insurance company for $50,000 before the lawsuit.
- Defendant driver’s passenger friend testified on her behalf but was caught in a material falsehood when she said they had only a casual friendship and would not have appeared as a witness without being subpoenaed. Social media posts, though, showed them vacationing together and using the hashtag “best friend.”