A local woman was sitting in the driver’s seat of her family Toyota Sequoia stopped for a red light at an intersection near the University of Oregon campus. She was rear-ended by a Cadillac driven by an underinsured motorist. It was a modest speed impact, but she immediately started to experience headaches. The accident had caused a permanent brain injury.
The headaches continued and worsened. She developed problems with her memory. She experienced a loss of energy, became more fatigued, and eventually had regular exhaustion. She developed problems with weakness, dizziness, and loss of balance. She began to experience abnormal sensations in the skin, including numbness, tingling, prickling, and burning or cutting pain.
The insurance company for the negligent Cadillac driver settled, and then we asked our client’s own insurance company to pay the balance of her losses. Her family had paid for a $1,000,000 underinsured motorist insurance policy, but her insurance company refused to pay anything. She was forced into a jury trial. At trial, the insurance company asked the jury to give no benefits under the insurance policy. Instead, the jury returned a verdict in her favor.
As with most brain injuries, the woman still suffers the effects of this collision and will the remainder of her life.
An Advocate for Brain Injury Survivors and Their Families
Don’s experience working for people with brain injuries has provided many insights into the nature of brain damage and the daily lives led by those with brain injuries. He has presented on the subject of representing brain-injured people to the Brain Injury Alliance of Oregon, an organization dedicated to brain injury research and prevention, and has written on the subject for the Oregon Trial Lawyers Association.
“People have no idea that I suffered a brain injury. From the outside, everything looks normal, but inside it is a different story. We need to help shed light on these invisible conditions.” Julie Sherman, represented by Don Corson.