Pregnancy should be a time of joyful possibility, but our 24-year-old client’s dreams of motherhood took a completely different path when she was left an incomplete quadriplegic as a result of a devastating ATV accident. We fought to secure her a settlement that would provide funds for her ongoing medical needs so she could focus on caring for her son.
How the Accident Occurred
Shortly after sharing the news of her pregnancy with her boyfriend, our client rented an ATV to go trail riding at Ocotillo Wells in San Diego County. The trip was a chance for the couple to spend some time together talking about their future while celebrating his birthday.
As the couple headed down a hill on one of the trails, our client’s shoe became entrapped in the wheel of the ATV due to a design defect in the vehicle. This caused her to lose control of the ATV and collide into a dirt wall at the bottom of the trail. She suffered multiple cervical spine fractures, which resulted in her becoming an incomplete quadriplegic.
Incomplete quadriplegia is characterized by paralysis or weakness in all four limbs. About 47% of all spinal cord injuries result in incomplete quadriplegia. Some individuals, like our client, have residual movement. However, this is undoubtedly a life-changing injury.
Finding a Path Forward
Our client faced a difficult journey as her pregnancy progressed. She was airlifted off the trail and eventually transferred to a specialized facility in Colorado to begin her rehabilitation—which focused on allowing her to have as much independence as possible given the limitations of her spinal cord injury. Her son was born close to full-term, with no significant developmental issues.
After returning home, our client required home health aides to assist with her care. Her extended family stepped in to help with childcare needs, but this was far from the future she anticipated when she first discovered her pregnancy. Due to her injuries, she continues to deal with chronic pain and is unable to even hold her son without assistance.
Holding the Negligent Manufacturer Accountable
After four weeks at trial, Case Barnett Law, along with a local Los Angeles law firm, secured a $4 million settlement against a confidential manufacturer of ATVs, motorcycles, and cars. The defense counsel offered a settlement before the jury was done deliberating. They knew jurors dislike companies that put profits before safety—and they recognized the strength of our case.
We attribute our success to our relentless discovery. Big corporations know how to hide documents, but we hold their feet to the fire until they are forced to turn over all relevant information. Even when it means going through thousands of pages, we’re committed to gathering the evidence needed to conclusively establish a manufacturer’s liability.
This was a challenging case because our client had lost consciousness and was thus unable to remember many of the details related to what had happened immediately before and after her injury. Because we are not a high-volume firm and we only accept cases where we believe our clients have suffered a great injustice, we were able to devote the time and resources necessary to achieve the best possible result for our client.
Do You Need to Speak to an Experienced California Personal Injury Attorney?
If you’ve suffered serious injuries that were caused by a manufacturer’s defective product, Case Barnett Law is here to help. Our experienced California personal injury attorneys will work hard to win compensation for your medical costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Call our office at 949.409.0055 or contact us online to request a meeting with our legal team.