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10/17/2022 – Associate Lee D. Tarr Wins Defense Verdict

In the case of Tonya Torruella and Maria Briceno v. Debbie M. Guerrero and Dean C. Moss, Kings County Supreme Court Index Number 506566/2018, MMG Associate Lee D. Tarr obtained a defense verdict at the conclusion of a summary jury trial. A unanimous jury dismissed the Plaintiffs’ cause of action after determining that neither Plaintiff had sustained a significant limitation of a body function or system, and did not sustain a permanent consequential limitation of use of a body member or organ as a result of a motor vehicle accident on August 14, 2016.

Article 51 of the New York Insurance Law provides that a plaintiff in a personal injury action arising out of negligence in the use or operation of a motor vehicle must establish that they have suffered “serious injury.” While both plaintiffs alleged ongoing neck, back, knee and shoulder pain, MMG Associate Lee D. Tarr provided to the jury how incredulous their claims were. Specifically, she offered evidence that both plaintiffs had not been treated in five years and had not had serious medical procedures. Ms. Tarr further impeached the plaintiffs’ testimony by offering proof of both plaintiffs’ failure to allege all their injuries at their first treatment, and that their treatment was much shorter and less involved than they both claimed. She provided plaintiffs’ medical records and successfully argued that each plaintiff’s alleged injuries of lumbar, cervical, shoulder and knee pain and strain did not meet the serious injury threshold.

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