Kahn v. Anderson
A court may award damages for medical expenses and pain and suffering to an individual who is injured in a motor-vehicle accident. In January 2010, the plaintiff, Irfan Kahn, worked as a driver and was traveling east on Commerce Drive in Bridgeport. The plaintiff made a left turn when he had a green arrow and collided with the defendant driver, who was traveling west on Commerce Drive. Both motor vehicles suffered significant damage. The plaintiff went to Norwalk Hospital later that day. An orthopedic surgeon, Eric Katz, prescribed physical therapy for the plaintiff's back, neck and shoulders. After magnetic resonance imaging disclosed a labral tear, Dr. Katz discussed arthroscopic surgery on the plaintiff's shoulder. Dr. Katz rated the 35-year-old plaintiff with a 5 percent permanent partial disability to his back, a 5 percent permanent partial disability to his neck and a 10-to-15 percent permanent partial disability to his shoulder. The plaintiff, who has worked as a driver for several years, claimed that because of his shoulder pain he experiences difficulty driving and playing with his children and he no longer plays in his basketball league. The plaintiff did not present evidence about loss of wages or earning capacity. The defendant admitted that he was negligent. The defendant's expert, Matthew Skolnick, opined that it was unclear whether the subject motor-vehicle accident caused the plaintiff's shoulder injury and whether surgery is required. Skolnick opined that the plaintiff suffered a 1 percent permanent partial disability of the back and an 0-to-5 percent permanent partial disability of the neck. The plaintiff's past medical expenses were approximately $14,238. The court awarded the plaintiff $10,000 for future medical expenses and $43,990 as fair, just and reasonable non-economic damages for pain and suffering, for a total of $68,228.