Posted On: April 3, 2012 by Stephen Bilkis

A motion for rehearing was petitioned by Daniel Schmidt with the Court of Appeals

A motion for rehearing was petitioned by Daniel Schmidt with the Court of Appeals. This is with the personal injury case filed by Charles Van and his wife Rilla Van against Mr. Schmidt. According to sources, the Vans were claiming that the jury verdict should not be upheld by the court as the jury’s conclusion was against the weight of the evidence. A retrial was granted by the Circuit Court in favor of Mr. and Mrs. Van.

The Vans were looking to get compensation for personal injuries they had allegedly sustained from a vehicle accident in October 2007. They said that because of the accident, Mr. Van had to undergo a cervical spinal fusion surgery in September 2009. Mr. Schmidt is not disputing his liability in the 2007 accident. He is contesting that the injury was not caused by the accident. He is said the accident was minor and would not have had Mr. Van require a medical treatment. He also pointed out to the court Mr. Van’s prior medical records, said a doctor. Mr. Van already had a cervical spinal fusion surgery done in 1991. There was also the 1998 car accident that he was involved in and the diagnoses of emphysema and spinal degenerative disease. In the trial for compensation, there were three medical expert witnesses, including one from the defense, all of whom said that the surgery was caused in part by the 2007 accident. The reason given by the Vans why they require a rehearing was that some of the statements were not taken into consideration.

In determining if a rehearing should be granted, the court must look if the evidence presented does not support the decision and if the decision is based on the wrong interpretation of the law. A Lawyer says, in jury trials, the jury has the right to choose which statements they would want to accept. This is not limited to lay witnesses, but also with expert witnesses. In the case, they relied on the evidence that showed that the vehicle was a minor fender bender. Even if Mr. Vans testified that the repair cost $800, he also stated that the vehicle is still unrepaired and being used by his wife. There were photographs of the damage to the vehicle and the medical history of Mr. Vans.

There were also some inconsistencies in the statement made by Mr. Vans. Although he has not been employed since the 1970’s, he said that he could do carpentry work, mechanic work, swim, run and play with his grand kids. He was wearing a neck brace in the trial when his neurosurgeon testified that there was no need for him to wear it. From the information, with all the testimony and evidence along with the jury’s right to reject testimonies, the court reverses the decision for a rehearing and says that the decision of the jury should be upheld. Doctors in Nassau and Suffolk are studying these situations.

In asking for compensation for personal injuries, there should be proof that the injury resulted from the accident directly or sequential to it. It is the job of a New York Spine Injury Lawyer to present his case to make a jury or a judge see the damage done and the loss that needs to be compensated. They see to it that the compensation is just.
If you have been injured, in a car accident or any incident because of the negligence of someone else, go to Stephen Bilkis & Associates. Our Spine Injury Lawyers have the experience in handling cases like this. They will check on all the details and give you the options as you may be eligible for compensation. We have offices all over New York and Long Island. You can call us not at 1-800 NY - NY- LAW for a free consultation.