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Home / Verdicts & Settlements / Teacher suffered concussion in rear-ender, Allstate balked at diagnosis — $240,000 settlement

Teacher suffered concussion in rear-ender, Allstate balked at diagnosis — $240,000 settlement

Plaintiff was traveling from her home in Lynchburg up to see family in Maryland when she was rear-ended in Fauquier County. Plaintiff declined medical attention at the scene despite a small laceration to her forehead. She presented to the emergency room that evening where no formal diagnosis of a concussion was made.

When plaintiff returned to Lynchburg, she was diagnosed with a concussion and was put under the care of Dr. Omar Elkhamara. Plaintiff testified that she made a 90% recovery under Elkhamara’s care, but reported that her symptoms worsened when she returned to work as a teacher. Several co-workers were prepared to testify on how the accident impacted plaintiff as a teacher. As such, Elkhamara suggested a reduced workload.

Neuropsychological testing with Dr. Joseph Conley showed neuropsychological deficits that significantly improved over three years.

Allstate defended the case and disputed the diagnosis of a concussion and post-concussion syndrome. Plaintiff therefore underwent a Rule 4:10 examination with Dr. Peck; however, Peck’s report and designation were the subject of a motion in limine resulting in the exclusion of the majority of Peck’s proposed testimony.

Allstate made no offers until the motion to strike Peck was filed; they tendered their $100,000 liability policy limits approximately one month before trial. Shortly thereafter, GEICO offered an additional $140,000.

There was only $250,000 in available coverage. Plaintiff’s experts became even stronger advocates for plaintiff after learning of Peck’s report.

Plaintiff settled the case for $240,000.


Type of action: Personal injury
Injuries alleged: Concussion and post-concussion syndrome
Name of case: Black vs. Parker
Court: Fauquier County Circuit Court
Case no.: CL18-224
Date resolved: 03/02/2020
Special damages: Medical bills of $27,980
Verdict or settlement: Settlement
Amount: $240,000
Attorney(s) for plaintiff: Brian P. Coleman, Manassas
Plaintiff’s expert(s): Omar Elkhamara, MD; Joseph Conely, PhD; Pedr K. Melberg, vocational expert
Insurance carrier: Allstate (liability); GEICO (UIM)