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Illinois Attorneys Obtain Defense Verdict in Circuit Court of Cook County

Chicago defense attorneys Nicholas J. Parolisi, Jr. and Inessa S. Holly obtained a jury verdict on behalf of an environmental consulting company client’s driver who was involved in an automobile accident while operating their company vehicle. The 12-person jury trial was one of the first to be held at the Circuit Court of Cook County following the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown.

Plaintiff was a passenger in a vehicle that was struck by a vehicle driven by our client. Diagnostic films taken after the accident showed a herniated disc in her low back. Therefore, Plaintiff claimed she suffered the herniated disc in her low back as a result of this collision and later underwent a discectomy followed by a fusion surgery.

To support Plaintiff’s argument that her herniated disc was a result of this collision, Plaintiff’s counsel relied upon Plaintiff’s lack of any prior medical treatment for her low back. At trial, Plaintiff presented medical expenses of nearly $500,000, with additional damages for pain and suffering, and loss of a normal life. Our client admitted liability, but denied the nature and extent of Plaintiff’s damages at trial.

Nick and Inessa’s trial defense was based on disputing Plaintiff’s claim that she sustained a herniated disc that required surgery as a result of the collision, and instead that the collision resulted in Plaintiff suffering a lumbar strain that required steroid injections and physical therapy. To support their defense, our attorneys presented photographic evidence of the collision showing minor damage to both vehicles, supporting our client’s testimony that it was a low-impact accident. Nick and Inessa also presented expert testimony from an orthopedic surgeon, accident re-constructionist and biomechanical engineer to support the defense that Plaintiff did not suffer a herniated disc as a result of the collision. Additionally, our attorneys presented evidence that Plaintiff’s involvement as a mixed martial arts fighter for four years combined with her work as a cleaning person for 10 years to support their argument that Plaintiff likely had symptomatic low back from the herniated disc prior to the collision, despite the lack of prior medical treatment.

Nick and Inessa’s defense persuaded the jury that Plaintiff suffered a lumbar strain that required steroid injections and physical therapy, and received a verdict of more than $130,000.

Nick has extensive experience defending clients in motor vehicle liability, premises liability, products liability, and construction accident and defect cases. He also handles cases involving professional liability, commercial disputes and foodborne illness outbreaks.

Inessa focuses her practice on personal injury, construction negligence, toxic tort and wrongful death claims. Her representative experience includes motor vehicle accidents, defective products, construction defects and other casualties.