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Motor Vehicle Law: Plaintiff presents sufficient evidence to recover damages for injuries caused in a motor vehicle accident but fails to present sufficient evidence to support an award for compensatory damages as to his daughter’s injuries

The present matter arises out of a motor vehicle accident between the plaintiff and defendant. The court states that the determination of damages involves a question of fact and when damages are claimed, they are an essential element of the plaintiff’s proof and must be proved with reasonable certainty. Damages may be awarded for pain and suffering, past, present, and future, resulting from the injuries as long as the evidence affords a basis for a reasonable estimate by the trier of fact of the amount.

Evaluating the evidence in the present matter, the court finds that the plaintiff suffered neck and back injuries as a result of the accident. Concerning economic damages, the court finds that the plaintiff is entitled to recover $4,475.00 for expenses incurred, including chiropractic evaluation and treatment. As to noneconomic damages, the court finds that the plaintiff is entitled to recover for his injuries and pain and suffering in the amount of $20,000.00. The plaintiff testified that his daughter, who was age 14 at the time of the accident, suffered a back injury as a result of the accident, for which she was treated in the emergency room, and that she also received chiropractic treatment. She did not testify at the hearing. The court reviewed the sixteen exhibits presented by the plaintiffs.

The exhibits concerned the plaintiff, and not his daughter. In view of the very general, limited testimony concerning injury to and treatment of the plaintiff’s daughter, and the lack of exhibits concerning her treatment, the court finds that the evidence is insufficient to find that the plaintiff is entitled to recover compensatory damages related to the daughter’s claims. The court concludes that judgment may enter for the plaintiff and against the defendant in the amount of $4,475.00 for economic damages and $20,000.00 for noneconomic damages for a total of $24,475.00. Hiraldo v. DeMartino, No. HHD CV 22 6161724 S, 2023 WL 4072953 (Conn. Super. Ct. June 13, 2023).