Dulles Airport area lawyer Doug Landau recently told a client from the South West that he looked forward to seeing PRIOR medical records. Landau was particularly keen to review any notes from the treating doctor indicating that the airport accident caused an “objective injury.” That is to say, that this event caused an identifiable anatomic change in the passenger’s body that was not part of the degenerative process we all experience through “wear & tear.” The report that this client sent lawyer Landau noted chondromalacia and other degenerative changes that the insurance company will contend were “pre-existing conditions.” Landau pointed out that subjective complaints of pain must be supported by objective medical evidence. He frequently sees this in his own Social Security Disability practice from the Consultative Medical Examiners and the Administrative Law Judges.
That is why it is important to compare pre- and post-injury diagnostic studies so as to undermine the insurance company for the airlines &/or airport’s allegations. When the objective medical evidence is supported by competent expert and lay witnesses’ testimony, then it can be submitted for consideration. On the other hand, if the injured passenger’s harms are only supported by subjective complaints, hearsay evidence and lack the causal relation opinion “to within a reasonable medical certainty,” then the court will preclude its introduction. In injury cases, “speculative damages” are not allowed to be submitted.
If you or someone you know or care for has been injured as the result of an airport terminal, deplaning, midfield terminal bus, airplane or other air travel related accident and there are questions about what laws apply, e-mail or call us at ABRAMS LANDAU, Ltd. (703-796-9555) at once.