Attorney’s John Alpizar and Scott Alpizar secured a $2,426,951.88
verdict in Seminole County Circuit Court on June 13, 2018, for a Merritt
Island man who was seriously injured in what was described as a catastrophic crash.
Aurelio Cruz, 68, was driving a Ford Windstar minivan northbound on Chuluota
Road on his way to work when a white pick-up truck heading southbound
came across traffic directly in front of Mr. Cruz. Mr. Cruz slammed on
his breaks, but could not avoid the horrific collision. Both Mr. Cruz
and the at-fault party had to be extricated from the vehicles, and Mr.
Cruz was transported to Orlando Regional Medical Center as a trauma alert.
“Many of Mr. Cruz’s treating physicians testified he was fortunate
to survive this crash,” said Attorney Scott Alpizar.
Mr. Cruz spent five days in the hospital where he was diagnosed with post-traumatic
vertigo, left scapular fracture, five fractured ribs on the left side
of his body, a grade II lacerated spleen, severe right ankle sprain, chest
wall injury, and abdomen injury. Mr. Cruz also injured his low back requiring
surgery in the future, a left brachial plexus injury resulting in denervation
and atrophy of his left shoulder muscles, carpal and cubital tunnel injuries
requiring surgery, a frozen left shoulder with multiple rotator cuff tears
requiring surgery in the future, and a neck injury resulting in a four-level
fusion. Six months prior to the crash, Mr. Cruz had undergone a two-level
neck fusion that was still in the healing phase when this crash happened.
“Mr. Cruz was well on his way to recovering from the first neck
surgery when this crash happened, and the only people who didn’t
believe that was Mercury Insurance Company,” said Alpizar. Mr. Cruz
gave the Defendant, Mercury Insurance Company of Florida, the opportunity
to settle his case for $500,000.00 just two weeks before trial, and Mercury
Insurance Company of Florida declined.
The trial of Aurelio Cruz v. Mercury insurance Company of Florida, began
Monday, June 4, 2018 and was heard before a six-member jury. The jurors
deliberated two and a half hours before delivering the $2,426,951.88 verdict.
The award included $297,520.88 for past medical expenses, $538,566.00
for future medical expensed, $229,954.00 for past lost wages, $61,511.00
for future loss of earning capacity, $499,500.00 for past pain and suffering
and $800,000.00 for future pain and suffering.