In the case of Velez v. Almonte, the plaintiff Ricarda Velez sought damages for injuries sustained due to the negligence of the defendant, Luis Almonte. According to the plaintiff’s testimony, she was in the process of exiting the taxicab operated by Luis Almonte when it ran over her left foot. Her right foot became twisted inside the vehicle, and her back was struck by the rear passenger door as the vehicle lurched forward. The medical reports submitted by the plaintiff suggest that Ricarda Velez sustained significant injuries to her knees and back.

The defendant moved for a summary judgment and dismissal of the plaintiff’s complaint on the ground that the plaintiff could not prove that she sustained a serious injury within the meaning of Insurance Law 5102(d). Moreover, the defense asserted that no causal connection or link was established between the accident and the physical injuries of the plaintiff. On the basis of the medical reports of Dr. Tantleff and Dr. Buckner, the abnormalities in the plaintiff’s knees and back were the results of preexisting, age-related causes that were wholly unrelated to the accident. Furthermore, according to Dr. Buckner, the plaintiff suffered at best a minor injury on her left ankle due to the accident.

To oppose the defendant’s motion, the plaintiff submitted medical evidence to show that her knees and back prevented her from adequately performing the customary acts which constitute her daily routine, as is required under the definition of a serious injury by Insurance Law. The plaintiff submitted the medical reports of Dr. Clarke and Dr. Brownstein, who performed MRI’s of the plaintiff’s both knees and back to examine the sustained injuries. However, it was found that the reports failed to establish causation with the accident and did not even mildly indicate that the plaintiff’s injuries were related to the accident.

In such a case as this, where the defendant has provided the court with persuasive evidence that the plaintiff’s injuries are related to preexisting degenerative conditions, the plaintiff must provide evidence to address the defendants’ claims regarding the lack of causation. As the plaintiff failed to provide the necessary evidence, the motion for summary dismissal was granted by the court.

If you have been injured in an accident with a taxi or another motor vehicle, then you should contact the law office of Jayson Lutzky. Mr. Lutzky is a highly experienced accident personal injury. Over the past 31 years, he has obtained millions of dollars for his clients. Mr. Lutzky offers free in-office consultations at his Bronx, New York office. If you have been seriously injured, then home and hospital consultations are also available. Call 718-514-6619 to set up an appointment today. Visit to learn more about the attorney.