Dimitrios Stefanidis v. Sherry M. Black and Francis D. Black: A man who was rear-ended in traffic and ended up with a neck and back injury, was awarded $470,000 recently by a Superior Court jury in Stamford.

Dimitrios Stefanidis, 37, who was driving a Mercedes sedan, was rear-ended while stuck in slowed traffic on Interstate 95 by a vehicle driven by Sherry M. Black. According to a press release from the law firm representing Stefanidis, Black failed to keep a proper lookout and to maintain an appropriate distance between the vehicles.

Stefanidis, meanwhile, suffered permanent injuries to his neck and back. Specifically, doctors discovered that Stefanidis had a herniated disc in his neck and another bulging disc in his low back. His doctors claim he will need surgery in his lower back to repair the disc herniation.

Stefanidis was employed as a car salesman at the time of the crash. He now claims the injuries have significantly impaired his ability to earn a living.

Stefanidis hired attorney William M. Davoren, of Wofsey, Rosen, Kweskin & Kuriansky in Stamford, who sued Black and the owner of the car she was driving for negligence. Davoren did not return messages seeking comment for this article.

The lawsuit sought reimbursement for Stefanidis’ medical bills, past lost wages, and compensation for his future medical bills, including the likely surgery, pain, suffering and loss of life’s enjoyment.

Attorneys for Loccisano, Turret & Rosenbaum, the Wallingford firm that defended the claim against Black on behalf of her insurance carrier, Liberty Mutual, argued that Stefanidis had stopped short on the highway and that the impact of the crash was not sufficient enough to have caused the injuries that he was alleging.

The defense offered $25,000 to settle the case. The plaintiff sought much more. With no settlement in sight, the case proceeded to trial. Multiple doctors testified at the trial before Judge Robert Genuario in Stamford-Norwalk Superior Court.

Ultimately, the jury decided Stefanidis’ doctors were more credible. Following a day of deliberations, they awarded Stefanidis $470,000. The damages total was boosted by nearly $60,000 by offer of compromise interest, dating to when the complaint was initially filed in 2008. And so the plaintiffs will receive $527,685.

“We are thrilled with the results and feel justice has finally been served,” said Stefanidis’ lawyer, Davoren, in the press release. “The jury balanced the harms and losses inflicted by these careless individuals and ensured that our client will be able to receive future medical treatment which will improve his quality of life.”•