Personal Injury Attorney John P. Burns Obtains $249,000 Settlement for School Crossing Guard

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Orange County Superior Court Judge approves $249,000 settlement for school crossing guard injured when struck by a car on March 15. 2011.

Marie has suffered serious injuries and this settlement will help her obtain the continuing medical and pain management treatment she needs without the added costs and stress of a trial.

At a March 7, 2014 Mandatory Settlement Conference Hearing, as shown in the court transcript, a judge approved a $249,000 settlement for 81-year-old school crossing guard Marie Dipilla, who sustained hip, back and leg injuries when struck by motorist Yadir Ramirez while Dipilla was working as a school crossing guard in 2011. (Orange County Superior Court Case No. 30-2013-00635929)

According to case records, a mediation was held on February 28, 2014, approximately one week before the court hearing, with retired Orange County Superior Court judge William Sheffield. According to the mediation briefs and exhibits, Attorney John P. Burns submitted to Judge Sheffield the Police Traffic Collision report, showing that the defendant driver drove into a school crossing intersection and hit Dipilla with the right front fender of his car which caused Dipilla to fall on her right side. Attorney Burns also submitted the hospital emergency room report, as well as numerous other medical records and bills, showing medical treatment for Dipilla’s right hip, sacroiliac and leg.

A medical report from Dipilla’s treating Neurosurgeon, which was also submitted by attorney Burns to Judge Sheffield, indicated that driver Ramirez caused Dipilla severe injuries to Dipilla’s low back, sacroiliac and right hip. The report further said that the impact had caused Dipilla severe pain and continuing disability.

The mediation records show that the insurance company offered only $80,000 to settle and that offer was declined by attorney Burns and his client.

According to Attorney, John P. Burns, Dipilla’s attorney: “Unfortunately, case documents showed that, although defendant Ramirez had an automobile liability policy of $250,000, he had no other assets to pay a judgment in excess of that amount. So even if a judgment was obtained against the driver for more than $250,000 there would be no money to pay it.”

At the March 7, 2014 Mandatory Settlement Conference in Dept. 22 of the Orange County Superior Court, the insurance company for driver Ramirez offered $249,000 to settle the case, as shown by the court transcript of the hearing. The transcript also shows that Dipilla agreed to the settlement amount and attorney Burns and Dipilla put the settlement on the court record before the judge.

Also according to attorney Burns: “I am extremely pleased that the insurance company finally agreed to pay. Under the circumstances, it was financially a good decision for Marie to accept the $249,000. Marie has suffered serious injuries and this settlement will help her obtain the continuing medical and pain management treatment she needs without the added costs and stress of a trial.”

About the Law Offices of John P. Burns

The Law Offices of John P. Burns represents people who have been injured in motor vehicle and pedestrian accidents, major airplane and train crashes, by dangerous products and injuries from dangerous premises. Attorney Burns has won numerous jury trials and has special expertise in motor vehicle accident cases involving spinal and related injuries.

Mr. Burns is the author of a leading book on the motor vehicle accidents entitled 9 Mistakes that can ruin Your California Vehicle Accident Case. For additional information please call 949-496-7000 or visit for a free consultation. The Law Offices of John P, Burns is located in San Juan Capistrano, CA.

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