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A recent California Supreme Court ruling changes the amount of money that a car accident victim can claim from a lawsuit. In the past, car accident victims could sue the wrongdoer and be awarded a settlement for the total cost of the treatment and medical expenses.

The holding came out of a case that was initially filed in Southern California. A woman was hit by a meat truck and sustained severe injuries to her spine. As a result, she had to undergo expensive surgery and get treatment for her recovery. An appeals court awarded her the full amount for the hospital bills after she filed a lawsuit against the owner of the meat truck. But the dispute was whether she should be awarded the full amount or the amount that her insurance company paid.

In this woman's case, her insurer had made a deal with the hospital, paying less than a third of the actual cost of the surgery and treatment. But after the appeals court ruled that she should be awarded the full amount and not the discounted amount, the meat company appealed.

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