What is the Average Car Accident Settlement in Maryland?
What is the average car accident settlement? That is the question for most accident victims. (Ultimately, the question is even more thin sliced: how much money will I actually get?) Surprisingly, there is little data available (our accident lawyers looked everywhere) and very little information in general. But there is older verdict data available that gives some lens as to what the numbers hold, both in Maryland and around the country.
The 2005 Civil Justice Survey of State Courts (older data, but that is the most recent our accident lawyers located) found that of the 14,170 bench and jury trials that plaintiffs won in 2005, less than 5 percent received damages more than $1 million. The median award for all 2005 civil trials in which damages were awarded, was $28,000. The picture for car accident cases – statistically – is even more bleak. The most common trial cases in 2005 were motor vehicle accidents, car accident cases being the bulk of these accident lawsuits. These accident claims made up 35 percent of all civil trials in 2005. The median verdict in these accident lawsuits was $15,000.
Jury Verdict Research just published a new Maryland specific study on the median compensation awards – as opposed to average settlement which is a different animal – for car, truck and motorcycle accidents. In the Maryland accident lawsuits that went to trial, the median recovery was $11,328.
That’s Not Good News: What Is the Good News?
Okay, those numbers are depressing and hard to explain. Let’s take a shot anyway. Most car accident cases – which make up a ton of the claims – are simply not good cases. The are soft tissue injury cases where the victim really was not badly hurt. Our lawyers are, frankly, not getting anywhere near these cases. In 1% of the Maryland accident lawsuits that went to verdict, the jury awarded more than $500,000. So there are big cases out there but the junk really drags down the average… a lot.
This data on the average verdict in Maryland accident cases involving motor vehicles is interesting but, ultimately, useless. As we have written elsewhere, Maryland’s jury verdicts are grossly distorted by the Maryland accident lawyers hired by the insurance companies who “bump up” what should be small court claims to Circuit Court. In other words, if an auto accident lawyer in Maryland files on small claim for more than $10,000 but less than $30,000 (which is the new District Court maximum), the insurance company’s accident lawyers may remove the case to Circuit Court, which generally requires a jury trial and almost invariably leads to greater expenses from both parties. As a result, juries hear personal injury cases – particularly in Baltimore accident cases for a host of reasons – that are soft tissue, whiplash injuries that should not be heard by a jury. This makes data of median or average Maryland car accident verdicts somewhat useless.
The take home message from that last paragraph – which is probably confusing for anyone who is not a Maryland auto accident lawyer – is that if you have a serious injury car accident claim and these numbers discourage you, relax. This is not the average recovery at trial for our Maryland car accident lawyers, and serious accident claims are weighed less heavily in these numbers which are median – not average – verdict statistics. Below we have provided more detailed information that might be far more useful for you than what the average car accident settlement is in Maryland or anywhere else in the United States.
One more statistic for you: Plaintiffs won 74% of Maryland accident lawsuits that went to trial in motor vehicle cases. Again, this is not our experience. We don’t keep comprehensive verdict statistics but we have only lost a few plaintiffs’ cases in the nearly 100 total lawyer years our attorneys have been practicing law.
If you have other questions or need a Maryland accident lawyer, our Maryland accident law firm handles, among other things, serious injury car accidents involving such injuries as broken or fractured legs, both in Maryland and throughout the country. If you or a loved one has suffered a serious leg injury as the result of the negligence of someone else, call our accident lawyers at 800-553-8082 or get no obligation Internet consultation with a Maryland accident lawyer.
Sample Demand Letters
- Sample Demand Letter #1 (example of an accident demand letter)
- Sample Demand Letter #2 (another example accident demand letter)
Handling Your Car Accident Case Without a Lawyer
- Handling Your Own Accident Injury Claim (information and tips)
- Handling Your Own Property Damage Case in Maryland (information and tips)
- Getting a Rental Car (information and the path ahead of you)
- If you Do Need a Lawyer: Why Choose Us?
Values of Specific Injuries
- More Information of Valuing Accident Case (more extended overview of how to value claims)
- Ankle Fracture Settlements and Verdicts in Maryland (median values)
- Fracture and Broken Leg Verdicts (median and average verdicts)
- Cancer Misdiagnosis Verdicts (average verdicts in failure to diagnose cancer cases)
- Rotator Cuff Settlements and Verdicts in Maryland. (median values)
- Rotator Cuff Settlement and Verdicts (data showing rise in rotator cuff values)
- Maryland Nursing Home Lawsuits (verdicts in Maryland)
- Knee Injury Verdicts (median and average verdict data on knee injury cases)
- Fractured Shoulder Verdicts and Settlements in Maryland (median values)
- Legal Malpractice (verdicts and settlements in Maryland, Washington, D.C, and Virginia)
- Loss of an Eye (verdicts and settlements in Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C.)
- Vertebrae Fractures (median values)
- Vertebrae Fractures (case values)
- Facial Scarring (average value)
- Wrongful Death Settlements and Verdicts in Maryland (average wrongful death values in Maryland fatal injury cases)
- Wrongful Death Verdict Values for Female Decedents (average and median wrongful death values for women)
- Wrongful Death Jury Awards for Minors (data showing disparity between female and male wrongful death verdict in children)
- Fractured Hip (Maryland, Washington, D.C. and Virginia)
- Value of Herniated Disc Cases (Maryland, Washington D.C. and Virginia)
- Value of Chest and Breast Injury Cases (average value and how the accident typically occur)
- Foot Injury Verdicts Nationally(median values)
- Foot Injury Verdicts Nationally #2 (including amputated toe cases)
- Amputated Toe Cases (national verdict statistics)
Verdict and Settlement Values Generally or by Type of Injury Case
- Valuing Truck Accident Cases (data on truck accident settlement and verdicts)
- Value of Car Accident Cases (average car accident settlements)
- Soft Tissue Injury Settlements (verdict data and commentary)
- Comparison of Verdicts Throughout the United States (jurisdictional comparisons)
- Head on Collisions (verdicts for head on motorcycle, truck, and auto accident injury cases)
- Bike and Motorcycle Accidents (mean and median values)