Is There A Limit On How Much I Can Recover In A Personal Injury Case ?
Maryland, through it legislature, has chosen to limit the amounts recoverable by those injured by the negligence of others.
Experienced Baltimore personal injury lawyers are all too aware that "in an action for personal injury, pain, suffering, inconvenience, physical impairment, disfigurement, loss of consortium, or other nonpecuniary injury..."and "[i]n an action for wrongful death, mental anguish, emotional pain and suffering, loss of society, companionship, comfort, protection, care, marital care, parental care, filial care, attention, advice, counsel, training, guidance, or education in which the cause of action arises on or after October 1, 1994, an award for noneconomic damages may not exceed $500,000. Note that "Noneconomic damages" do not include punitive damages. Punitive damages are discussed in a separate article. Discuss your claim with a Baltimore personal injury attorney to determine if you are entitled to punitive damages. A different calculation applies if there is more than one claimant in a wrongful death action, and in medical malpractice actions. The initial limitation has been increased and will continue to be increased by $15,000 on October 1 of each year. The new limit applies to injuries occurring between October 1 of that year and September 30 of the next year. For example: if you were injured between 10/1/2008 and 9/30/09, your maximum recovery would have be $710,000.00; if you were injured between 10/1/2009 and 9/30/10, your maximum recovery would be $725,000.00. For injuries that occur between 10/1/18 and September 30th of this year, the cap is $860,000.
Most injury claims resolve by settlement or verdict for a mere fraction of the upper limits. However, the application of cap has come as a monumental shock to those who are paralyzed, horribly maimed, or have lost a parent or spouse to the negligent acts of others.
That's not to say some individuals and families have not challenged the legality or constitutionality of the provision. They have, albeit unsuccessfully. In fact, Maryland's high court has systematically rejected all challenges to the cap, including the most recent one. I analyze, evaluate and develop a strategy for all my client on a complimentary basis during our initial meeting. Contact me today to arrange yours.
-This Article was updated by Eric Kirk on 2/21/19.