Fortunately, it’s a new year and hopefully Covid will step back from its profound societal impact. Here at Clark and Steinhorn, LLC, we put away on behalf of our wonderful customers and, as a result, our thoughts focus on resolving or reviewing their cases in 2021.
Unfortunately, the pandemic continues to create havoc in the legal system, which is not helping. Throughout Allan’s time and my career, the insurance industry has steadily undermined the value of cases to the point where the usual cases are worth 1/3 of what they were 25 years ago.
Covid has taken this to a new low. The current world of personal injury is often made up of insurance companies making deals that are not meant to be fair to victims, and we have often shrugged, filed lawsuits, forcing insurance companies to either offer fairer deals or a risk test perform.
We excel at the trial, and while this can be stressful for our clients, the reward is a fair judgment from a jury of peers. There are some litigation delays instead of reaching an agreement, but the payout is fair compensation.
Unfortunately, Covid 19 has caused courts to waver between transitioning to reopening and closing again. This has resulted in litigation being delayed for practically a full year, with more to be postponed. This has encouraged some insurance carriers to make even less reasonable offers without facing a far greater judgment.
New cases filed in many Maryland district courts are not fully processed because the culpable defendant is required to have a trial in order to issue a summons, which the courts cannot currently provide. This is not a criticism of the courts, which are in a totally untenable position, but the issues that have hit injury cases in 2020 could get worse.
In 2021, we therefore anticipate that case values will continue to decline, trials will be delayed, injured victims will continue to be concerned about getting the medical care they need, and that semi-normality may gradually be reached again in the second half of the year.