Our head-on collision lawyers handle severe injury and wrongful death car and truck accident lawsuits. Our attorneys are based in Maryland but we handle head-on accidents in all 50 states when the injuries are grave injury or death.
When two vehicles collide head-on, their combined speeds drastically increase the impact force of a crash. Two cars traveling at just 40 mph down a highway who collide head-on suddenly experience forces as if they had been traveling 80 mph. This makes frontal accidents particularly dangerous.
Head-on accidents are dangerous for another reason besides sheer velocity. In these types of accidents, cars typically come to a complete stop immediately. This abrupt change in velocity, which accident reconstructionists term delta-V, is severe in this kind of accident.
Our head-on collision attorneys are familiar with jury awards and settlement compensation amounts for the injuries that commonly result from head-on accidents such as traumatic brain injuries, back and neck injuries, paralysis, and multiple broken bones.
Head-on collision cases are often easier to prove than other types of car accident cases because there is usually plenty of physical evidence at the scene. But you have to marshal all of the evidence quickly and in the right way. Our lawyers consider skid marks, breaking times, human error, black boxes, and other factors that can prove with a high degree of certainty the cause of an accident.
Our experts take this data and compile reports, diagrams, and animations so that we can show a jury just how a crash must have happened. As a result, our cases will likely settle long before trial. Our law firm has never lost a head-on vehicle crash claim.
Proving the other driver's responsibility in a head-on car collision requires two things in Maryland. First, you must prove that the at-fault driver came out of their lane and into yours. In a contributory negligence state like Maryland, you also need to establish that you were in your established lane at the time of the crash. Under Maryland law, if both drivers are partially responsible, even if unequally at fault, neither party can recover.
As our lawyers said above, it is critical in a head-on wreck to immediately gather evidence after the crash. The location of the vehicle at the time of the crash is not always obvious after the crash because the cars rarely land where the impact occurred.
The median compensation award in head-on collisions nationally is just north of $30,000. T
This is an incredibly misleading statistic. A quarter of the cases in the national study were for back strains. This must mean they factored in a great deal of parking lot accident cases where there is little property damage.
Most of the head-on vehicle crash cases we see involve death or a severe injury and these are almost invariably six and seven-figure cases (assuming adequate insurance coverage). Additionally, most cases head-on crash cases will settle before trial.
Often, the only thing that keeps the settlement value of these cases down is the insurance policies. Sometimes, the most important work we do in these cases is finding applicable insurance that can cover the loss in unexpected places.
The highest verdict our law firm has obtained for a client in a head-on car accident was $8 million.
Below are jury payouts and settlement compensation amounts in head-on car accident lawsuits.
Do these sample head-on accident stories and outcomes allow you to calculate a settlement amount for your claim. They do not. But these examples are instructive in understanding the relative range of compensation.
Keep in mind that if you are trying to drill down on a range of settlement compensation amounts, you are probably better served looking at the type of injury. Also, when you are trying to access how much your case is worth from a pre-trial settlement perspective, the car insurance company you are dealing with will have a huge impact on the amount of your settlement offer.
- 2022, Georgia: $56,250 Verdict A 45-year-old man was struck head-on. He suffered bilateral meniscus tears, a head contusion, and bilateral wrist bruises. The man sustained residual knee swelling. He could no longer work as a carpenter. The man alleged negligence against the at-fault driver. He claimed he failed to take evasive action and recklessly operated his vehicle. The jury awarded $56,250.
- 2021, Kentucky: $10,000,000 Verdict A man was struck head-on by a truck. He died at the scene. The man’s family alleged negligence against the truck driver. They claimed he negligently drove while suffering from chronic fatigue. The family received $10,000,000.
- 2021, Michigan: $1,250,000 Verdict A 60-something man was struck head-on. He fractured his hip, right knee, right fibula, sternum, and sacral disc. The man underwent multiple surgeries to address his fractures. He also underwent physical therapy. The man alleged negligence against the at-fault driver. He claimed he failed to stay in his travel lane. The jury awarded $1,250,000.
- 2021, Washington: $100,000 Arbitration Award A 41-year-old man was struck head-on. He suffered a fractured and sprained right wrist, a triquetral bone fracture, headaches, a head laceration, and spinal pain. The man alleged negligence against the at-fault driver. He claimed he fell asleep while behind the wheel. Following arbitration, the man received $100,000.
- 2021, Georgia: $26,141,628 Verdict A 19-year-old man was struck head-on by a drunk driver. He died at the scene. The man’s family alleged negligence against the at-fault driver. They claimed she drove while drunk and was on her phone while driving. The jury awarded $26,141,628.
- 2020, Idaho: $5,000,000 Settlement An intoxicated driver fatally struck a 71-year-old woman head-on. Compounding this tragedy, the woman's family claimed in their lawsuit the at-fault driver was drunk. He was driving his employer's truck. This changed the game in terms of how much insurance was available to satisfy any settlement or verdict. This case settled for $5,000,000.
- 2020, Pennsylvania: $42,500 Settlement A 14-year-old passenger was struck head-on by an uninsured driver. She suffered a finger fracture. Her father's insurer, Donegal, agreed to a $42,500 settlement.
- 2020, Washington: $191,863 Arbitration Award An intoxicated driver struck a 66-year-old woman head-on. The woman suffered an L2 fracture, a concussion, post-concussion syndrome, chest and pelvic hematomas, and soft-tissue injuries. She settled with the other driver for his $100,000 policy limit. The woman then filed suit against her UIM insurer, State Farm. Following arbitration, she received a $71,678 award. The woman also received $1,753 in costs and $18,432 in a PIP waiver. Her net award was $191,863.
- 2020, Georgia: $120,000 Verdict A woman was struck head-on. She suffered severe and permanent injuries. The woman alleged that the other driver's negligence caused her injuries. She claimed she negligently turned left and failed to control her vehicle. A jury awarded her a $120,000 verdict.
- 2020, New York: $25,000 Settlement A woman was struck head-on. Her grandson sustained a left clavicle fracture and bulging discs. The boy's mother settled with the other driver's insurer for $15,000 and the woman's UIM carrier for $10,000. Does this settlement seem small? It sure does. It may be that parties to the crash had small insurance policies. (New York's minimum coverage is $25,000 but the at-fault driver in this collision was likely an out-of-state driver.)
- 2019, Iowa: $200,000 Verdict A man was struck head-on. He suffered pain in his neck, shoulder, and chest and depression. The man alleged that the other driver's negligence caused his injuries. He claimed she drove on the wrong side of the road and failed to control her vehicle. The woman disputed the man's injury claims. She argued that his injuries were pre-existing. The jury ruled in the man's favor and awarded $200,000.
- 2019, Washington: $37,216 Verdict A 26-year-old man was struck head-on. He suffered a concussion and soft-tissue injuries to his neck, back, and knee. The man claimed the other driver's negligence caused his injuries. A jury awarded him $37,216.
- 2019, Alabama: $75,000 Settlement A minor girl was struck head-on by an underinsured driver. She suffered severe injuries. Her father alleged that the underinsured driver's negligence caused her injuries. He also brought a UIM claim against his insurer, State Farm. This case settled for $75,000.
- 2019, Washington: $2,350,000 Settlement A 17-year-old girl was driving her Mitsubishi. Another driver her head-on after falling asleep. The girl died from her injuries three days later. Her family alleged that the other driver's negligent driving led to her death. They also claimed negligence against Mitsubishi because its defective airbags failed to deploy. Mitsubishi denied liability, arguing that the airbag light was on for three hours before the collision. The case settled for $2,350,000.
- 2019, New York: $250,000 Settlement A man is using a cellphone while operating his vehicle. He crosses over the center lane and strikes the plaintiff’s car head-on. The plaintiff, a 27-year-old woman, breaks her foot, ankle, and leg in the accident. Once she arrived at the hospital, surgeons install a rod in her leg to repair the fractures. She requires additional surgery to remove the rod and extensive physical therapy. She misses work for more than a year due to her injuries and continues to suffer from pain and physical limitations. The parties negotiate a settlement before the matter goes to trial. The defendant’s insurance, State Farm, provides for a $250,000 award.
- 2017, Pennsylvania: $130,000 Verdict The plaintiff, a 42-year-old woman, is driving on a two-way road. As she approaches an intersection, the driver in front of her makes a hasty left turn, cutting off a car traveling in the opposite direction. The car swerves into the plaintiff’s lane of travel, resulting in a head-on collision. She spends four days in the hospital. The woman’s injuries from the crash include two herniated discs and radiculopathy which are treated with physical therapy for almost a year. She still experiences pain and a limited range of motion. She claims that her injuries prevented her from running her business, which eventually had to be closed. After a day-long trial, a jury awards the plaintiff $65,000 for past pain and suffering and another $65,000 for future pain and suffering.
- 2014, Maryland: $96,789 Verdict A 21-year-old waiter files a lawsuit after being severely injured in a head-on collision after the at-fault driver crossed the center line. After being transported to the hospital by ambulance, the plaintiff is diagnosed with a comminuted ankle fracture and is admitted to the hospital for four days while he undergoes an internal fixation with the placement of two screws. The plaintiff is left with a permanent limp and is unable to continue working as a waiter. At trial, the plaintiff claims $34,188.69 in medical expenses and $12,600 in lost wages. A Montgomery County jury awards $50,000 in pain and suffering as well as the plaintiff's lost wages and medicals for a total of $96,789.
- 2013, Maryland: $28,000 Verdict A 50-year-old nursing assistant is injured when she is involved in a near head-on collision. She sustains soft tissue cervical and lumbar injuries requiring physical therapy. The plaintiff files suit against the at-fault driver claiming he failed to maintain his lane of travel and veered across the centerline. In addition to denying liability, the defendant claims it is the plaintiff who veered across the centerline. The plaintiff’s District Court claim is transferred to the higher Circuit Court by the defense counsel. The plaintiff claims $9,683 in past medicals and $2,040 in past lost wages. A Montgomery County jury awards $20,000 which includes the plaintiff's past medicals and lost wages, with an additional $8,277 for past pain and suffering.
- 2012, Maryland: $415,000 Verdict A 16-year-old competitive lacrosse player is severely injured when a work van crosses the center line and strikes her head-on. She suffers tibia and fibula fractures rendering her unable to play lacrosse and forcing her to lose out on a college scholarship. She files suit after undergoing open reduction and internal fixation with rods. Though liability is not an issue, the defendants dispute the extent of the plaintiff's injuries and contend she made a good recovery and had resumed recreational athletic activities. A Baltimore County jury awards the young girl a compensation payout of $415,000.
- 2012, Maryland: $950,000 Settlement A driver is struck head-on by a vehicle that crosses the centerline, causing her to suffer humerus, hip, and thoracic spine fractures. She undergoes numerous surgeries, resulting in open reduction with the insertion of metal implants to repair the humerus fracture and total right hip arthroplasty. She is left with permanent scarring on her right leg and arm. She files a suit in Charles County claiming Defendant failed to maintain his lane of travel, but the parties reach a settlement before trial. She receives $600,000 in past medicals, $300,000 in future medical expenses, $25,000 in past lost wages, and $25,000 for future wages.
If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a head-on crash, this can be a trying time for your family. Reach out and get the help you need from our experienced attorneys. Our head-on collision lawyers are here to assist you through this process. Call our law firm today at (800) 553-8082 or contact us online. Our lawyers handle only serious injury and wrongful death claims.