Recently, in the District Court of Baltimore County, Associate Derrick Dye argued that the Plaintiff’s alleged “specials” of over $5,000.00 were excessive and unreasonable, as the Plaintiff only received 11 physical therapy treatments. Although the liability of the Defendant was stipulated, Mr. Dye argued that the fees charged of over $400.00 for each physical therapy visit, and the 11 visits themselves, were excessive and unreasonable for a very minor “fender-bender” in a shopping center parking lot that resulted in no property damage to either vehicle. Although the Plaintiff’s pre-trial settlement demand was $23,500.00, a Baltimore County Judge awarded the Plaintiff only $1,500.00 in “specials,” which was less than 1/3 of the physical therapy bill.
The reasonableness of the medical fees and costs and the necessity of the treatment in a given case can almost always be evaluated by conducting a “common sense” assessment at its outset. Competent defense counsel must always keep in mind that, regardless of the amount for which a plaintiff sues, if the medical fees and costs seem excessive and unreasonable, they probably are!
Article contributed by James Buck