Metro Verdicts Monthly graph this month is the median verdict and settlement value of shoulder surgery lawsuits that have gone to trial over the last 23 years. The average settlement/verdict in Washington D.C. is $59,500. Maryland is less than half that: $42,636. The average settlement/verdict in a shoulder surgery case in Virginia is $60,000.
Our law firm has handled many shoulder surgery cases from the trauma of a car or truck accident. These statistics are not very helpful in figuring out the settlement value of your shoulder injury case. Why? Because the settlements and verdicts in these cases are all over the map. An “average” shoulder injury verdict tells you nothing about your case. Also, liability and insurance matter. So if it is a medical malpractice or premises liability case with iffy liability, you can’t compare that to a rear-end motorcycle accident case.
Shoulder Settlements Case Results
Here are some sample settlements and verdicts in shoulder surgery cases. This is not a random sample. This is what good shoulder surgery cases look like. One of the tricky things about this analysis — and another reason past cases cannot prevent future outcomes — is that a car accident that requires shoulder surgery does not happen in a vacuum. Usually, other injuries occur too so slicing them out from the settlement or verdict is sometimes hard to do.
- Francis v. Ebrahimi (New York 2020) $305,000: Passenger in a motor vehicle crash sustained significant shoulder injuries, because of a collision with the defendant’s vehicle. They include tears to her right shoulder rotator cuff and glenoid labrum. For nine months, she underwent physical therapy. She would then undergo arthroscopic surgery on her right shoulder, which included the removal of damaged tissue. She underwent ten more months of physical therapy. She claimed a permanent injury. Her shoulder remains painful from the accident and has a limited range of motion. Her injuries have also hurt her ability to do basic tasks such as bathing, cooking, or cleaning. Doctors warned that she may sustain residual arthritis.
- Roofer v. General Contractor (New York 2020) $5,350,000: This is a construction accident case that led to a very large jury verdict. While working on an abandoned home, the roofer sustained multiple injuries to his dominant arm after falling on a dumpster. The injured sustained a mangled arm and major blood vessel damage to the elbow. He also sustained blood vessel rupture and tendon tears. He would undergo several unsuccessful surgeries to his arm, which would ultimately be amputated from above-the-elbow. He would be prescribed hydrocodone for pain. He also sustained rotator cuff tendonitis in his right shoulder. The case would settle for $5,350,000.
- Tithof v. Oakley Family Tavern (Michigan 2020) $10,000: Patron sustained head, shoulder, and neck injuries because of an altercation at a restaurant with the owner. He initially called 911 after being assaulted. Law enforcement took photos of his injuries. He did not visit the hospital that night. He visited the hospital a few days later. The health care providers diagnosed a head injury, specifically a concussion and post-concussion syndrome. He also sustained a cervical strain, rotator cuff tears, post-traumatic stress disorder, and the exacerbation of his pre-existing arthritis. He underwent surgery on his shoulder to repair the rotator cuff. He also received four corticosteroid injections into his spine. The man also claimed that he would need total reverse shoulder replacement surgery, and continued physical therapy and psychological treatment. The jury verdict was $10,000 in damages which did not even cover his medical bills. (I’m surprised a lawyer took this case.)
- Hall v. Landstar Ranger (Louisiana 2020) $4,375,017: This a truck accident case. A man sustained shoulder, spine, hand, and brain injuries after a truck driver rear-ended his vehicle. He was knocked out unconscious. (Rarely happens with a rear-end collision. But this is a large truck crash.) When responders arrived 20 minutes later, he remained unconscious. He arrived at the emergency room, where he was treated for a concussion and a scalp laceration. He would later have surgeries performed on his shoulder, thumb, and knee. (Huge medical bills, obviously.) His medical team recommended that he undergo surgery on his spine. The jury verdict was a whopping $4.3 million. Obviously, this man had a traumatic brain injury. So the shoulder injury was one of many serious injuries that contributed to this jury verdict.
- Plaintiff v. City of New York (New York 2020) $3,449,990: Man sustained a lumbar and cervical injury and shoulder injuries in an automobile accident. A police officer collided into his vehicle. Ambulance transported man to the hospital, where he underwent X-rays and other treatments. He sustained multiple disc herniations and a rotator cuff tear. The man underwent physical therapy and pain management for about six years. He would later undergo right shoulder surgery to remove damaged tissue and cartilage. Because of his injuries, he has stopped working and requires lifelong medical care. The case settled for $3,449,990.
- Plaintiff v. Defendant Premise Owner (New York 2020) $2,195,000: An appliance installer fell through a ground floor opening, sustaining multiple injuries, while on the job. He sustained multiple injuries, including his brachial plexus and several fractures throughout his body, including wrist fractures which were a big part of this case. This construction worker would undergo multiple forms of treatment such as physical therapy and painkillers. He also underwent nerve-transplant surgery to treat his brachial plexus. He can no longer work as an appliance installer, but now works as a cook. The confidential settlement totaled $2,195,000.
- Employee v. Defendant Company (New Jersey 2020) $1,025,000: Female managerial employee of a financial consulting company slipped and fell on a wet floor, injuring her left shoulder and back. She contended that the defendant company that was hired by her employer negligently managed the cafeteria premises. A woman underwent cervical fusion after conservative therapy and pain management was not adequate treatment. The injured worker also underwent arthroscopic surgery to repair her left shoulder tears. The total confidential settlement with the insurance company in this premise liability case amounted to $1,025,000.
- Bravo v. Antkowiak (New York 2020) $3,000,000: Landscaper sustained multiple injuries after being side-swiped by the defendant’s tractor-trailer. Besides multiple disc herniations, he sustained a right shoulder rotator cuff tear. He would undergo multiple surgeries including multiple diskectomies and arthroscopic surgery on his right shoulder. The man claimed that his injuries affect his ability to perform physical labor. Parties settled for $3,000,000 prior to trial. (Surprising this was not a confidential settlement.)
- Farley v. State Farm (Florida 2020) $88,225: The plaintiff was involved in a multi-car motor vehicle accident. She sustained a strain in her cervical ligament and a tear in her labrum in the automobile accident. These injuries were treated with injections. When that failed, the plaintiff got shoulder surgery. The insurance company, State Farm, did not offer the insurance policy limits so the case went to trial.