Articles Posted in Delaware

Most jurisdictions leave the judge’s discretion whether to admit photographs from a car accident for the purpose of demonstrating the extent of the injuries of the occupants of the car. In Davis v. Maute, 770 A.2d. 36 (Del. 2001), the Supreme Court of Delaware took a minority view, holding that a party in a car accident may not directly argue that the seriousness of the injuries from an auto accident correlates to the extent of the damage to the cars, unless there is testimony from an expert witness that makes a correlation.

Accordingly, lawyers in Delaware may not argue by implication what the lawyer could not argue indirectly and attempt to suggest that the lack of property damage reflects the minor injuries.

This is great for Delaware plaintiffs’ lawyers in car accident cases who have minor property damage and claim injuries. Still, our lawyers prefer the majority rule because if you have a serious injury/serious impact case, you want to get the pictures to the jury to show the severity of the injuries and the Davis v. Maute holding can backfire on plaintiffs.

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