Insurance Carriers in Maryland often are insistent on the filing of "Friendly Suits" to seek court approval of the settlement of personal injury and malpractice cases involving minors who are the victims. Is this required under Maryland law?
The short answer "No". There are statutory requirements associated with the endorsement of settlement checks to protect a minor's settlement proceeds and the endorsement effects the obligations of the financial institution where the money comes home to roost but no specific court approval is mandated to settle a child's case.
Is such approval desirable? Maybe yes and maybe no. If the approving judge has the time to understand the undelying facts and law their imprint may help protect the insurance company, its insureds and the guardians or parents of the minor victim. Such approval may or may not protect the child. For more see:http://www.maryland-law.com/library/laurel-maryland-attorney-on-injury-claims-for-children-.cfm