Accident and injury is defined as an accident that causes physical or mental injury and damage to an individual. The state of Maryland allows an individual to file a claim against the person/party that are believed to have caused the accident.
Accidents that can be filed under accident and injury claims include:
- Vehicle Accidents (cars, trucks)
- Transportation accidents (trains, planes, boats)
- Medical Malpractice (During surgery or a misdiagnosis)
- Slip and Fall
- Defective Products (machinery, drugs, seat belts etc.)
The state of Maryland has a statute of limitations on filing Accident and Injury claims. This means that there is a specific time frame in which a person is allowed to file the claim. In Maryland, the statute of limitations on Accident and Injury claims is within 3 years from the date the incident occurred. If a person decided to file a claim against Maryland’s state government, the statute of limitations is within 1 year to file a formal claim and within 3 years to file a lawsuit.
Maryland is a ‘fault’ state. This means that the person/party found guilty of causing the accident is responsible to pay any compensation ordered by the court to the plaintiff. The defendant and the plaintiff may sit through settlement negotiations prior to trial and attempt to reach an agreement and avoid going through a trial. If both parties reach an agreement, the case is settled and there is no need for a trial. However, if the parties cannot reach an agreement, the case is taken to trial and a judge will decide whether or not the defendant is guilty and how much compensation is to be paid.
Compensation is paid to cover damages in an accident including but not limited to:
- Medical Expenses (cost of any treatment/care required because of the accident)
- Damage to Property
- Damage to income (including overtime and future incomes that can no longer be obtained)
- Physical Disability
- Mental Disability
- Emotional Trauma
- Pain and Suffering
- Loss of Enjoyment
For a defendant to be found guilty, there must be solid proof that they were the sole cause of the accident. This is done by proving the four elements of negligence.
- Duty: the defendant has a duty or responsibility to act in a certain way
- Breach of Duty: the defendant fails to properly carry out their duty
- Causation: Connection between the defendant’s breach of duty and injuries caused in the accident
- Damages: the victim suffers injuries and losses
If all four elements can be applied in the argument against the defendant, then it can be proved that the defendant was negligent and caused the accident. On the other hand, if the court discovers that the plaintiff can also be held responsible for the occurrence of the accident, they will not be entitled to any compensation even if the percentage of responsibility was as small as 1%. This law is known as “contributory negligence” and the state of Maryland is one of only 5 states that recognises this law.
If you need a Maryland Accident Lawyer to help you with your Accident case in Maryland, call us at 888-437-7747. Our Maryland Accident Attorneys can help you.