For a law firm that represents plaintiffs:
How is fault determined in an automobile accident?
Automobile accidents usually happen because a driver is negligent. This means that the driver operated his or her vehicle in an unsafe manner. Usually, auto accidents occur because a driver has been negligent, meaning that he or she has operated a vehicle in a careless and unsafe manner. Drivers must exercise "reasonable care" when driving, but "negligence" may occur if a driver is distracted while driving, such as talking on a cell phone or applying makeup, and many accidents are caused because a driver did not follow traffic laws, such as ignoring signals and speed limits. It is up to the injured party to prove that the other driver was negligent and that the other driver's negligence caused the injuries.What monetary damages am I entitled to if I am injured in a car accident?
Auto accident victims generally are entitled to recover damages for all losses and expenses they incur because of an accident. Such compensation may include recovery for:
• medical bills;
• lost wages, including overtime;
• pain and suffering;
• physical and/or mental disability;
• disfigurement and permanent scars;
• emotional trauma;
• loss of love and affection; and
• other incidental expenses related to the injury. How long do I have to file a lawsuit if I am injured in a car accident?
Statutes of limitations vary from state to state. In Maryland, if you are injured in an automobile accident, you have three years from the date of the accident or to file a claim.What are subrogation rights?
If your health insurance covers medical bills that were the result of an automobile accident and you subsequently recover damages from the at-fault driver, your health insurance company could be entitled to recover some or all of the amount it paid for your medical bills. It would be wise to discuss the issue of subrogation with an experienced accident attorney.Should I give at-fault driver's insurance adjuster a copy of my medical records?
No, you should never give your medical records to another driver's insurance company and you should not let the adjuster pressure you into doing so. Medical records are confidential and certain steps have to be taken in order to get your records released. It is advisable to consult an accident attorney before signing any releases or even making a statement to an insurance adjuster.Is automobile insurance mandatory in Maryland?
All licensed drivers in Maryland are required by law to carry a minimum of $20,000 bodily injury liability per person, $40,000 bodily injury per accident if multiple persons are involved, and $15,000 property damage liability coverage. My car was stolen and it was involved in an auto accident; am I responsible to the injured person?
Generally, a defendant is responsible only for those accidents and injuries which are proximately caused by his or her negligence. When a criminal act, such as stealing an automobile, occurs, this supersedes a defendant's negligence. Where the automobile owner has taken reasonable measures to avoid an intervening cause, such as a criminal act, and the automobile was stolen absent negligence on the part of the owner, the car owner is not proximate cause of plaintiff's injuries or damages.What happens if I am uninsured and involved in an auto accident?
The purpose of uninsured motorist coverage provides compensation to an insured for bodily injury or wrongful death damages inflicted by the negligence of another uninsured motorist. If the injured party is covered under uninsured motorist coverage, any damages or injuries he or she sustained will be covered. However, the injured party's insurance company may pursue damages against the at-fault driver.Who is an expert witness and how does having expert witnesses help my case?
A witness who is qualified as an expert because of his or her knowledge, skill, experience, training, or education may testify to an opinion concerning scientific, technical, or other specialized knowledge. If the expert's knowledge helps the judge or jury to understand the evidence or to resolve a fact in issue, they can always be helpful to the case. Expert opinions are admitted only when if the expert witness establishes to possess special knowledge as to the very matter on which the witness offers to give an opinion.Resource Links
District Court of Maryland: http://www.courts.state.md.us/district/selfhelp/traffic.html
Maryland Department of Transportation –State Highway Administration Safety Information: http://www.sha.state.md.us/safety/safety.asp
Maryland Motor Vehicle Association: http://mva.state.md.us/