Aberdeen, MD Personal Injury Lawyer
Injuries happen all the time. Unfortunately, some injuries are very serious and result in hefty medical bills due to long hospital stays, emergency medical procedures, and lengthy recovery periods. To add another layer of difficulty, you may suspect that an injury was caused because someone else was not paying enough attention or was careless.
If you believe that you were injured because someone else was negligent, our lawyers can help you. We know how to handle the Maryland court system and effectively fight for you to get the financial compensation and justice you need after a serious injury.
To get a free, zero-obligation review of your case, call Rice, Murtha & Psoras at (410) 694-7291 and speak with our personal injury lawyers.
Who Can You Sue in an Aberdeen, MD Personal Injury Lawsuit?
The nature of your injuries and the specific causes of your accident will determine who you can and should sue in a personal injury lawsuit. You can only get damages for parties that actually caused your injuries, so taking someone to court who is not responsible for hurting you is a waste of time. Accordingly, it is very important for you and our personal injury lawyers to figure out who caused your injuries so that you bring the right parties to court. We will go into some of the potential defendants of a personal injury lawsuit in this section.
Many personal injury claims are the result of motor vehicle accidents. Cars, trucks, buses, and other kinds of motor vehicles can easily injure other drivers or pedestrians if the driver is careless. If a driver speeds, runs a red light, drives drunk, or otherwise violates a traffic rule, they can be considered negligent and held accountable for your injuries under the law.
If you get injured on someone else’s property, there are some circumstances where you will be able to sue them.
Property owners must make sure their properties are safe for those who enter and use them for various purposes. The area of law that covers this is called “premises liability.” For example, owners of hardware stores and supermarkets have to warn customers of dangerous conditions, such as slippery surfaces, with “wet floor” signs. If the owner does not do that and you slip and get hurt, it could be considered negligence on the part of the property owner.
In many instances, you can sue someone’s employer if they injure you while they are doing something related to their job. Often, the employee who actually does the injuring will be something called “judgment proof.” This means that, even if you win your lawsuit, they do not have enough capital to pay you your damages, and you would be left wanting after you were injured. Courts recognize this and, therefore, allow plaintiffs to sue employers through a principal called “respondeat superior” under certain circumstances.
The catch is that the employee must be doing something related to their job in order for liability to “stick” to the employer. For example, if a plumber hits you with their van on the way to fix someone’s sink, you can sue their employer because driving to the house they are going to work on is a work-related activity. On the other hand, if that same plumber has clocked out for the day and is driving home when the accident happens, liability may not attach to the employer because driving home is not sufficiently related to their job.
In some circumstances, there is a chance that you should sue a specific government entity. For example, state and local governments are often responsible for road maintenance, so if you were injured in a car accident because of a pothole or faulty guardrail, you may be able to file a claim against the relevant government entity.
There are special rules for suing government entities that our lawyers need to follow. There is a concept called “sovereign immunity,” which means that governments must consent to being sued in court. Naturally, no sane person would consent to be sued if given the choice, so many states, including Maryland, have waived sovereign immunity under many circumstances. Under Md. Code, State Gov’t Art., §12–104, sovereign immunity is not a defense for tort/personal injury actions. If you are using a federal government entity for, say, an accident at or around the Aberdeen Proving Grounds, there may be other considerations involved, so you should speak with our personal injury lawyers about your case.
Damages in Aberdeen, MD Personal Injury Lawsuits
The ultimate goal of any personal injury lawsuit is to get damages from the defendant as compensation for your injuries. While you get awarded damages as a lump sum, our lawyers may break down the amounts into categories in your complaint to better explain the source of damages to the court. The three primary categories of damages in personal injury lawsuits are economic damages, non-economic damages, and punitive damages.
Economic damages come from things that have a quickly provable economic value. Things like hospital bills and the cost of long-term care will fall under this category. You can also claim economic damages for lost pay from work when you were recovering or from lost opportunity to earn future income.
Non-economic damages are less concrete than economic damages. This category covers things like physical pain or mental anguish. You will have to argue the value of these damages in court with the help of our personal injury lawyers.
Punitive damages are different in that they are not based on your condition but on the behavior of the defendant. They are only awarded when the defendant has done something especially bad, such as intentionally trying to do you harm instead of merely being careless/negligent. You have to ask for punitive damages in your initial filing of the lawsuit, so you should speak about it with our lawyers if you are seeking them.
Call Our Aberdeen, MD Personal Injury Lawyers Today
Call (410) 694-7291 and speak to Rice, Murtha & Psoras’s personal injury lawyers today about your case.