If you were injured due to the negligence of another person, filing a claim with their insurance company may be one of your best options to receive compensation. However, if a person has the bare minimum insurance coverage available, this can make it difficult or impossible to recover the costs of medical bills and other expenses. Fortunately, you may be able to file a lawsuit to recover what you cannot recover in an insurance claim. If you are considering filing a lawsuit against a negligent person that injured you, consult with an experienced Baltimore personal injury lawyer today. The Law Offices of Randolph Rice is here to help you pursue the compensation you need after sustaining a serious injury. Personal injury attorney Randolph Rice explains whether a plaintiff can sue for more than a defendant’s insurance policy limits.
Can a Lawsuit Exceed Insurance Policy Limits in Maryland?
Filing a claim with an insurance company is one way that a victim of an accident can pursue compensation for their injuries and other expenses. For example, if you were involved in a car accident, the State of Maryland would allow you to seek compensation from the negligent driver’s insurance company. However, a victim could run into some issues when trying to recover damages for their losses.
There are many insurance policyholders that only pay for the bare minimum for insurance coverage. This means that when a person is injured due to the policyholder’s negligence, the victim will only be able to recover a limited amount from the insurance company. For example, limited insurance coverage could make it impossible for a victim to recover the compensation needed for surgery after suffering a broken bone in a slip and fall accident.
Fortunately, there is another option available when the policy limits for a defendant is not sufficient to cover a victim’s injuries in Maryland. The victim could seek to file a personal injury lawsuit against the individual that caused their injuries. When filing a personal injury lawsuit, there are no insurance policy limits to prevent a victim from requesting a certain amount in damages. This means that a victim of an accident can litigate for the appropriate compensation that would allow them to handle all economic and noneconomic losses that resulted due to the accident.
Note, however, that you cannot accept a settlement from an insurance company and then proceed to file a lawsuit against the person that caused your injuries. A potential plaintiff must decide whether they will accept the settlement offer or litigate their claim in court.
To learn more about filing a lawsuit against a negligent person that caused your injuries, you should continue reading and speak with an experienced Maryland personal injury attorney today.
Proving Negligence and Damages in a Personal Injury Lawsuit in Maryland
If the policy limits held by a defendant were insufficient to meet the cost of injuries and financial losses you sustained, you should file a lawsuit against the person that caused the accident. Before you can be awarded damages in a personal injury lawsuit, you must first prove your case.
Personal injury lawsuits in Maryland are often based on a theory of negligence. This means that a plaintiff must show how the defendant acted negligently in order to receive damages. Specifically, the following elements must be shown in order to prove negligence:
- The defendant owed the plaintiff a duty of care
- The defendant breached the duty of care (e.g., speeding)
- The plaintiff suffered an injury due to the defendant’s breach
- The plaintiff sustained an injury that is compensable by a court of law
There are various types of evidence that can help a plaintiff prove negligence. For example, if a plaintiff needs to show how a doctor acted negligently and committed medical malpractice, the plaintiff can enlist the help of an expert witness. An expert witness can help identify where a doctor violated the standard of care that is common within their field.
Once a plaintiff has proved negligence, they must also prove their damages. There are various ways to prove damages. For example, a plaintiff can provide documentation showing medical bills that resulted from the accident.
Compensatory damages can be awarded to a plaintiff after winning a personal injury lawsuit. These damages can be divided into two categories: economic and noneconomic damages. Economic damages are easily calculated as they are based on financial losses suffered by the plaintiff. Noneconomic losses are difficult to calculate because they are often based on subjective factors. The following is a list of compensatory damages available for a personal injury lawsuit in Maryland:
- Medical expenses, costs of medical equipment, rehabilitation, and medication
- Loss of wages and future loss of wages
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium
- Emotional distress
Contact Our Experienced Maryland Personal Injury Attorney to Discuss Your Potential Lawsuit
If you or a family member was a victim of a serious accident, contact an experienced Baltimore personal injury attorney as soon as possible. With a wide range of experience litigating personal injury lawsuits, committed attorney Randolph Rice is here to help you fight for the compensation you deserve. We understand how an accident can affect all aspects of a victim’s life, and we are here for you. To schedule a free legal consultation to discuss your potential lawsuit, contact the Law Offices of Randolph Rice at (410) 694-7291. You may also contact the firm by using our online submission form.