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Maryland Personal Injury Lawyer

Have you been injured in an accident? You may have the right to file a claim for personal injury (medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering).

If someone else was:

and that behavior has resulted in physical or emotional pain to you, speak with a personal injury attorney immediately to determine your best options.

You may be entitled to compensation for your damages and injuries. Don’t know if you have a claim, we offer FREE consultations to all injury victims. Call today to speak with a lawyer now to review your case. There is no fee unless we win, which means no out of pocket expense for you!

Do I Need A Personal Injury Lawyer?

Ask yourself TWO important questions to determine if you need to speak with a personal injury attorney:

  1. Where you injured? (physical or emotional or did you incurr lost wages); and
  2. Did someone else cause your injury? (was another person negligent, reckless or intentionally hurt you)

If you answered YES to both of these questions, then you should speak with our injury lawyers today.

The personal injury lawyers with the Law Offices of Randolph Rice are available 24/7 to talk and we offer free consultations for all injury cases. Call attorney Randolph Rice today at 410.288.2900 or email him directly for immediate legal help.

Still not sure if you need a personal injury attorney? Keep reading to learn more about the injury laws in Maryland and when/why you should hire a lawyer for your injury claim.

What is Personal Injury?

Personal injury is the legal representation for the purpose of financially compensating an individual for the negligence, reckless or intentional acts of another person or business.

The compensation for personal injury may include bodily injury, emotional injury or occupational losses.

Personal injury focuses on the hassle, pain and suffering of the victim as opposed to property injury, which is legal representation to seek compensation for damages to a physical object, such as a car or building.

It is not uncommon after an auto accident to seek personal and property injury damages, as both the driver or passengers as well as their vehicle suffered injuries and damage.

How Much Does a Personal Injury Lawyer Cost?

Most if not all personal injury lawyers will NOT charge a client to investigate and take on their case. Personal injury lawyers work on a contingency basis fee structure. This means the lawyer is paid a percentage from the settlement or verdict.

What Percentage Does a Personal Injury Lawyer Take?

If the claim is settled, the personal injury will be paid 33% of the settlement. If a lawsuit is filed or the claim is taken to court for a trial, then the lawyer will take 40% of the verdict in the case.

In addition to the legal fee, the settlement will pay any costs and expenses associated with litigation or the claim. This may include postage, medical records and billing information or expert witness fees.

If you have questions about legal fees in a personal injury case, speak with one of lawyer today. Schedule a free consultation by calling 410.288.2900 or 800.470.RICE.

Example Legal Fees in a Personal Injury Claim

How Much Do I Pay the Lawyer If We Don’t Win at Trial?

If you (the plaintiff) are required to file a lawsuit and take the case to trial and not win (meaning the judge or jury finds for the defendant), then you don’t owe the lawyer any money. That is the best part of hiring a personal injury lawyer on a contingency fee structure. You have no down side to pursuing a claim because the lawyer assumes all of the costs.

Read more about contingency fees in a personal injury case.

Maryland Personal Injury Lawyer Questions

Many people have no idea what a personal injury lawyer does until they suddenly need one. Although there is no shortage of TV ads for personal injury “PI” attorneys in Maryland or billboards by the roadside, finding a lawyer is not like finding a food store.

Shopping for an attorney is not an everyday chore. Although some people never need to hire a personal injury lawyer, statistically an individual licensed to drive in America is likely to be involved in at least three car accidents in their lifetime.

The insurance industry estimates drivers will file a claim for a collision about once every 17.9 years. Many people will require the service of a personal injury lawyer at some time in their lives whether for a car crash, a medical malpractice case, a fall on a wet floor or an industrial accident. Here are some personal injury questions and their answers most people ask when facing looking to hire a personal injury attorney.

What is a Personal Injury Lawyer?

A personal injury lawyer is a legal professional who represents clients who have been hurt in an accident. He or she will take over dealings with the liable party and his or her insurance company on your behalf and may file a lawsuit. If the case goes to a court hearing, a Maryland personal injury lawyer will represent you.

A personal injury lawyer is also known as a plaintiff lawyer or trial lawyer. The attorney is a civil litigator who provides legal representation to plaintiffs who claim they suffered a physical or psychological injury from the negligent or careless acts of another person, entity or organization. Personal injury lawyers also represent families who claim their loved ones lost their lives due to the fault of another party by filing wrongful death lawsuits.

Personal injury lawyers may specialize in accident and injury cases or may also practice in areas like family law, criminal law and workers’ compensation.

However, they must have the same education and certification as other attorneys. Lawyers require a four-year undergraduate degree followed by three years of law school to earn a juris doctorate (JD) degree. A JD degree is awarded by law schools that are accredited by the American Bar Association. Lawyers must then pass a bar exam to practice law in the state they are helping clients in.

Find out if your lawyer is licensed to practice law.

How to Find a Personal Injury Lawyer?

Personal injury lawyers are among the biggest advertisers. However, the fact most people are inundated with ads for personal injury lawyers, does not necessarily make the process of finding one easier. Although some injured people will call the first guy they see in a TV ad, it makes sense to shop around for the best Maryland personal injury lawyer for you and your claim.

Here are some ways you can find a personal injury lawyer:

1. Look at the Yellow Pages.

Two decades ago, many people shopped for goods and services in the Yellow Pages or another telephone directory. Today, the internet has replaced these thick directories. The phone directory still provides a large list of lawyers but chances are you won’t be able to find a directory. Read Yellowpages to stop printing after January 2019.

2. Word of Mouth – Talk to Your Friends and Family

Personal recommendations remain an effective way of finding a personal injury lawyer. If friends or coworkers have hired an attorney who secured a good result for them, it’s worth meeting that lawyer. However, you should not make a decision about a lawyer solely on the recommendation of another person. It’s important to hire an attorney who fits your style and has experience of your type of case.

3. Other Lawyers

Often lawyers will refer clients to other attorneys. This often happens if, for example, a divorce lawyer has a client who was hurt in a car crash. The divorce lawyer may refer the client to a personal injury specialist. Be aware lawyers receive a referral fee for passing on cases, so make sure the injury lawyer you are referred to is a good fit.

4. Bar Association Referral Services

Many bar associations have referral services that will put you in touch with lawyers. The Maryland State Bar Association provides phone numbers of bar associations in each jurisdiction. You should ask about screening criteria.  

Some lawyer referral services meticulously screen attorneys and list only those lawyers with certain qualifications and a certain number of years of experience. Other services list any attorney in good standing with the state bar who maintains liability insurance.

5 The internet

Any Google search for “top personal injury lawyer in Maryland” or “Baltimore car accident lawyer” will yield a slew of results. The internet is an effective way of researching lawyers because you can read the online reviews left by clients. You can also get an idea of what a lawyer is like by viewing online videos or reading bio pages on the firm’s website. Another useful area to check is a Maryland personal injury lawyer’s results.

6 Online attorney directories

Personal injury lawyers are often listed on legal directories. These include FindLaw, Avvo, Nolo, Super Lawyers, Martindale-Hubbell, Justia and HG.org, to name just a few.

Many of these services give a lawyer a ranking based on factors such as peer reviews and the number of white papers they have written and speeches given. The rankings are often meaningless to potential injury clients and paid listings can receive greater prominence on these sites. However, legal directories provide useful background on attorneys and are another research tool.

7. Social Media

Many personal injury lawyers now have a social media presence. Sites like Facebook and Instagram often provide a lighter side to what injury attorneys do. Many lawyers are active in their communities.

They may have a scholarship program or support local charities. Although social media is not used by many clients to help them find a personal injury lawyer, it may familiarize them with a firm and make them more comfortable with hiring an attorney in the future.

8. TV, Radio and Print Ads

Advertising whether on the TV, the radio or newspapers remains an effective way for personal injury lawyers to get out their message in Maryland. However, the law firm with the biggest advertising budget is not always the best one for your case. You should carefully look at reviews and ideally meet a number of attorneys before you make a decision about who to hire.

How to File a Personal Injury Claim Without a Lawyer?

Many people handle their own car, motorcycle or truck accident or minor personal injury claim without hiring an attorney. If your injuries are non-serious ones like soft tissue injuries, it may be more economical to handle your own case than to hire an injury lawyer.

However, in cases of significant or serious injuries you should be wary about filing your own claims. Often the insurance companies offer people with serious injuries far less compensation than they are entitled to.

The easiest cases to file a personal injury claims without a lawyer are when the injuries sustained are minor and liability is not an issue. For example, you are rear-ended in a parking lot and suffer a whiplash injury that clears up in a few days. The other driver’s insurance company admits liability and offers to settle the case.

If the injury is more complicated and liability is disputed, it often makes more sense to hire an attorney.

At the accident scene, you should gather as much information as possible, seek medical attention and obtain a copy of the police report.

You should then estimate your damages. Add up special damages which are the costs to replace or fix your vehicle, lost earnings and lost earning capacity. You should also add up medical bills and other financial losses caused by your accident.

This can be a tricky process. Estimating pain and suffering is even more complicated. While personal injury lawyers use certain formulas to estimate pain and suffering, there is no guarantee a jury will use the same formula.

Once an investigation into the accident has taken place and you have a figure for damages, you can send a demand letter to the party responsible for the accident.

It’s best to send a demand letter only after you have considered the full impact of the injury on all aspects of your life and a reasonable valuation of your injury claim has been made. The demand letter should contain:

After making a claim you will likely receive a counter offer from the insurance company. Typically, the first offer is lower than the insurance company is prepared to go.

Accident victims are more likely to get a better offer by continuing to fight the insurance company.  If you don’t accept the offer you should be prepared to file a complaint with the court. You may receive a better offer but you should be prepared to go to court. If the insurance company does not give you a better offer, it makes sense to hire an injury lawyer to deal with litigation and to file a lawsuit with the court.

What Does a Personal Injury Lawyer Do?

Every personal injury case requires considerable work. From the outset, a personal injury lawyer will meet with you and decide whether or not to take on your case. Keep reading to learn my a lawyer may not take on your case.

If the lawyer takes on your case, he or she will do a lot of initial work such as obtaining witness statements, examining the police statement, looking at photographs and other reports to decide what further information to request and what expert witnesses to call.

When you have finished treatment for your injuries, or your condition has stabilized, the lawyer will start assembling medical reports, bills, employment reports and other items. These are needed to establish the extent of your injuries and how much money you have lost and will lose in the future due to the accident.

The lawyer will then contact the insurance company of the party responsible for your injury to solicit an offer based on the report of your losses and injuries.

If the attorney is unable to get an offer to your satisfaction, a lawsuit will be filed or arbitration will be demanded. The attorney may have to sue a number of defendants.

After the attorney has received answers from the defendants, the process called discovery will begin. This will include depositions of parties involved in the case, witnesses and experts. 

When discovery is complete, a trial date will be requested. The assignment of the trial date depends on the court calendar. Often a Maryland personal injury lawyer will continue negotiations and a mediation may be held between the parties. Many cases settle weeks or even days before the date of a trial.

How to Choose a Maryland Personal Injury Lawyer?

In your choice of a personal injury lawyer you should consider the following factors:

When Should You Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer?

In cases involving serious injuries, it makes sense to hire a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible once you have dealt with medical providers. If you know you are going to hire a personal injury lawyer you should do so before talking to the other side’s insurance company because this could jeopardize your case.

Some clients enter negotiations with an insurance company and only hire a personal injury lawyer when it becomes clear the case will be litigated.

In Maryland, you have three years to bring a personal injury case. Although you can hire a personal injury lawyer up until the statute of limitations is reached, you should not wait too long because it becomes harder to find witnesses and recollections fade.

How Much Does a Personal Injury Lawyer Cost?

Personal injury lawyers typically work on a contingency fee basis, which means there is no fixed fee. The lawyer will take a cut of what you are awarded in your case, but only if an award is made.

This means people who have been hurt do not have the added burden of affording legal fees at the outset of a case.  The contingency fee is usually 33.33 percent or 1/3 of a settlement and 40 percent if the case proceeds to trial. The contingency fee is based on the gross proceeds of the accident claim. You will not have to pay upfront for the work of our Maryland personal injury team.

Who is the Best Personal Injury Lawyer?

Injury lawyers in Maryland are not allowed to claim they are the best. Clients make decisions on who they believe is the best personal injury lawyer for their case in Maryland on a wide range of factors including:

What Percentage Does a Personal Injury Lawyer Take?

The percentage of a personal injury lawyer takes of a payout varies from firm to firm, but is typically about a third. At the Law Offices of Randolph Rice, we take 33.33 percent or 1/3 of a settlement and 40 percent if a case goes all the way to a trial.

How to Settle a Personal Injury Claim Without a Lawyer

You may settle a personal injury claim without a lawyer by dealing directly with the insurance company of the driver, business owner or another individual who caused your accident. In some cases, liability may be disputed by the other side’s insurance company. You should gather as much evidence as possible. If liability is disputed, you should consider talking to a lawyer.

If there is no dispute about liability, you should calculate a sum for your injuries and send off a demand letter. If the insurance company comes back with a low offer and refuses to budge, you should consider hiring a lawyer at this time. Some accident victims settle claims successfully without a lawyer. However, if you have been seriously hurt you have more to lose by not hiring an attorney. Lawyers.com reported people who represented by attorneys received an average of $77,600 in compensation, compared to $17,600 for those who settled a personal injury claim without a lawyer.

How to Find a Good Personal Injury Lawyer

If you want to find a good personal injury lawyer in Maryland, you should do your homework. Talk to friends and colleagues who have hired legal professionals; read reviews and case results and watch videos. You should also aim to talk to a number of personal injury lawyers before you make your decision to ensure you have hired the right attorney for you.

Why Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer?

People hire personal injury lawyers for many reasons. They may not want to deal with an insurance claim and need an attorney to carry out negotiations on their behalf while they concentrate on recovering from their injuries. They may be wary of being short-changed by an insurance company.

Some victims of car crashes may want a culpable driver to be punished in court. Victims of drunk drivers sometimes want the at-fault driver to be held accountable before a jury.

Studies have shown people who hire personal injury lawyers typically are awarded more money than those who deal directly with an insurance company. When you hire a personal injury lawyer, you are paying for years of experience in dealing with accident cases. Very few accident victims can bring this level of expertise to bear on their claims.

How to Pick a Personal Injury Lawyer?

There are many factors you should consider when deciding how to pick a personal injury lawyer in Maryland. Read the lawyer’s bio to find out what areas he or she excels in. Look at reviews and past case summaries.

It’s also important that the lawyer is accessible and can see you immediately. The best attorneys will want to see you as soon as possible after an accident. They may come to your home or hospital bed. Otherwise, a lawyer should be easily accessible and have fought cases in your jurisdiction. Consider going online and making a shortlist of five or so lawyers to meet. Interview them and hire the attorney who is the best fit.

How Much Percentage Does a Personal Injury Lawyer Get?

The typical personal injury lawyer will charge a contingency fee to handle your case which means you won’t pay up front. According to Nolo, most contingency fees are between 33 percent and 40 percent. Typically, a personal injury lawyer will receive 33.3 percent. If you receive an offer of $40,000 from the at-fault party or his insurance company in your case, your lawyer will receive $13,332. 

How to Find The Best Personal Injury Lawyer?

There are no hard and fast rules about finding the best personal injury lawyer, but you should look for lawyers who have considerable experience in personal injury cases. Also, search for big settlements and verdicts.

You should look at a lawyer’s education and credentials and standing in the profession. Find out how many cases a personal injury lawyer has taken to trial and what results he or she achieved. Membership of state and national trial groups can be a positive sign. Work with successful law firms with sufficient resources to hire leading experts and time to devote to your case.

What Questions Should I Ask a Personal Injury Lawyer?

Before you hire a personal injury lawyer, you should ask questions. It’s important to get a full picture so as you are aware of the process. Questions you should ask a Maryland personal injury lawyer include:

How to Win a Personal Injury Case Without a Lawyer

The secret to winning a personal injury case without a lawyer is to be meticulous. However, getting a payout from an insurance company may not always be the same as winning, particularly if it’s less than your case is worth.

You can help your case by getting witness statements at the accident scene, taking pictures and making sure your case against the driver who injured you is as strong as it can be. Collect all medical bills and records, calculate a reasonable claim and hit the insurance company with a comprehensive demand package. A painstaking approach will help you succeed in a personal injury case without a lawyer provided liability was not an issue in the wreck. If your injuries were substantial or serious, you should talk to a personal injury lawyer.

When To Get a Personal Injury Lawyer?

There is no legal obligation to hire an attorney. You can file all of the necessary paperwork yourself and represent yourself in court. However, your prospects of winning compensation and not being short-changed are higher with a lawyer.

Generally, if you suffer serious or substantial injuries in an accident you should hire a lawyer. If your injury is bad enough to mean time off work, you are in lawyer territory. Critical and life-threatening injuries or permanent injuries such as brain damage require long-term medical care and often incur massive bills. It makes sense to get a personal injury lawyers for these cases and you will likely be making a major mistake if you take on the insurance company alone.

Complicated accidents that require expert witnesses are also best dealt with by a lawyer as well as cases in which liability is disputed.

How to Settle a Personal Injury Claim Without a Lawyer

Settling a personal injury claim without a lawyer is easier if you carefully compile notes of the car accident, slip and fall or another injury and document all medical treatment. Don’t talk to an insurance adjuster immediately after a crash.

Be firm in the negotiation process. If the number an adjuster comes up with is not high enough, be firm. Often the threat of getting an attorney involved or filing a lawsuit may lead to a higher offer.

How to Choose a Lawyer for Personal Injury

There are a number of factors you should consider when choosing a lawyer for personal injury. Experience in personal injury is an important one. Also, look at the courts he or she often appears in and the attorney’s results in that court.

Consider the number of years the attorney has practiced, his personal injury expertise, his reputation, his past case results and what former clients say about the lawyer.

How to File a Personal Injury Lawsuit Without a Lawyer

Litigants can file a lawsuit without a lawyer directly with the courts in Maryland. When claims are filed with the District Court, the process is much easier and shorter than cases in the Circuit Court. You will appear before a judge rather than a jury. That trial date will probably only be a couple of months after the case is filed. Cases filed for less than $15,000 are often settled before the trial date. If you are seeking over $30,000, you should file a lawsuit in the Circuit Court.

If you file the lawsuit in the Circuit Court, you will end up before a jury. This is a longer and more involved process that requires more preparation on your behalf. Maryland courts provide further advice for self-represented litigants.

What To Look for in a Personal Injury Lawyer in Maryland

When looking for a personal injury lawyer in Maryland you should consider the number of years he or she has practiced personal injury law and the types of cases litigated. For instance, if a family member has been injured at a nursing home, it makes sense to hire counsel who has successfully sued nursing homes in the past.

Look at accolades, reviews and videos. Aim to hire a personal injury lawyer with time to handle your case and an interest in fighting the insurance company all the way to get you what you deserve.

At the Law Offices of Randolph Rice, our team has a long and successful track record as personal injury lawyers. Call us for a free case evaluation today at (410) 288-2900.

What is a Personal Injury Claim?

A personal injury claim is brought by a Plaintiff or party that has suffered an injury caused by someone else’s negligence and entitles them to compensation. Examples of personal injury claims include car accidents, medical malpractice, and slip and falls.

How to prove a Personal Injury Claim

In order to prove a personal injury claim in the court of law, a plaintiff must establish five elements. As your Maryland injury lawyer, we must prove before a judge or jury:

1. The existence of an act or failure to act of the negligent party

2. A duty owed by the adverse party to exercise due care

A duty of care is “an obligation, to which the law will give recognition and effect, to conform to a particular standard of conduct toward another.” Prosser and Keeton on the Law of Torts, § 53, at 356 (5th ed. 1984) (hereinafter “Prosser”). There are four categories in which a duty is classified and recognized by the law. These categories include:

If a claim doesn’t fit into one of the four categories, there may be no legal duty owed. There can be no negligence where there is no duty that is due; for negligence is the breach of some duty that one person owes to another. Village of Cross Keys, Inc. v. U.S. Gypsum Co., 315 Md. 741, 751-752, 556 A.2d 1126 (1989).

3. A breach of duty by the adverse party

The adverse party’s failure to act or negligent actions breached their duty to you. In proving the existence of a breach, a plaintiff must show evidence of the defendant’s negligence or failure to act.

In Maryland, the breach of a statutory duty may be considered some evidence of negligence. Pahanish v. W. Trails, Inc., 69 Md.App. 342, 517 A.2d 1122, 1132 (1986).

A statutory violation can be prima facie evidence of negligence that is sufficient to prove such a breach of duty as will sustain a private action for negligence. Flaccomio v. Eysink, 129 Md. 367, 100 A. 510, 515 (1916).

Keep in mind that the statutory violation itself does not establish liability; liability only arises if the violation is the proximate cause of the plaintiff’s injuries. Brooks v. Lewin Realty III, Inc., 378 Md. 70, 835 A.2d 616, 621–22 (2003)

4. A relationship between the adverse party’s conduct and the harm caused the affected party

The plaintiff must prove that the adverse party’s actions or failure to act was the cause-in-fact and proximate cause of their injuries. Cause-in-fact asks whether the plaintiff’s injuries would have happened “but for” the adverse party’s actions. Proximate cause is used to determine if plaintiff’s injuries were the direct and natural result of the defendant’s actions.

5. Damages to the affected party

A plaintiff must show that you sustained actual damages in which you are entitled to recover and can be remedied by monetary compensation.

Have more questions about settlement? Check out our article on personal injury calculator.

What happens if you file a lawsuit?

If you decide to file a lawsuit, you become the Plaintiff and the person who caused your injuries becomes the defendant. Usually, lawyers for each side will begin gathering facts through written questions or on the record interviews. This process is called discovery. After discovery, your case will either proceed to trial or settlement.

The Law Offices of Randolph Rice Can Help with Your Lawsuit

A skilled injury lawyer will know when to file a legal claim with the Maryland civil court system. We have experience handling personal injury claims involving the following, among others:

No matter what type of accident and injury you sustained, complicated personal injury litigation can require many resources. We handle every aspect of the process and cover all of the costs of litigation up front so that our clients can focus their time and energy on their physical recovery and do not have to worry about paying out of pocket.

We work to resolve each case in the most efficient manner possible, building a strong case to bring to the table in settlement negotiations. However, if you don’t receive the settlement you deserve, we are not afraid to take your case to trial.

Personal Injury Law firm in Baltimore, Maryland

If you or a loved one were injured by the negligent actions of another, you deserve the best law firm to represent your claim. You deserve a personal injury law firm staffed with experienced lawyers that will advocate for you and offer competitive rates.

Experienced Injury Lawyers Matter in Your Claim

Hiring an experienced lawyer is the right move for your case. They are knowledgeable about the law and familiar with personal injury cases.

Their skilled lawyers have substantial experience with personal injury cases in Maryland.  They have represented thousands of cases involving clients injured in auto accidents, truck accidents, slip and fall injuries, hit by a car or pedestrian struck lawsuits, amusement park injuries, and all other injuries received from the negligence of another.

With so many years of experience, the lawyers at the Law Offices of Randolph Rice know how to handle insurance companies and attorneys representing other parties. Our Maryland personal injury lawyers have the extensive legal knowledge to make sure you receive the maximum compensation you are entitled to for your claim.

courtAdvocacy in and out of the Courtroom

We fight for our clients and we will fight for your case. We know how to achieve results that favor our clients by being great advocates. Part of being an advocate requires an attorney to be organized, assertive, great problem solvers, and excellent decision makers.

Our Maryland attorneys embody all of these skills and will use them towards representing your claim. Problem solving is a very important skill to have as a personal injury attorney.

The attorneys at the Law Offices of Randolph Rice are great problem solvers that will come up with solutions tailored to meet your particular needs by getting to know your particular case.

Our lawyers in Maryland will ask the tough questions to get to the root of your suit and look at every possible outcome for your case. Even with the toughest cases, we will find solution when none are apparent.

Making Decisions About Your Injury Claim

The personal injury lawyers at the Law Offices of Randolph Rice are also excellent decision makers. They will work for the best possible outcome for all clients. We advise clients on their options to enable them to make the best decisions regarding their case. That means answering every question and returning phone calls promptly to ensure our clients are informed.

Competitive fees for a Personal Injury Claim

We offer competitive rates to our clients through our contingency fee plan offered for personal injury cases. A contingency fee is a sum of money a client pays to a lawyer only if the lawyer handles a case successfully. The lawyer accepts a fixed percentage of the recovery won at trial or in settlement.

Time Limits for Filing Injury Cases in Maryland

There is a hard and fast rule in Maryland called the Statute of Limitations. This rules precludes a victim from filing a lawsuit for damages after a proscribed period of time.

Limits are necessary to provide adequate time for a diligent plaintiff to bring suit as well as to ensure fairness to defendants by encouraging prompt filing of claims. Supik v. Bodie, Nagle, Dolina, Smith & Hobbs, P.A, 2003, 834 A.2d 170, 152 Md.App. 698, certiorari denied 841 A.2d 340, 379 Md. 225.

The statute of limitations can be used as a defense against a suit when a plaintiff misses a deadline for filing a claim. The party that raises this defense and establishes that the statute of limitations accurately applies, may result in the court dismissing the case and legally barring recovery in a suit.

Determining if the statute of limitations applies to your case can be challenging. First, you must figure out which statute of limitations applies to the cause of action you are bringing.

Most tort cases in Maryland apply Maryland Code, Courts and Judicial Proceedings § 5-101 which states that “a civil action at law shall be filed within three years from the date it accrues unless another provision of the Code provides a different period of time within which an action shall be commenced.” MD Cts. & Jud. Proc. § 5-101.

See the chart below for a list of statute of limitations for different causes of action:

Legal Cause of Action Statute
Assault: 1 year Md. Code Ann. Cts. & Jud. Proc. § 5-105
Contract (in writing): 3 years or 12 years Md. Code Ann. Cts. & Jud. Proc. § 5-101; Md. Code Ann. Cts. & Jud. Proc. § 5-102(a)(5)
Legal malpractice: 3 years Md. Code Ann. Cts. & Jud. Proc. § 5-101
Medical malpractice: 3 years from discovery of the injury or 5 years from the injury (whichever is earlier) Md. Code Ann. Cts. & Jud. Proc. § 5-109(a)
Personal injury: 3 years Md. Code Ann. Cts. & Jud. Proc. § 5-101
Product liability: 3 years Md. Code Ann. Cts. & Jud. Proc. § 5-101
Slander: 1 year Md. Code Ann. Cts. & Jud. Proc. § 5-105

Next, you must find out when time begins to accrue on your claim. A tort cause of action can start to accrue on the date when the wrongful action occurs and results in injury. Berringer v. Steele, 133 Md. App. 442 (2000).

Other causes of action may start to run from the point that the plaintiff knew or should have known of an injury rather than the date of the injury itself which is not always the case for all tort causes of action.

Determining when a cause of action accrues can require legal research and interpretation. It is often best to consult a personal injury lawyer to help you through this process.

The Law Offices of Randolph Rice can help you with every step of the process. Our Maryland lawyers can assist you in every step of your claim. Call the Law Offices of Randolph Rice today to schedule a free appointment to discuss your case.   

Other Practice areas Under Injury Law

Don’t be pushed around by the big insurance companies. We represent client in:

Speak With Randolph Rice: Baltimore, Maryland Injury lawyer

Call the Law Offices of G. Randolph Rice, Jr., LLC, at 410-288-2900 for immediate legal help and advice. We have the experience and knowledge of the Maryland injury laws to maximize your compensation.

Our personal injury attorneys are ready to help you recover. Attorney Randolph Rice is an experienced Maryland personal injury attorney and if the insurance company is fighting you, we take them to Court.

We represent clients injured in auto accidents, truck accidents, slip and fall injuries, hit by a car or pedestrian struck lawsuits, amusement park injuries, and all other injuries received from the negligence of another.

Attorney Randolph Rice is committed to ensuring the success of your case by giving it the time and energy it deserves. We have the experience and knowledge to guide you through the complex path of a personal injury case.

Locations in Maryland

Areas in Maryland where our injury lawyers file claims in Maryland:

Learn More About Personal Injury Law

Common Personal Injury Questions?

If you’ve been hurt, we know you have a lot of questions. Who is going to pay my medical bills? How do I get my lost wages back? What about my pain and suffering? We’re here to answers those questions and get you back to normal after your accident. Here are some answers to some common personal injury questions:

How much does a Maryland injury lawyer cost?

There is no fee unless we win. We pay all of the costs to pursue your claim.  We are paid from the settlement or verdict, on what is called a contingency.  That means our payment is contingent on the success of your case. Click here to read more about how a Maryland personal injury lawyer is paid.

Should I accept a settlement check from the insurance company before I complete treatment?

No, don’t accept a settlement check until you speak with a lawyer. For more information on settlement checks, view our Youtube video.

Who is the Best Personal Injury Lawyer in Maryland?

We are often asked, “Who is the best personal injury lawyer in Maryland?” While there are no standard databases or judging committees to determine the best personal injury lawyer in Maryland.

There are a ways to find one. By talking to previous clients of the firm is one of the best ways to find a lawyer to handle your injury claim. You can also search online for the best injury lawyers and find reviews and testimonials.

One of the best ways to find a personal injury lawyer is by interviewing and finding one that fits you and your situation. You want a lawyer that will take the time to listen to you.

A lawyer that will call you back or return phone calls and emails. The most important factor when looking for the best Maryland injury lawyer is trust. Trust the lawyer to fight for you as a victim and you have found the best personal injury lawyer in Maryland.

Should I take pictures after my accident?

Yes, take as many pictures as possible.  You want to tell a story through your pictures.  Think about telling a person about the accident only using pictures and not any words, then start to snap away with your smartphone.

Should I see a doctor after a car accident?

Yes, if you are in pain or you feel discomfort, you should visit a doctor as soon as possible.

If you’ve been hurt in a car accident, call our office at 410.288.2900 for immediate legal help and speak with a Maryland personal injury attorney today!

Our Office Can Help After an Injury

Many people do not realize the importance of a personal injury attorney after an accident. You may think an attorney can only help with a trial, but a skilled injury lawyer can fully protect your rights after an accident. From getting your car fixed to negotiating a fair and just settlement with the insurance company. Our personal injury lawyers will do everything from beginning to end allowing you to rest, heal and recover from the accident.

Determining and Proving Liability

To recover compensation from another party after an injury, the law requires that you sufficiently prove that party’s fault in your accident. You may know that the other driver hit you, but that is not enough to prove liability in our legal system.

Instead, an accident victim must prove that the negligence of another party resulted in injuries. Negligence occurs when another party has a specific duty of care toward the victim and breaches that duty of care. Negligent parties in personal injury cases may include:

Identifying a negligent party and proving negligence are two different matters. An experienced attorney will know how to conduct a thorough investigation to gather as much evidence as possible to support your liability claims.

Evaluating Your Losses

Many accident victims do not realize the true extent of their losses stemming from the accident. Too many people simply add up the medical bills they received and accept payment for those costs. In this situation, you could forego significant compensation that you deserve for many other injury related losses. You may not recognize that legal losses can include:

If you sustained a severe injury, chances are you can seek the above damages. The value of many of these damages, however, is hard to determine.

For example, if your injury requires lifelong medical care, estimating a lifetime’s worth of medical costs will require the analysis of medical experts who can consider the type of care needed for your type of injury and the costs of such care (adjusted for inflation during time).

Future losses generally require expert opinions and our law firm has access to the necessary experts. In addition, many damages associated with severe injuries are noneconomic—you cannot directly measure them in terms of financial losses.

A good injury lawyer, however, can help determine the value of pain and suffering or the permanent damage an injury caused you. We know how to carefully consider every possible loss in your case to determine the maximum amount of compensation you deserve.

Insurance Claims

Personal injury victims rarely head directly into court, resolving their cases instead through insurance claims, such as with:

Successfully obtaining payment from another party’s insurance company can avoid the need for litigation, though it’s anything but simple.

Insurance companies are not willing to pay out to non-policyholders without specific proof of liability on the part of the policyholder, as well as proof of all of your losses.

Our attorneys can help you present evidence to prove your claims and obtain a fair insurance settlement whenever possible. Insurance companies are notorious for making incredibly low offers to unrepresented injury victims, hoping that claimants will assume they have no choice but to accept those offers.

This can deny you much of the compensation you deserve and leave you with no further legal rights to pursue additional compensation. Never agree to a settlement before thoroughly reviewing your case with a personal injury lawyer.

We will determine the adequacy—or more often, inadequacy—of an offer and negotiate for a higher amount on your behalf.

Our personal injury Maryland law firm also regularly assists accident victims with uninsured motorist claims if the negligent driver lacks the necessary insurance coverage.

These claims also require you to prove the liability of the negligent driver and we will assist you with every step of your claim. At the Law Offices of Randolph Rice, we provide the best personal injury attorneys in Maryland and offer a wide range of services to our clients.

7 Reasons Why A Personal Injury Lawyer May Turn Down Your Case

If you go to a store to pay for clothes or food, you don’t wonder whether the store will turn down your cash and say you can’t buy what you want you came to purchase.

Yet, a lawyer is never required to accept an accident case from a potential client, unless they agree to terms.

Why is that? First if you look what is really happening, it’s not so much that you are paying a lawyer to handle your case.

You are really selling your case to an accident lawyer, He is handling your case in exchange for a receiving a percentage of what is recovered (at least that’s the typical arrangement).

He might recover a third of your proceeds or if you lose, he will receive nothing. So just as much as you need to decide if an accident attorney is right for you, he needs to decide as well. Here are the top seven reasons why an attorney may turn down your accident case.

books, legal, lawReason #1: Your Accident Attorney Can’t Represent You Because of Legal Issues

Let’s say you live in State “A” and were negligently injured in a car accident 4 years ago where you sustained injuries you were aware of at the time. Now you decide to retain an attorney to handle your case for the first time. Any reputable attorneys in the state will turn you down.

Why? Because in most states, almost all negligence cases need to be brought within three years of the accident, and the courts would not allow you to proceed after that.

Another problem might be jurisdiction. If you are a resident in State “A” but you were hit in State “B” by a State “B” driver, the proper place to proceed with your case will be State “B” not in State “A”.

Unless a personal injury attorney is also licensed in State “B”, they can’t practice there. Even if they were it would probably be impractical to handle the case since it would be so far away from where they usually practice.

Reason #2: The Facts of the Case are not in Your Favor

Because  an accident lawyer taking on your case is taking a risk that there may not be paid back for the time being put into the case,  they will always want to evaluate the facts of the case to see if they support your claim.

If you are injured in an accident with another car driver, but the police only give you tickets for reckless driving and driving under the influence and your insurance company has decided you were liable and paid out a claim, an injury lawyer will probably will decide there is little chance they will want to take your case.

Another fact that could  prevent recovery is if there was negligence by both parties in an accident case, In Maryland the law technically requires that you be completely without fault regarding an accident or you cannot recover from other party for your damages.

neck, back, x-ray, doctorReason #3 : Damages are Difficult to Prove or Don’t Justify Handling Your Case

If an accident lawyer does not feel your damages are large enough to cover the time for their involvement in the case, they may refuse to handle. As said earlier, when you are looking for a lawyer to handle a case you are selling a lawyer in the belief you have an economically valuable legal matter.

If facts do not support that, they are not obligated to take the case. Even if you can prove the other party is liable, if your damages are minimal, it may not justify the involvement of a lawyer.

Reason #4: Even if the Case is Winnable, there is No Chance to Collect on the Judgement

Let’s say you were badly injured  at someone’s house and want to sue them for injuries. Even if you take them to court and win a judgment against them, it may not be worth if they don’t have insurance or assets to pay the judgment.

Winning a case does not mean a court or a lawyer will insure the at fault party will pay you what you win. If the at fault party is bankrupt or going into bankruptcy they might even be able to “discharge” any claim you have and prevent you from collecting.

Reason #5: The lawyer decides the Costs of Taking on the Case Outweigh the Benefits of Representation

Even if an attorney  is handling a case on a contingency basis where you don’t pay a fee unless you win, there are still expenses that need to be paid to proceed with the case.

There can be filing fees, service fees, costs of getting expert reports, court reporters for depositions, research, copying fees, and document preparation.

In many cases, even if you are not paying an attorney in advance, they still expect you to pay these costs as they are incurred. If they don’t think you can cover the expenses, they may not want to take on the case.

Even If the accident attorney agrees to pay all costs and get reimbursed  from them at settlement, they may be concerned whether it is worth it. The accident attorney may feel the final recovery does not justify the amount of time they must put into the case, if there are other cases they can handle with a greater possible return for the same or less amount of time.

A lawyer is like anyone else: if they can make more money with less effort, they will normally prefer to do that. However, this may mean you may want to see if other competent accident lawyers do have the time to handle the case.

Reason #6: A Conflict of  Interest Prevents an Accident Lawyer from Handling  Your Case

Sometimes an attorney may want to handle your accident case but may be ethically prevented from doing so or may be challenged. If you were involved in an accident case and the other party was the lawyer’s spouse or child, then they probably should not handle your case.

If your case involves the driver for a company that the accident lawyer does a lot of work or business for, this also can be a conflict of interest that would stop representation.

Sometimes the conflict of interest might involve you directly or it might be the party on the other side who would object to the representation.

Reason #7: You and the Attorney Might Not be a Good Fit Personally

When an accident attorney and a client agree to work with each other, it is important that they can get along. The client must trust that the attorney is making the right decisions handling the case.

The lawyer must trust that the client will follow instructions and advice in how they proceed in handling the accident claim. If the lawyer believes that they cannot work together it could jeopardize the outcome of the case.

The lawyer is also dependent on information that he is given. If the attorney feels the client is not being truthful or incapable cooperating with the gathering of information, it will make reaching a successful settlement very difficult.

Even where honesty is not an issue, people can have different expectations. What if a client believes their case is worth $250,000, but the attorney thinks at best the case is only  worth $25,000?

Such a large difference in expectations could mean many arguments throughout the handling of the case., It may be better that the client find an accident lawyer, if there is one, who agrees with their view of the case’s value.

If an attorney thinks a fair settlement can be reached without going to trial, but the client wants to roll the dice and take their matter to a jury trial, the accident lawyer again maybe uncomfortable in that representation, and if the lawyer feels that there is likely to be a difference of opinion later on in the case, he may refrain from wanting take on that client.

Finally, the lawyer might decide that there are unknown or unclear reasons for not taking on a case. A potential client  might come to an accident lawyer with what looks like a strong claim. However, if there is a list of previous attorneys who handled the case, there maybe hesitancy to take it on, even if it not clear why the case was rejected.

Why Having an Honest Evaluation of Your Case is Important

When you have a case and you are looking for an accident attorney, make certain that you discuss  your legal matter in detail with any potential lawyer. Make certain the attorney hears all the facts, not just the ones you think are favorable. Have them present a description as to how they would proceed on your behalf to the end.

Have them explain how they will be paid (and how much) and who will handle the payment of expenses. If the response ultimately is that they cannot handle your accident case, be grateful at least for receiving an honest evaluation. In the end, it might save you a lot of time and money.

How Much Does a Personal Injury Lawyer Make?

According to LawyerEDU.org, The average annual salary for a personal injury lawyer is about $73,000. These figures fluctuate. Attorneys working for bigger P.I. firms top the pay scale making between $81,000 and $164,000 a year.  Junior personal injury lawyers and some sole practitioners may make considerably less than $70,000.

Personal injury lawyers work on a contingency basis which means they only make a recovery if their client wins a settlement or a verdict. Given that lawyers take a percentage, their pay is dependent on the size of the award in any given case.

How to Become a Personal Injury Lawyer

Personal injury lawyers do not need to specialize in injury law at an early stage. Their career path is the same of that of other attorneys.

The first step to becoming a personal injury lawyer involves earning an undergraduate degree. Students must have a bachelor’s degree to attend law school. Most law schools will accept candidates with any undergraduate degree although English, political science, social science, and history are popular areas of study. Some schools offer pre-law programs.

Prospective law students must take the Law School Admission Test toward the end of their Bachelor’s Degree. Admission to law school depends on a student’s grade point average, as well a LSAT score.

Students who want to become a personal injury lawyer must then earn a law degree. Law school typically comprises three years of study after attaining a Bachelor’s Degree. Most states require prospective attorneys to earn their J.D. degree from an institution approved by the American Bar Association. Students who want to become a personal injury lawyer can take electives such as advanced tort law and medical malpractice.

Taking an internship is also important for prospective personal injury lawyers. Interning with a personal injury firm or a judge can provide invaluable experience.

Students who want to become a lawyer must take and pass the law exam for the state they want to practice in. This is known as being admitted to the bar. There is no separate track for personal injury lawyers. It’s the same exam for all prospective attorneys.

Maryland is one of just three jurisdictions that does not require lawyers to take the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination (MPRE) in which candidates are tested on the professional conduct of lawyers.

A lawyer can work as a personal injury lawyer after passing the bar exam but must earn Continuing Legal Education (CLE) points to maintain bar status.

How Much Does a Personal Injury Lawyer Make a Year?

A recent study suggested the average annual salary of a personal injury lawyer is about $73,000 in the United States. However, a 2018 report on ZipRecruiter suggested a higher figure of $82,158. The range is $33,000 to $148,500. ZipRecruiter estimated its personal injury lawyer salaries by scanning its database of millions of active jobs published locally throughout the country.

Attorney Randolph Rice is ranked by Super Lawyers, is an Avvo 10 out of 10 Superb Maryland Attorney and is Lead Counsel Rated.