A car accident takes only seconds but can change the rest of your life, burdening you with severe injuries and costly medical bills. If the other driver caused the accident, you may be entitled to financial compensation from his or her insurance company, with the potential for additional compensation depending on the severity of your injuries. If you or one of your family members was hurt in a crash or collision, you should talk about your legal options with an experienced Bel Air South car accident lawyer, like Randolph Rice, founder of Rice, Murtha & Psoras.
Randolph Rice is an experienced and aggressive car crash lawyer in Bel Air South with a track record of successful recoveries. At Rice, Murtha & Psoras, we know the tricks that insurance companies try to use to save money, and will work strategically to protect you against “low-ball” settlement offers or other maneuvers that could weaken your claim or short-change you unfairly. Our goal is to secure the greatest amount of compensation possible so that you do not have to worry about medical bills, lost earnings, or property damage. We will also fight for compensation for your pain and suffering, challenging insurance companies who deny liability or undervalue your claim. To set up a free legal consultation, contact Rice, Murtha & Psoras online, or call today at (410) 694-7291.
Types of Car Accident Claims Our Bel Air South Lawyers Handle
If you were hurt in a car accident, you should strongly consider speaking to an attorney. Even if it was a minor accident, you may have sustained injuries that will lead to substantial medical costs. For example, certain brain injuries, bone fractures, and soft tissue injuries can take days or even weeks to become apparent after an accident. Insurance companies may be quick to deny coverage or settle for less than your claim is worth, telling you that your injuries are not serious or that the other driver was not at fault for the accident. Hiring an attorney to file your auto accident claim gives you a better chance of recovering the full amount that you are entitled to.
At Rice, Murtha & Psoras, we work on a contingency basis, which means you pay nothing unless we recover compensation for you. We handle all types of car accident claims in Bel Air South, including but not limited to:
- Collisions with trucks, buses, or motorcycles
- Drunk driving accidents and drugged driving accidents
- Head-on collisions
- High-speed accidents
- Highway accidents
- Hit-and-run accidents
- Intersection accidents
- Left-hand turn accidents
- Low-speed accidents
- Multi-car pileups
- Parking lot accidents and parking garage accidents
- Rear-end collisions
- Side-swipe collisions
- T-bone collisions
- U-turn accidents
Common Car Crash Injuries
Car crashes often cause severe injuries, especially when vehicles collide at high speeds. Certain types of crashes tend to produce specific injury types, such as “whiplash” (cervical sprain/strain) neck injuries, which are common in rear-end collisions.
Unfortunately, insurance companies are often more focused on protecting the bottom line than on providing fair coverage. Insurance companies use standard algorithms to calculate damages after an accident, which means that insurers rarely make reasonable initial offers for serious and complex injuries, such as traumatic brain injuries.
In other cases, an insurance claim may not be a wise decision because a negligent driver may not have sufficient insurance coverage to compensate a victim. This means that a victim could be successful in an insurance claim but may still have a number of expenses from the accident because the settlement amount was insufficient. Unfortunately, after agreeing to an insurance settlement, a victim will be unable to pursue a lawsuit against the negligent driver that caused their injuries.
A car accident attorney in Bel Air South can fight to increase your recovery, taking into consideration factors the insurance company may have undervalued or overlooked, such as future medical treatments, reduced future earning capacity, and long-term disability. Common types of injuries that can result from car accidents include:
- Back and spinal cord injuries, which can result in chronic pain or paralysis
- Broken bones, often accompanied by deep cuts and bruising
- Burn injuries, which can occur if victims become trapped by hot or flaming debris
- Road rash injuries, which can occur if the driver or passengers are ejected from the vehicle
- Traumatic brain injuries, such as concussions or penetrating head wounds
When to File a Car Accident Lawsuit in Bel Air South, MD
The victim of a car accident should not waste any time in pursuing a personal injury lawsuit to recover damages for their injuries and other losses. The primary reason to file your claim as soon as possible is to avoid violating the statute of limitations. The statute of limitations determines the length of time that a potential plaintiff has to file a lawsuit with a court of law. Note, however, that the time limit set by the statute of limitations may vary depending on the circumstances of the case. For example, a car accident lawsuit may have a separate filing deadline than a product liability claim.
In Maryland, the statute of limitations for a personal injury lawsuit is three years from the date of the injury. If a plaintiff does not file their complaint within three years of the date of the injury, the court has the power to bar their claim. This may occur if the defendant in the case motions for a dismissal due to the violation of the statute of limitations. As a result, the court could dismiss the case with prejudice, which means the case cannot be refiled, and the plaintiff will likely lose all avenues to seek compensation.
There are a number of reasons to swiftly pursue a personal injury lawsuit, besides the statute of limitations. For example, if you had a loss of wages due to a car accident, you may need the compensation to manage your expenses. Additionally, an experienced attorney may hesitate to take your case if the statute of limitations deadline is quickly approaching.
You should also avoid making any assumptions about the statute of limitations for your case. As mentioned, you could lose the opportunity to file your case if you are unsure about how long you have to file your case. Our firm can help you determine the statute of limitations deadline for your case.
Damages Available for a Car Accident Injury Lawsuit in Bel Air South
Once a plaintiff prevails in a personal injury lawsuit, they can be awarded damages for their injuries. To prevail in a personal injury claim, a plaintiff will typically have to show how a defendant acted negligently. To prove negligence, a plaintiff should have evidence of the defendant’s actions. For example, the damage caused by the defendant should be photographed.
It is also important to note that there are four elements a plaintiff has to show to prove negligence:
- The defendant owed the plaintiff a duty of care
- The defendant breached the duty of care to the plaintiff (e.g., speeding)
- The plaintiff was injured due to the defendant’s breach
- The plaintiff sustained an injury or other losses that are compensable by a court of law
Once these elements are proven, the plaintiff can be awarded compensatory damages for their injuries and losses. Compensatory damages consist of economic losses and noneconomic losses. Economic losses are easy to calculate because they primarily consider objective factors. Noneconomic losses are difficult to calculate because they consider subjective factors.
The following is a list of compensatory damages that can be awarded for personal injury lawsuit:
- Loss of wages and future loss of wages
- Medical expenses for treatment, medical equipment, medication, and other related costs
- Pain and suffering
- Property damage
- Emotional distress
- Loss of consortium
This is not an exhaustive list. In some cases, a plaintiff may even be awarded punitive damages. Punitive damages are awarded when a defendant has committed a particularly heinous act.
To learn more about the damages available for your injuries, you should speak with an experienced attorney as soon as possible.
Bel Air South Car Accident Attorney Serving Residents Injured in a Crash
Our office routinely investigates complex multi-vehicle accidents. There is almost no accident or insurance scenario we have not encountered before, making us skilled and effective advocates for the clients we represent. We will gather, preserve, and closely analyze every shred of available evidence to determine what caused the crash and how negligence or recklessness may have played a role. We will also handle all negotiations with your insurance company, along with the other driver’s insurance provider, keeping a careful eye on the fine print of each policy to ensure you are not unfairly denied any of the damages to which you may be entitled.
If you or a family member was injured in a car accident in Bel Air South or the surrounding area, our law office is standing by to assist you and answer your questions. For a free legal consultation about filing a car accident claim in Maryland, contact Rice, Murtha & Psoras online, or call (410) 694-7291 to speak with a car crash lawyer in Bel Air South today.