Car accidents are one of the leading causes of injury and death for many demographics. In cases of severe injury, medical bills can be quite high, and the pain and suffering you face from the injury could require serious financial compensation. Even in low-speed crashes, you could sustain injuries like whiplash or back injuries that might require time off work and other expensive complications.
For help with a car accident injury case, call the Rice, Murtha & Psoras today. Our Glen Burnie, MD car accident lawyers represent injury victims in lawsuits to seek compensation for injuries, medical expenses, and lost wages. Our lawyers can help you understand your options for seeking compensation and help you maximize the compensation you can receive by filing your claim in the best way for your case. For a free legal consultation on your case, call our law offices today at (410) 694-7291.
Common Causes of Car Accidents in Glen Burnie, MD
Driving a car can be incredibly dangerous, and drivers have a lot going on at once. However, drivers are expected to follow certain standards and protocols behind the wheel of the car. When they fail to do so, they can cause serious accidents. Many of these failures happen in the same common ways, leading to the following common car accident scenarios.
Left Turn Accidents
One of the most common ways for two cars to crash occurs when one car has to make a left turn across an oncoming lane of traffic. If the driver fails to properly signal and warn the oncoming cars about the turn, they can cause an accident. They could also hit the other car if they fail to obey a stop sign or red light, if they do not properly estimate the oncoming car’s speed, or if they take the turn too fast to keep control.
Running a Red Light or Stop Sign
When a driver fails to stop at a stop sign or red light, they could quickly find themselves driving at high speeds into cross traffic. Whichever car illegally entered the intersection is typically at-fault in these kinds of crashes. These accidents often result in high-speed crashes and “T-bone” collisions.
If one car is actively tailgating another or gets too close while speeding up or slowing down, they have a shorter distance to react and stop their car if the car in front of them has to stop suddenly. If the rear car hits the front car, it usually happens because the rear car was following too closely for the current conditions or because the front car intentionally “brake-checked” them.
Backing Up Accidents
In parking lots and streets with angled on-street parking, one of the most common causes of accidents is drivers who back up without properly checking behind them. If a driver backs into you in a parking lot, the accident is likely their fault and you can sue them for injuries.
Speed is a factor in many car accidents. Even when it is not the primary cause of the crash, it is commonly a contributing cause; drivers who speed are more likely to commit other serious errors behind the wheel because they have less time to react to dangers.
How to Proceed After a Car Accident in Glen Burnie
A car accident can be an extremely scary and disorienting experience, even if it is minor and you walk away relatively unscathed. If injuries are involved and medical treatment is necessary, it can be even more frightening. However, it is vitally important that you act swiftly and decisively after a car accident has occurred to follow the necessary protocols and to document all the evidence of the crash.
The first thing you should do after an accident is to immediately make sure that you and all of your passengers in the vehicle are not injured. You need to do the same with regard to the driver and passengers of the other vehicle involved in the accident, regardless of who was at fault. If injuries have occurred it is required that you contact emergency services or get the individual to a medical center as quickly as possible if they cannot do so themselves.
You are required to give certain information to the driver of the other vehicle after any accident that results in injury, death, or property damage. You must provide them with your name, address, registration information for the vehicle, driver’s license information, and insurance. If the accident is minor and does not involve anything more than property damage, you may be able to leave after exchanging information and the insurance companies will handle the rest.
However, this does not mean that you should not document the scene by taking pictures and videos of the scene and recording any contemporaneous recollections you have about the cause of the accident. It may be helpful to draw out diagrams after the accident showing the how the incident occurred to the best of your recollection. If the other driver is not cooperative and you need a lawyer down the road, having such information from the time of the accident will be pivotal.
If there are injuries or deaths, if you hit an unattended vehicle and cannot located the owner, if a drunk driver is involved, if a vehicle involved cannot be safely moved, or if the other driver is unable to provide required information or refuses to provide it, you are required to call the police. The police will come to the scene of the accident and make a report. This report will be vital in the determination of fault by insurance companies or in a criminal or civil case. Make sure you provide detailed and accurate information to the officer if any report is made.
Leaving the scene of an accident is a major crime in the state of Maryland that can result in jail time. Even if you are not at fault, you should never leave the scene of the crime until you have exchanged all pertinent information with the other driver or spoken to the police. As soon as possible, you should contact your insurance company and make a full report of what has occurred and your recollection of how the accident happened.
Determining Fault After a Car Accident in Glen Burnie, MD
Car accidents in Glen Burnie, MD typically play out in one of two ways. Sometimes, the accident and the circumstances surrounding are clear cut and it is obvious that one party is at fault. Other times, there will be a dispute about who caused the crash and whether it was caused as a result of one party’s negligence. If the insurance companies cannot come to a satisfactory agreement about who owes what costs, a civil suit may be necessary to collect the damages to which you are owed.
In order to succeed in a civil suit, you will need to prove that the other party was negligent. In the context of a car accident, this involves showing that the other person did something that was not in line with the driving laws and the rules of the road in the state of Maryland. Your lawyer will need to show that there was a duty, a breach of that duty, that this breach caused the accident, and that there are damages available for such a breach.
A duty is something that a driver is required to do to protect the safety of other drivers on the road. For example, a driver has a duty to obey all traffic signals. A breach occurs when someone fails to complete their duty. For example, if a driver blows through a red light without stopping, this would be a breach of their duty to obey all traffic signals. If the driver goes through a red light and crashes into your car in an intersection, you should be able to show that the fact that the driver did not obey traffic signals was the cause of the accident. If the driver had stopped at the red light, the accident would not have occurred. Any treatment injuries or cost of repairing your vehicle as a result of this breach of the driver’s duty would constitute damages that you can collect.
The other driver may try to claim that they were not in breach of their duty and therefore did not cause the accident. This is why it is vital to photograph, videotape, and document the scene, interview any witnesses who saw what occurred and provide their contact information to your insurance company, and give your insurance company a full and detailed description of what happened as soon as possible. The more information you have and the sooner you provide it to your insurance company, the more likely you are to succeed in your claim. If you are injured, remember to be sure to file a police report and to keep records of all of your medical expenses after you have been treated.
Types of Injuries That Can Result from Car Accidents in Glen Burnie, MD
There are numerous different types of injuries that can occur as a result of a car accident, from the minor to the extremely serious. Below we list some of the most common types of injuries that occur and that we will fight to get you damages for.
- Traumatic Brain Injuries
- Herniated Discs
- Fractured or Broken Bones
- Internal Injuries
- Spinal Injuries
Compensation for Glen Burnie Car Accident Injuries
When another driver causes an accident, you may be able to hold them “liable” for the crash. In some instances, their insurance will cover the liability by paying you damages for the injuries and vehicle damage the driver caused you. This can cover some minor cases, but injuries always make a case more complex and may require increased compensation. If you take your case to court, you may be able to claim full damages for your injuries.
The damages paid through insurance often cover lost wages and medical bills from an injury as well as damage to the vehicle. However, insurance policies will typically only cover a percentage of the costs, not the full value. Insurance will also not cover pain and suffering. If your injuries were severe, pain and suffering may be the biggest part of the damages the other driver owes you, and you could miss out by trying to get compensation through an insurance claim.
If you take your case to court, your attorney can argue for full damages. This could potentially include the full cost of any medical expenses, including hospital stays, surgeries, rehabilitation, physical therapy, and other expenses. If you missed work or will miss work in the future because of the injuries, you can claim damages for lost wages and reduced earning capacity. Lastly, the damages for pain and suffering can account for the impact the injury has had on your life, the pain and discomfort of the injury, missed opportunities, and other physical and mental effects of the injury.
It is important to talk to an attorney about what your case is worth. The other driver or their insurance company may try to shut down your claim by denying fault or denying compensation. They may alternatively try to offer a low settlement or refuse to cover certain damages you are owed. Your attorney can help you understand what your case should be worth and avoid any low settlements.
Call Our Glen Burnie Car Accident Lawyers for a Free Legal Consultation
If you were injured in a car accident in the Glen Burnie area, contact the Rice, Murtha & Psoras today. Our personal injury lawyers represent victims of car crashes and members of their family in lawsuits to seek compensation for physical pain, mental suffering, medical bills, and lost wages. If your car accident left you with expensive bills, kept you from working, and caused other disruptions in your life, call our Glen Burnie car accident lawyers today to set up a free legal consultation and learn more about what your claim might be worth. Our number is (410) 694-7291.