Victims of car accidents may face substantial injuries and disabilities after the crash. Fortunate victims may face only minor injuries or property damage alone, but victims of serious crashes may leave with permanent injuries that require ongoing medical care and expensive medical bills. If you were injured, you do not need to go through your recovery alone. Our Wheaton, MD car accident lawyers may be able to help you get compensation for the injuries you faced and fight to get you additional payments for your pain and suffering and other damages.
For a free legal consultation on your car accident case, call the Law Offices of Randolph Rice today. Randolph Rice is a car accident and personal injury lawyer practicing in the Wheaton, MD. Mr. Rice represents injury victims and their families in lawsuits to recover lost wages, medical bills, and pain and suffering for their injuries. For a free legal consultation on your case, call our law offices today at (410) 694-7291.
How to Get Compensation for a Car Accident in Maryland
Car accident victims face damages from the cost of vehicle repairs in nearly every case. However, in more serious cases, you may face devastating consequences, such as severe physical injuries, missed work to cope with your injuries, serious pain and suffering, and other harms. In these cases, you may not be able to get full compensation for your injuries by filing your claim with an insurance company, and it may be best for you to file your claim with the courts.
When you take your case to court, you can claim any damages you faced as a consequence of the accident. In many cases, this means claiming the value of any medical care you faced, wages you missed because of the injuries, and pain and suffering you experienced. The medical bills can include both past and ongoing bills for imaging, surgeries, doctor’s visits, physical therapy, and other care. Lost wages can cover the cost of paychecks missed during your recovery as well as ongoing reductions in wages due to disabilities or injuries. Lastly, pain and suffering can include damages for the physical experience of pain as well as the mental and emotional experiences.
To seek these damages, you often have the choice between filing your claim in court and filing with the insurance company. An insurance claim is simpler in most cases, but you are typically limited in the damages you can receive. An insurance policy might not pay the full value of the injuries, as the policy is unlikely to cover damages for pain and suffering. This means that you may need to file your case in court to get the full compensation you deserve.
Proving Fault in a Car Crash in Maryland
Drivers, passengers, and others injured in a car crash must first prove that they were injured by another driver before the court will award damages. It is up to the jury in the case to listen to the evidence and arguments presented at trial and decide which driver or drivers were at fault for the crash. Only then can the court order the at-fault parties to pay the victims.
To prove fault, you typically must meet the burden of proof. Unlike the “beyond a reasonable doubt” standard famously used in criminal cases, civil lawsuits for personal injuries use a “preponderance of the evidence” standard. This means that you must prove that it is more likely than not that what you claimed is true – that the other driver was at fault for the crash.
For a court to find the other driver at fault, there must be something that they did wrong that warrants holding them accountable. In many cases, this mistake is a violation of traffic laws: speeding, drunk driving, drowsy driving, running a red light, or committing other traffic violations. If you can prove that the other driver illegally entered the intersection, struck you while speeding, failed to signal, or otherwise violated the law, you may be able to prove they were at fault.
If there were no explicit traffic laws violated, you can still argue that the other driver was at fault because of another mistake or error they made. For example, if a driver was going too fast for the road conditions but was still under the speed limit, they may still have been negligent. This is common in accidents on icy or wet roads.
The at-fault driver will likely try to defend against your claim by arguing that you were actually at fault instead of them. This can be a complete defense in Maryland since cases might be blocked if the court finds that the victim helped contribute to the accident. However, your lawyer can help present the case in a way that helps protect your claim and can argue that the other driver was solely at fault and must pay damages.
In many cases, evidence of what the driver said or did can help you prove fault. If the other driver admitted that the accident was their fault as part of an apology or admitted anything that helps your case, it is important to talk to your lawyer about those facts and statements.
Call Our Wheaton Car Accident Injury Lawyers for a Free Consultation
If you or a loved one was seriously injured in a car accident in Wheaton or the surrounding areas in Maryland, you should speak with a lawyer about your options for seeking compensation. Many people are content filing insurance claims and only find out later in the process that the insurance claim does not offer enough money to cover their needs. For a free legal consultation on your car accident injury case, and for help understanding how to maximize the damages in your case, call the Law Offices of Randolph Rice’s Wheaton car accident injury lawyers today at (410) 694-7291.