Temple Hills, MD Personal Injury Lawyer

Personal injuries might forever alter a victim’s quality of life in Temple Hills. To get compensation for damages caused by another’s negligence, you can file a lawsuit with help from our lawyers.

After an accident in Temple Hills, victims should call the police and emergency medical services. This can lead to immediate documentation of the event and the victim’s injuries. There are certain limitations that pertain to injury claims in Maryland, such as the amount of time victims have to sue and the amount in compensatory damages they can recover. For example, recovery of non-economic damages is currently capped at $935,000 for personal injury victims. For you to recover such compensation, you must prove the defendant’s fault by establishing that they owed you a duty of care at the time of the accident and ultimately breached it. Suppose you are presented with a settlement offer at any point during your lawsuit. In that case, we can evaluate it to determine whether or not it is fair before settling or proceeding with a trial.

You can call the Temple Hills, MD personal injury lawyers of Rice, Murtha & Psoras now at (410) 694-7291 to schedule a free analysis of your case today.

Who to Call After Sustaining a Personal Injury in Temple Hills, MD

If you were hurt because of another person’s negligent or intentional wrongful act in Temple Hills, you should follow certain reporting guidelines. For example, this might include calling the police, depending on the type of accident you were injured in.

In Temple Hills, auto accidents that cause injury or death must be reported to law enforcement, according to Md. Code, Transp. Art., § 20-107. While other accidents, like slip and falls, might not legally require police involvement, you might still have to call 911, depending on the severity of the incident and your injuries. Calling 911 can allow you to get the immediate medical care you need from paramedics. Such medical professionals can take you directly to the hospital from the accident location.

You can then call our lawyers after you get the emergency medical care you require for your injuries. Our attorneys can learn the basic facts of the accident and begin investigating your case right away. During this time, we can obtain the police report for the incident if law enforcement was called to the scene of the event. We can also interview eyewitnesses, obtain surveillance footage, review photographs, and gather additional evidence that indicates who is liable for your injuries in Temple Hills.

Limits Pertaining to Personal Injury Claims in Temple Hills, MD

When it comes to your personal injury claim in Temple Hills, there are certain limits and deadlines to be aware of, especially regarding the amount of time you have to file your lawsuit and the compensatory damages available to you.

Statute of Limitations

According to Md. Code, Cts. & Jud. Proc. Art., § 5-101, the deadline to sue for a personal injury in Temple Hills is three years from the date of injury. If you were harmed because of medical malpractice, you would have five years from the date of injury or three years from the date of discovery to file your lawsuit, as dictated by Md. Code, Cts. & Jud. Proc. Art., § 5-109(a). If your case involves a government worker or entity, you might have to file a notice of a claim sooner than three years.

The statute of limitations exists so that negligent parties cannot be held liable for injuries sustained far in the past. If you do not bring your claim within the provided timeframe, you may be blocked from financial recovery in Temple Hills. That does not mean you should bring your lawsuit the day after you are injured, however. Filing too soon might leave you without sufficient support for your compensation claim.

We can help you file on time in several ways. First, our personal injury lawyers can assess your total damages and the extent of your injuries as you incur losses and build medical evidence. Prioritizing this aspect of your claim is crucial so we can learn the full value of your case before suing. We can then gather the necessary information and evidence for the basis of your claim so that we can file soon after your accident and within the statute of limitations in Maryland.

Limit on Non-Economic Damages

Maryland imposes certain limits regarding victims’ recoveries of non-economic damages. Pursuant to Md. Code, Cts. & Jud. Proc. Art., § 11-108(b)(2), normal personal injury plaintiffs can only recover up to $935,000 in intangible damages. This recovery limit increases by $15,000 annually. The cap on non-economic damages guides juries when awarding compensation to victims at trial. Whether or not you recover all non-financial damages available in your case will depend on the evidence of damages you can provide. Because of this, it may help your case to confide in a mental health professional or personally document your pain and suffering in the time following an accident in Temple Hills. That way, if your case goes to trial, you can show the jury the full extent of your emotional difficulties and recover the largest award for pain and suffering available in your case.

Establishing a Defendant’s Duty of Care in a Temple Hills, MD Personal Injury Lawsuit

In civil claims in Temple Hills, the standard of proof applied is typically the preponderance of the evidence standard. In order to meet this standard and prove that the defendant’s negligence most likely caused your injuries, you will have to establish four elements, the first being that the defendant owed you a duty of care.

A duty of care is the responsibility a person or entity owes to another. For example, as a driver, one owes a duty of care to other drivers on the road. The level of this duty is to follow traffic laws and act with reasonable responsibility while driving. A doctor’s level of duty to their patients differs in that it is often higher. Property owners also owe duties of care to visitors in Temple Hills. Our personal injury lawyers must establish the relationship between you and the defendant at the time of your accident to determine whether or not a duty of care was present.

Once we do this, we then have to show that the duty of care was ultimately breached. We can do this by illustrating exactly how the defendant in your lawsuit acted negligently. For example, suppose you were injured in a slip and fall in the stairwell of your apartment building. In that case, it might have been because the property management group failed to install adequate lighting, making it liable for your damages.

Proving Additional Elements of a Personal Injury Case in Temple Hills, MD

On top of proving duty of care and breach, our lawyers must also prove additional elements, such as causation and damages, in order for you to find success in your personal injury lawsuit in Temple Hills.

Causation is the crucial and often illusive link between the defendant’s negligent act and the plaintiff’s physical injuries. That is to say, that it is not enough to prove that the defendant acted negligently, as you must then show that the defendant’s actions caused your injuries. To accomplish this, we might use a combination of evidence, such as security camera videos, photographs from the scene, medical records, and eyewitness statements.

Finally, we will have to prove that you suffered real damages as a result of the incident in question. Victims can do this by keeping track of any and all financial losses related to an accident caused by negligence. This will include records of medical expenses and lost wages. If you have suffered emotional distress because of the event, document your pain and suffering as well.

Assessing Personal Injury Settlement Offers in Temple Hills, MD

Knowing the full value of your personal injury claim will be important when it comes time to evaluate potential settlement offers from the defendant. Our attorneys can carefully assess any settlement offers you receive so that you can make an informed decision.

Generally speaking, the first settlement offers victims get are low-ball offers. Defendants and insurance companies tend to do this with the hope that victims might accept settlements that are simply unfair. This can bode well for negligent parties, who may only end up compensating victims for a portion of their losses.

A good rule of thumb is not to accept initial settlement offers. Instead, allow our attorneys to compare the offer to your total damages to see if it is appropriate. On the rare chance that it is, you may be able to settle then and there. If the first offer is not fair, we can go back with a counteroffer supported by proof of the defendant’s negligence. Sometimes, when faced with compelling evidence against them, defendants might be more willing to settle at a higher amount out of court in order to avoid being found liable by a jury in Temple Hills.

It is also important for victims to understand that settling out of court might lead to lesser recoveries when it comes to certain damages. For example, defendants rarely offer to compensate victims for pain and suffering in settlements. Furthermore, if you go to trial, you might be awarded punitive damages by the jury, depending on whether or not gross negligence is present in your case.

Estimating the Length of Your Personal Injury Claim in Temple Hills, MD

Each personal injury claim is unique, meaning some take longer than others to complete. Our lawyers can estimate the possible length of your claim and provide you with the guidance and support you need to see it through.

Some personal injury lawsuits are wrapped up fairly quickly, depending on both parties’ willingness to settle out of court. That said, there is a common misconception that settling automatically takes less time than going to trial, which is not always true. Settlement negotiations might drag on for a long time, causing a victim to go without compensation for longer than is necessary.

Going to trial can also take some time, as there are many procedural requirements involving in going to court. Furthermore, trials are complex processes, the lengths of which will depend on the evidence and arguments presented by both sides.

Do not get discouraged during the course of your case, even if it is taking longer than you initially anticipated. Provided you have a strong claim, you can likely get compensation for your damages, regardless of how long it takes for your lawsuit to conclude.

If you choose to settle out of court, the compensation you receive will be negotiated for by our lawyers and the defendant’s counsel. If the defendant is found liable in court, the jury assigned to your case will determine your award based on the proof of damages you can provide and Maryland’s limits on certain compensatory damages.

Call Our Injury Lawyers in Temple Hills, MD Today

Call Rice, Murtha & Psoras at (410) 694-7291 to get help with your case from our personal injury lawyers today.