Should You File a Personal Injury Claim following a Maryland or Washington, D.C., Trucking Accident?
It’s not something that many people think about until they’ve actually been involved in a Maryland traffic accident, but there are important points to remember when considering whether or not one should file a personal injury lawsuit. Certainly, anyone who contemplates filing a personal injury claim should consider whether Maryland’s legal statutes and case law support your particular situation. Whether you are thinking about an insurance-related claim or a personal injury lawsuit, contacting a qualified automobile, trucking or motorcycle accident lawyer should be your first step.
From the standpoint of automobile and commercial trucking injury claims, there are many things to consider when discussing your case with an experienced injury attorney. Under Maryland law, the statute of limitations can be a limiting factor, depending on how much time has elapsed since the accident in question. For personal injury claims brought in Maryland -- as well as the District of Columbia -- in most situations the deadline to file is three years after the date of the accident. As long-time commercial trucking accident attorneys, the legal team at Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC, knows that it is critical to keep the limitations deadline in mind when planning a litigation strategy for our clients.
Furthermore, beyond any consideration of the filing deadline for a personal injury claim, it is important to be prepared for any counter claim of shared fault in an automobile, commercial trucking or motorcycle-related collision. In fact it is not at all unusual for some plaintiffs to find that they themselves have been named by the defendant in a separate injury lawsuit, in which the other driver or involved party claims that individual shares at least some amount of the blame for the crash.
Under Maryland’s contributory negligence rule, a plaintiff can be barred from collecting any damages from the other driver, even though the other motorist bears the majority of the fault. The sad fact is that under these types of situations, where the court agrees that blame is shared between the plaintiff and the defendant, the plaintiff’s damages are essentially zeroed out due to the role that person’s own negligence played in the injury accident.
Not only does the contributory negligence rule apply in court cases involving personal injury or wrongful death, the specter of being accused yourself of some shared responsibility is often raised during out-of-court settlement talks with insurance company representatives following a traffic accident -- all the more reason to discuss one’s intentions with an experienced Maryland auto and trucking injury lawyer ahead of time.
The legal staff at Lebowitz & Mzhen is well aware of the complications that can arise when planning a personal injury lawsuit tied to a commercial trucking collision. Our attorneys are experienced in representing victims of negligence-related traffic accidents and will review prospective clients’ cases in terms of Maryland’s insurance laws and the liability issues concerning transportation companies and other operators of commercial motor vehicles (CMVs)
As Baltimore-based commercial trucking accident lawyers, we understand that some traffic accident victims who are severely hurt may be reluctant to pursue a personal injury claim against a responsible party or parties. However, as professional litigators with years of experience in the field of personal injury and insurance law, we remind those people that individuals who are at fault in commercial trucking crashes should be held accountable for their actions. This often means pursuing a personal injury lawsuit against the negligent parties in order to recover the costs of medical treatment, rehab therapies and lost wages, not to mention damages for pain and suffering.
We understand that some victims who spend long periods of time negotiating with insurance carriers may find that the statute of limitations is fast approaching. This is something that should be avoided if at all possible. While there are many skilled attorneys that can help victims of Maryland roadway accidents, few of them can work miracles in the eleventh hour.
Rather than attempt to negotiate with insurance companies, who would generally be happy to run the clock out on victims in hopes of using up valuable case preparation time, we recommend that anyone who has been badly injured in a commercial trucking crash take the time early on to consult with a qualified injury lawyer. In general, the rule of thumb for individuals who believe they have a legitimate claim of negligence against a commercial truck driver or the trucker’s employer, should be to make an appointment with a personal injury lawyer at least six month to a year before the statute of limitations expires for a particular trucking accident.
An exception to the rule mentioned above is when the victim of a traffic accident is a minor child. Under the Maryland statutes, those children under 18 years have until age 21 to file a personal injury claim. Under such circumstances, a younger victim of a commercial trucking collision could legally be able to wait many years to file a claim, so long as it is done before his or her 21st birthday.
Lebowitz & Mzhen is ready and willing to help victims of trucking-related traffic wrecks, using our legal knowledge and courtroom experience to help individuals recover damages due them under the law. As experienced Baltimore attorneys, we know that proving negligence can be a difficult and complicated process, which requires in-depth research and proper case preparation.
Our team’s dedication to helping our clients means that we prepare each case with the full intent of going to trial. This can benefit our clients in many ways, not the least is in situations where the defendants prefer to settle out of court. These out-of-court settlements can take much of the stress off of the victim and his family by eliminating the need for a trial, which in turn can allow the victims to recover damages more quickly and to get on with their lives.
If you have been badly injured in a commercial trucking accident, an automobile collision or a motorcycle wreck, we recommend that you seek the counsel of a qualified personal injury attorney as soon as is practicable. The professional staff at Lebowitz & Mzhen is ready to sit down with you and discuss the details of your traffic-related injury accident. Please contact us toll-free at (800) 654-1949) or can email either Jack Lebowitz or Vadim Mzhen to arrange a no-obligation initial consultation.