Personal injury law is a complicated area of law because it includes many types of accidents that can cause injury. The basis for any personal injury case is that someone was injured, and someone else was at fault for the accident. Without an injury, an individual doesn’t have a personal injury claim. The tricky thing about personal injury law is that a person may not know they have a claim until they meet with a personal injury law firm owings mills md. Before meeting with a law firm, it’s helpful to understand some Maryland personal injury law basics.
What is a Personal Injury Claim?
A personal injury claim is a tort-based negligence. A “tort” refers to a wrongful action that causes an injury to an individual. This individual, the injured victim, is called the plaintiff in a personal injury lawsuit.
The claim is based on negligence. Negligence is defined as the wrongful party not acting as a reasonable person would have in the same situation. For example, a reasonable person would have stopped at a stop sign to avoid causing an accident. If the defendant didn’t stop at a stop sign and caused a car accident, then they are negligence.
An accident victim must prove four things to be successful in a personal injury lawsuit. They must show the defendant owed them a legal duty to protect them from harm. The defendant breached that duty by causing the accident. The defendant’s actions led to the accident victim being injured. The last thing they must prove is that they incurred damages such as medical bills and lost wages.
Time to File a Claim in Maryland
Maryland limits the time an accident victim has to file a lawsuit. This is called statute of limitations. This means if a person waits too long to file their claim, they may lose the right to sue. For most personal injury cases, a claim must be filed in court within three years from the day of the accident. For example, if an accident victim fell in a grocery store on April 1, 2016, they would have had to file by April 1, 2019, to pursue their case. If the person filed April 1, 2019, their case would be rejected by the court.
Contact a Lawyer about a Maryland Personal Injury Claim
Another reason why personal injury law is so complex is because a person or company who caused the accident can claim certain defenses. One type of defense is called contributory negligence. This defense option means the victim of the accident was also at fault.
Maryland law would prevent a victim from recovering any money if they were at fault for the accident. Thus, the victim also acted negligently and contributed to the accident that caused their injuries. Some defendants in a lawsuit may mention this defense to a victim to stop them from pursuing a claim. It’s best to always seek a personal injury firm for representation and to understand more about personal injury laws.