Personal injury and tort laws cover a wide variety of accidents and injuries that people sustain. Personal injury claims seek compensation for the damages caused by injuries and accidents.
If you sustain injuries due to another party’s negligence, intentional acts, or wrongdoing, you should seek legal advice regarding your options for recovering compensation for your financial losses, pain and suffering, and other damages.
Continue reading to learn some examples of the types of cases personal injury lawyers handle.
Motor Vehicle Accidents
This type of personal injury law encompasses all types of cases involving motor vehicles.
What cases do personal injury attorneys handle involving motor vehicles and automobiles?
- Car accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Semi-truck accidents
- Commercial vehicle accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Bus and public transportation accidents
A motor vehicle crash can cause severe injuries and significant financial damages.
While all types of car accidents can cause catastrophic injuries, examples of collisions that have a high risk of death and injury include:
- Head-on collisions
- Rollover accidents
- Multi-vehicle crashes
- Interstate accidents
- T-bone accidents (sideswipe crashes)
- Rear-end accidents
Insurance companies often blame the other driver for contributing to the cause of a crash to avoid paying the full value of damages. After an automobile accident, it is best to allow your lawyer to handle all communications with the insurance adjuster and claims investigator. Talking with the insurance company or settling a claim without legal advice can result in lower settlement amounts for you.
Animal Attacks and Dog Bite Cases
Dog bites and animal attacks can cause painful injuries that result in permanent impairments, debilitating emotional distress, and significant disfigurement. A victim may suffer permanent nerve damage, traumatic brain injury, broken bones, scarring, and other injuries from a dog attack. In addition, victims may experience chronic anxiety whenever they are around animals.
Maryland dog bite laws hold dog owners strictly liable for damages when their dog attacks or bites someone. Generally, the law holds the dog owner liable for medical bills, lost wages, and other economic damages. The dog owner may also be liable for non-economic damages.
Typically, the dog owner can only avoid strict liability if the victim was trespassing on the owner’s property, although this exception might not apply to a child. Also, the dog owner might avoid liability when the victim is partially to blame for the attack, such as if the victim provoked the dog.
Workers’ Compensation and Workplace Injuries
Almost all employers in Maryland are required to provide workers’ compensation insurance for employees. Therefore, if an employee is injured during the ordinary course of employment, the employee receives workers’ comp benefits.
The employee does not need to prove negligence. Also, contributory fault laws do not apply. Therefore, the employee can receive benefits even though the employee was partially to blame for the cause of the injury.
Workers’ compensation laws generally do not permit an injured worker to sue their employer for negligence.
However, the law does not prevent an injured employee from suing third parties for negligence. Therefore, you could receive additional compensation for a workplace accident if another party caused your injury.
Product Liability Claims
Defective products cause severe injuries. Any product has the potential to cause injuries if the product is defective.
Parties that can be held liable for creating, making, marketing, and selling defective products include:
The most common types of product liability claims include design defects, manufacturing defects, and marketing defects. Many product liability cases are based on strict liability.
You do not need to prove that the party intended to injure you or was negligent in causing your injury. You only need to prove that the product was defective and the defect caused your injury.
Wrongful Death Claims
Wrongful death laws hold parties liable for damages when they cause the death of another person through negligence or intentional acts. A wrongful death claim can arise from any personal injury case.
A family can receive compensation for a variety of damages, including:
- Funeral expenses
- Lost wages
- Medical expenses
- Loss of future earnings
- Mental anguish
- Loss of comfort, companionship, and marital care
Maryland laws give priority for filing wrongful death claims to primary beneficiaries, including the person’s spouse, children, and parents. However, secondary beneficiaries may file a claim when there are no surviving primary beneficiaries.
Premises Liability Claims
Property owners can be held liable for injuries that occur on their property.
Examples of premises liability claims include:
- Slip and fall accidents
- Insufficient security
- Loose or falling objects
- Swimming pool accidents
- Broken or defective stairs and railings
- Dog bites
- Bed bugs
- Inadequate lighting
- Elevator and escalator accidents
- Playground and school accidents
- Broken and uneven sidewalks, walkways, and surfaces
Premises liability claims cover accidents on property owned by private individuals, businesses, and government entities. Maryland classifies visitors as invitees, licensees, and trespassers. The level of the duty of care the property owner must use depends on the type of visitor.
Generally, property owners owe a duty of care to invitees and licensees to provide safe premises by taking reasonable care to remove, remedy, or warn of dangerous conditions.
Because trespassers are not on the property with the owner’s permission, the owner might not be liable for a trespasser’s injuries. However, that might not apply if the trespasser is a child.
Medical Malpractice Claims
Not all bad outcomes are the result of medical negligence or medical errors. Medical malpractice occurs when a medical provider fails to provide a level of care that meets or exceeds the accepted standard of care for that situation. The failure to provide an acceptable standard of care harms the patient.
Common types of medical malpractice claims include, but are not limited to:
- Medication errors
- Failing to obtain informed consent
- Birth injuries
- Surgical errors
- Failure to diagnose, delayed diagnosis, and misdiagnosis
- Diagnostic errors
Proving medical malpractice can be challenging. First, you need medical experts to testify that the doctor’s actions breached their duty of care to the patient. You must also prove that the doctor’s actions or omissions were the direct and proximate cause of your injury and damages.
Statute of Limitations for Maryland Personal Injury Claims
All types of personal injury cases have a deadline for filing personal injury lawsuits. However, the statute of limitations varies depending on the type of claim and the parties involved in the claim. There may also be exceptions to the statute of limitations in some cases.
If you do not file a lawsuit before the deadline expires, you cannot hold the party legally liable for your damages and injuries. Therefore, it is best to seek legal advice as soon as possible after an injury or accident.
Schedule a Free Consultation with a Baltimore Personal Injury Lawyer
If you’ve been injured in an accident, it’s best to reach out to a personal injury lawyer for help. An experienced Baltimore personal injury attorney will fight for your legal rights and ensure that you recover the compensation you need.