Personal injury claims are a way to recover just compensation for losses that were the fault of another party. After a crash, it’s highly advisable to consult a personal injury lawyer who serves the Gaithersburg and Rockville areas. When you watch this video, you’ll learn that turning to a personal injury lawyer offers you distinct financial advantages.
An insurance company may not necessarily offer the average person fair compensation for his or her accident injuries. However, when you have an auto accident attorney contact the insurance carrier on your behalf, the representative will know that you’re serious about recovering compensation. If a just settlement is not forthcoming, your Gaithersburg lawyer may file a personal injury lawsuit on your behalf.
After an accident, it’s quite possible that the other party will attempt to deny fault for the crash or shift the blame to you. This may give you some problems when you try to recover compensation with a personal injury claim filed near Rockville. Personal injury lawyers strongly recommend taking a few minutes to gather critical information after a crash, including the names and contact information of any witnesses. Then, your personal injury lawyer can interview these witnesses and obtain their statements.
Witness statements can be used to support the allegations in a personal injury lawsuit. For example, if the other party rear-ended your car, he or she may try to claim that you stopped abruptly, or even backed up and hit them. A witness may be called to testify that you did indeed hit the brakes in response to a traffic hazard, but that the other party was tailgating you and wouldn’t have struck your car if he or she maintained a safe distance.
In medical malpractice claims, auto accident injury claims, slip and fall accident claims, and any other type of personal injury claim in Rockville , your personal injury lawyer will have to prove that the plaintiff is guilty of negligence per se. Negligence per se is a legal term that means that if the plaintiff violated a law or regulation, and that violation resulted in injury or death, then the plaintiff was negligent.
Watch this video for a legal definition of negligence per se. If your personal injury lawyer can prove negligence per se, then you will be entitled to an award or settlement for damages sustained due to the accident or injury.
If you or a loved one has hired a personal injury lawyer in Gaithersburg to file a personal injury claim or accident injury claim, you might be entitled to seek loss of affection damages. Loss of affection damages can be included in your personal injury settlement if you or your spouse was injured to the point that he or she can no longer show affection or participate in sexual activity.
Loss of affection damages are always sought by the uninjured partner in a personal injury claim or accident injury claim. Your wrongful death lawyer is also able to pursue loss of affection damages if your spouse or partner was killed due to negligence, intentional infliction of injury, or medical malpractice. This type of personal injury claim is known as a loss of companionship claim or a loss of society claim.
In order to determine whether a surviving family member should be awarded these damages in a wrongful injury case, the jury will consider whether the deceased had a harmonious relationship with the plaintiff, what their living arrangements were, and the overall effect that the death had on surviving family members.
If you have been injured in a commercial truck or semi-truck accident near Gaithersburg , you should contact a truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. A truck accident lawyer can help you navigate the complexities of truck accident law, which includes state and federal Departments of Transportation regulations and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration regulations. Here is a brief explanation of the role of federal law in truck accident cases.
Which Federal Agencies Regulate Truck Accident Laws?
Most elements of the trucking industry are regulated by both state and federal agencies. These agencies establish trucking laws and truck accident laws that may affect you if you are in a commercial truck accident or semi-truck accident. The federal agencies that regulate trucking and trucking laws are the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations is the primary source of most federal trucking regulations.
What Areas of Trucking do Federal Laws Regulate?
Whether a truck driver operates in your state or elsewhere, he must follow federal laws and regulations for the industry. He must hold a valid commercial driver’s license at the time that he is operating a commercial truck or semi-truck. He is only permitted to drive for a certain amount of time in one stretch without stopping and taking a break. The amount of weight that the truck is legally allowed to haul is regulated based upon the size of the truck. The truck must be regularly inspected, maintained, and repaired according to federal safety and quality standards. There are also federal safety regulations associated with hauling hazardous materials.
How is Liability Proven in a Truck Accident Case?
Your truck accident attorney should be able to tell you if he thinks that he will be able to legally prove that the truck driver was responsible for your truck accident. This can be proven if the driver was negligent or was driving negligently, or if he or his trucking company violated any federal trucking or local traffic laws.
It can be particularly challenging for a personal injury lawyer to litigate cases involving soft tissue injuries, given that these injuries are often not visible. There are two essential steps you should consider following an accident that inflicts soft tissue injuries. First, you should immediately go to the emergency room or urgent care center for a thorough evaluation. Inform the physician that you were just in an accident and make sure that this information is reflected in your medical record. Do not hesitate to ask the medical staff if imaging studies may help diagnose and document your injuries, such as MRI or CT scans. After receiving medical care, promptly schedule a consultation with injury attorneys to discuss presenting a personal injury claim near Rockville.
It’s imperative to consult a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible because there are deadlines for personal injury claims. Additionally, evidence may not be readily available after a certain point following the accident. This is particularly true of truck accidents, given that trucking companies may dispose of certain evidence after just 90 days. Arranging legal representation right away can improve your chances of securing compensation.
Personal injury claims near Gaithersburg can be quite complex. If you’ve sustained injuries, property damage, or other losses because of the negligence of another person, your best chance of securing compensation is with the help of a personal injury lawyer. You also have the right to consult a personal injury attorney if you’ve suffered the loss of a loved one because of someone else’s reckless or negligent actions.
Why do I Need a Lawyer?
Television shows and movies often glorify the act of representing one’s self in court, but this is rarely a good idea. Even if you aren’t sure whether you should file a personal injury lawsuit, you can benefit from the guidance of a personal injury lawyer beginning right after an accident. When you arrange legal representation, you’ll have the benefit of the lawyer’s in-depth knowledge of your legal rights and options. He or she will thoroughly evaluate your case, explain its merits, answer your questions, and help you understand the steps toward obtaining compensation. Depending on the type of accident you were involved in, your personal injury lawyer will negotiate with the insurance carrier on your behalf. Individuals who try to negotiate with insurance carriers by themselves are often given very low settlements. If negotiation fails to result in just compensation for your losses, your lawyer may file a lawsuit on your behalf.
Which Lawyer Should I Choose?
Typically, attorneys choose one or several areas of the law to focus their practice on, whether criminal defense, bankruptcy, family law, immigration, etc. It’s best to hire a lawyer who focuses exclusively on personal injury claims. In doing so, you have more assurance that the attorney has seen and handled your type of issue before, and that he or she is fully capable of successfully managing your claim. Before signing a retainer agreement with the lawyer, you may wish to ask about his or her track record of securing compensation for clients and how frequently they appear in court.
What Is the Initial Consultation?
Many reputable personal injury lawyers offer free case reviews or initial consultations. This first meeting allows you and the lawyer to get acquainted, assess the case, and discuss your legal options. The initial consultation also gives you the opportunity to decide whether the law firm is a good fit for you before signing the retainer agreement.
If you are hurt because of someone else’s negligence, you are entitled to personal injury protection near Gaithersburg . A personal injury lawyer will fight to make sure you have the right to be compensated.
If you suffer a personal injury in an accident, you may have the right to file a personal injury claim. A personal injury lawyer can advise you about the viability of your claim for damages. Even if you were partly at fault for the accident, you may still have the right to sue. Damages usually increase if you have substantial medical bills, have missed time from work, or will never again be able to work due to your injury. To find out more about your rights, schedule a consultation at a personal injury law firm.
Many personal injury claims near Gaithersburg stem from dog bites. If you have been bitten by someone else’s dog, your personal injury lawyer can guide you through the process of holding the dog owner liable.
Each year, a personal injury attorney handles multiple claims from people who have suffered serious injuries as a result of dog bites. When you are hurt by someone else’s dog, his or her homeowners insurance company is responsible. Today, dog bite claims account for over one-third of homeowners insurance liability claims. Liability may be imposed because of a state law where a dog owner is automatically responsible for any injury or property damage caused by a dog. Liability may also arise if the owner was negligent in controlling a dog or if the victim can prove that the owner knew a dog was dangerous. As your personal injury lawyer will advise you, dog owners can also face criminal liability when their pets lash out.
If you have been hurt in a car accident , you should seek counsel from an auto accident lawyer near Gaithersburg. Personal injury law can be complicated, and only a personal injury attorney who regularly handles auto collisions can evaluate whether or not you may have a claim for financial damages. Continue reading to find out why you should not speak to the other driver’s insurance company, put off seeking medical care, or have your car fixed immediately after an accident.
Speak to the Other Attorney
Assuming you are in an auto accident with a truck or car driver who is insured, his or her insurance company will want to secure a statement from you as soon as possible. However, it is essential to hire a personal injury lawyer before you speak to any insurance company. Many people feel pressured to give a statement after an accident. Unfortunately, anything you say can and will be used against you in a trial. Only an experienced personal injury attorney can ensure that your legal rights are protected and that you do not accidentally admit to fault.
Put Off Seeking Medical Care
When it comes to accident injury claims, seeking medical care right away is important. Even if you are not sure that you are seriously hurt, it is vital to speak to a doctor and seek a comprehensive medical evaluation. Many injuries do not show symptoms until days or even weeks after an accident. In order to recover monetary damages and be reimbursed for medical bills, you should see a doctor immediately after an accident. You should also make sure to hold onto any bills.
Take Your Car in for Repairs
While you may understandably want to have your car fixed as soon as possible, having your vehicle serviced can make it more difficult for investigators to determine who is at fault. To make sure you are adequately compensated for any property damage or loss, a personal injury lawyer urges clients to only take a car in for repairs after fault has been conclusively established.
Regardless of a store’s size or notoriety, that store is responsible for taking reasonable measures to protect its customers’ health and safety. Slip and fall accidents are the most common types of injuries that occur in stores, although other injuries can also occur if the premises are poorly-lit or maintained. If you are injured while shopping in a store, you may be eligible to file a personal injury lawsuit near Gaithersburg for compensation.
Slip and Fall Accidents
Slips, trips, and falls are the most common accidents that occur while shopping in stores, and also a common basis for personal injury claims. These injuries may arise from a variety of conditions, including poorly-maintained flooring, cords or other tripping hazards, and even flooring damage or dangerous areas that are not properly marked. However, because a slip and fall accident can be a difficult legal case to pursue, it is imperative to work with an experienced personal injury attorney when filing a claim against a store to obtain damages for a slip and fall that occurred while in the property.
Falling Object Accidents
Another common personal injury that is likely to occur while shopping is an accident involving a falling object. Poorly-secured stock can easily fall from shelving, while old or unstable shelving units themselves may also pose a hazard to shoppers. Injuries can also occur while trying to reach items on shelves that are difficult to access, even with the help of an employee. Finally, even overhead signs installed by the store can topple or drop onto patrons. If you are injured by a falling object while in a store, your personal injury law firm can help you evaluate the conditions that led to the accident and file a successful personal injury lawsuit to receive the compensation to which you are due.
There are many potential hazards that can lead to accidents that cause minor or even major injuries while in a store. The best way to pursue a personal injury claim of this nature is to work with an experienced personal injury lawyer serving Gaithersburg to receive the prompt medical treatment and financial compensation you deserve.
While most individuals are familiar with accidents involving personal cars, trucks, or motorcycles, public transportation vehicles are also at risk for accidents as well. Bus and train accidents cause the same injuries and hardships that result from car and truck accidents , but seeking compensation is much more difficult without the help of an experienced personal injury lawyer serving Rockville. Every time you ride public transportation, the carrier assumes responsibility for your safety. Pedestrians and bicyclists sharing the roads with public transportation also have the right to safe conduct by bus and train operators. Thus, if you are involved in a public transportation accident, you may have the right to sue for compensation to cover lost wages and medical expenses associated with your injury. However, seeking compensation from a public transportation service is not the same as filing a normal personal injury lawsuit following a crash in which everyone involved is a private party. Many municipalities that operate bus, subway, or train systems have special immunities or “notice” requirements in place to limit their liability, or worse, extinguish your claim entirely if all of the special rules are not followed. This is why working with an experienced personal injury lawyer is so important—your lawyer will ensure you follow all necessary regulations and meet any required deadlines to file your case to avoid the most common causes of dismissal and help you receive the compensation you deserve.
Although motorcycle accidents are no more or less common than car and truck accidents, a motorcycle crash is more likely to cause serious injuries than a collision between two passenger vehicles. There are many possible causes of motorcycle accidents, including driver lapses, poor weather and road conditions, and even vehicle limitations that can increase the risk of a motorcycle crash under certain circumstances. If you have been involved in a motorcycle crash near Gaithersburg, it’s best to work with a personal injury lawyer to determine issues such as fault and damages due to help you recover from any injuries you may have sustained.
Poor Road ConditionsMotorcycles are more prone to accidents resulting from poor road and weather conditions than enclosed passenger vehicles. This is because motorcycles are both smaller and less stable than four-wheeled vehicles, and can be easily affected by potholes, cracks, slick conditions, and even debris or obstacles in the road. Driving in poor weather conditions not only further reduces motorcycle stability, but also reduces the visibility of the motorcycle to other motorists, which can increase the risk of a collision.
Distracted driving is a common cause of car and truck crashes, and also a frequent factor involved in motorcycle crashes as well. Car and motorcycle drivers who are distracted from the road, even momentarily, are more likely to cause an accident due to inattention. As a motorcyclist, it’s important to both pay attention to the road at all times and take notice of the drivers around you to determine whether distraction may keep them from noticing you. Car and truck drivers can benefit from avoiding distractions and constantly scanning the area around their vehicle for motorcycles, which can be easy to miss due to their small size and fast movements.
Studies have shown that a driver’s view of a motorcycle may be momentarily obscured by the standard pillars on the left and right edge of a windshield. So a driver who approaches a stop sign, and takes but a quick glance to the left or right, may not see a motorcycle approaching on the boulevard. Similarly a driver intending to turn left across oncoming traffic, may not see an approaching motorcycle “hidden” behind the left pillar of the windshield.
Taking precautions when riding a motorcycle or sharing the road with motorcycles is the best way to avoid a motorcycle crash. If an accident does occur, contact a motorcycle accident attorney promptly for help with pursuing any personal injury claims.
Slip and fall lawyers regularly help victims get compensation after being hurt from falls in Gaithersburg, MD. While it may seem simple to prove that a property owner is at fault when someone is hurt on his poorly maintained property, personal injury law in this area is actually quite complex. If you have slipped on a floor, stairs, or ground that is slick or dangerous, here is how your attorney can prove the property owner’s fault.
The first step in proving fault involves showing that a property owner failed to act carefully. In short, the injured party and his/her slip and fall lawyer have to show that the property owners did not take reasonable steps to ensure that the property at issue was free from dangerous conditions. For example, an owner at an apartment complex who fails to provide any snow removal or sidewalk treatment after a snow storm might be liable to tenants who fall and sustain injury. Even where a landlord claims not to have known about a dangerous condition, such as a rotting board on a staircase, they can be held responsible for an injury if it can be shown that the landlord failed to conduct inspections of the property over time which would have revealed the dangerous condition.
A personal injury lawyer needs to show that the property owner did not meet the standard of reasonableness under the law. The property owner does not have to guarantee the safety of all persons on the property, but must meet a standard of reasonableness in keeping the property safe. For example, if a patron in a grocery store slips and falls on a grape that was just knocked from a produce display, the property owner will argue that this was an unpredictable event and that it would be unreasonable to require all grocery stores to post employees at the end of each aisle to constantly watch for random spills. The court will often look to whether the owner met an industry standard for safety, staffing or inspections.
Finally, a personal injury lawyer will need to show that the property owner bears sole responsibility for an accident. Maryland and D.C., along with just two other states across the country, still adhere to the old and disfavored “contributory negligence” standard. This means that if the plaintiff contributed to an accident through his or her own negligence, no matter how slight, the plaintiff will be totally barred from any recovery. For example, if a store positions a display table so the leg sticks out into the aisle, causing someone to trip and fall, the store owner will argue that even if its employees were negligent, the shopper contributed to the incident by not watching where they were walking. If the plaintiff can be shown to have been just 1% negligent in an incident, their claim is barred and the 99% negligent property owner owes nothing. This harsh rule has defeated numerous slip and fall and other injury claims and left seriously injured citizens owing substantial medical bills and lost wages, with no recourse against the parties primarily responsible. This reason alone should be incentive for every person who has sustained a slip and fall injury to contact an experienced attorney immediately after such an incident to fully understand their legal rights and prepare the best case possible.
Pharmacy errors happen every day. Unfortunately, when pharmacists make mistakes, the results can be disastrous for Gaithersburg residents who rely on prescription medications. Lawyers in Gaithersburg regularly counsel clients who have suffered personal injury due to pharmacy error.
Most of these injury and accident cases are caused by a combination of circumstances, including overreliance on assistants, similar shapes, sizes, and colors of medications, a busy counter, and the repetitive nature of pharmacy work itself. These mistakes can cause individuals who are already sick to become even more ill. For example, a diabetic may be prescribed an inappropriate amount of insulin, or a bronchitis patient may receive too high a dose of antibiotics. While overdoses are common, patients may also suffer side effects, allergic reactions and withdrawal symptoms when they are prescribed the wrong medication. Sadly, personal injury lawyers report that the elderly are all too often the victims in personal injury cases that stem from completely avoidable pharmacy errors.
If you have been involved in a truck accident in the Rockville or Gaithersburg area, your first step should always be to contact an experienced personal injury attorney who regularly handles truck accident claims . Each situation is specific, and only an experienced lawyer can guide you through your exact legal options. Still, all truck accident victims have basic legal rights regardless of the circumstances of their accidents. Keep reading to learn the answers to victims’ frequently asked questions about their rights after a truck accident.
Can I Sue the Truck Driver’s Company After a Truck Accident?
Usually. As long as the truck driver is employed by a trucking company, that company can be legally responsible for its driver’s negligence. That means both the individual trucker and his employer may be financially responsible for any costs the victim incurs due to personal injury, including pain and suffering, loss of current and future wages, and emotional trauma. Problems may arise when a trucker works as an independent contractor and does hauling for different companies, but as long as the company supervises the driver, your accident lawyer can argue that he was legally an employee.
Can I Automatically Recover Against a Truck Driver Who “Jackknifed”?
Not necessarily. While many truck accident claims involve eighteen-wheeler trucks that “jackknife,” drivers are not always liable for others’ personal injuries. Some examples include if the truck driver took an abrupt turn in an effort to avoid a stalled vehicle or another accident, or if there was an unforeseen defect or slipperiness in the streets.
Can I Win a Lawsuit Even if I Was Partly at Fault?
In only four jurisdictions across the country, including Maryland and Washington, D.C., any negligence by the victim which contributes to an accident will likely bar any recovery by the victim. Because of this harsh rule, it is not uncommon for a trucking company with obvious liability for an accident to argue that the victim was 1% at fault. In this way, they can completely avoid the consequences of a serious accident. You should always seek out a personal injury attorney who is experienced in accident claims to help establish your very strongest case and get the damages you deserve.
If you file a personal injury claim in Gaithersburg , your insurance carrier may try to offer a settlement to resolve your case. Many people will be tempted to take early offers put forth by an insurance company, but that may not always be the best idea. Watch this video to learn more.
Insurance companies are profit-driven organizations, and are therefore motivated to reduce their expenses. One key way that these companies try to reduce expenses is by paying out the smallest settlements they can. To ensure that you receive a fair payout from your insurance carrier, rather the sum that they initially offer, consult an attorney with experience in personal injury and insurance claims immediately after an accident, who can give you professional guidance through the claims process.
If you have been wrongfully injured in a car, truck, or motorcycle accident near Gaithersburg, you might consider contacting a personal injury lawyer to help you seek compensation for medical care and other damages. While every personal injury case will be unique depending on the individual circumstances, there are some general procedures that you can expect during a case. Read on to get a closer look at the components of a personal injury case.
Your immediate priority should be to seek appropriate medical care, though you will want to make sure that your care is well-documented to be sure that all the details are available when you contact an attorney.Attorney Consultation
Most personal injury lawyers will offer a free initial consultation to discuss the viability of your case. If you do decide to pursue a case, your lawyer will gather details about the accident and your injuries or the injuries/wrongful death of a loved one you are representing. Most often, the legal fee in a personal injury cases will be based on a percentage of the settlement or trial verdict, meaning that upfront legal costs are not a factor and should not hold you back from seeking the representation you deserve.
Demand and Negotiation
Once your attorney has assembled all documentation of your injuries and losses, a demand will be made to the defendant’s insurance carrier. Typically, a claims adjustor will review the demand materials sent by your attorney. Negotiations then commence to try and settle the case outside of court. In many cases the claims representative will first request additional information about your health history or wages before completing an evaluation of your claim.
While most personal injury cases settle outside of court, there remain a large number of cases where a settlement may not be reached in negotiation. In these situations, your lawyer will file a lawsuit, which will commence the process of discovery. This process entails the gathering of information through depositions, document collection and review, medical examinations, and other exploration of the liability and injury issues in a case. As discovery is wrapping up, the case may be sent to mediation, which will be followed by a trial if a settlement is still not reached.
Boating accidents can be a complicated area of personal injury law, because they may relate to either maritime law or negligence law, depending on the circumstances of the accident. Furthermore, there are many factors that present a danger to boaters and those enjoying water recreation. Many states allow individuals as young as 12 to operate boats, and many adult boaters will operate the vehicle under the influence of alcohol. Therefore, it is important to seek an attorney experienced in both of these practice areas to be sure that your rights are protected in your case.
When you do seek proper representation near Gaithersburg or Rockville, you will have an advocate to explore the details of your case, determine appropriate compensation, and decide who may be at fault. Possible defendants in your case may include the boat owner, operator, or manufacturer. If the operator of the boat leaves the scene of the accident, there may also be felony charges involved for the defendant in your case.
Commercial trucks carry an inherent danger on the road, because these vehicles are much more difficult to maneuver than passenger vehicles, and they can cause much more significant property damage and injuries following accidents . In many cases when commercial truck accidents take place, there are a number of factors to consider when determining fault. This article will take a closer look at some of the underlying factors that might increase the risk of accidents involving eighteen wheelers or other heavy equipment. If you or a loved one has been the victim of a commercial truck accident, you should not hesitate to contact a personal injury lawyer near Gaithersburg and Rockville area to explore the details of your case.
Truck drivers often have unrealistic schedules resulting in long days on the road, which can pose a big danger with driver fatigue. Being sleep deprived on the road can reduce reaction times and cause a driver to overlook safety guidelines that might otherwise prevent serious accidents. In June 2014, in a fatal highway accident that made national headlines, a Wal-Mart tractor trailer operator slammed into other vehicles ahead after failing to notice traffic slowing in a construction zone. After the accident, investigators learned that the truck driver had been awake for 28 hours leading up to the accident.
Poor Road Conditions
Bad weather is a risk for any driver, but stopping a big rig on an icy road or controlling the vehicle in windy conditions might be much more difficult for commercial drivers. When weather and other poor road conditions are present, all drivers should be more cautious and aware of trucks on the road.
Aside from driver negligence , failed equipment and inadequate driver training are leading causes of commercial truck accidents. In cases where an equipment failure led to the accident, there may be multiple defendants involved, including the truck manufacturer and the trucking fleet.
Unsafe Driver Practices
Passenger vehicles do have their role in truck accidents, as there are a number of unsafe practices that can limit a commercial driver’s ability to respond in time. Driving in between trucks, passing on the right, and abruptly changing lanes are all habits that could lead to dangerous situations involving larger vehicles.
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