If you were injured in a car accident in Maryland, you may be eligible for compensation to offset the cost of your injuries. The days and weeks following car accidents can be a very stressful time for the victim and their families. The last thing on your mind is a lawsuit. However, a car accident lawsuit may be the difference between enormous debt due from medical bills and financial freedom following your accident so it is in your best interest to find out how long after a car accident can you sue in the state of Maryland.
It is important for you to know that the state of Maryland car accident laws have a strict timeline on filing car accident claims. The best way to ensure you receive a fair settlement is to speak to a Maryland car accident lawyer and get your claim started as soon as possible.
The Regan Zambri Long PLLC lawyers can help guide you through the claims process, making sure the paperwork is filed correctly and on time. We offer free consultations where you will speak with a seasoned Maryland attorney who can help you understand every step of the lawsuit. There is no need to delay – the sooner you have a Regan Zambri Long car accident lawyer on your side, the sooner you can put the accident behind you and rebuild your life.
A statute of limitations is a law that sets the maximum amount of time someone has to make a legal claim against someone else. Statute of limitation laws exist to protect Maryland residents from unfair legal action. Statute of limitation laws make sure that the defendant is close enough to the date of the accident to have the evidence he or she needs to defend themselves. If a claim is brought about several years after the accident, the defendant may not have access to the evidence that would give them a fair defense.
In the state of Maryland, a victim has three years from the accident date to file a car accident lawsuit against the negligent driver. While this may seem like a long time, if the window closes and an official claim is not filed, you may lose your rights to collect compensation for your injuries. The statute of limitations helps the car accident victim, as well. Severe injuries lead to expensive medical bills. Filing a claim as soon as possible is the best way to ensure you will not be in financial distress because of your accident, so it is important to find out how long after a car accident can you sue in Maryland in order to plan your actions.
The Regan Zambri Long car accident attorneys are not limited to the state of Maryland. We also take on car accident cases in Virginia and Washington, DC. If you were involved in an accident in Virginia, you only have two years from the date of the accident to file a claim. Like Maryland, Washington DC’s statute of limitations is a three years.
There are certain cases where the statute of limitations can be paused in a car accident. This pause in the rule is called “tolling.” The exceptions include:
The first exception to the statute of limitations is when a child is injured in a car accident. The statute of limitations does not begin until the child reaches his or her 18th birthday. When the clock starts ticking on the minor’s 18th birthday, they will have until their 21st birthday to bring about a lawsuit.
If the victim suffers debilitating physical injuries which makes it impossible to file a lawsuit within the statute of limitations, the statute may be tolled as long as they are unable to file a claim.
If the negligent driver refuses to admit liability (which happens often in hit-and-run cases) the statute of limitations will be tolled until the at-fault driver is identified.
If you are not a resident of Maryland, but were involved in an accident while traveling through the state, you may be able to file a car accident claim in the state of Maryland. There are two criteria for a Maryland court to hear a case:
If the negligent driver who caused your accident is a resident of Maryland, then the Maryland courts have personal jurisdiction over that driver and you would likely be able to bring a claim in the Maryland courts, even if you’re not a resident of the state.
If you are not a Maryland resident and the negligent driver is not a Maryland resident, the case gets a bit more complex. This is because the state of Maryland does not have personal jurisdiction over someone who is not a resident. In many cases, an out-of-state resident will be able to sue the negligent driver in the state where the accident happened. The courts usually recognize the accident as the driver’s “minimum contacts” in the state and will take on personal jurisdiction over the driver.
If you are not a resident of Maryland, but were involved in an accident in the state, contact the Regan Zambri Long car accident lawyers. They know the ins and outs of Maryland law and can give you a reasonable assessment of your case, including all the legal options you have. Call for your free case evaluation.
Besides the statute of limitations law, Maryland also practices another law that will affect your car accident case. Maryland is one of the five jurisdictions in the U.S. that still practices contributory negligence (Virginia and Washington DC also use the contributory negligence rule). Contributory negligence is a law that states if the plaintiff (the car accident victim who files the lawsuit) is responsible, even partially, for the accident, then he or she cannot recover damages. For example, if the negligent driver who caused the crash was under the influence of alcohol, but you were also speeding when the car accident happened, you may not be able to collect compensation.
The Regan Zambri Long car accident lawyers have seen defense lawyers quickly use contributory negligence to try to get their client out of paying what they owe. Fortunately, our law firm has been practicing for more than 30 years and we are deeply familiar with the tactics of defense lawyers. Your car accident attorney will use documentation from the accident (police reports, videos and photos of the accident, medical records, driving records, eyewitness testimonies, accident reconstruction, and expert witnesses) to build your case and prove you were not at fault for the accident.
When you work with a Regan Zambri Long personal injury attorney, you are working with the best of the best. Our practice extends through Maryland, Virginia, and Washington DC. Our past clients will tell you when you work with a Regan Zambri Long lawyer, you are working with a compassionate friend and fierce protector of your rights. We are confident we can secure a settlement in your favor. Our promise to our clients: we do not take a fee unless we win. If a settlement offer comes back that is too low, we will prepare to take your case to court. Our firm has the funds and the resources to take on the large insurance companies. We have secured millions for our clients. You can rest assured your attorney will be with you until the very end of the case and will not accept a fee until you collect fair compensation. Call today for your free consultation to find out more details about how long after a car accident can you sue someone and get the compensation you deserve.