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Do I have to file a lawsuit in my Maryland car accident case?
At Clark & Steinhorn, LLC we are often asked if our clients have to file a lawsuit in their Maryland car and truck accident cases. The answer of course is no. Nobody has to file a lawsuit ever.
However, a lawsuit may be necessary in order to obtain fair compensation. Insurance companies often low-ball injured crash victims before suit. Some lawyers and victims take the unduly low offers to avoid the time and hassle of a lawsuit. However, when they do this they often leave money on the table.
At Clark & Steinhorn, LLC we try and advise our clients on the best way to maximize their economic compensation while minimizing the hassles and delays.
I was in bad accident. Do I have to go to the insurance company's doctor?
Periodically we are asked about insurance company requested medical appointments and whether victims of crashes must attend them? The answer is maybe. If a case is in litigation (a lawsuit has been filed) then the answer is generally yes. However, there are various limitations. These include limits on how far you would have to travel for such an examination, how many times and when the exam is scheduled.
Often the insurance company has to provide transportation or pay for mileage to and from the doctor and parking.
However, if the case isn't in a lawsuit the answer is no unless under some circumstances the P.I.P. insurance can request such an exam, which is however quite rare in Maryland.
Why does the liability insurer want my social security number and should I give it to them?
When you are in a crash and seek compensation for your injuries, the insurance company will seek your social security number so they can use the so-called index system to look for prior claims by you. You don't have to give it to them but they don't have to negotiate a settlement with you either so generally we suggest providing this information.
Can Insurance Companies Look at My Old Claims?
Yes they can and yes they will. The insurance industry routinely aks your atorney for so-called "Indexing information" which often includes your social security number, address and date of birth.
Should you disclose prior injuries?
Many victims in car and truck accidents reinjure parts of their bodies that have been hurt previously. The inevitable question is whether or not they should disclose the preexisting problems to the insurance companies, their doctors and their lawyers?
The answer is an emphatic "Yes"! Insurance companies have access to a database which purports to reflect all prior injury claims, so once they get your date of birth and name they know quickly whether or not you have been hurt before, what part of you was injured, how it was injured, who the insurance company was and how much was paid.
For doctors, effective treatment requires knowledge of your past medical history both to treat and to ensure that their medical reports are credible.
As for your lawyer, they must know the truth about everything and most particularly about prior claims and injuries in order to maximize your fair compensation.
Injured in an Uber or Lyft car accident, what should you do?
The most obvious answer is get necessary and appropriate medical care and call an experienced lawyer. The source of insurance proceeds available to you and the amount is quite fact specific and requires a detailed and thorough investigation. Call Clark and Steinhorn, LLC at (301) 317-1001
How do Maryland car accident cases work?
How do Maryland car accident cases work?
This is a frequently asked question and can mean a number of things. First, there are several kinds of Maryland car accident cases. Some involve just property damage and some feature both property damage and personal injury. Maryland is a uniquely bad state in which to be involved in a crash as the state continues to observe an out-dated legal doctrine, that of contributory negligence.
Contributory negligence compares the conduct of drivers involved in car accidents and a driver who is negligent even to a small degree can be deprived of compensation for personal injuries, even if the other driver is overwhelmingly at fault.
So assuming that you were not negligent, the typical practice in Maryland car crash cases involves the at-fault driver's insurance company either repairing or replacing your damaged vehicle with the additional possible provision of a rental car. If you are injured, you can submit your medical expenses, lost income documentation and supporting medical records to the at-fault driver's insurance company with an eye towards settlement.
Insurance companies routinely disagree with car and truck crash victims on the value of their cases and that is why lawyers like Clark and Steinhorn, LLC exist.
Why do I need a lawyer for my Maryland Car or Truck Crash Case?
There is an easy answer and a more complex one. The easy one is that insurance companies routinely take advantage of victims of car and truck accidents. They know if you don't take their "final" offer that the odds of you successfully filing and pursuing a lawsuit are very low.
The more complex answer involves the fact that insurance company adjusters are trained to elicit information from victims of Maryland car and truck accidents calculated to diminish the value of their cases and to lower expectations at settlement. Lawyers serve as the spokesperson for injured car accident victims and understand the true value of cases. Lawyers always have recourse to filing a lawsuit if the insurance company is reluctant or unwilling to offer a fair settlement.
The lawyers at Clark and Steinhorn, LLC are highly knowledgeable about the complex interplay between different kinds of insurance coverages. Strategic use of insurances available to victims of Maryland car crashes can maximize the settlement or verdict they receive. Health insurance, PIP insurance, disability insurance and of course liability insurance all come into play in a major crash and need to be managed properly.
Workers compensation and PIP interact uniquely particularly in cases with uninsured or underinsured motorist claims. Don't be a victim twice, consult Clark and Steinhorn, LLC to ensure you receive all of your fair compensation.
I was hit by an uninsured motorist, what do I do?
In Maryland and the District of Columbia auto insurance is mandatory and failure to have it can result in a host of penalties. Despite this we see crashes with uninsured motorists frequently. This invariably worries the victims of these car accidents and at Clark and Steinhorn, LLC we reassure our clients that this is not an insurmountable problem.
Uninsured motorist coverage is included in everyone's auto insurance policy and serves to protect car accident victims from the actions of irresponsible drivers. The funds that your insurance carrier pays in these benefits will not raise your rates and the uninsured driver can be pursued to repay these monies. For more questions contact us. https://www.maryland-law.com/library/laurel-lawyer-on-maryland-uninsured-motorist-coverage.cfm
I've Been Injured in A Maryland Car Crash How Will I Pay For MY Medical Expenses?
There are a variety of ways that Maryland Car Crash Victims can ensure that their medical expenses are paid for. The first line of payment involves P.I.P. insurance. Personal Injury Protection benefits are a limited amount of "No-Fault" Insurance benefits that emanate from the insurance policy of the driver's car. The second line of payment is health insurance. The third is use of a physician or other healthcare provider who is willing to be paid out of the settlement of the victim's car accident claim.
The interplay between these payment sources is complex and consulting an experienced attorney at Clark and Steinhorn, LLC is advisable. (301) 317-1001 or Maryland-Law.com
What circumstances give rise to a medical malpractice or medical negligence claim?
This simple question is not an easy one to answer. The mere fact that you have had a bad result from medical care is not enough. Routinely, doctors, hospitals and other medical personnel obtain consent forms for medical procedures that spell out problems that could occur. While signing such a form does not absolutely take away your right to bring a malpractice action it does provide the healthcare provider some cover if things go wrong.
The basic rule of thumb is that healthcare providers are not permitted to deviate from the standard of care expected of them. This standard of care is usually defined by other healthcare providers practicing in the same area. One of the most important reasons to contact an experienced medical malpractice lawyer such as the lawyers at Clark & Steinhorn is to assist in analyzing what the standard of care is and in finding an appropriate expert or experts.
How long do I have to file such a claim?
Maryland and the District of Columbia each have somewhat different rules for determining how long one has to bring a claim. The basic legal limit involves a concept called the statute of limitations. While there are exceptions, the general rule is that any such claim must be filed with the appropriate court or arbitration office within 3 years of injury. The analysis involving how long one has to file a claim is very complex and often will require detailed analysis by a medical malpractice lawyer experienced in such matters.
What is a premises liability claim?
Such a claim is shorthand for a whole group of cases involving injuries sustained by people while on the land or premises of others. This can include commercial establishments such as shopping malls, hotels, theme parks, or sports arenas and stadiums. It could also include injuries that you sustain at the home of another.
How do I figure out who is responsible for such an injury?
This will often require a detailed investigation by an attorney experienced in such cases. We have represented a number of individuals who have been injured or even attacked at various hotels, malls, and even their own apartment complexes. Companies and individuals that operate such premises are required to do so with an eye on potential harm that could come to their patrons. We routinely see apartment complexes where the management knows that criminal activity is taking place there and does not warn their own tenants and guests of their tenants how to avoid being a victim of such a thing. Similarly, many area malls can be magnets for criminal activity. The mall owners know this, often the merchants know this but the shoppers are exposed to this without warning.
What other kinds of premises cases are there?
We have represented many people in premises cases including swimming pool injury cases, attacks on hotel guests and visitors, collapsing wall and ceiling cases, and even cases at big box stores where large heavy objects fall off the shelves and severely injure shoppers and their children.
The pool we were at had a lifeguard but he was not paying attention, how does this affect things?
One of the most significant problems we see in swimming pool cases involves lifeguard training and attention. The mere fact that a lifeguard was on duty does not mean they were engaged appropriately in life-guarding. If a tragic incident occurs at a pool where a lifeguard was present it is important to determine whether others at the pool were aware of the lifeguard’s inattention.
Whom do I bring such a claim against?
Sometimes the mistake is with the pharmacy and other times it is with the doctor or his office. Figuring this out can often be puzzling and it is essential that you obtain an attorney who is experienced in such matters.
I had a terrible reaction to a prescription, does this mean I have a claim?
The mere fact that you have had a terrible reaction to a prescription does not guarantee a successful claim. Many modern day medications have known side-effects. Some of these side-effects only occur in a very small group of people. Analyzing such a claim requires an attorney sophisticated in such matters.
I often see on TV ads for lawyers who say they represent individuals who have been prescribed specific medications. I have been prescribed this medication, does this mean I have a claim?
You may or may not have a claim. An analysis of this question will require a focus on the circumstances under which you were prescribed the medication, the dosage you were prescribed, whether or not you have other prescriptions or health factors which would make this prescription ill advised and a host of other considerations. It is important that you consult a lawyer experienced in such cases so that a proper analysis to present your claim can be made.
Who can I make a claim against if I am injured while riding on public transportation?
Generally speaking, if you are riding an Amtrak train the claim should be made against Amtrak, if you are riding a Metro or MARC train against Metro or MARC, and if you are riding a Metro bus against Metro. Each of these entities is owned or operated by governmental authorities, and the rules for making claims against them are quite specific and consequently the need for an attorney experienced in making such claims is important. Please contact Clark & Steinhorn if you have such a claim.