Baltimore Car Accident Attorney
When you roll out of your driveway in Baltimore, Maryland, the last thing on your mind is potentially getting into a crash while running a simple errand or going to the grocery store and requiring the services of a Baltimore car accident lawyer.
Imagine you are on your way to pick up your child at Belmont Elementary School and you get rear-ended by a driver who was texting. Or perhaps on your way home from picking up groceries at Eddie’s of Roland Park and you get in a head-on collision with an intoxicated driver going the wrong way on Roland Avenue. You could even be picking up a friend at the Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport and get t-boned by a driver rushing so as not to miss their flight. This is why for so many people who have been injured in an auto accident, it is important to secure the services of a car accident attorney in Baltimore, Maryland.
How Often Do Auto Accidents Occur in Baltimore, Maryland?
According to the Maryland Department of Transportation, a total of 108,656 car crashes took place in the state in 2021. That number might have already caught you off guard. However, that is not the only surprising statistic we are highlighting here.
The crash data for Maryland numbers also reveal that a little over 26.5% of those car crashes led to someone getting injured. Also, 524 people died from car crashes in Baltimore City, Towson, and other parts of Maryland. A little under 74% of the car accidents recorded that year were property damage crashes. It is also important to mention that the numbers you are seeing are pretty much in line with the trends in Maryland. From 2017 to 2021, the state averaged 110,745 car accidents annually. People received injuries in 28% of those car crashes.
Meanwhile, 71.6% of those accidents led to property damage. The five-year average for fatalities stemming from car collisions is 514. If someone you know passed away following an automobile crash, an attorney can help you handle that situation. Baltimore City and Baltimore County residents should be extra cautious driving around. Over the last five years, Baltimore County accounted for 18.7% of all the car crashes that occurred in the state. During that same timeframe, 16.3% of Maryland car accidents were in Baltimore City.
Top Causes of Car Accidents in Baltimore, Maryland
You never want to be in a position where you need to hire a car accident lawyer in Baltimore. However, learning more about the top causes of car accidents in Maryland can help you avoid that scenario.
Intoxicated Driving: Intoxicated drivers pose a great danger to everyone on the road. They are unpredictable, negligent, and downright scary to be around. According to data provided by the state of Maryland, we had drunk drivers involved in 6,522 car accidents in 2021. Therefore, intoxicated driving is a major public safety issue that we must prevent.
Distracted Driving: A motorist engages in distracted driving whenever they look at their phone, eat, or perform any other activity that takes their attention away from the road while controlling their vehicle. Distracted driving is also highly dangerous. In 2021, Maryland recorded 50,882 car crashes caused by distracted driving. Hire a Baltimore car accident attorney if you have been victimized in an accident like this. Speeding: Speeding is a prime example of reckless driving behavior. This aggressive form of driving led to 7,947 crashes in Maryland through 2021. An experienced legal representative from Leppler Injury Law can help you to understand your legal options if you have been injured in a car crash as the result of a speeding driver in Baltimore, Maryland.
Steps to Take Immediately Following a Car Accident in Baltimore, MD
Your car accident lawsuit may hinge on your actions immediately following the crash. Avoid making costly mistakes by following the steps detailed in this article.
Examine Your Current Condition
You must always prioritize your safety in the aftermath of a car crash. First, take a few moments to examine yourself and check if you have any injuries. If other people are in the car with you, this would also be the best time to check on them.
- Call 911: Whether you are injured or not, you should call 911 and ask them to send paramedics if someone in your vehicle is hurt. You can still request assistance from the Baltimore police department even if no one received injuries during the accident.
- Talk to the Other Driver: Assuming you feel well enough to move, you should approach the other driver and exchange information with them. Maryland drivers must exchange names, addresses, driver’s license numbers, vehicle ownership details, and insurance information. The other driver is violating the law if they withhold those details from you.
- Gather Evidence: Next, you need to focus on gathering evidence. Take pictures of the accident site and the vehicles involved. If there are any witnesses present, you should also talk to them and ask for statements.
- Speak to the Police: The police officers should now be at the scene. Speak to them and share the evidence you have so they can properly investigate the accident and file their police report required under Maryland Transportation Section § 20-107.
- Visit a Doctor: If you were in a car crash, go to the doctor as soon as possible. Let the doctor examine you so they can determine if you have sustained any injuries.
- File a Claim with Your Insurer: Filing a claim with your insurer is a must following a car accident. Share the other driver’s information but do not mention how the accident unfolded or who may be at fault. Discussing those details at this juncture could complicate your case.
- Hire a Baltimore Car Accident Lawyer: Lastly, you should hire a legal representative if you do not have one already. Their assistance will be vital as you move forward with your case. In addition, you will need a car accident attorney in Baltimore if your loved one passes away from a tragic collision.
Do I Need an Attorney if I am in a Car Crash in Baltimore?
Why is hiring an attorney so important if you were recently involved in an auto accident? To put it simply, the services they provide are invaluable during this time. In the period right after the accident, you can expect to receive calls from insurers and attorneys.
Dealing with them while you are injured can be a nightmare. If you would like to spare yourself from that ordeal, you should hire a lawyer who can handle those conversations. Your legal representative can also use evidence to demonstrate that you bear no blame for what happened. That is critical because bearing even 1% of the blame for an accident can make it difficult for you to recover damages. An experienced attorney can also help get cases moving faster. For example, if you need more time to recover, they can take care of the legal filings in the meantime.
What Types Of Car Collision Cases Does Leppler Injury Law Handle?
Some of the types of auto accident and collision cases our Baltimore, MD injury law firm handles include: wrong-way accidents, rear end accidents, highway accidents, parking lot accidents, hit and run accidents, broadside accidents, t-bone accidents, head-on collisions, distracted driving accidents, texting and driving accidents and fatal car accidents.
John Leppler also handles rideshare accidents such as Uber and Lyft accidents in Baltimore.
Factors That Affect Settlement Amounts in Car Crash Cases in Baltimore, Maryland
What kind of settlement offer can you expect to receive in your Baltimore car accident case? The factors detailed below will help determine that.
The Losses You Sustained: The settlement offer you receive should account for the losses you sustained. If you sustained a concussion from the accident, the settlement should make it easy for you to treat that injury. In cases where victims suffered serious injuries, the average settlement is around $20,000. The extent of your losses may also be property damage. In that scenario, you can expect a settlement offer of around $4,500. The Defendant’s Assets The defendant in your case may not have plenty of money. If so, your settlement may max out at their insurance limit. That could be an issue if you sustained significant losses. The Defendant’s Attitude Some defendants may be against settling because they firmly believe they did nothing wrong. A defendant like that may not be one for negotiations. Therefore, you should not expect to get a settlement offer from them.
Understanding Maryland Car Accident Laws and Insurance
If you are planning to proceed with a car accident lawsuit in Maryland, there are two important laws to keep in mind. The first one is the law of contributory negligence. We already touched on this earlier, but the courts can bar a plaintiff from recovering damages if they bear even one% of the blame for the accident.
You and your Baltimore car accident attorney must successfully show that you are completely innocent if you wish to win the case. Maryland residents should also know about the statute of limitations for car accident cases. You have three years to file a lawsuit if you were involved in a car accident. After that, the countdown starts from the day you were injured. We also want to mention the insurance requirements for all Maryland car owners. The state of Maryland requires all drivers to have a policy that provides $30,000 for bodily injury, $60,000 in coverage for two or more people, and $15,000 for property damage. Make sure you get your insurance policy in order before you start driving around town so you can avoid potential penalties.
How Much Does it Cost to Hire an Attorney in Baltimore, Maryland?
People often point to cost when answering why they opted against seeking legal representation. That is unfortunate because many attorneys make their services as accessible as possible. Often they will only charge their clients if they reach a settlement or are awarded damages in a case. Most car accident lawyers in Baltimore typically charge a fee representing about 33 to 40% of the final payout. The final percentage will vary based on whether you settled your lawsuit or went to trial.
If your legal representative decides not to proceed with the lawsuit because the evidence suggests you will lose, they will drop the case. Even if that happens, they will not charge you anything. You do not need to worry about being buried under a mountain of debt because you hired an attorney.
Questions to Ask Your Attorney
We have established throughout this article that the services provided by attorneys are critical in car accident cases. Even if your crash happened while you were just visiting Baltimore you will need their help if you want to win your case. But how can you identify the right legal expert to hire? Asking some key questions could give you some valuable insight.
How Much Will You Charge?
In the previous section, we discussed the average cost of hiring a car accident attorney in Baltimore, Maryland. You can use those numbers to determine if the ones you are interviewing are offering you a fair deal. It will not take you long to find legal representatives who offer reasonable rates.
Are You Regularly Available to Discuss the Case?
You can understand if some lawyers are busy, but you still deserve their time and attention if you are paying them. During your interview, ask the candidate about their ability to maintain an open line of communication. Do not settle for attorneys who feel like they can get away with speaking with you only when it is convenient for them.
Are You Willing to Go to Trial?
The majority of car accident lawsuits become settled before they get to court. That is fine if you are getting a good settlement offer from the defendant. However, settling for the sake of avoiding a trial is a no-no. You should ask your candidates if they are willing to go to trial. Focus on the candidates who are confident even if the case goes to trial because they will not settle for any bad offers.
What Do You Need Me to Do?
Finally, it would be best to ask your lawyer candidates about what they will need from you. It is important to clarify things so you can set your expectations properly as the case progresses.
Dealing with injuries, phone calls from insurers and having to worry about potential costs to fix your car can really be a headache. Below are a few recommended local repair shops to consider if you need work done on your car.
Monument Street Auto Center – 3700 E Monument St, Baltimore, MD 21205
Baltimore Body Shop – 2720 Sisson St. Baltimore, MD 21211
Framerite Auto Repair – 6414 Harford Rd, Baltimore, MD, 21214
Whay’s Auto Service – 3549 S Hanover St Baltimore, MD 21225
Contact Leppler Injury Law Today For a Free Consultation
Going through the aftermath of a car accident is incredibly difficult. During that time, you should lean on your Baltimore car accident lawyer for assistance. Reach out to us if you wish to proceed with a car accident lawsuit. We will get you the compensation you need in a timely manner so you can put this unpleasant ordeal behind you.
Additional Resources and FAQs
What Are My Rights Following a No Contact Car Accident?
What Happens if the At-Fault Party Does Not Have Car Insurance?
Does a Pre-Existing Condition Ruin My Car Accident Case?
How to Report a Hit and Run Car Accident