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Maryland Car Accident Law: Everything You Need to Know

Most people prefer to settle outside of the court when it comes to lawsuits brought about by accidents. Doing this is more convenient. Often, we allow our accident lawyers to lead the battle.

Allowing our lawyers to take charge is an understandable thing to do. But most of the time, our ignorance of the law can also be detrimental, especially in the state of Maryland. We might not only get what is due to us, but our obtuseness may also cause legal troubles for us.

Of course, we should trust our lawyers. But having the basic legal knowledge will help us at the time of the accident itself. Here are a few things that we should keep in mind:

Contributory Negligence

Maryland is one of the few places that continues to follow the old holdover rule. This principle will not allow the victim who the jury determines contributed in any way to his injury to get redressed in a personal injury case.

Let us say that a driver ran over a pedestrian. If the jury ruled out the victim was negligent because he did not cross the street at a crosswalk, the injured would not get a single cent.

No matter how many accident lawyers you hire for the personal injury case, you will not get any redress if the jury finds you negligent. On the other hand, most states follow the comparative negligence law. This rule awards the injured compensation. But it reduces the amount after determining the percentage of fault.

Sadly, in 2013, Maryland’s Court of Appeals upheld the old holdover rule. The justices ruled in favor of the defendant in the Coleman vs. Soccer Association of Columbia.

Assumption of Risk

The ordinary Joe often makes the mistake of interchanging the assumption of risk and contributory negligence. This doctrine states that the injured understood the risks involved in doing what he was doing. Accident lawyers often use this in slip-and-fall lawsuits.

For example, a person decides to continue walking on the wet floor even if he notices the sign. Unlike contributory negligence, which might be a mistake, the injured made a voluntary action. Thus, he made a move with his full consent.

Sudden Medical Emergency

In this principle, defendants admit that they caused the accident. But their accident lawyers would argue that it was not their fault. This doctrine will not allow the accused to walk free because they lost control of themselves.

Lawyers would ask for medical records of the accused to determine if he was already suffering from such ailment before the accident. They might also examine phone records for evidence that the suspect was texting or calling during the incident. The whole court would need to determine if the following factors are present:

  •  Sudden physical incapacity
  •  The incapacity was not foreseeable
  • The inability rendered him unable to control his vehicle
  •  Loss of control caused the collision


Following the set rules always pays. It does not only prevent accidents, but it guarantees that if such injury happens, you will get due compensation.

If you need a car accident attorney, you do not have to look elsewhere. At Zuckerberg & Halperin, we will be more than happy to take care of your legal concerns so that you can focus on your healing. Call us now for more information. 

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