The Damages Available in a Maryland Wrongful Death Claim

What Losses Can Be Recovered After the Death of a Loved One?

The Damages Available in a Maryland Wrongful Death ClaimWhen a family member dies because of the wrongful conduct of another person, there’s nothing that can undo the harm. You are, however, entitled to compensation for many of your losses. As we have previously explained, there are two types of claims that can be filed after an accidental or wrongful death: survival claims and wrongful death claims. The damages available depend on the type of claim you file.

If your claim is a survival action (filed on behalf of the decedent’s estate), the damages are similar to those the deceased would have had a right to recover had he lived. They include the following:

  • Medical expenses incurred as a result of the injury or illness;
  • Compensation for damage to property owned by the deceased;
  • Damages for the deceased’s pain and suffering before death; and
  • Funeral and burial expenses.

If, on the other hand, the lawsuit is a wrongful death claim (brought on behalf of surviving family members), you can seek compensation for:

  • Loss of financial support, and
  • Loss of consortium or companionship.

It’s important to understand that Maryland places a cap on non-economic damages in a personal injury action. “Non-economic” damages are those that typically cannot be determined based on actual expenses or lost income. Examples include pain and suffering and loss of companionship. Currently, the maximum recovery for non-economic damages in a Maryland wrongful death or survival claim is $2 million.

Experienced Frederick County Accidental Death Lawyer

Jonathan Scott Smith, a Maryland Super Lawyer, has more than three decades of experience successfully handling personal injury claims, including wrongful death and survivor actions. A highly successful trial lawyer known for his ability to get positive results, he’s received the Client’s Choice Award from AVVO, with an average client review of 5 stars,as well as a perfect 10.0 (Superb) rating as a litigator. He’s AV-rated by other attorneys under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System (the highest rating possible) and has been named a Top Rated Lawyer by The American Lawyer magazine.

Contact an Experienced Baltimore Personal Injury Lawyer

Let attorney Jonathan Scott Smith protect your rights in the aftermath of an accidental or wrongful death. Contact our office by e-mail or call us at 410-740-0101 to arrange a meeting. Your first consultation is without cost or obligation. We take wrongful death claims throughout the state of Maryland, including Howard County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Frederick County, PrinceGeorge’s County, and Montgomery County.

Third-Party Liability for Motor Vehicle Accidents

Can You Sue Someone Other Than the At-Fault Driver?

Third-Party Liability for Motor Vehicle AccidentsWhen another driver acts carelessly or negligently and causes a motor vehicle accident, you have the right to bring legal action against that person to recover compensation for your losses. But motor vehicle accidents often have multiple causes. In many situations, you can seek damages from third parties, in addition to suing the person who was driving the other car. How does that work?

To recover damages under a legal theory of negligence, you must show that a person failed to act reasonably; that the failure to do so caused an accident; and that you suffered actual losses as a result. Here are a few examples of potential third-party liability for a motor vehicle accident:

  • A bar, restaurant, or private party host serves alcohol to someone who is visibly drunk—Ifthat person causes a car wreck while intoxicated, the person and/or business serving the alcohol may be liable.
  • The owner of a vehicle allows another person to drive their car, knowing that that person is inexperienced or has a history of reckless driving—The vehicle owner may have liability in the event of an accident.
  • An employer requires an employee to drive while on the job—The employer may be liable if that employee causes a car accident.
  • A city fails to properly maintain roads—The city may be liable if poor road conditions contribute to an accident.
  • A car or car-part manufacturer fails to take reasonable steps to ensure the safety of a vehicle or part, such as brakes or tires—The manufacturer may have a legal responsibility when a defective product contributes to an accident.

Experienced Prince George’s County Personal Injury Attorney

Maryland SuperLawyer Jonathan Scott Smith has fought aggressively for personal injury victims in Baltimore and throughout the state for more than 30 years. A skilled and experienced trial attorney known for his consistent record of obtaining positive results for clients, Scott Smith received the Client’s Choice Award from AVVO, with an average client review of 5 stars (the highest rating possible) and has a perfect 10.0 “Superb” rating from AVVO as a litigator. He’s AV-rated by his colleagues in the legal profession under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System and has been named a Top-Rated Lawyer by The American Lawyer magazine.

Effective Ellicott City Wrongful Death Lawyer

If you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident, we can help. Contact our office by e-mail or call us at 410-740-0101 to schedule an appointment. There’s no cost for your first consultation. We represent injured people in Howard County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Prince George’s County, and Montgomery County in Maryland.

The Time Limits for Filing a Maryland Wrongful Death Claim

What Is the Statute of Limitations for an Accidental Death Claim?

The Time Limits for Filing a Maryland Wrongful Death ClaimWith any personal injury claim, including wrongful death, there’s a time limit for filing a lawsuit to recover compensation for your losses. This time limit is established by a law known as the statute of limitations.

There are good reasons for a statute of limitations. First, it’s in the interests of justice for the lawsuit to proceed when memories are fresh and evidence can still bepreserved. The more time that passes, the greater the risk that witnesses will die or move or that recollections will fade. In addition, it’s generally deemed unfair or inappropriate for a potential defendant to live in perpetual fear of a potential lawsuit.

Every state sets its own statutes of limitations, and the time limits vary based on the type of claim. In Maryland, if you want to bring a lawsuit to recover damages forthe accidental or wrongful death of a loved one, you must file your complaint within three years of the date of death. Unless there are exceptional circumstances, any wrongful death claims filed after the expiration of the statute of limitations will be dismissed by the court.

Proven Maryland Wrongful Death Attorney

Jonathan Scott Smith, a Maryland Super Lawyer, has more than three decades of experience successfully handling personal injury claims, including wrongful death actions. A proven trial lawyer with a reputation for getting positive results, he’s earned the Client’s Choice Award from AVVO, with an average client review of 5 stars(the highest rating possible) and a perfect 10.0 (Superb) rating as a litigator. Scott Smith is AV-rated by other attorneys under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System and has been named a Top Rated Lawyer by The American Lawyermagazine.

Contact an Experienced Baltimore Personal Injury Lawyer

Let attorney Jonathan Scott Smith protect your rights after the accidental death of a loved one. Contact our office by e-mail or call us at 410-740-0101 to arrange a meeting. Your first consultation is free. We take wrongful death claims throughout the state of Maryland, including Howard County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Prince George’s County, and Montgomery County.

Damages Available in Maryland Wrongful Death Claims

What Can You Recover After the Accidental Death of a Loved One?

Damages Available in Maryland Wrongful Death ClaimsThe wrongful or accidental death of a loved one can leave an emotional wound that may never heal. But there are financial consequences, as well. If you qualify to file a wrongful death lawsuit, what can you expect to recover?

In Maryland, there are two types of claims that can be filed after an accidental death: (1) a survival action, brought on behalf of the decedent’s estate and (2) a wrongful death claim, brought on behalf of the heirs of the deceased. In a survival action, the estate can seek to recover funeral costs and unpaid medical expenses. The estate also can pursue compensation for any suffering of the deceased caused by the accident. In the wrongful death action, survivors can seek compensation for loss of support, as well as loss of companionship or consortium.

Proven Montgomery County Personal Injury Lawyer

Maryland Super Lawyer Jonathan Scott Smith brings more than 30 years of experience to personal injury victims in the Baltimore metropolitan area and across the state of Maryland. A skilled and experienced trial lawyer known for his ability to get positive results, he’s earned the Client’s Choice Award from AVVO, with an average client review of 5 stars(the highest rating possible), as well as a perfect 10.0 (Superb) rating as a litigator. He’s AV-rated by other attorneys under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System and has been named a Top-Rated Lawyer by American Lawyer magazine.

Effective Ellicott City Wrongful Death Attorney

If you have lost a loved one because of the carelessness or wrongful act of another person, we can help. Contact our office by e-mail or call usat 410-740-0101 to schedule an appointment. Your first consultation is without cost or obligation. We handle personal injury claims in Howard County, Baltimore County,Carroll County, Frederick County, Prince George’s County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

Can You File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?

Which Parties Qualify to Bring a Wrongful Death Claim in Maryland?

Can You File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?When a loved one dies due to the carelessness or negligence of another person, there’s really nothing that can make you whole. Nonetheless, it’s important to hold the wrongdoers accountable for your losses. Maryland law allows eligible individuals to pursue damages (monetary compensation) for certain losses. Who can bring a wrongful death action in Maryland?

Under Maryland’s wrongful death statute, you must be classified as a “beneficiary” to have the legal right to seek compensation for an accidental death. The statute differentiates between primary and secondary beneficiaries:

  • Primary beneficiaries—This category includes the surviving spouse, children, and parents of the deceased. If one or more primary beneficiaries bring a wrongful death claim, all damages for the wrongful death go exclusively to those parties.
  • Secondary beneficiaries—If no primary beneficiary survives the deceased, or if no primary beneficiary chooses to bring a wrongful death claim, a secondary beneficiary may do so. (A claim also may be brought on behalf of both primary and secondary beneficiaries.) Secondary beneficiaries include siblings, nieces and nephews, cousins, and other distant relatives.

Experienced Baltimore Personal Injury Attorney

Maryland Super Lawyer Jonathan Scott Smith has provided effective representation to personal injury victims in Baltimore and across Maryland for more than three decades. A skilled and experienced trial attorney with a history of obtaining positive results, he’s received the Client’s Choice Award from AVVO, with an average client review of 5 stars(the highest rating possible), as well as a perfect 10.0 (Superb)rating as a litigator. He’s AV-rated by his colleagues in the legal profession under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System and has been named a Top-Rated Lawyer by The American Lawyer magazine.

Effective Montgomery County Wrongful Death Lawyer

If you lose a loved one due to the carelessness or wrongful act of another person, we can help. Contact our office by e-mail or call us at 410-740-0101 to schedule an appointment. There’s no cost for your first consultation. We represent injured people in Howard County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Prince George’s County, and Montgomery County in Maryland.

Black Box Recorder May Provide Critical Evidence in Your Truck Accident Claim

Many Commercial Trucks Now Equipped with Data-recording Device

Black Box Recorder May Provide Critical Evidence in Your Truck Accident ClaimYou’ve likely heard, in the aftermath of a plane crash, that investigators are seeking the “black box” data recorder in an effort to understand the cause of the accident. You may not know, though, that many newer models of commercial trucks also come equipped with a similar device.

The black box recorder, also referred to as an electronic control module (ECM) or electronic data recorder (EDR), is a small device installed in a semi, big rig, 18-wheeler, or tractor-trailer to collect and store information about the physical properties of the truck. The black box can gather a wide range of data about the truck’s operation, including:

  • The speed the truck was traveling immediately before and at the time of an accident
  • Whether the truck accelerated or decelerated before the crash
  • If and when brakes were used
  • Whether the truck was on cruise control
  • How long the truck had been on the road since its last stop
  • If the driver was wearing a seat belt, and
  • The vehicle’s tire pressure at the time of the accident.

The black box also can provide data that can be compared with the driver’s physical log to determine if state or federal “on the road” time regulations were violated.

ProvenMD Personal Injury Lawyer

Maryland Super Lawyer Jonathan Scott Smith has aggressively fought for personal injury victims in Baltimore and throughout Maryland for more than 30 years. A skilled and experienced attorney with a history of getting positive results at trial, he has received the Client’s Choice Award from AVVO, with an average client review of 5 stars (the highest rating possible) and a perfect 10.0 Superb rating as a litigator. He’s also AV-rated by colleagues under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System and a 2012 Top Rated Lawyer by American Lawyermagazine.

Effective Baltimore, MD Personal Injury Attorney

If you have been hurt because of the wrongful act of another person, we can help. Contact our office by e-mail or call us at 410-740-0101 to schedule an appointment. There’s no cost for your first consultation. We represent injured people in Howard County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Prince George’s County, and Montgomery County in Maryland.

Happy New Year 2020

Happy New Year 2020

May the holiday season fill your home with joy, your heart with love, and your life with laughter.

Do You Have to Remove Snow and Ice from Your Car in Maryland?

Can You Be Liable for a Motor Vehicle Accident If Your Visibility Is Impaired?

A lot of people do it in the winter in Baltimore and across Maryland—there’s a little snow or accumulation of ice on your windshield, maybe the windows are frosted up, but you’re in a hurry… running late. So you head out on the roads with snow on the hood or windshield, or peering through a small section of window that you’ve scraped clean. What happens if you cause an accident because you can’t see another motorist?

There is no law in Maryland requiring that you take the time to clean snow or ice from your vehicle or ensure that your windows are fully defrosted. But that only means you won’t face criminal charges or get a traffic citation if you cause an accident. In a civil lawsuit based on the accident, the injured party may have little difficulty showing that your failure to clean the car was negligent. The standard for determining negligence is what a reasonable person would do. If a reasonable person would have cleaned snow and ice off the car, you can be held liable for failing to do so.

Results-oriented Anne Arundel County, Maryland, Personal Injury Attorney

Jonathan Scott Smith, a Maryland Super Lawyer, has protected the rights of personal injury victims in and around the greater Baltimore area for more than 30 years. He is a skilled and experienced litigator with the proven ability to obtain positive results at trial.

As a testament to his reputation for successful advocacy, attorney Smith has received the Client’s Choice Award from AVVO, with an average client review of 5 stars (the highest rating possible). AVVO also has awarded him a perfect 10.0 (Superb) rating as a litigator, and he is AV-rated by his colleagues in the legal profession under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System. He’s a Maryland Super Lawyer and also was recognized as a 2012 Top Rated Lawyer by The American Lawyer magazine.

Effective Baltimore, MD Personal Injury Attorney

If you have been hurt because of the wrongful act of another person, we can help. Contact our office by e-mail or call us at 410-740-0101 to schedule an appointment. There’s no cost for your first consultation. We represent injured people in Howard County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Prince George’s County, and Montgomery County in Maryland.

Injuries Due to Ice and Snow in Maryland

The Duties of Property Owners to Keep Sidewalks and Thoroughfares Clear

Injuries Due to Ice and Snow in MarylandThough there is no state law mandating the removal of snow or ice from sidewalks in Maryland, many municipalities have their own ordinances requiring property owners to take action:

  • Business owners and homeowners in Prince George’s County face a $100 fine if they fail to remove snow or ice within 48 hours. Howard County has a similar requirement.
  • In Montgomery County, snow and ice must be removed within 24 hours.
  • Baltimore County and the City of Baltimore give residents and business owners 24 to 48 hours. Fines range from $25 to $100.
  • The City of Rockville has a sliding scale, based on the amount of snow—less than three inches must be gone within 24 hours; three to nine inches must be removed within 48 hours; and 10 or more inches must be cleared within 72 hours.

Results-Oriented Maryland Personal Injury Attorney

Jonathan Scott Smith, a Maryland Super Lawyer, has consistently obtained positive results for personal injury victims in the Baltimore metropolitan area and across the state for over 30 years. Attorney Smith holds a 10.0 (Superb) rating as a trial attorney from AVVO, as well as AVVO’s Client’s Choice Award, with an average client review of 5 stars. The American Institute of Personal Injury Attorneys honored him as one of the “10 Best Attorneys in the State of Maryland in Client Satisfaction.”

He is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an organization comprised of less than 1% of all American lawyers who have obtained million-dollar judgments, awards or settlements. Smith has been named as one of the top 100 lawyers in Maryland by Super Lawyers and was lauded as a Top-Rated Lawyer by The American Lawyer in 2012.

Smith has been AV-rated (the highest rating possible) by his colleagues in the legal profession every year since 1988 and also has received Martindale-Hubbell’s Client Distinction Award, an award given to less than 4% of all attorneys listed. The National Trial Lawyers Association, a “by invitation only” professional organization, includes him among the state’s top 100 attorneys.

Experienced Baltimore County Personal Injury Accident Attorney

If you have been hurt because of the wrongful act of another person, we can help. Contact our office by e-mail or call us at 410-740-0101 to schedule an appointment. There’s no cost for your first consultation. We represent injured people in Howard County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Prince George’s County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

Happy Veterans Day 2019

Happy Veterans Day 2019

“We remember those who were called upon to give all a person can give, and we remember those who were prepared to make that sacrifice if it were demanded of them in the line of duty, though it never was. Most of all, we remember the devotion and gallantry with which all of them ennobled their nation as they became champions of a noble cause.” — Ronald Reagan

ADDRESS :

  • Jonathan Scott Smith 10490 Little Patuxent Parkway, Suite 200 ,Columbia, MD 21044-4960

  • Call for consultation 410-740-0101