Slip and Fall Claims in Maryland Winter Weather

What Are the Duties of Property Owner Regarding Snow and Ice?

Slip and Fall Claims in Maryland Winter WeatherWinter is upon us, and in Maryland, that means snow and ice. Though the average snowfall across the state is about 20 inches a year, there are some parts of the state that can accumulate several feet. That snow can pose its own risks, but may also turn into ice, making conditions extremely dangerous. Property owners in Maryland have certain duties to maintain their premises in winter to minimize the risk of injury to persons legally visiting the property.

The Duties of Property Owners in Maryland’s Winter Weather

Residential and commercial property owners must take reasonable steps to ensure that the risk of injury is minimized. In Maryland, this means that property owners must monitor and inspect property for potential hazards and either take steps for eliminate the danger or reasonably warn visitors of the potential risks. This requires homeowners and commercial property owners to pay attention to weather forecasts and conditions, and take reasonable measures, including laying down salt or sand, removing snow or ice, or preventing access to premises. Many municipalities in Maryland have specific ordinances requiring the removal of snow within a specific period of time.

Proven Baltimore County Slip and Fall Attorney

Maryland SuperLawyer Jonathan Scott Smith has aggressively advocated for personal injury victims brings in Baltimore and across the state of Maryland for more than 30 years. A well-respected trial attorney, Smith has been listed as a “Top-Rated Lawyer” by the American Lawyer Magazine and has consistently been AV-rated by his colleagues in the Maryland Bar under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System (the highest rating possible). The National Trial Lawyers Association, a “by invitation only” professional organization, has named him one of the top 100 attorneys in the state of Maryland.

A recipient of the prestigious Client’s Choice Award from AVVO, with an average client review of 5 stars (the highest rating possible), Jonathan has also earned a perfect 10.0 Superb rating from AVVO as a trial attorney.

Experienced Premises Liability Lawyer in Maryland

If you or someone you love has been hurt in a slip and fall in snowy or icy weather, let attorney Jonathan Scott Smith help you pursue full and fair compensation for all your losses. Contact our offices by e-mail or call us at 410-740-0101 to schedule an appointment. Your first consultation is free. We represent injured people in Howard County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Prince Georges County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

The Different Types of Damages in a Personal Injury Claim

What Losses Can You Recover after an Accident?

The Different Types of Damages in a Personal Injury ClaimWhen another person acts carelessly, causing an accident, you have a right to file a lawsuit seeking “damages.” In a personal injury lawsuit, those “damages” generally take the form of a monetary payment. As a general rule, most personal injury damages are categorized as “compensatory,” intended to reimburse you for specific losses or provide you with remuneration for anticipated expense or loss. In rare situations, in a personal injury claim, an injured party may seek (and the court may award) “punitive” damages, often where the wrongful act was egregious or with reckless disregard for human life.

Compensatory damages are further divided between those considered “economic,” and those referred to as “non-economic.” Economic damages are those that are typically tangible and easy to calculate, such as lost wages or unreimbursed medical expenses, as well as property loss or damage. Non-economic damages, on the other hand, are losses that are commonly more difficult to accurately compute, and may include such things as physical/emotional pain and suffering, loss of companionship/consortium, and loss of enjoyment of life.

Results-Oriented Maryland Personal Injury Lawyer

Maryland SuperLawyer Jonathan Scott Smith brings more than three decades of experience to injured people in Baltimore and throughout the state of Maryland. A proven trial attorney, Smith has been named a “Top-Rated Lawyer” by the American Lawyer Magazine, and has long been AV-rated by his colleagues in the legal profession under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System (the highest rating possible). The National Trial Lawyers Association, a “by invitation only” professional organization, has listed him among the top 100 attorneys in the state of Maryland.

Attorney Smith has also earned the prestigious 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 from AVVO as a trial attorney.

Aggressive Montgomery County Accident Injury Attorney

If you or someone you love has suffered any type of loss as the result of a personal injury, we can help. Contact attorney Jonathan Scott Smith by e-mail or call our offices at 410-740-0101 to schedule an appointment. Your first consultation is free. We represent injured people in Howard County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Prince Georges County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

Potential Defendants in a Car Accident Claim

Sources of Recovery after a Motor Vehicle Crash

Potential Defendants in a Car Accident ClaimWhen you’ve been hurt in a car, truck or motorcycle collision, your first inclination is to bring a lawsuit against the driver who caused the wreck. You may, however, have other potentially responsible parties:

  • The manufacturer, designer or marketing of the vehicle or any of its component parts, if you can show that the accident was caused to any extent by a dangerous or defective product
  • The municipality or agency responsible for roadway maintenance, if the accident was due to roadway defects, such as potholes, uneven pavement, water or gravel on the roads or defective or missing signage
  • The person who served the alcohol, if the accident was caused by a drunk driver—Maryland is one of a handful of states that do not allow you to sue the bar, tavern, restaurant or other establishment that served the alcohol. You may sue a private individual who provided liquor or alcohol.
  • The owner of the vehicle, if other than the driver—You may have a claim against an owner who knowingly allowed a person to drive the vehicle, provided the owner knew or should have known of the potential for harm because of that person’s youth, inexperience or other shortcoming. This theory, long recognized in Maryland, is known as “negligent entrustment.”

Results-Oriented Baltimore, Maryland Auto Accident Attorney

Maryland SuperLawyer Jonathan Scott Smith has successfully protected the rights of injured people across the state for more than 30 years, including persons hurt in motor vehicle accidents. An accomplished and highly-regarded trial attorney, Smith has been honored as a “Top-Rated Lawyer” by the American Lawyer Magazine, and has long been AV-rated by his colleagues in the legal profession under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System (the highest rating possible). The National Trial Lawyers Association, a “by invitation only” professional organization, has listed him among the top 100 attorneys in the state of Maryland.

Smith has also earned the prestigious 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 from AVVO as a trial attorney.

Proven Frederick County Accident Injury Lawyer

If you or someone you love has suffered any type of loss as the result of a personal injury, we can help. Contact attorney Jonathan Scott Smith by e-mail or call our offices at 410-740-0101 to schedule an appointment. Your first consultation is free. We represent injured people in Howard County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Prince Georges County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

Proving that Someone Caused an Accident

What is “But-For” Cause? What Is Proximate Cause?

Proving that Someone Caused an AccidentWith most personal injury claims, you are seeking compensation because of the defendant’s negligence. To successfully prove negligence, you must show that:

  • The defendant failed to act reasonably under the circumstances
  • That failure caused an accident
  • You suffered actual losses as a result

Let’s look at what you must show to prove that a person caused an accident.

As the law of personal injury has evolved, two specific types of cause have been identified: actual, or “but-for” cause, and proximate cause:

  • “But-for” cause means that you must show that the accident would not have happened, and any ensuing injuries would not have been sustained, had the defendant acted reasonably.
  • Proximate cause looks at whether or not the accident and/or injuries suffered were reasonably foreseeable as a consequence of the failure to act as a reasonable person. Without the requirement of proximate cause, a defendant’s liability could be potentially unlimited.

Proven Baltimore County, Maryland Personal Injury Lawyer

Maryland SuperLawyer Jonathan Scott Smith has fought for the rights of injured people across the state for more than 30 years. An accomplished and highly-regarded trial attorney, Smith has been honored as a “Top-Rated Lawyer” by the American Lawyer Magazine, and has long been AV-rated by his colleagues in the legal profession under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System (the highest rating possible). The National Trial Lawyers Association, a “by invitation only” professional organization, has listed him among the top 100 attorneys in the state of Maryland.

Smith has also earned the prestigious 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 from AVVO as a trial attorney.

Experienced Carroll County Accident Injury Attorney

If you or someone you love has suffered any type of loss as the result of a personal injury, we can help. Contact attorney Jonathan Scott Smith by e-mail or call our offices at 410-740-0101 to schedule an appointment. Your first consultation is free. We represent injured people in Howard County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Prince Georges County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

How Personal Injury Attorneys Gather Evidence in Maryland

The Tools Available for Obtaining Factual Support for a Claim

How Personal Injury Attorneys Gather Evidence in MarylandTo successfully recover damages in a Maryland personal injury lawsuit, you must prove your case by a “preponderance of the evidence.” In essence, this means that your lawyer must demonstrate to a jury that your version of the facts is more believable than the defendant’s version. Your attorney will do that with factual evidence. But what tools are available to help your lawyer get the necessary evidence?

The Tools Available through the Court to Gather Evidence in a Personal Injury Claim

There are three specific tools available through the courts to help you assimilate evidence to support your case:

  • Depositions— A deposition is essentially an out-of-court examination of a witness, with a court reporter typically present to preserve all testimony. A party can be compelled to attend a deposition (by use of a subpoena). At the deposition, attorneys for all parties may ask questions. A party may give testimony that will not be admissible at trial. Attorneys will customarily voice an objection and instruct the witness to answer. The court will then hold evidentiary hearings to determine whether evidence will be admissible at trial.
  • Requests for production— A party to litigation may require that another party produce physical evidence for examination. That may include documents, electronic data or physical objects. A party may refuse to produce physical evidence, but must provide a legitimate reason to the court.
  • Interrogatories— The parties may submit a list of factual questions to any other party. The court will typically limit the number of interrogatories. A witness may be compelled to answer interrogatories in writing.

Results-Oriented Maryland Personal Injury Attorney

Maryland Super Lawyer Jonathan Scott Smith has fought for the rights of injured people across the state for more than 30 years. A highly respected trial lawyer, Attorney Smith has been named a “Top-Rated Lawyer” by the American Lawyer Magazine, and has long been AV-rated by his colleagues in the legal professionunder Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System (the highest rating possible).The National Trial Lawyers Association, a “by invitation only” professional organization, has identified him among the top 100 attorneys in the state of Maryland.

Smith has also earned the prestigious Client’s Choice Award from AVVO, with an average client review of 5 stars (the highest rating possible), as well asa perfect 10.0 Superb rating from AVVO as a trial attorney.

Proven Baltimore, Maryland Accident Injury Lawyer

If you or someone you love has suffered any type of loss as the result of a personal injury, we can help. Contact attorney Jonathan Scott Smith by e-mail or call our offices at 410-740-0101 to schedule an appointment. Your first consultation is free. We represent injured people in Howard County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Prince Georges County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

The Time Limits for Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit in Maryland

What Is the Statute of Limitations? What Is Its Purpose?

The Time Limits for Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit in MarylandWhen you have been injured in Maryland in an accident or as a result of someone else’s careless or negligent act, you have a right to file a lawsuit to recover compensation for your losses. You must, however, file your complaint within a limited period of time, as set forth in Maryland’s “statute of limitations.”

What Is the Statute of Limitations?

The statute of limitations is a written law, enacted by the Maryland legislature, that sets forth the time period within which a lawsuit must be filed. As a general rule, if a complaint is not filed within those time limitations, the claim will be barred. Though many states require that a personal injury lawsuit be filed within two years of the date of the injury, Maryland allows an injured party three years to commence legal action.

What Is the Purposed of the Statute of Limitations?

The statute of limitations seeks to ensure that legal proceedings take place while the memories of all parties are still fresh. It also minimizes the risk that witnesses will die or relocate, or that critical evidence will deteriorate or be destroyed.

For a defendant in a personal injury lawsuit, the statute of limitations prevents a potential claim from hanging over his or head for an unreasonable period of time.

Results-Oriented Maryland Personal Injury Attorney

Maryland SuperLawyer Jonathan Scott Smith has aggressively advocated for injured people across the state for more than three decades. Known and respected by his fellow attorneys for his trial experience, Attorney Smith has been named a “Top-Rated Lawyer” by the American Lawyer Magazine, and has long held an AV-rating under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System (the highest rating possible). The National Trial Lawyers Association, a “by invitation only” professional organization, has identified him among the top 100 attorneys in the state of Maryland.

Smith has also earned the prestigious 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 from AVVO as a trial attorney.

Proven Baltimore, Maryland Accident Injury Lawyer

If you or someone you love has suffered any type of loss as the result of a personal injury, we can help. Contact attorney Jonathan Scott Smith by e-mail or call our offices at 410-740-0101 to schedule an appointment. Your first consultation is free. We represent injured people in Howard County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Prince Georges County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

Common Defenses to Personal Injury Claims in Maryland

Ways that Your Personal Injury Lawsuit May Be Challenged

Common Defenses to Personal Injury Claims in MarylandYou’ve been hurt because someone else wasn’t paying attention. The facts may seem pretty straightforward, so you may think your claim will be quickly resolved. There are, however, a number of potential challenges the defendant can raise during the legal process:

  • You contributed to the chain of events that caused the accident or injury—Maryland is one of a few states that still adheres to the legal principle of contributory negligence. In certain circumstances, if the defense can demonstrate that you engaged in actions that contributed to causing the accident, you may be denied any recovery.
  • The injuries you allege were suffered before the accident that is the subject matter of the lawsuit—This is known as a pre-existing injury. You can recover for any aggravation or re-injury, but not for any injury that existed at the time of the accident.
  • You signed a waiver—As a practical matter, waivers are unlikely to be enforced by a court if the language is vague or overbroad, or if the result would be unfair
  • You knew the activity was dangerous—There are some activities that are considered inherently dangerous, such that you will be deemed to have assumed the risk of possible injury
  • You did not file your lawsuit in a timely manner—In Maryland, as in other states, you have a limited time (pursuant to the statute of limitations) to file a claim or it will be barred

Results-Oriented Maryland Personal Injury Lawyer

Maryland Super Lawyer Jonathan Scott Smith has fought for the rights of injured people across the state for more than three decades. Recognized by his fellow attorneys for his trial experience, Attorney Smith was named a “Top-Rated Lawyer” by the American Lawyer Magazine, and has long been AV-rated under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System (the highest rating possible).The National Trial Lawyers Association, a “by invitation only” professional organization, has named him among the top 100 attorneys in the state of Maryland.

Smith has also earned the prestigious 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 from AVVO as a trial attorney.

Aggressive Prince George’s County, Maryland Accident Injury Attorney

If you or someone you love has suffered any type of loss as the result of a personal injury, we can help. Contact attorney Jonathan Scott Smith by e-mail or call our offices at 410-740-0101 to schedule an appointment. Your first consultation is free. We represent injured people in Howard County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Prince Georges County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

What You Need Most in a Personal Injury Attorney

What to Look for When Hiring an Accident Lawyer

What You Need Most in a Personal Injury AttorneyWhen you’ve been injured because of someone else’s carelessness or negligence, you have the right to file a lawsuit to recover full and fair compensation for all your losses. You want the right lawyer, though, to handle your claim—your choice of legal counsel can have a significant impact on the result you get. So what are the most important traits to look for when hiring a personal injury attorney?

Experience is Essential

There’s simply no substitute for experience. You want a lawyer who’s been in practice for a number of years, who has focused his or her practice on personal injury and, ideally, who has handled personal injury claims like yours. If you’ve been hurt because of the carelessness of a medical professional, a commercial truck driver or the manufacturer of a dangerous or defective product, you’ll typically be better served by someone who has successfully handled those types of claims. With medical malpractice, you’ll want someone who knows how to establish the standard of care and who can work easily with medical experts. With commercial truck accidents or product liability claims, you’ll want someone who understands the unique causes and the specialized types of evidence often involved.

Results Matter, Too

When you’re interviewing potential personal injury lawyers, always ask them for examples of how they’ve obtained positive results in the past. You want a lawyer who knows how to get the outcome you want. You also want an attorney who can either negotiate an effective settlement or take your case to trial, if necessary (and who know when to settle or go to trial).

Proven Baltimore County Personal Injury Attorney

Jonathan Scott Smith, a Maryland SuperLawyer, has successfully represented injured people across the state for more than 30 years. Highly regarded by his fellow attorneys for his trial experience, Attorney Smith was named a “Top-Rated Lawyer” by the American Lawyer Magazine, and has long been AV-rated under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System (the highest rating possible). The National Trial Lawyers Association, a “by invitation only” professional organization, has listed him among the top 100 attorneys in the state of Maryland. Smith has also earned the prestigious 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 from AVVO as a trial attorney.

Results-Oriented Howard County, Maryland Accident Injury Attorney

If you or someone you love has suffered any type of loss as the result of a personal injury, we can help. Contact attorney Jonathan Scott Smith by e-mail or call our offices at 410-740-0101 to schedule an appointment. Your first consultation is free. We represent injured people in Howard County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Prince Georges County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

Failing to Wear a Motorcycle Helmet in Maryland

Can You Still Recover Damages after a Crash?

Failing to Wear a Motorcycle Helmet in MarylandIn the state of Maryland, you may not operate or be a passenger on a motorcycle on public property or thoroughfares unless you are wearing an approved helmet. What are the consequences if you are injured in a motorcycle accident, but were not wearing a helmet at the time of the crash? Can you still file a personal injury claim for your losses?

Failure to Wear a Helmet Does Not Bar Recovery

The fact that you were not wearing an approved helmet at the time of a motorcycle accident will not prevent you from filing a lawsuit or from recovering compensation for any injuries sustained. In fact, the law governing the use of helmets by operators and passengers on motorcycles in Maryland specifically bans any evidence that an injured person was not wearing a helmet to prove negligence, contributory negligence or to reduce a potential damage award. That being said, while wearing a helmet won’t prevent an accident, it can minimize your pain and suffering when you are in a crash.

Proven Ellicott City Personal Injury Lawyer

Maryland SuperLawyer Jonathan Scott Smith has aggressively represented injured people across the state for more than three decades. Highly respected by his colleagues in the legal community for his trial experience, Attorney Smith was named a “Top-Rated Lawyer” by the American Lawyer Magazine, and has long been AV-rated under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System. The National Trial Lawyers Association, a “by invitation only” professional organization, counts him among the top 100 attorneys in the state of Maryland.

Smith has also earned the prestigious 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 from AVVO as a trial attorney.

Effective Montgomery County, Maryland Accident Injury Attorney

If you or someone you love has suffered any type of loss as the result of a personal injury, we can help. Contact attorney Jonathan Scott Smith by e-mail or call our offices at 410-740-0101 to schedule an appointment. Your first consultation is free. We represent injured people in Howard County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Prince Georges County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

The “Seatbelt Defense” in Maryland Motor Vehicle Accident Claims

Can An Insurer Refuse to Pay If You Weren’t Wearing a Seatbelt?

Woman fastens a seat belt. Safe driving conceptUnder Maryland law, all passengers in a motor vehicle in motion on public property must wear a seatbelt. What is the impact, then, on your right to recover compensation for an injury if you are involved in a motor vehicle accident while not buckled in? With Maryland’s strict “contributory negligence” approach, will you be banned from recovering damages for your injuries?

Maryland Rejects the Seatbelt Defense

Though Maryland is one of only three states that still follow the principle of contributory negligence, where any carelessness or negligence by an injured party serves as a bar to recovery, Maryland has held that insurance companies may not refuse to pay an insurance claim because the injured party was not wearing a seatbelt at the time of an accident. This is based on findings that whether or not an injured party is wearing a seatbelt has nothing to do with what actually caused the accident. Under the Maryland statute governing liability in motor vehicle accidents where an injured party was not wearing a seatbelt, a defendant may not introduce evidence of such a failure in order to show contributory negligence or to reduce damages. In fact, the parties may not make any reference to seatbelts at trial unless the design, installation, manufacture, supply or repair of the seatbelt is an issue.

ProvenMarylandPersonal Injury Attorney

Maryland SuperLawyerJonathan Scott Smithhas fought for the rights of injured people across the state for more than 30 years.Highly respected by his colleagues in the legal community for his courtroom skills, Attorney Smith wasnamed a “Top-Rated Lawyer” by the American Lawyer Magazine, and has long held an AV-rating under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System.The National Trial Lawyers Association, a “by invitation only” professional organization, lists him among the top 100 attorneys in the state of Maryland.

Smith has also earned theprestigious Client’s Choice Award from AVVO, with an average client review of 5 stars (the highest rating possible), as well asa perfect10.0 Superb rating from AVVO as a trial attorney.

Aggressive Howard County, Maryland Motor Vehicle Accident Injury Lawyer

If you or someone you love has suffered any type of loss as the result of a personal injury, we can help. Contact attorney Jonathan Scott Smith by e-mail or call our offices at 410-740-0101 to schedule an appointment. Your first consultation is free. We represent injured people in Howard County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Prince Georges County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

ADDRESS :

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

  • Call for consultation 410-740-0101