You May be Running Out of Time to Bring A Car Accident Lawsuit in Maryland
If you have suffered an injury as a result of a car accident, you may not be focused on bringing a lawsuit right now. You may be focused on healing, rebuilding your life, patiently waiting and hoping that the car insurance settlement process will resolve itself, or trying desperately to move on from a traumatic event. It’s completely normal not to want to focus on something terrible that happened, but it’s likely that without the guidance of a lawyer, you may be living the consequences of the accident for far longer than necessary.
What is a Statute of limitations?
Maryland, like most states, has a statute of limitations on all personal injury claims, which also applies to car accident lawsuits involving injury or death. A statute of limitations is a strict time limit that guards how long you have to file a lawsuit from the time the injury occurred.
These statutes of limitations exist for a number of reasons. A primary reason is the preservation of a fair trial. As time passes, it becomes harder to find evidence, and witnesses won’t have as good of a memory of the events that transpired and may have moved away or no longer be alive.
Although not directly related to the statute of limitations, another time sensitive issue to be aware of is the fact that most security camera footage is deleted after 90 days. Basically, the closer you bring a claim to the time of the accident, the more information and people there are available to support and resolve it.
How Long Is the Statute of Limitations?
In Maryland, the statute of limitations for car accident lawsuits involving injury or death is three years, as it is for all personal injury lawsuits in the state. In most cases, the clock starts ticking at the time of the accident. However, if the collision ultimately results in a death, the statute of limitations will begin at the time of death, even if it is later than the date of the collision.
It’s important to note that the statute of limitations applies only to the filing of a lawsuit, and not to the filing of a claim with your insurance company. You do not have three years to file a claim with an insurance company–most insurance companies require that you make a claim as soon as reasonably possible following a collision. Additionally, the sooner you initiate the insurance process, the less you are delaying a possible lawsuit.
It is also important to note that in some cases, the statute of limitations may be extended. This may include claims arising out of Workers’ Compensation claims, injuries to a minor, or claims during Covid related court closures. It is important to consult with your attorney about potential extensions to the statute of limitations.
What Can I Do?
If you are nearing the three year mark from the date of your accident or a loved one’s death and are still unsure of your options, it’s important to reach out to an experienced Maryland Personal Injury Lawyer as soon as possible so you do not miss your window. If you are awaiting the resolution of your insurance process but are nearing the end of the time you have left to file, it’s a good idea to consult with an attorney to determine the best course of action.
Schedule a Consultation Today
Contact Berman | Sobin | Gross LLP to schedule a consultation today, and talk to experienced Maryland car accident lawyers who care about the specifics of your case and getting you the best settlement possible.