What to Do After a Truck Accident in Maryland
With its proximity to bustling ports as well as the nation's capital and the traffic-laden beltway surrounding it, Maryland's roads can unfortunately be the scene of debilitating truck accidents. In one accident, for example, a box truck collided with and flipped another truck shutting down all lanes of Beltway traffic for hours.
If you're unfortunate enough to be involved in a truck accident in Maryland, you may have more avenues to recovery than if your losses resulted from a regular car accident. After all, with truck accidents, you'll almost always be dealing with trucking companies that could also be liable for your damages. Learn more below where you'll find additional information on what to do after a truck accident in Maryland.
Heightened Rules for Trucking Companies
Along with filing insurance claims, Maryland truck accident victims may also sue a trucking employer in court under one or more of the following legal theories:
- Negligence (via respondeat superior);
- Negligent hiring;
- Negligent entrustment; or
- Product liability (for any mechanical defects in a truck).
It's also important to note that trucking companies must comply with a wide range of state and federal rules and regulations, ranging from weight and route restrictions to work hour limits for truckers. The failure to do so could also serve as the basis for a legal claim.
Beware of Contributory Negligence
Maryland has contributory negligence rule which can bar a plaintiff from any recovery if he or she was at fault in an accident in any way. This applies even if a motorist's fault was only 1% of the cause behind an accident.
However, this rule only applies to a plaintiff's conduct causing the accident as opposed to that which may have caused injuries. To illustrate the difference, Maryland law specifically states that a plaintiff's failure to wear a seatbelt, which may be one cause of injuries, but not the cause of an accident, does not constitute contributory negligence.
Maryland Truck Accident Laws at a Glance
There are important steps to take after any accident, but you can learn more about the specific laws that apply in Maryland by consulting the chart below.
Maryland Code Section 5-101 (statute of limitations)
Maryland Code Section 20-102 (obligations to stop and exchange information after an accident)
Maryland Code Section 20-104 (obligations to render reasonable assistance to any person injured in an accident including assisting in transport to medical facilities if required)
Maryland Code Section 20-105 (information that must be exchanged after an accident)
Maryland Code Section 20-107 (requiring reporting of accidents involving bodily injury or death)
Maryland Code Section 20-109 (allowing suspension of licenses or registration for failing to provide all the correct information required)
Maryland Code Section 22-412.3(h)(1)(ii) (failure to use a seatbelt alone does not constitute contributory negligence)
|Statute of Limitations||
Three years from the date of an action accrues (usually the date of the accident).
Note: State laws are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts (including federal decisions), ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.
Maryland Truck Accident Laws: Related Resources
- Truck Accidents
- Maryland Car Accident Compensation Laws
- Maryland Car Accident Settlement Process and Timeline
Questions About What to Do After a Truck Accident in Maryland? Ask a Lawyer
Surviving a Maryland truck accident can be rife with challenges as you try to put the pieces of your life back together. As you do, it's important to understand your rights and how you can recover from your losses. Consider speaking with an experienced car accident attorney in Maryland who can help put you on the right track.
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