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Rockville Personal Injury Law Blog

What is the effect of contributory negligence in Maryland?

In Maryland, if you have been injured because of the negligence of another person, you may be less likely to recover damages resulting from your injury if your own negligence contributed to the cause of your injury. This is so because Maryland law still recognizes the doctrine of contributory negligence as the law of the land.

When a person’s negligence is involved in their own injury, they cannot recover even if another person’s negligence was much more serious. This is true unless an exception to contributory negligence applies, such as when a plaintiff is a young child, the “last clear change doctrine” applies, or the case is a in strict liability case, according to the American Bar Association. While some not versed in the law may not recognize anything unusual in the Maryland rule, others, aware that only a handful of jurisdictions still recognize contributory negligence, may consider it a “dinosaur” that should be replaced by the more simple, logical and fair doctrine of comparative negligence. When comparative negligence is the rule, an injured person’s ability to recover damages is reduced in proportion to their negligence in the case.

Behavior changes after a traumatic brain injury

A brain injury often has an emotional toll as much as a physical one. When people suffer traumatic brain injuries, there is a chance that they will need family members and loved ones to help the with daily activities of life.

Caregivers sometimes get what seems like the raw end of the deal. This is because they might be dealing with the behavioral changes in their loved one. These changes can make you wonder if your hard work is being appreciated. Here are some important things to think about when you are dealing with the behavioral changes of your loved one:

Should you be worried about your concussion?

Maryland residents who suffer from head injuries can experience an array of symptoms. Some head injuries may be light and require very little outside interference to heal well. Other head injuries, however, can be quite severe and result in long-lasting or very traumatic damages.

Mayo Clinic discusses the symptoms unique to severe brain trauma. If you experience any of these, then the damage you're facing could be quite serious and usually requires immediate medical attention. These symptoms can be divided into two categories: mental and physical. 

Ride-sharing may not decrease drunk driving

While many across Maryland use ride-sharing services like Uber or Lyft if they plan to have a night on the town, a new study says that despite Uber's claims, these services have had no impact on the number of people driving drunk.

As Fortune reports, a recent study compared the number of traffic fatalities on holidays and weekends in areas before ride-sharing was available and after the apps were introduced. No association was found in a reduction of driving deaths in the 100 most populous metro areas included in the study. The researchers from the University of Southern California and Oxford University stated that the lack of a decrease in drunk driving deaths may be because there are still not enough drivers working for the services or because it is possible that those who used cabs previously are the ones using the apps. This contradicts a 2015 study commissioned by Uber and Mothers Against Drunk Driving that found a sharp decrease in accidents and arrests in communities that had ride-sharing services.

What are common slipping and tripping hazards?

Maryland residents like you can easily have your whole day turned upside down by something as simple as a lack of maintenance on public property. The Law Offices of Scott N. Bergman, LLC, focus on helping you gain compensation for your slip-and-fall accidents, which can start by identifying potential hazards that can cause these accidents to happen.

Some tripping and slipping hazards are quite common. This includes wet floors, either because they're freshly cleaned or because water from the outside has collected near the door. Uneven flooring is also common, and can involve stairs or ramps, as well as sudden drops from one level of flooring to another. Material that can "catch" on your shoe may count as a hazard. For example, welcome mats or rugs in a common area can grip the sole, causing you to trip.

Is your concussion serious?

If you're a resident of Maryland who's suffered from a recent head injury, it'll benefit you to keep a careful eye on it. It's a common mistake for people to believe that their concussions aren't severe when in reality, they can be much worse than anticipated. This underestimation can cause unnecessary pain and suffering.

Mayo Clinic lists out the many different symptoms of concussions. Some of these are temporary and fade quickly, and some of them can be indicative of heavier or more severe damage that require professional medical care. For example, dizziness and headaches are both quite common. However, extreme headaches, pressure, or vomiting can indicate larger areas of damage. If blood or clear fluid is draining from your ears or nose, this should be taken as a sign to get medical attention immediately.

Do store owners have an obligation to warn customers?

As simple as shopping at a retail store may be, there are often behind-the-scenes considerations of which the average shopper may be unaware; not the least of these is the store owner’s concern about shopper safety. In Maryland, a conscientious store owner will satisfy any duty owed to you by meeting that standard of care required by the nature of your visit.

If you enter a store, the nature of your visit may determine the extent to which the store owner or occupant of the premises will be concerned about liability for any injury to you in the unlikely event of an accident. If a retail clothing outlet, which holds itself out as providing discounted clothing to the public, operates during normal business, as a shopper you may expect them to provide you with information about any dangerous sections or features within the shopping area of the store. You may notice signs that warn of certain areas that are off-limits to customers and for employees only. In such a circumstance, you are invited to enter the shopping area of the store for the purpose of shopping at the retail clothing outlet, but you are not invited to the employee-only area and your presence there would  change the duty owed.

Pediatric brain injuries can change the course of a child's life

Parents who see their child hurt will usually take steps to make sure that the child isn't in pain. When you are in a car crash and have a child in the vehicle, checking on your child is likely your top priority. Unfortunately, children can suffer some pretty serious injuries in these crashes. One of these is the possibility of a brain injury.

There are many different ways that this type of injury can affect a child. This is usually determined by the location and severity of the injury. The medical care the child receives can also affect this. Here are some points for you to remember about pediatric brain injuries:

Companies team up to improve autonomous car safety

Many Maryland residents who are eagerly awaiting the introduction of autonomous vehicles on a large scale may well be intrigued about the possibility that these cars could dramatically reduce the number of accidents that happen. Certainly improved safety has been put forth as a primary benefit of these vehicles but just how might this be achieved?

One way that a self-driving car might be able to keep people safer than a human-driven car is through the ability to avoid an accident with another object. This may be done by the inclusion of special technology that allows the vehicle to sense anything in a certain range. While this may sound futuristic, it is real today. One company that makes this technology, referred to as LiDAR, is called Innoviz. Innoviz will be working with a vehicle parts maker, Delphi Automotive, so that its LiDAR technology may be built into Delphi's products.

Broken bones from a fall can require extensive medical care

Many people think of falls as an embarrassing nuisance. While this is the case for some falls, it is also possible that this could lead to a very serious injury.

People who suffer injuries when they fall should be prepared for the recovery process. This varies greatly depending on the type of injury that they have. Broken bones are one type of injury that can require considerable time and rehabilitation to recover completely.

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