If you were hurt in a recent personal injury accident, you are probably wondering how the pandemic created by the novel coronavirus COVID-19 will affect your rights as a victim. The crisis has already had an impact on almost every area of your life, so it is understandable that you’ll have concerns about whether the personal injury legal process will move forward. Fortunately, you can rest assured that certain aspects of your matter can proceed: Even though courts are closed for most purposes by order of the Maryland Judiciary, there are some out-of-court tasks that can happen today.
Your Maryland personal injury lawyer is still working diligently to pursue compensation for your losses, but you should be aware of what is going on and what you can do to support your claim.
Continue Medical Treatment
Depending on the nature of your injuries, you may have follow up care with your own doctor and other treating physicians. You should continue with treatment as advised for your health and well-being, but also to support your personal injury claim. Keep regular appointments, take medications as instructed, and comply with recommendations for at-home care. Every encounter with your physicians generates medical records, which may be powerful evidence for:
- Auto, truck, and motorcycle collisions;
- Bicycle and pedestrian accidents;
- Slip and falls, dog bites, and other incidents that occur because of dangerous conditions on property;
- Injuries due to defective products;
- Medical malpractice; and,
- Many other personal injury accidents.
Claims and Settlement Negotiations Moving Forward
If your attorney has already filed an injury claim with the responsible party’s insurance company, shutdowns associated with the COVID-19 crisis should not impact your rights. Many insurers are supporting their adjusters in working remotely. Though there may be delays, the insurance company will continue to:
- Process your forms and demand package;
- Review your support documentation, including medical records;
- Investigate the causes and contributing factors in the accident; and,
- Negotiate with your lawyer regarding a settlement to resolve your claim.
If the insurer will not agree to a fair amount to compensate you for your losses, your next step is to file a lawsuit in court.
Pending Civil Cases
Litigation initiated before Maryland courts shut down for the COVID-19 pandemic may be stalled for the time being. However, your attorney can continue with certain tasks to advance your lawsuit. Parties can still engage in written discovery, including exchange of interrogatories and document production. Lawyers representing the parties may conduct status conferences over the phone, and it is possible to negotiate a settlement. Once the courts reopen, your matter will proceed accordingly.
Count on Your Maryland Personal Injury Attorney During the COVID-19 Crisis
Regardless of the status of your personal injury claim, it can be a relief to know that your lawyer can move forward with relevant tasks until courts get the green light to resume normal operations. COVID-19 may have created some delays, but your rights remain intact. If you were hurt in an accident and need legal assistance, please contact attorney Michael A. Freedman. Our offices in Baltimore and Anne Arundel Counties are open, so we can conduct a free consultation via phone.