Cecil County’s Top 5 “Hot Spots” for 2016 Accidents #3

We continue our countdown of the hot spots for Cecil County auto accidents in 2016 with a bit of a stretch. As with some of our previous posts in this spot is actually a stretch of roadway where a couple of different areas/intersections along the road are the real “hot spot”. This one ranks just above #4, which we looked at last week.

3. Rt 40 approaching and past North East, MD

Rt 40 through a few spots in North East, Maryland are some big problem areas. One of them is a direct result of evening/afternoon rush hour traffic. As you head west on Rt 40 from Elkton to North East, traffic will begin to back up between 4:30 and 6pm as far back as Marley Road. This traffic inevitably results in many rear end collisions on an almost daily basis. This wasn’t always the case, and we suspect that it’s largely the result of cell phone/smart phone use by people who are waiting in the line of traffic, seeing that it begins to move, and then doesn’t stop in time for the traffic.

Heading a little further west on Rt 40 will bring us to the intersection with Red Toad Road. This newly renovated, but not redesigned, intersection is a super hot spot for traffic accidents for a variety of reasons. It’s actually a bit surprising to most that this isn’t alone the number one accident spot in our countdown (maybe it’ll rise up the list in 2017, as we’ve already seen double digit accidents here so far this year).

red toad during construction

From an overhead map view there’s nothing strange or unique about this intersection, but if you travel through the area regularly you’ll know that it’s nothing normal going on here. The traffic coming from Red Toad in either direction often have issues negotiating who gets to go first, and in what direction, as most traffic coming from Red Toad in either direction is turning onto Rt 40 in one direction or another.

Additionally, the traffic traveling through Rt 40 in either direction is in no way innocent in causation of these accidents. We’ve found many people get surprised by the light, and attempt to speed up to beat it, or just run it altogether. The problem created here more or less speaks for itself with where this intersection ranks on this year’s list!

If you’re injured in an accident in Cecil County, or anywhere in the State of Maryland please call our office at 410-885-6200. We’re happy to discuss your claim, and handle all dealings with insurance companies on your behalf. Most importantly, we don’t charge you anything up front, and only get a fee if we are successful in getting you money.

Cecil County’s Top 5 “Hot Spots” for 2016 Accidents #4

We’re continuing out countdown of the most dangerous accident spots in Cecil County, Maryland for the calendar year 2016. Last week we saw the 5th most dangerous accident intersection(s) as rated by the cases my office handled in the 2016 calendar year.

4. Rt 40 and Rt 213 (Bridge St/Augustine Herman Highway)

rt40rt213elkton

If you were to have asked me what intersections I thought were the most dangerous in 2016 without actually looking at the numbers this one would have been my guess for the top spot. Surprisingly, this intersection ranked number 4 on the overall list for 2016 accidents.

Yes. That mean’s there are 3 intersections in Cecil County Maryland that we handled more accidents from than the interchange between Rt 40 and Rt 213!

This is likely one of the busiest intersections in Cecil County, right in the heart of Elkton. The intersection of 2 major county arteries is also the intersection of many many vehicles, not in a good way!

The lights here are on a timed sequence, but they’re not entirely consistent. If you’ve ever tried to turn left onto 213 from the eastbound Rt 40 lane, you know that left arrow lasts maybe 3 or 4 cars…if everyone is paying attention!

Be careful traveling through this intersection, and don’t try to “speed up” and beat any lights here, otherwise you might become a client of ours, or even worse create a client for our office. Don’t just be careful here, but also be careful in our #3 most dangerous intersection for 2016.

If you’re injured in an accident in Cecil County, or anywhere in the State of Maryland please call our office at 410-885-6200. We’re happy to discuss your claim, and handle all dealings with insurance companies on your behalf. Most importantly, we don’t charge you anything up front, and only get a fee if we are successful in getting you money.

Cecil County’s Top 5 “Hot Spots” for 2016 Accidents #5

Our injury law office here in Elkton, Maryland has grown quite a bit before opening up in late 2014. We handle a LOT of accident and injury claims throughout the State, but many of them happen right here in Cecil County or involve citizens of Cecil County. In our normal process of doing year-end reporting from 2016, we noticed some interesting trends when it comes to the location of many of the accident cases we handle. We’ve compiled a list of the Top 5 Accident Locations in Cecil County. You may want to take note of this list, and be extra aware when driving in these areas.

5. Rt 272 near the North East Walmart

272 at Walmart NE

The intersection with the 5th most injury related accidents in Cecil County in 2016 is really 3 different intersections that sit back to back to back in North East, MD. We’ve represented clients in a variety of accidents that have occurred entering and/or exiting the main entrance to the plaza where the Walmart is in North East. Just a bit north of this intersection is the main entrance to Timberbrook community, Rogers Road. We have almost as many accidents in 2016 at this intersection, as there are a few feet down the street.

272atRogers

Just a few hundred feet north of Rogers Road is the intersection at Nazarene Camp road. Not quite as many as Rogers Road or the Walmart, but just as close in location that we felt the need to lump this in. This grouping of 3 intersections is actually only our 5th most “dangerous” for 2016. Number 4 has us representing even more clients….

 

If you’re injured in an accident in Cecil County, or anywhere in the State of Maryland please call our office at 410-885-6200. We’re happy to discuss your claim, and handle all dealings with insurance companies on your behalf. Most importantly, we don’t charge you anything up front, and only get a fee if we are successful in getting you money.

The cost/benefit of increasing your PIP/Medpay Coverage in Maryland

Today I had the pleasure of meeting with one of my clients in the Elkton, MD office to discuss her current treatment progression as a result of an ongoing automobile accident case. Among the topics of conversation was her auto insurance policy, and the fact that she had switched insurance companies since her accident. As I experience many insurance companies who attempt to trick their clients into waiving PIP coverage, I wanted to double check her coverages and make sure she didn’t get duped.

Fortunately, her company has an app that allows her to bring up, and even modify coverage on the fly, which let us play around with possible scenarios for insurance coverage…

We quickly learned that she did have PIP coverage….that’s good. Don’t ever waive PIP coverage in Maryland!

The company she is now insured through does not offer more than the basic $2,500 PIP, but they do offer MEDPAY coverage. It works more or less the same way as PIP, except it cannot be used for wages.

The additional coverage was offered in the following increments: $500, $1,000, $2,500, $5,000. Each of these options would offer money toward medical payments above and beyond the $2,500 in PIP coverage, depending on which was selected.

We first clicked the $500 option, which immediately let us know that her premiums would increase by $2.55 if she were to add the $500 in medpay coverage. That’s not too bad. Doing the math, she’d have to pay this premium for 196 months (16 years) for her to pay more in premium than the benefit she’d gain as a result.

Medpay Premium in MarylandWe then clicked the $5,000 button…while it was loading I told her “i bet you anything it’s far less than 10x the price” and sure enough…to get $5,000 in additional medical payment coverage, it would cost her a whopping $5.88month. That’s double the premium for ten times the coverage! that’s a no brainer… She’d have to maintain this policy for $850 months (70 years) accident free in order to pay more in premium than she’d potentially gain in benefit! This is an absolute no brainer!

 

Policy Limits Offer- Motor Cycle Collision

Some of the most difficult claims to resolve can be Motorcycle accident claims in Maryland. Our firm recently represented a victim of a motorcycle accident, and achieved a policy limits result from the at-fault driver’s insurance company.

Like with many serious claims where we are able to achieve such a result for our client, our focus now shifts to finding other avenues of recovery for the client, and negotiating outstanding expenses on our client’s behalf.

 

A potentially dangerous time on the roads

By now most of us in Maryland and the surrounding areas have “dug out” of the recent blizzard that hit us late last week. While our roadways are seemingly cleared of ice and snow, that doesn’t necessarily mean the dangers that come from such a storm are gone.

While the roadways are mostly cleared, there still remain large piles of shoveled and plowed snow throughout areas along the side of roadways. Medians that were never touched, as there was to be no traffic there, and other adjacent areas that have remaining snow and ice will now begin to melt as the weather heats up a bit.

This can create unrealized dangers on the roadway, and extra care and caution should be used to avoid accidents!

Much like the time directly following the start of a rain storm can be a dangerous time to be on the road, the times of the day where the ice and snow begin to melt and run onto the roadways can be equally dangerous. The same aspect of water mixing with the oils on the roadway will happen whether that water is new rain, or run off of newly melted snow and ice.

Also, the evening hours as the temperature drops can be even more treacherous, as that water on the roadways can freeze, causing ice incidents.

Take extra care in these days and weeks following the blizzard, or any blizzard for that matter. Give yourself extra commute time, and extra follow distance between you and the vehicle in front, just in case a quick stop is required. The last thing you’ll want is to have your brakes lock up, tires skid across the recently melted water, and cause an avoidable accident!

As always, should the other drivers on the roadway not see this, not heed this advice, and put you in a situation where you’re the victim of such an accident, do not hesitate to contact our office as soon as possible at 410-885-6200. We can help navigate the insurance company nightmare, make sure you’re paid fairly for your injures, and in many cases recover for the diminished re-sale value of your damaged and repaired vehicle.

I love a good client success story….

I’ve spend my entire career as an attorney, and much of my career in the industry prior to becoming an attorney working to educate the community and clients of mine or the firm(s) I worked for about how to improve their automobile insurance in preparation for an eventual accident.

The reality of the situation is that accidents are actually happening more and more frequently, as the threats and risks created by distracted drivers texting, emailing and facebooking on their phones while driving have drastically outweigh the improvements designed to make vehicles safer, including those designed to have cars automatically avoid accidents.

Much of the education that I have provided to my clients and prospective clients can be found in the book I published in 2014 entitled ‘Making the most of your Maryland auto insurance policy‘ which is available on amazon.com or can be downloaded electronically via the web at no cost.

The success story for one of our clients comes from this educational outreach. One of the first clients our firm represented for an automobile accident was driving a vehicle owned and insured by his girlfriend. The owner of the vehicle had waived Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage on the policy, but the driver had not waived PIP on any policy he was named on, and was eligible for PIP. I took the opportunity to speak to the owner of the vehicle, even though she was not our client, nor was she involved in the accident herself. One of the major pieces of advice provided to her was to remove that PIP waiver, and increase the PIP coverage as much as she can afford and that her company would offer her.

Apparently she listened to me, and it’s turned out to greatly benefit her, as the advice provided in the book is designed to do. Later on in the year she herself was the victim of an automobile accident. Of course, she called our firm for representation, and as I was working on resolving her claim this morning, I looked through the file and realized that she carried $5,000.00 in Personal Injury Protection coverage, a big change from when she had waived it! In the end, this meant that the vast majority of her hospital, physical therapy, and doctors bills have already been paid. In the end, this means more money in my client’s pocket once the claim resolves! In fact, she will likely put as much as $5,000 more in her pocket than she would have if she had maintained the PIP waiver. That’s a real big deal!

This is the type of success story for my clients that makes me happy that I do what I do, and that I run my practice the way that I do. If you are a client or not, and would like me to take a look at your Maryland auto insurance policy, give me a call at 410-885-6200. I’ll gladly take the time to meet with you in my office, or review over the phone/fax/email and let you know what things I think you can do to improve your policy. No one wants to get into an accident, and I certainly wouldn’t wish it onto any of my clients or even any of my so called “enemies,” but it’s good to know ways you can prepare for the worst that will cost you very little, and in some instances even reduce your premiums. Final note: I don’t sell insurance, so the offer to review your policy is not a sales pitch. Any suggestions I make involving changes to your policy will have to be done through your own insurance agent, or by finding a new agent. So no worries calling for information and having to avoid a hard sell, it’s just not happening!

 

Policy Limits Offer- Rear End Motor Vehicle Accident

We’re proud to discuss a recent case result for one of our Cecil County Automobile Accident Clients. In a rear end loss from earlier in the year, our client suffered a variety of injuries as a result of the accident. We have presented the claim to the insurance company for the at fault driver, who has agreed that they owe the claim, and will be offering the limits of their auto insurance policy.

The next step in the process is to seek additional coverage, and negotiate the outstanding obligations to our client, mainly through the subrogation of the health insurance company.

We hope to have this case entirely resolved within the next two months, but the heavy lifting is over for now! Another great success for our firm and our clients!

How long will my injury case take?

There are a variety of common questions asked by clients who I represent in their Maryland Injury Cases. In previous articles I’ve discussed the number one question asked, which is what is my accident case worth. The number two question is usually how long will my injury case take. This question is almost as tricky as the case value one, and equally difficult to answer in the early days and weeks of an accident case.

First of all, we’re dealing within injury cases here. These cases are valued, as noted in the previous article, based upon the injuries sustained and the recovery time required for those injuries, you’ll arrive at the baseline time required to resolve on of these cases. There are very few instances in a Maryland personal injury claim where it is appropriate to settle that claim prior to the claimant being completely finished with treatment for injuries. That being said, any discussion of the timeframe for resolving one of these starts with the treatment time for injuries.

Our office does most of the groundwork on these claims within the first days and weeks following the incident, and our being hired by a client. This includes contact with insurance companies, setting up of claims, requesting medical records, requesting additional documentation, etc. Most of this “heavy lifting” that sets the stage for the rest of the claim is done early on, and usually quite efficiently within our office.

Then we wait. We wait until our client has reached a point in their physical recovery process known as Maximum Medical Improvement, often referred to as MMI. This means that either the injured person is back to where they were pre-accident, or they’re at a point in which they’re as good as their going to get, and there is a permanent injury of some sort.

Once MMI is achieved, our office will collect the remaining medical bills and records we need to move onto the next phase of the claim, which would be preparing the demand. Usually we will have all of the bills and records for these claims within 2-4 weeks from the time a patient is discharged, but that varies depending on the medical providers involved.

The demand drafting process is somewhat quick within our office. Depending on the extent of the injuries, this may take a few hours, or a day to get ready. Then, we send it to the insurance company for the responsible party, and we’re in another waiting phase. Typically it takes between 4-6 weeks for most insurance companies to contact us with an offer to resolve these cases. Then, we contact our client to discuss the offer, and take it from there. More on the injury settlement process can be found here.

Then, we’ll either settle the case after a week or two of negotiation, or we’ll prepare to file suit in the matter. Each of these paths are unique to the individual case, and will be discussed in detail with our clients before any decisions are made.

If you’re interested in learning more about the value of your Maryland personal injury or auto accident case, or are concerned with how long it will take to resolve, contact my office as soon as possible (410) 885-6200 to schedule a free consultation with a lawyer.

 

The aftermath of a Motorcycle Accident

Automobile accidents can be dangerous. Many of them result in injuries to some or all of the people involved in them. These injuries can vary from minor, to very serious or even fatal. The process of successfully handling an automobile accident case from the legal perspective can be complicated, as there are a variety of factors that can influence the bottom line resolution for the client.

Motorcycle accidents can be even more complicated in Maryland. There are a lot of major difference in the way that insurance works for motorcycles, as well as the obvious difference in likelihood of a serious injury in a motorcycle accident. More often than not motorcycle riders are thrown from their bikes as a result of accidents, and suffer a variety of different injuries. Very simply put, I don’t have a whole lot of car accident clients who suffer from road rash. There are often much higher medical bills, longer time missed from work, and longer periods of time to recover from the injuries in motorcycle accidents.

Motorcycle accidents in Maryland can be complicated

While some people think that they can get away with handling an automobile accident on their own, without the aid of a lawyer, it’s almost impossible to survive a Maryland motorcycle accident without one. One major difference in motorcycle accidents in Maryland is that motorcycle insurance policies do not cover personal injury protection (PIP) coverage. If you don’t already know, PIP is the coverage that will pay some of your medical bills and/or wage loss prior to settlement, and without any increase in your premiums. Without this coverage, it is often difficult to find a doctor or therapist who will administer a long course of treatment without an attorney who will provide some assurance that they will get them paid at the time of settlement. Unless you’ve got about $6,000-$10,000 to fork out in cash to pay for this ongoing treatment, you’ll probably need some help. If you do have that kind of cash, you might deplete your resources pretty quick, as with motorcycle injuries you’re probably going to miss substantial time from work, and you won’t get that paid for right away…remember, no PIP.

My office is experienced in handling motorcycle accidents throughout the State of Maryland, and have handled these cases from the lower end, with relatively minor injuries, all the way up through those involving fatalities. We’re adept at guiding you through the process, making it so you can get medical treatment without needing to pay cash, and fighting for the compensation you deserve.

To discuss your Maryland or Cecil County Motorcycle accident with an experience lawyer, call us now at 410-885-6200 to talk to a lawyer, and schedule a free, no obligation consultation in our Elkton or Baltimore office.