Chesapeake Beach is a resort town in central Maryland, on the western shore of the Chesapeake Bay. While its popularity has decreased significantly since the Bay Bridge was built, allowing for easier access to Maryland's more popular Eastern Shore, it is still the preferred vacation spot for many in Maryland and around the region.
Unfortunately, accidents can happen during vacation, too. When these end up with you or someone you love getting hurt, it can impact more than just your vacation week; it can even make the rest of your life difficult especially if the injury is a serious one that comes with long-term disabilities. These injuries can be frustrating and feel particularly unfair if they were from an accident that you not only did not cause but were also powerless to prevent.
Because of how unfair and unjust this can be, Maryland allows you to file a personal injury claim against those who were ultimately responsible for your injuries, allowing you to get the compensation that you are entitled to and which it is only fair for them to pay. Guiding you to success in these endeavors is where the personal injury attorneys at the law office of Gilman & Bedigian can help.
Chesapeake Beach is a town in Maryland on the western shore of the Chesapeake Bay. During the 2010 census, Chesapeake Beach had a population of 5,753, making it one of the largest towns in all of Calvert County, which is also one of the most affluent counties in all of the United States.
Chesapeake Beach got its start as a fledgling community where the Fishing Creek joined the Chesapeake Bay. It was incorporated into a Maryland town in 1886 as a resort town but only started growing when the Chesapeake Beach Railway was built. This rail line stretched over 27 miles from Washington, D.C. and ended in Chesapeake Beach, bringing city dwellers to the beach where they could spend an off day or weekend. Chesapeake Beach grew in popularity in the early 20th century, with its weekend population reaching over 10,000. However, the Great Depression hurt the town's development just as it was getting started and dealt it a sharp blow when it put the Chesapeake Beach Railway out of business in 1935. Chesapeake Beach took another economic hit when the Bay Bridge was completed in 1952, opening up the Eastern Shore of Maryland to visitors who would otherwise have had to travel hours out of their way. With the vacation spots of the Eastern Shore taking away business from Chesapeake Beach, the town struggled.
However, the lack of tourists has enticed more people to live in Chesapeake Beach year-round. The population of the town has grown significantly over the past few decades and has even sped up since the completion of the Bay Bridge. It has also become the home of one of the detachments of the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory, which tests sonar and other maritime equipment for the U.S. military. Finally, Chesapeake Beach attracts numerous people every year with a line of sandstone cliffs that run along the shore in Bayfront Park and points further south. These cliffs, the Randle Cliffs, can reach as high as 180 feet above the water below, giving the shore a startlingly rocky and rough appearance.
Personal Injury Claims in Chesapeake Beach
Just like in any other place in the state, accidents that happen in Chesapeake Beach fall under the jurisdiction of Maryland's personal injury law. Therefore, if you get hurt because of someone else's negligence in Chesapeake Beach and file a lawsuit to get the compensation you deserve, you will have to show four things in order to be successful. These are:
- That the other person owed you a duty of care at the time of the accident,
- This duty of care was breached by the other person's conduct,
- That breach was the cause of your injuries, and
- You suffered legal damages, as a result.
The Duty of Care in Maryland
Generally speaking, Maryland personal injury law requires that everyone act like a reasonably prudent person whenever it is foreseeable that their conduct could hurt someone else. Not only does this typically mean that other people should not intentionally hurt you, but also that they should pay attention to whatever it is that they are doing when being negligent could also result in an injury.
If someone else owes you a duty of care and then fails to uphold their responsibilities, they have breached it. In Maryland, breaching the duty of care happens even if the other person did not mean for it to happen: Regardless of whether they acted intentionally or negligently, failing to uphold the duty of care in our state results in a breach that can lead to legal liability.
Just because someone else owed you a duty of care and then breached it, though, does not automatically mean that they will be held legally liable. In Maryland, in order to be justifiably compensated by someone else for their role in your injuries, their conduct must have been the cause of your losses. This involves two different elements:
- But for the breach of the duty of care, you would not have been hurt, and
- The breach and your injuries are not so far removed from each other on the chain of cause and effect that it would be unfair to hold the person you are suing liable for your losses.
Personal injury cases in Maryland are focused on getting you the compensation that you deserve from the person or people who caused your injuries. Knowing how much compensation you need, then, requires an accounting of all of the ways that you have suffered in the accident. Otherwise, it would be impossible to tell if you have been fully compensated or not. Together, these constitute your legal damages, which include:
- The cost of fixing any property damage you suffered in the accident,
- The pain and suffering that you and your family have been put through,
- Your medical bills, including those that you are likely to accumulate in future treatment necessary for a full recovery, and
- Wages you lost and earning potential that you no longer have because of your injuries.
Car Accidents in Chesapeake Beach
Car accidents are the most common source of a personal injury situation in Chesapeake Beach. Other drivers owe a duty of care to drive reasonably prudently to all of the other people on the road. Unfortunately, many drivers do not take this legal responsibility very seriously. Instead, they drive recklessly, often while drunk, texting, or going way too fast for the road conditions. If these unsafe driving practices lead to an accident that causes your injuries, you could be entitled to compensation from the other driver.
Dog bites are another common personal injury case to happen in Chesapeake Beach. Unfortunately, dog bites do not follow the standard procedure for personal injury cases in Maryland because you cannot file a lawsuit against what actually caused your injuries – the dog. To get around this issue, Maryland's personal injury law allows you to sue the dog's owner and holds that owner strictly liable for the actions of their pet. This means that you do not have to show that the owner was at fault, at all – it is often enough to show that you were bitten by the dog and that the dog was owned by the person you are filing the suit against.
Premises Liability in Chesapeake Beach
People who own property in Chesapeake Beach have a duty of care to keep their visitors safe. Depending on your relationship with the property owner, this can mean they have to maintain their premises properly, fixing anything that could cause you to slip and fall and get hurt, or refrain from actively hurting you while you are on their land. Importantly, though, you have legal rights to enforce even if you are on someone else's property without their permission, as a trespasser.
Gilman & Bedigian: Personal Injury Attorneys in Chesapeake Beach
Personal injuries from car accidents, dog bites, and slip and falls are just some of the most common that happen in Chesapeake Beach that requires a lawsuit to get you the compensation that you need and deserve. Just because you have been hurt in a different way, though, does not mean that you are any less entitled to getting financial help on your road to recovery. In fact, other accidents can result in even more serious personal injuries that make it even more important to enforce your legal rights to compensation.
The personal injury lawyers at the law office of Gilman & Bedigian are here to help you get the compensation you need from those who caused your injuries. By making sure that justice is served on those who are responsible for your pain and suffering, we can ensure you are made whole after a serious accident. Contact us online or call our law office at (800) 529-6162 for a free consultation.