Owings Mills Personal Injury Lawyer
With a population of about 30,000 local residents living within less than 10 square miles of land area, Owings Mills is one of Maryland’s many unincorporated communities. Ranked squarely in the middle of a 100-strong list of communities named by CNNMoney.com as the "100 Best Places to Live and Launch," Owings Mills is comprised of a half dozen separate and distinct neighborhoods, including Belltown, Delight, Owings Mills New Town, Tollgate, Gwynnbrook and Worthington; each of these communities falls within the boundaries and purview of Baltimore County.
These six areas represent a total of 12,500 households, a third of which have children under 18 years old and about eight percent which have a family member 65 years or older. More than half the residential population of Owings Mills (25 to 64 years old) most likely commute locally, or farther afield in the Baltimore-Washington, D.C., area.
Younger residents may travel by car or bus to local schools in the Baltimore County Public Schools system, or to one of the nearby higher-ed institutions such as the Community College of Baltimore County, ITT Technical Institute, or the Owings Mills campus of Stevenson University. Living and working in the greater Baltimore area, many residents may find themselves traveling on any number of local roadways, including MD-129, MD-519, MD-130, MD-140 or Interstate 795.Auto Accidents
Roadways in and around Owings Mills, as well as Baltimore County in general, can at times be highly congested and present numerous traffic accident risks that even the best drivers may find difficult to avoid completely. Among the many hazards facing residents of Owings Mills and other nearby communities, the following list includes just a few:
- Aggressive Drivers
- Fatigued Truckers
- Distracted Motorists
- Drug-Impaired Drivers
- Drunken Drivers
- Inexperienced Motorists
- Mechanical Failures and Blown Tires
- Incidents of Road Rage
Once involved in a serious car crash, it makes very little difference whether you are a driver or a passenger. Any vehicle traveling at a high rate of speed can cause a bad accident when traffic is heavy, especially at intersections or during rush hour when many drivers' minds are getting to work or school. Injuries and deaths resulting from serious roadway collisions are quite common and, sadly, nobody is immune from the devastating effects of an injury-involved traffic accident.
The fault for a majority of passenger car and commercial trucking crashes can be attributed to at least one of the drivers involved. Reckless driving, such as dangerous or thoughtless operation of a motor vehicle, can be observed almost daily in and around Owings Mills; and keep in mind, it only takes one careless action by an inconsiderate or aggressive driver to cause a bad accident that may result in the death or serious injury of an innocent person.
While generally not considered as thoughtless as the reckless operation of a car or truck, fatigued driving (also known as drowsy driving) can be just as dangerous as alcohol- or drug-impaired driving. Tragically, many people who feel almost too tired to drive, may still attempt to do so despite the potentially deadly results. Thinking that one can “fight off” the inevitable sleepiness, especially when driving at night, can result in fatal consequences for not only the driver himself, but others on the road as well.
Intoxicated driving, or driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, is one of the more dangerous activities that a person can engage in on the road. At Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC, our personal injury team has seen the aftermath of far too many DWI and DUI traffic wrecks, which is why we always caution against getting behind the wheel in other than a fully sober condition.
Here in Owings Mills, there is certainly no lack of reasons for many of the car, truck and motorcycle accidents that take place on our roadways. It should not be forgotten that some stretches of road and some intersections see a higher frequency of motor vehicle collisions. Local reports suggest that some sections of roadway in Owings Mills area are more prone to traffic accidents; these include the following areas:
- Route 795 at Reisterstown Rd.: A high-volume intersection, this crossroads has seen numerous injury-related and fatal accidents over the years. Causal factors include excessive speed, red light violations, and possibly confusing turn lane orientation and signage
- Owings Mills Blvd. at Crondall Ln.: The site of a number of serious accidents, based on local reports, drivers traveling through this intersection may be affected by poor visibility as well as heavy traffic volumes
- McDonogh Rd. at Owings Mills Blvd.: Anecdotal evidence suggests that accidents occuring at this intersection may arise due to confusing lane markings and limited sightlines
- Rolling Rd. at Greenspring Valley Rd.: Crashes at these crossroads have been known to occur, perhaps due to the high rate of vehicle movement through the intersection, as well as because some less experienced drivers find the traffic flow challenging
In addition, several other crossroads in the Owings Mills area make for difficult driving and occasional traffic accidents. These include:
- Liberty Rd. at Owings Mills Blvd.
- Red Run Blvd. at Owings Mills Blvd.
- Owings Mills Blvd. at Dolfield Blvd.
These lists are hardly exhaustive, but may help some drivers to identify potentially troublesome intersections and maybe avoid them during peak traffic hours. Unfortunately, staying vigilant and practicing safe driving habits doesn't necessarily mean a driver will never be involved in a serious Owings Mills traffic accident.
Being aware of one's surroundings, obeying traffic signals, and adjusting vehicle speed to accommodate prevailing roadway and weather conditions will all help to minimize the risks associated with any potentially dangerous intersection; however, safe driving alone will not preclude the possibility of being T-boned by a negligent driver running a red light. If you or someone you care about has been involved in a bad motor vehicle collision and ended up in a hospital emergency room, our auto accident injury attorneys are here to help.Courthouse Venues for Owings Mills' Accident Victims
If a traffic accident results in serious injury or death, the victim or their family may wish to file a personal injury claim or wrongful death lawsuit against the responsible party(s). Some personal injury or wrongful death lawsuits filed in the Owings Mills area will find their way to a local courtroom, including the following venues:
- District Court for Baltimore County (1 E. Rolling Crossroads, Catonsville, MD 21228)
- District Court for Baltimore City (5800 Wabash Ave., Baltimore, MD 21215)
- Circuit Court for Baltimore County (401 Bosley Ave., Towson, MD)
Some civil and criminal proceedings affecting individuals in Owings Mills will appear on the dockets at the Baltimore County Courts Building. Since the Circuit Court for Baltimore County is of the general jurisdiction type, this court has full common law and equity powers in adjudicating criminal, civil, family law and juvenile cases. The court is also the only one in the county with the authority to carry out jury trials.
Not only does the Circuit Court handle civil cases, including lawsuits brought by one party against another — such as automobile injury, medical malpractice, pharmacy errors and wrongful death claims — the court also has the power to decide appeals from District Court, as well as certain administrative agencies. In regard to civil cases, the Circuit Court is the exclusive arbiter of claims exceeding $30,000. District Court handles all traffic-related matters, criminal misdemeanors, and those civil cases in which the disputed amount is between $5,000 and $30,000.
Many personal injury lawsuits taken up by Maryland courts involve traffic accidents that have resulted in the injury or death of a driver, passenger or pedestrian. In some instances, a roadway-related collision may involve a municipal bus, school bus or other type of mass transit conveyance that carries one or more paying passengers. Because many large commuter and touring buses are designed with a tall overall height (high center of gravity), they can be difficult to control during emergency maneuvers; sometimes resulting in a serious rollover type of crash. The tragic consequences of a bus accident can be compounded by the potentially large number of injured victims that naturally occur due to the greater passenger capacity of these vehicles.Owings Mills Personal Injury Specialists
In addition to traffic collisions involving buses, passenger cars and motorcycles — all of which carry commuters to and from their jobs in the Owings Mills and Baltimore County area — commuters on foot walking from their vehicle, a bus stop or a train station can often times become victims of a traffic-related injury accident. The legal team at Lebowitz & Mzhen Personal Injury Lawyers, knows that nobody expects to become a roadway accident statistic when they leave their home in the morning, which is why we place great importance on helping these individuals and their families recover damages following a serious injury accident.
In the case of pedestrian accidents, the most frequent cause is usually some kind of driver distraction. With the multiple devices fighting for people’s attention in cars these days, it is not surprising that one or more distractions can be factors in a serious car-pedestrian collision. Talking or texting on a cellphone, fiddling with car audio controls, paying too much attention to a GPS navigation and not enough on the road — even eating food or applying makeup — can pull a motorist’s attention away from the task at hand just long enough to cause a bad crash.
In addition to distracted driving, pedestrians can end up as a traffic accident victim when walking near a potentially dangerous intersection. There have been instances where a person on foot has been hurt in a collision with a passenger car, commercial truck or motorcycle due to something as simple as poorly placed traffic signage or lack of a merging lane, either of which can present a potentially lethal situation for any pedestrian. Incorrectly set traffic signal timing can also be a danger to persons crossing a roadway; not allowing pedestrians sufficient time to get out of the roadway in time has been known to result in serious bodily injury or even death.Preparing for an Auto Injury Lawsuit
Establishing responsibility for a car, motorcycle or trucking-related accident is a critical aspect of any Maryland personal injury case; therefore, the legal team at Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC, recommends that victims obtain the police accident report for the collision in which they were injured. While the level of detail provided in a traffic accident report may vary considerably, in cases of an injury-related accident an officer will be more apt to include more extensive details than, say, in the case of a minor fender-bender collision.
The form provides space for the responding officer to include crucial information, such as location of the crash, drivers' names, possibly even a diagram of the crash scene, and sometimes a descriptive narrative of what took place, often gleaned through interviews with the drivers, passengers and eyewitnesses.
Even crash reports that are short on some details will still be critical to a plaintiff's case; no matter what, you should always try to obtain a copy of the incident report because a potentially large monetary judgement can often hang in the balance. Presenting the official police documentation of a Maryland traffic accident can help to inform the Court's determination of who was ultimately responsible for a serious injury accident.Locating a Police Report for an Owings Mills Traffic Accident
Owings Mills does not maintain its own police department, therefore most any car or trucking-related accidents that occur within its boundaries typically fall under the jurisdiction of the Baltimore County Police Department (BCPD). For residents of Owings Mills, there is a BCPD precinct station located at 8707 Harford Road in Parkville, Maryland. Known as the Parkville Precinct, officers will likely be dispatched from this location when a 911 call comes in for accidents in and around Owings Mills.
Securing a police accident report following an Owings Mills car or commercial trucking accident depends on the particular law enforcement department that responded to the crash; this means a Baltimore County officer or possibly a Maryland State Trooper if the accident occurred on or near a state route.
The process for obtaining a police report from the Baltimore County PD is explained below. Please also note that accident reports will not be immediately available following an accident; typically, police departments recommend that victims of auto accidents allow two weeks following a crash to make a request for their accident report, which allows for internal department processing time.
In Person — If the responding officer works out of the Parkville Precinct of the BCPD, you can visit the precinct located at 8707 Harford Road, Parkville, MD 21208 (hours of operation: 8am–4pm, Monday-Friday) or contact them by phone at 410-887-6177.
By Mail — Visit the BCPD website for a downloadable “Police Report Request Form,” which should be filled out and mailed to the BCPD’s Information and Records Management Unit at:
Information and Records Management Unit, Records Requests
700 East Joppa Road
Towson, Maryland 21286-5501
Be sure to enclose a self addressed/stamped envelope, as well as the nonrefundable $15 fee (paid by personal check or money order payable to Baltimore County, Maryland. Do not send cash). Follow the instructions on the request form, and include information such as the Accident Report Number (if known); date, time and location of the accident; names of the individuals involved (drivers' and passengers' names, etc.); your name and address that you wish the report mailed to. For questions about requesting accident records, call the BCPD 410-887-2390.Maryland State Police (MSP) Traffic Accident Reports
In situations where a Maryland State Trooper has responded to a car, truck or motorcycle accident in the vicinity of Owings Mills, an automobile crash report will be generated by the MSP officer in charge of the accident investigation. Formal police reports that are prepared and filed by MSP officers are referred to as Motor Vehicle Accident Reports.
When it comes to traffic accident tort cases, a vehicle accident report — whether filed by the Baltimore County PD or the state police — will almost certainly be a critical piece of supporting documentation when pursuing a personal injury claim against a negligent driver or other responsible party. For anyone seeking compensation for damages arising from an Owings Mills road accident, obtaining a state police accident report will be very important to your claim. The general application process for an MSP Motor Vehicle Accident Report is as follows:Obtaining an MSP Motor Vehicle Accident Report
For auto accidents where a Maryland State Police (MSP) trooper has responded, the Central Records Division (CRD) of the MSP handles the associated reports; the CRD collects, analyzes, and distributes reports and other data regarding car accidents, as well as incident reports on criminal activity. The CRD will respond to requests for copies of car or trucking accident reports filed by a Maryland State Trooper, as follows:
In Person — No sooner than 10 days following a roadway accident, a copy of a Vehicle Crash Report can be requested from the MSP Barracks where it was filed. A state trooper responding to a traffic accident in the Owings Mills area will, in most likelihood, be working out of the MSP Barracks G in Westminster (at 1100 Baltimore Boulevard, Westminster, MD 21157). The $4 non-refundable search fee can be paid via personal check or money order (no cash). It is advisable to call the particular MSP barracks ahead of time to be sure someone will be available to accept your request. The Westminster Barracks non-emergency phone number is (410) 386-3000.
Online — Police accident reports can also be ordered via the MSP website by going to the “Contact Us” page and clicking on the Central Records Division link. Once there, click on the “Request for Motor Vehicle Accident Report” button toward the bottom of the page and follow the directions to request your accident report.
Mail-in — Should you wish to mail in your request, go to the bottom of the same page and download a copy of the Accident Request Form (you will need to have Adobe Reader installed on your device) and follow the instructions. Once completed, mail the request along with a check or money order for $4 to the address provided on the form. When a copy of your accident report becomes available, the CRD will mail the document to you.
Once a copy of your Motor Vehicle Accident Report is available, you can receive it in person by going to the Central Records Division (1711 Belmont Avenue, Baltimore, Maryland 21244; 410-281-2700. Office hours are Monday–Friday; 8am–4:30pm, except holidays).A Personal Injury Law Firm Here to Protect Your Rights
Should you find yourself badly injured as a result of a traffic collision caused by a negligent driver, we recommend that you or your family contact a skilled personal injury lawyer experienced in auto accident litigation and who understands Maryland insurance law. The law firm of Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC, is ready to help with all manner of personal injury cases.
As experienced trial lawyers, our attorneys know how a properly prepared legal case can many times result in a pretrial settlement — such outcomes can spare plaintiffs and their families the extra time and expense of a potentially lengthy courtroom trial. That said, our legal team is always ready to take every case to trial since many lawsuits do eventually end up in front of a judge or jury.
At Lebowitz & Mzhen Personal Injury Lawyers, we are always ready to assist victims suffering from debilitating bodily injuries resulting from car, truck and motorcycle wrecks. For a free, no-obligation consultation, please phone us toll-free at (800) 654-1949, or email either Jack Lebowitz or Vadim Mzhen to schedule a one-on-one meeting.