If you have been seriously injured in a slip and fall in Maryland, you may feel wronged. You may especially feel wronged if you slipped and fell on public property, which your taxes went toward. You may start to wonder what legal options you have.
Many Marylanders may be surprised to learn that their legal options and the process they must follow to get justice depends, to some extent, on whether they were injured on government-owned property or not.
You may be wondering what happens if, for example, you slip and fall on a poorly maintained city-owned sidewalk in downtown Baltimore. Would you have a legal case against the city?
The good news is that, in Maryland, a city, county, or state government may, depending on the circumstances, be sued and held responsible.
However, to continue the downtown Baltimore sidewalk example, if you suffer an injury on a public sidewalk, you would have to make your legal claim pursuant to the Maryland Tort Claims Act (MTCA), and the MTCA requires you to file your claim much sooner than someone injured on private property would have to file a comparable claim.
A claim under the MTCA must be filed within one year of the date of your injury. One year is a very short period of time. Meanwhile, someone injured on private property would have up to three years from the date of their injury to file their case.
Does the MTCA unfairly hamstring victims? Probably so.
Should victims act quickly to find an attorney if they’ve suffered serious injuries? Definitely.