Q: Do I have a case if I apologized to the other driver after my motorcycle crash?
It is very common for people to apologize to others, even if they didn’t do anything wrong. Many people say “I’m sorry” as a way of being polite; however, if the other driver told his insurance company you apologized, they will try to deny your injury claim. This is because Maryland accident claims fall under a rule called contributory negligence.
While most states have laws that fall under comparative negligence, Maryland reviews accidents under contributory negligence. The difference is that under comparative negligence, someone who is partially responsible for an accident can still receive compensation. For example, one person may have been only 10 percent at fault for a crash, allowing him to make a 90 percent recovery. However, the law doesn’t work this way in Maryland.
If you were even slightly responsible for the motorcycle crash you were injured in, contributory negligence won’t allow you to make any type of recovery. This is because the rule in our state doesn’t allow any driver who contributed to a crash to make any type of financial recovery from the other driver. The only way you would be able to make a financial recovery is if the crash investigation revealed that the other driver was 100 percent at fault for the collision.
If you really didn’t do anything to contribute to your motorcycle crash, you can hold the other driver liable for your damages. But because the other insurance company will look for ways to prove your negligence, you and your accident attorney will need to fight back to make sure you get the compensation you are due.