In recent years, technological advancements have resulted in incredible feats, one of them being self-driving cars (aka, autonomous cars). But while these cars come with less risk of some of the common causes of car accidents, self-driving car accidents can still happen anywhere, including in Maryland.
If you’ve been hurt in a car accident with an autonomous vehicle, you could be facing a complicated legal situation — and a personal injury attorney at Koonz McKenney Johnson & DePaolis LLP can help. You need a reliable legal advocate on your side who can review your case and pursue compensation on your behalf.
Self-Driving Cars in Maryland
In Maryland, a driver is required for every vehicle, and that includes autonomous vehicles.
This means that even if a vehicle is being driven autonomously, a licensed driver must be in the driver’s seat at all times while it is traveling. Furthermore, the driver must be awake, paying attention, and ready to take over at any time.
These laws exist to reduce the likelihood of an autonomous vehicle getting into an accident. Furthermore, they ensure that an insured driver is behind the wheel of the car, even if the vehicle is driving itself.
However, even when there is an insured driver at the wheel, that does not mean you should expect an insurance claim to be simple. Almost all autonomous cars on the road belong to car companies, which means any accident claim will involve corporate lawyers who will do everything they can to minimize your compensation.
The experienced attorneys at Koonz McKenney Johnson & DePaolis LLP won’t be overwhelmed by corporate lawyers or insurance agents. Our goal, in every case, is to maximize the compensation our clients receive. An accident with an autonomous car is no exception.
Is a Telsa an autonomous car?
Many people wonder whether a Tesla is classified as an autonomous car. The answer to this question is not always straightforward because what is considered an autonomous car can vary.
The definition of an autonomous car is increasingly complicated as cars become equipped with more automation features. And not all states or countries agree on the definition of an autonomous car.
Thankfully, Maryland law simplifies this by requiring a licensed driver to be aware and ready to take over, no matter what level of automation is being used. This means that the driver is responsible for anything the car does, regardless of whether it is autonomous or just has some automated features.
Who is liable for an accident with an autonomous car?
Conveniently, liability for car accidents is generally determined in the same way, whether one of the vehicles in an accident is self-driving or not.
If either of the drivers — through negligence or intentional action — did something that caused the accident to occur, then that driver is liable. And in an autonomous vehicle, the human in the driver’s seat takes liability for the actions of the car.
However, the insurance company for the other car in the accident will typically attempt to prove that their client wasn’t the liable party. And if you are not represented by an experienced Maryland car accident attorney, they will probably succeed.
To protect yourself after an accident, you should consult with an attorney from Koonz McKenney Johnson & DePaolis LLP as soon as possible. We will send independent investigators to find evidence that proves the other vehicle was liable.
You may even benefit from the fact that the other car was autonomous. For example, if we prove that the driver was asleep or otherwise not paying attention, they may be liable regardless of other factors. This creates a second avenue for determining liability that can only benefit you.
Why choose Koonz McKenney Johnson & DePaolis LLP?
Laws regarding autonomous cars are relatively new. Many law firms are not yet familiar with these laws or how to handle these types of cases. But our law firm has remained up-to-date on these evolving regulations.
We have experience with both traditional auto accident cases and autonomous vehicle claims. And this experience nets results. Our law firm is recognized as one of the most accomplished personal injury practices in the state and has secured millions of dollars in compensation for our clients.
If you want to be represented by a law firm that understands this new technology and the laws that regulate it, trust Koonz McKenney Johnson & DePaolis LLP to handle your autonomous car accident case.
Contact a Maryland Personal Injury Lawyer at Koonz McKenney Johnson & DePaolis LLP Today
Have you or a loved one been injured in a Maryland car accident with a self-driving vehicle? Other law firms might not know how to handle this type of case. But our law firm is equipped and ready to help. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation with a seasoned personal injury attorney.