In order to prove a case of negligence in Maryland, the person bringing the action (the Plaintiff) must prove the following four (4) elements:
1.That the person who caused the accident and injuries (the Defendant) had a “Duty of Care” to the injured person. A Duty of Care is a duty to use that degree of care that an ordinarily prudent person would have used under the circumstances. The issue becomes whether the behavior of the Defendant in any given case constituted negligence so that the Defendant is liable. Proving negligence does not, by itself, award monetary damages however. The other elements must also be proven;
2. The Plaintiff must also establish that the Defendant breached that duty by not exercising reasonable care;
3. The Plaintiff must further prove that the Defendant’s negligence caused the harm (injuries, damages and losses) and was the “Proximate Cause” of the harm, not a remote consequence of it; and
4. The Plaintiff must prove actual damages, meaning the injuries and losses sustained to support the compensation for the harm.
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