According to the South Carolina Department of Public Safety (DPS), one traffic accident occurs every 3.7 minutes, one person sustains an injury in a car crash every 8.5 minutes, and one person dies from a car accident every 8.6 hours in South Carolina.
Greenville County was a close second place to Charleston County for the most traffic collisions and injuries in the state, racking up 16,508 and 5,718, respectively. Greenville County also had the most fatal collisions—87 died here in a recent year, three from drunk driving.
These numbers reveal the serious risk that South Carolina drivers face every time they hit the road. Most drivers drive carefully and make good choices; however, it is those few individuals who drive recklessly and make poor choices that endanger other motorists and cause accidents.
If you’ve sustained an injury in an auto accident due to someone else’s negligent driving, you may be eligible to seek compensation for losses related to your injury. Contact the Hughey Law Firm at (843) 881-8644 to schedule a free consultation and discuss your Greenville, South Carolina, case with an experienced auto accident attorney.
Hughey Law Firm’s Results in Auto Accident Cases
At the Hughey Law Firm, our legal team has experience negotiating, settling, and litigating auto accident cases. We have secured millions of dollars in compensation for clients in past cases, including settlements and verdicts ranging from $250,000 to over $1,600,000. While we cannot guarantee a favorable result in your case, we can promise to diligently pursue the best possible result given your circumstances.
Types of Injuries That Result From an Auto Accident
Motor vehicle accident victims may sustain a variety of injuries depending on the circumstances of their accidents, such as the location, speed, number of cars involved, and severity of the accident. Some of the most common auto accident injuries that we see include:
- Broken bones
- Lacerations and other deep cuts that might leave scars
- Internal bleeding and organ damage that might occur from an airbag
- Back injuries
- Spinal cord injuries that might include temporary or permanent paralysis
- Burns, amputations, and other injuries that might result in permanent scarring or disfigurement
- Neck injuries including whiplash
- Head injuries including traumatic brain injuries
Modified Comparative Negligence in South Carolina
South Carolina is a tort liability state, which means that insurance companies and courts must determine each party’s level of fault in personal injury cases that stem from car accidents. If your case goes to trial, a South Carolina court will determine if the defendant’s negligence led to your accident and injury. If the court determines that the defendant acted negligently, it will apply a modified comparative negligence rule when it awards damages.
Comparative negligence involves the notion of shared fault, so courts assign a percentage of fault to each party and reduce the damages award based on the plaintiff’s percentage of fault. For example, if a court determines that a plaintiff was 25 percent responsible for his or her own injuries, it will reduce the damages award by 25 percent. Thus, if the court originally determined that the plaintiff suffered $2,000,000 in damages, he or she will only be able to recover $1,500,000. South Carolina, like many other states, follows a modified version of comparative negligence, which holds that if the plaintiff is over 50 percent at fault for an accident, he or she is barred from recovering any compensation at all.
Tactics That the Defendant May Employ
The defense may employ a variety of tactics in an attempt to reduce the value of a claim, including:
- Shifting the blame to the victim. The doctrine of comparative negligence motivates defendants in South Carolina to shift blame to the victim to avoid paying damages. The defense may argue that the victim was speeding, driving under the influence, or driving while distracted, and that the victim’s actions caused the accident or increased the severity of his or her injuries.
- Downplaying injuries. The insurance carrier and other defendants may argue that the victim’s injuries aren’t as severe as claimed, or they may argue that the victim did not sustain his or her injuries as a result of the accident.
- Make a low settlement offer. When defendant insurance companies anticipate that they will have to pay out some compensation regardless of how aggressively they defend their case in court, they often will offer the victim a settlement amount to prevent or halt litigation. Generally, insurance companies offer low initial settlements that do not fully compensate victims for their injuries. You should always speak with an attorney prior to accepting any settlement.
Regardless of the strategies that the defense employs, a skilled auto accident attorney will be able to anticipate these tactics and fight against them to ensure that you receive compensation for the full cost of your injuries.
Seeking Damages After a Greenville Auto Accident
South Carolina law entitles individuals who sustain injuries in auto accidents to recover economic and non-economic costs related to their injuries. Common damages that an auto accident victim can recover include:
- Medical expenses, including ambulance and other emergency services, hospital stays, X-rays, surgeries, follow up visits, medication, and more
- Future medical costs if the injury causes a long-term condition or disability that requires extensive recovery or lifetime care
- Lost wages for time away from work related to an injury
- Lost earning capacity if an injury results in a permanent disability that prohibits a victim from returning to work, requires a reduction in work hours, or necessitates a career change
- Rehabilitation and recovery expenses, including physical therapy and assistive devices, such as prosthetic limbs, wheelchairs, and canes
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium
Contact an Experienced Auto Accident Attorney Today
If you sustained an injury in Greenville because of another individual’s negligent driving, you may be eligible to seek compensation for your injuries. Call the Hughey Law Firm at (843) 881-8644, or contact us online, to schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced litigators.
When you retain us, one of our skilled attorneys will guide you through the legal process, investigate your case, talk to potential witnesses, and advocate for you every step of the way, leaving you time to focus on recovering from your injuries. We handle most personal injury cases on a contingency fee basis, which means you pay nothing up front and we collect our attorney’s fees from any settlement or court-awarded damages amount that we secure for you.