Columbia, SC Personal Injury Lawyers
Some Recent Case Results
Local Attorneys Who Care.
If you were hurt because of another’s negligence, whether the injury was minor or serious, you need a highly experienced and compassionate lawyer. At Burriss & Ridgeway, our team of Columbia, SC personal injury lawyers have the experience and resources to tackle the most challenging injury case.
Whether you were injured in a car accident or a slip and fall, you need an attorney who will aggressively fight for your rights. Insurance companies do not have your best interests in mind. Between medical expenses and lost wages, you could be facing a financial dilemma. Our lawyers will work to maximize your compensation, whether by negotiating with an insurance company or litigating your case in front of a judge and jury.
If another person, business, or entity’s negligence caused your injury, they should be held financially liable for your damages. No matter how your injury occurred, call (803) 451-4000 to review your legal options.
Injury Lawyer Wayne Ridgeway Speaking on Injury Law in South Carolina.
Our Areas of Practice in Injury Law:
Founding Partner: Attorney Wayne Ridgeway Jr.
Need to File An Injury Claim in South Carolina?
In South Carolina, you may file a personal injury claim within three years from the date of injury. It’s best to get help sooner rather than later. Contact our Injury Attorneys today.
Common Types of Injury Claims in South Carolina
When people are seriously injured, the results can be catastrophic and life-changing. We are familiar with many serious injuries, including broken bones, puncture wounds, traumatic brain injuries, crush injuries, spinal injuries, internal injuries, deep cuts, and prolonged emotional or mental trauma (i.e., PTSD).
When equipment or chemicals catch on fire or explode, burn injuries can often result. Unfortunately, severe burns are very serious. They often have to be treated in expensive specialized burn units.
Sometimes it can take multiple surgeries and many months or even years of rehab. Even then, some burn victims experience medical difficulties or problems being able to return to work.
If you have suffered a significant burn injury, you’ll definitely want legal help to make sure you receive proper compensation for all of your expenses.
Dog Bite Injuries
We all love our own pets. And many of us consider our dogs to be “man’s best friend.” But there is no denying that a dog bite can get very nasty. Between the physical injuries (deep cuts, tears, and puncture wounds) and the bacterial infections that can result from the dog’s saliva, the aftermath of being bitten by a dog can be daunting.
People may require high potency antibiotics, rabies vaccine shots, and reconstructive surgery (or multiple surgeries in some cases) to try to restore their appearance and the functionality of the bitten body part(s).
Dog owners are responsible for the damage their dogs inflict on other people. We can help you determine the amount of liability the dog’s owner has in your particular case.
If you have suffered from a significant dog bite injury, please seek an experienced accident and injury lawyer to be sure you receive all the compensation you deserve for your injuries and damages.
The human brain is infinitely more complex than any high tech computers we have today. But when there is significant damage to the brain, it can be difficult to heal the damaged neurons and to completely restore all original functions.
A traumatic brain injury (TBI) can result when someone is in a car accident, a bicycle accident, a fall, a fight, and any other situation where the head receives a heavy blow. For months or even years afterward, some people experience difficulties like sensitivity to light and sounds, severe headaches, emotional trauma, depression, anxiety, and difficulty functioning in normal life.
Often people who have suffered from a traumatic brain injury have a lot of rehabilitation to go through and sometimes multiple CT scans and even surgeries, as well.
They may experience difficulty returning to school or work. Sometimes reading too much, being on screens, and concentrating for long periods of time is just too much. There can even be problems with mobility, taste, touch, vision, or hearing depending on the part of the brain that was affected.
If you or a loved one has suffered from a significant brain injury because of someone else’s actions or negligence, please reach out to a personal injury lawyer near you to make sure you receive all of the compensation you deserve for the injuries, lost wages, medical bills, future expenses, and general damages, as well.
Slip and Fall Injuries
One of the most common types of personal injury is a slip and fall case. Someone slips on something icy, wet, or slippery and falls—sustaining physical harm from the fall. Sometimes tripping over something and falling is included in this category, as well.
These kinds of injury cases often involve head injuries, brain injuries, broken hips, broken arms, and other bone fractures. People may need surgeries and rehabilitation. They may have difficulty getting back to their normal functioning if the damage is severe enough.
If you fall and experience a significant injury because a property owner was negligent or you slip and fall at work, it would be wise to consult with a slip and fall lawyer near you to see if you may be able to receive compensation for your injury.
A spinal injury can happen because of a slip and fall, a traffic accident, diving headfirst into a shallow pool, a fall from a height, or even because of assault or battery. Spinal injuries can result in very serious problems for victims including sometimes partial or total paralysis.
This type of injury requires prompt and continuing medical attention. If you have a serious injury as the result of someone else’s negligence or intentional acts, we recommend that you consult with an injury claim lawyer.
Serious injuries can include a wide variety of things that result in significant medical expenses, surgeries, rehabilitation, and/or loss of mobility or productivity.
Some common serious injuries are things like crush injuries, internal injuries, deep cuts or lacerations, bad fractures, significant head injuries, spinal injuries, paralysis, etc…
Any time there is any kind of significant injury and there is another person who is liable for that injury, it’s wise to have legal representation. Look for the best injury lawyer you can find in your area.
What Types of Compensation are Available for a Personal Injury Claim in South Carolina?
If you are injured because of another’s negligence, the law requires that the negligent party make you whole again. This sounds like a fair principle. However, in practice, it is often very challenging to define “whole.” What amount of compensation is adequate based on your injuries? Our Colombia personal injury attorneys will calculate your compensatory damages based on your injury, financial losses, and the injury’s impact on your life. Below we discuss some types of specific compensation you could be awarded in a personal injury case.
The most common type of damages awarded in a personal injury case is medical expenses. Depending on the severity of an injury, the total cost could exceed hundreds of thousands of dollars. This is especially the case if the plaintiff requires long-term care. Plaintiffs are also entitled to be compensated for future medical expenses. It is important to note that your health insurance provider could be entitled to a portion of an award for medical expenses.
If your injury requires you to miss work, or renders you unable to work again, you can recover for lost wages. This compensation would include the money you would have earned if you were not injured. If you are permanently disabled because of your injury, this could be a substantial award.
Pain and Suffering
You are entitled to monetary compensation if you suffered physical pain during an accident and while you were recovering from your injuries. Calculating a dollar figure that adequately compensates someone for the suffering they endured is challenging. However, if an accident or injury was catastrophic, juries are often willing to award plaintiffs significant awards. Because of the difficulties in predicting what juries will do, many insurance companies will settle out of court to avoid a potentially huge award.
Emotional distress often falls under the broad category of pain and suffering. However, emotional distress is intended to compensate an injured victim for the psychological impact of an injury. This impact could include loss of sleep, anxiety, fear, or depression.
Loss of Enjoyment of Life
An injury impacts more than your physical comfort and income. A severe injury could permanently prevent you from engaging in those activities that made life worth living. If you were a swimmer or marathon runner, you should be compensated if you are no longer physically capable of participating in your favorite hobby. A new parent who is unable to play with their children also experiences a significant loss.
Loss of Consortium
If your injury negatively impacted a close personal relationship, you could be compensated for the loss of consortium. These types of damages are often awarded to a spouse or family member of a seriously injured individual. They are also common in wrongful death claims.
Proving Fault or Liability in a Personal Injury Case in South Carolina
When someone is hurt and someone else can be legally held responsible for the injury, that person has liability. There are three general types of liability for personal injury cases.
If you have suffered from an injury in a place of business or on someone else’s property, you may have the right to pursue legal action against the party at fault because property owners have strict liability. This means they are responsible for certain types of injury even if the property owner was not at fault or negligent.
If you sustain an injury because of another person’s negligence or intentional actions, you may also have a valid case against the responsible party. Negligence would require that someone had a certain legal duty of care or responsibility not to cause harm and they did not uphold their duty.
If someone purposely assaults, batters, or attacks someone else to cause intentional harm, the injured party may be able to file a case against the person. Sometimes criminal charges are also involved.
If you are experiencing pain and discomfort as a result of a fall, someone else’s negligence, or an attack of any kind, do not let the opposing party offer you a low settlement. Seek professional advice to ensure that your rights are protected.
What Should You Do After an Injury in Columbia?
1. Get Medical Care
Don’t immediately assume you are fine.
You will need proof that you sought medical attention right away if you decide to file a case later.
2. Report Your Injury
If you are injured on the job, report the incident to your manager immediately.
If you are injured on someone else’s property, report your injury to the property owner.
3. Collect Evidence
Try to get the contact information for other people involved and any witnesses.
Be sure to keep all of your medical documentation so that you have all of the evidence you need later to support your case.
4. Call a Personal Injury Lawyer
Our lawyers can tell you if you may have a case and what steps to take next to protect your interests.
This can help ensure that you are compensated appropriately for your injuries.
How Long Do You Have to File a Personal Injury Claim in South Carolina?
South Carolina’s statute of limitations governs personal injury claims. The statute of limitations sets a deadline for a plaintiff to file a civil complaint. Under the law, a plaintiff has three years from the date of the accident or event to file a personal injury lawsuit. This deadline applies to cases arising from negligence, including car accidents, slip and falls, or premises liability claims. The three-year period typically begins counting from the date of the accident.
However, South Carolina has identified some situations when the three-year deadline could be extended. For instance, if a minor was injured in a car accident, the clock would not start running until they reached the age of 18. Additionally, if a person was “legally disabled” at the time of the accident, the statute would begin once the disability ended. It is important to note that if the underlying reason for an extension was a “legal disability,” the extension would not exceed five years.
Another exception occurs when the defendant leaves or resides outside of South Carolina for one continuous year after the accident before the lawsuit can be filed. Under these circumstances, the period of absence will likely not be counted as part of the three-year period. However, it is critical to speak to our Columbia personal injury attorneys as soon as possible to ensure you are not barred from filing a lawsuit because you waited too long.
Dealing With Insurance Companies
All too often, we as lawyers are faced with clients that allowed an insurance company or commercial defendant to force them into a settlement that was too low, simply because it seemed convenient at the time. Or maybe our clients didn’t realize what they could actually receive if only they had proper legal representation.
How you deal with the insurance company involved in your case is very important. Don’t let them push you around or try to coerce you into saying or doing anything to hurt your case.
How Much Does it Cost to hire a Personal Injury Attorney in Columbia?
It is not uncommon for someone to believe they cannot afford a lawyer or that they do not have a case. That is not a decision you should make on your own. Our initial consultations are free. More importantly, we work on a contingency fee. This means that our law firm gets paid if your case is successful. During your first appointment, our Columbia, SC personal injury lawyers will listen to you, ask you questions, and evaluate whether you have a case worth pursuing. Call (803) 451-4000 to schedule a free consultation with Burriss & Ridgeway.