Columbia, SC Car Accident Lawyers

People in Columbia rely on their cars.  Commuting to work, running errands, or even driving to church can become a nightmare if another driver runs a red light or makes a mistake behind the wheel.  

Even worse, if you have been in an accident, insurance companies can delay payment and may not offer to pay enough to cover your injuries.  Accepting an initial insurance settlement could leave you without compensation for serious medical expenses, substantial lost wages, and the pain and suffering you face after a crash.  If you faced serious injuries or lost a loved one in a car accident, it is important to talk to a Columbia car accident attorney as early in the process as possible.

For help with your potential case, call the Columbia car accident lawyers at Burriss Ridgeway Injury Lawyers.  Our attorneys have experience handling car accident lawsuits on behalf of injury victims, and we fight to get them the compensation they need.  To schedule a free case consultation, call our attorneys today at (803) 451-4000.

How to Get Compensation for Car Accidents in Columbia, SC

If you are hurt in a car accident, you may be left with bills and expenses that you cannot afford – especially if the injuries keep you from work.  Insurance claims may be able to cover your injuries, but insurance companies may not be willing to pay you what you deserve.  In many cases, you should turn to a Columbia, SC car accident lawyer for help with your case.  An attorney can go over the facts of your case, investigate your injuries, determine how much you deserve in compensation, and fight to get you those payments.

Insurance Claims

Insurance claims in South Carolina are filed against the driver who caused the crash.  South Carolina is not a no-fault insurance state, which means that you need to prove who caused the crash before their insurance company will pay for damages.  Whether you sue or file an insurance claim, fault will be one of the most important issues in your case.

Proving Fault

To prove fault in a Columbia car accident case, you will need to prove that the driver who hit you violated some legal duty they owed you and that that caused your injuries.  Drivers owe each other many legal duties, such as the duty to follow red lights and stop signs, the duty to avoid speeding, and the duty to cautiously look for cars before turning or changing lanes.  Whenever drivers violate a traffic law or a common safe-driving requirement, they can be said to have breached their duty.

If that breach caused the crash, you can get compensation for any damages you can prove were caused in the crash.  Sometimes, accidents happen even when everyone is being as safe as they can.  In these cases, it may be difficult to prove fault, and your lawyer may need to work with your insurance company to get damages paid.  However, any time when someone’s mistakes or errors cause the crash, you can provide testimony and other evidence to show how the crash was their fault.

Damages related to an accident can include more than just physical injuries.  Many car accident victims claim damages for pain and suffering – which can be the biggest part of your claim.  Damages for lost wages and future lost earning capacity can also be very important in your case.

Who to Sue in a Columbia Car Accident Case

Determining what parties to file your case against can be confusing.  Fortunately, our Columbia car accident attorneys can handle this for you.  We can investigate the case, determine if there are any parties other than the driver to sue, and file the proper claims.

Some drivers may wonder whether you sue the driver or their insurance company after an accident.  Typically, lawsuits for car accident injuries are filed against the driver directly, but their insurance company steps in to provide an attorney and cover the damages.  The specifics of how that works will be defined by the driver’s insurance policy.  Just remember that you sue the person who hit you in most cases.

Sometimes, there are additional parties aside from the driver who can be at fault.  If the driver who hit you was a truck driver, bus driver, taxi driver, or some other commercial driver, you could be entitled to sue their employer, too.  Trucking companies, bus companies, taxi companies, and other companies often hire strong legal teams to protect themselves from liability.  However, the law in South Carolina does allow injury victims to sue the defendant’s employer as long as the negligence occurred as part of their job (i.e., while driving for work).

Car accidents are occasionally caused by mistakes that neither driver made.  If the vehicle that caused the crash was part of a fleet, the vehicle’s owner may be responsible for negligent maintenance and upkeep.  This kind of claim can also be made against mechanics whose work later causes a crash.  Auto manufacturers can also be held liable for unreasonable equipment failure, auto defects, and other malfunctions that lead to crashes or make injuries worse.  Many lawsuits revolve around dangerous airbags, seat belts, ignition systems, and fuel systems.

Talk to an attorney to make sure all proper parties are included in your case before it is filed.  If cases need to be refiled later, they could run afoul of the statute of limitations.

Our Columbia Car Accident Lawyers Can Help

If you were hurt in a car accident or a loved one was killed or injured in a crash, contact us today at (803) 451-4000.  Our Columbia car accident injury attorneys at Burriss Ridgeway Injury Lawyers dedicate our practice to helping injured victims get the compensation they deserve.  Call us to schedule a free initial case consultation.

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