Columbia Car Accident Lawyer
If you have been in a car crash, you are likely badly injured and struggling to recover. If the accident wasn’t your fault, you might be entitled to compensation. A Columbia car accident lawyer can help you win what you are owed.
Cars are a common sight nearly everywhere you go. Whether you are in downtown Columbia, South Carolina, or on a rural county road, you are rarely the only motorist in sight. Unfortunately, that means more opportunities for a serious accident.
When you are in a serious auto wreck, it can be tough to recover and get the compensation you need. This feels even worse when you did not cause the accident. Another person hit you, leaving you stuck with the bills. You will need to contact the driver’s insurance company, but insurers might not be helpful or even try to blame you for the crash, leaving you to fight for your fair compensation in court.
Motor vehicle accidents can be a tough situation, but our lawyers at HawkLaw, P.A. can help. With a personal injury attorney in Columbia, South Carolina by your side, we can help you get the full compensation you deserve after an accident. If you are struggling with your car accident claim, you can reach out to our law firm for the help and legal representation you need.
Common Causes of Columbia Car Accidents
Accidents are sadly more common than you might often think. In a split second, a reckless driver can change your life forever. Distracted driving is one of the top reasons motor vehicle accidents occur. Every crash is unique. However, there are some common causes, such as:
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol (DUI).
- A car hits you while you are biking, walking across a street, or even on the sidewalk.
- Reckless truck drivers who have not followed regulations or are simply careless (truck accidents can be particularly dangerous due to the sheer size of the vehicle involved).
- Another vehicle rear-ends yours while at a traffic stop.
- A driver is distracted by their cell phone, eating food, or smoking (to name a few).
If drunk driving is involved, an experienced attorney can work to protect your rights, but also indirectly the rights of others, since DUI is a common repeat offense if the defendants are not held accountable.
Common Columbia Auto Accident Injuries
Before you seek compensation for your car accident injury, first, you will need to assess the specific injuries you have suffered because of the crash. Auto collisions can be especially dangerous, so it is important for you to keep track of the suffering you have been put through. Unfortunately, the damage suffered could be extensive.
Injuries in auto crashes tend to be serious because the impact is likely to happen at high speeds. While cars have become safer than ever, a car crash can still leave you to deal with life-changing injuries.
Once you have suffered these injuries, you will need to fight to get the compensation you know you deserve. But even one injury is enough to make any undertaking a challenge, and you might have suffered several injuries. You may need someone to help you list your injuries and how much you have suffered because of them.
- Traumatic brain injury
- Back or neck injury
- Spinal cord injury
- Severe burn
- Painful laceration
- Broken bone
- Internal bleeding
This is not an extensive list, but only an example of the many physical problems you might suffer after being a car crash victim and does not include the emotional injuries you may struggle with after your injury. Always seek medical treatment as soon as possible after an accident since some injuries are hidden or may not emerge until days or weeks after the accident.
What to Do After Experiencing a Car Accident in Columbia, SC
Experiencing a car accident can be terrifying and knowing what to do in the aftermath can be highly stressful. It is important to try to follow certain steps in the immediate minutes and hours after a motor vehicle crash occurs to protect yourself, make certain everyone is safe, and to also protect yourself from a legal perspective.
- Call 911 if it appears anyone involved in the crash needs immediate medical care for serious injuries.
- Contact police to confirm a police report is filed (this will prove to be very important later on).
- If not seriously injured, stay put at the accident scene until law enforcement arrives.
- In minor crashes, move the car to a safe space away from traffic lanes but as nearby to the accident site as possible.
- In serious crashes, leave the car as is and, if possible, get everyone to a safe location away from traffic.
You will also want to gather as much documentation as possible to provide a careful timeline of events and conditions surrounding the car accident. Get the following information as soon as reasonably possible after a collision occurs.
- Location of the accident and time of day.
- Take photos and, if possible, videos of the accident site and any accident details.
- Take photos of any skid marks, street signs, potholes, or any other relevant details that may have contributed to the crash (even if you are not certain).
- Collect contact information from anyone who witnessed the accident and can provide a first-hand account.
- Write down the insurance company of the other party, along with their contact information.
- Contact a Columbia personal injury attorney as soon as possible for a legal consultation, especially since there is a statute of limitations in South Carolina to file a personal injury claim.
If you are injured and are unable to gather documentation, try to ask if another individual can take some photos and write down any other pertinent details associated with the crash. Any evidence you collect will be useful later on you decide to open a personal injury claim or if someone files against you.
Fault For Car Accidents In Columbia, South Carolina
Once you’ve taken note of the injuries you have suffered, you will need to know who is financially responsible for those wounds and the medical bills that pile up because of them. Finding the person responsible will be a major part of filing your claim. Though, what challenges can Columbia car accident victims expect as they file their claims?
Once you have gotten treatment for your injuries, you will need to report the accident to the insurance company and make sure you have the other driver’s insurance information. Because South Carolina is a “fault” state, the at-fault driver or his or her insurer will be responsible for paying the expenses tied to your crash.
As you might have guessed, this system motivates insurers and negligent drivers to try to prove that they are not, in fact, financially liable for the injuries car accident victims suffer. With insurance companies’ teams of attorneys and substantial financial resources, they can build a convincing case for why they should not have to pay you—even if the true cause of the crash seems clear to you.
The Insurance Company Will Not Want To Help
Unfortunately, the insurance company might not be easy to deal with. If your claim is especially costly, you might have some extra trouble getting the settlement you deserve for your injuries. You will need the full amount to recover, of course, so do not hesitate to ask for help if you are afraid there is something wrong with your settlement offer.
It is unfortunate, but insurance companies do not always make fair settlement offers. In some cases, you may have trouble getting any response at all from these insurers. This can make it difficult to recover, but a car accident lawyer in Columbia can help you fight back when the insurance companies are not being fair after an auto wreck or they try to shift the negligence to you.
In some cases, the insurance company might give you a lowball settlement offer, which is way too low to cover all of the expenses you have incurred in the wake of your accident. This offer is supposed to make you feel desperate: If you do not know what your claim is worth, they will claim that this is their best offer and that you will have to take it or go without a settlement.
They may use other methods, such as delaying your claim, refusing to respond, or otherwise trying to avoid paying you the full amount you deserve. It is frustrating, but you do not have to let them get away with it. Instead, reach out to an experienced personal injury lawyer who can fight back and will not be afraid to go to court.
Recovering Compensation For Your Columbia Car Crash
You know you will need to file your claim for your car accident damages, but how much are you owed? Knowing what your claim is worth is critical to obtaining the full compensation you are owed, but that is often difficult to determine without the tools a lawyer will have access to, especially since insurance companies tend to make underestimated offers to accident victims. In all honestly, insurance adjusters often will also try to take advantage of you as well.
First, you will need to confirm that you include all of your economic damages. This should include any financial costs you have suffered because of the accident. The costs of medications, doctor visits, surgeries, ambulance rides, and assistive devices for your injuries are economic damages, for example.
What about the suffering your injuries caused? These fall under non-economic damages, which include the mental, emotional, and physical hardships you might experience after an accident. These, unfortunately, are also difficult to calculate without legal help. These are intangible, which means it is hard to place a monetary value on them.
Fortunately, your Columbia car wreck lawyer can help you determine what these damages are worth. We have the resources and experience you will need to find the value of all of your damages, which can vary based on how severe your suffering was. If you are not sure what your damages should include, see the list below for some damages that are common after serious car accidents:
- Current and future medical expenses
- Medical bills from doctors, hospitals, and therapists
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional trauma
- Property damage
- Loss of future wages
- Car damage
Additionally, if you have suffered permanent disability, disfiguring scars, or the wrongful death of a loved one, along with any pain and suffering you have struggled with since the accident, this is also considered when awarding compensation.
Columbia Uber Accident Lawyer
When you are in a rideshare accident, it can be tough to identify the person responsible for your injuries. You may need a Columbia lawyer’s help when your Uber trip goes wrong. Your attorney will know exactly what course of investigation in this type of car accident case to take to protect your rights and obtain justice for any accident-causing behaviors or vehicle conditions that led to your injury.
Speak With A Columbia, SC Car Accident Attorney
A car crash can be a dangerous, traumatic experience. After an accident, you might struggle with serious mental scars, and the bills will still keep piling up. You deserve compensation for the suffering you have been through because of the other driver, but his or her insurer might not be willing to pay.
That might mean you have to take your case into a courtroom for an injury claim, but that can be difficult when you are struggling with injuries and other damages. Failing to give your case the full attention it needs could mean losing part or all of your compensation. To get the full compensation you deserve, speak with a qualified Columbia car accident attorney from HawkLaw, P.A.
Our attorneys can fight for your compensation when you are recovering, taking some of the stress of a lawsuit off of your shoulders during this difficult time. We will even begin with a free consultation* so you know we are the right firm for you before we get started on providing you with sound legal advice.
If you or a loved one have suffered injuries and losses in an automobile accident or another kind of personal injury accident, reach out to a Columbia auto accident attorney for the help you need. Our practice areas are diverse. Just give our law firm a call at 1-888-HAWK-LAW (429-5529) or fill out the online contact form at the bottom of the page to receive a free case evaluation.* Someone from our legal team will get right back to you.