Will an insurance company pay for my injuries and property after a wreck?

Dirk J. Derrick
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South Carolina Lawyer Dirk Derrick helps victims recover from car accidents, personal injury & wrongful death.

If you are injured in an auto accident, you may collect damages if you are less than 50% at fault in the accident.

As seen in the recent case of Roddey v. Wal-Mart Stores, the South Carolina Supreme Court affirmed that a person must be less than 50% negligent to file a claim against the other party involved. Alice Hancock died in a car accident while driving the getaway car for her sister who was attempting to shoplift in Wal-Mart. Wal-Mart’s security guard Derrick Jones was asked to get her license plate number and in an effort to do so, Jones drove his security truck after Hancock.

Although Wal-Mart’s security policy requires employees to “never pursue a suspect off the facility’s property,” and to “never use a moving vehicle to pursue a suspect,” Jones was directed to get Hancock’s information. When Hancock’s sister entered the car, Hancock put the car in reverse, backed up at a high speed, struck a median in the parking lot, turned around, and drove towards the exit of the parking lot. Once on the highway, Hancock drove through a stop sign and a stop light almost causing an accident. According to Jones, she then drove up a ramp almost hitting another car before she later drove off the road and died in a crash.

Hancock’s personal representative, Roddey, believed her death was caused by Wal-Mart’s negligence when the security guard followed Hancock to retrieve her license plate information. The Supreme Court disagreed and said that although Wal-Mart was negligent in following its security policy which hopes to prevent injury or death, Hancock was aware she was driving a getaway car, engaged in reckless driving, and was more than 50% at fault for her accident and death. Any reasonable jury would find that it was much more Hancock’s fault than it was of the defendant.

Every case is different and the damages available depend on the circumstances of each case.  

Have You Been Injured In A South Carolina Area Car Accident?

If you've been injured in a car accident you need to speak with an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our Conway, South Carolina office directly at 843.484.0707 to schedule your free consultation. We are also able to meet clients at our Myrtle Beach, Murrells Inlet, Mt. Pleasant, Columbia, North Myrtle Beach or North Charleston office locations.

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