If you’re a victim seriously injured in an accident caused by someone else, the very fact that it wasn’t your fault is the reason you need an attorney. Without one, you might end up stuck with economic damages that should be paid by the at-fault driver:
- Medical expenses
- Property damage
- Lost wages
Handling your claim without legal representation might also cost you the opportunity to get fair compensation for your non-economic damages:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of enjoyment of life
If you’re injured in a car crash caused by another driver, the best way to strengthen and protect your claim is to avoid admitting fault to anyone and contact an attorney as soon as possible.
Insurance Companies Will Fight Your Claim Following A Charleston Area Car Accident
If you’re one of the lucky car accident victims who has only minimal damage to a vehicle and minor injuries from the crash, you might be able to file your own claim against the negligent driver’s insurance company and cover your damages. The insurance company will not be so accommodating, however, if:
- Your car is totaled.
- You have severe injuries requiring surgery and/or referrals to specialists.
- You have a long recovery ahead of you and cannot work for an extended period of time.
- You are left fully or partially disabled.
- Your loved one has died in the car crash.
In any of these cases, the insurance company is going to look for any way it can to dispute, devalue, or deny your claim. Its adjusters and attorneys have a duty to protect the interests of its policyholders and keep the company profitable. They don’t do so by simply paying every claim that’s filed. They will dig deeper into your medical records to look for pre-existing conditions they can blame for your current injuries. They will use any ambiguity or imprecise language in the police report to place some or all of the blame for the wreck on you.
They will use that information to dispute/deny your claim or to offer you an unfairly low settlement soon after the crash and before you even know what your total medical expenses are likely to be. Even when you’re at your best, you probably don’t stand a chance of coming out on top against these trained professionals—and you’re hardly at your best if you’re recovering from serious injuries. This is why you need a lawyer. Only an experienced car accident attorney can help you get the settlement you deserve by:
- Checking the police report for inaccuracies and hiring an independent investigator if necessary
- Interviewing witnesses to the crash and obtaining video footage from nearby security or red-light cameras
- Connecting with your doctors to get accurate documentation of your injuries, treatment, and prognosis
- Bringing in expert witnesses and/or an accident reconstruction specialist
- Putting a dollar amount on your pain and suffering
- Negotiating with the insurance company to get you fair compensation
- Taking your case to trial if necessary
Your Charleston Car Accident Lawyer Can Negotiate a Lower Percentage of Fault
Even if you are partially responsible for your own accident, you can still file a claim for damages. Your award will simply be reduced by your percentage of fault. South Carolina’s modified comparative fault system, however, will bar you from collecting any compensation at all if you are more than 50% to blame. The insurance company’s lawyers will do all they can to show that you were more than half responsible. Having an experienced attorney in your corner to fight back and prove them wrong can make the difference between collecting fair compensation and collecting nothing.
Have You Been Injured In A Charleston 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 Charleston, South Carolina office directly at 843.488.2359 to schedule your free consultation. We are also able to meet clients at our Conway, Myrtle Beach, Murrells Inlet, Mt. Pleasant, North Myrtle Beach or North Charleston office locations.