Auto Accident Injury in Columbia, SC
Have you suffered an injury due to a car accident in Columbia? If so, your life may never be the same again. Injuries from a car accident can interfere with your ability both to work and to enjoy everyday activities. They can also be incredibly painful. As such, you need an auto accident attorney who understands the laws in and around Columbia, SC that will fight for your legal rights and help you receive the financial compensation you deserve.
Auto Accident Injury Statistics in Columbia, South Carolina
According to the National Safety Council, in 2019 about 4.4 million people suffered serious injuries in motor vehicle accidents and an estimated 38,000 were killed.
In 2018, the South Carolina Department of Public Safety stated that there was a traffic accident every 3.7 minutes in the state. Every nine hours that year, someone died in an auto collision. The total number of fatalities from auto accidents in the state for 2018 was 1,036, with a total of 58,053 injuries. Richland County had a total of 13,519 traffic collisions with 49 fatal accidents.
What to Do After an Auto Accident
It’s important to be prepared in the event you are a victim of a car accident. Below are the steps to remember immediately after your crash.
Receive Immediate Medical Attention
What is the most important step that you need to take after an auto accident? You need to receive immediate and proper medical treatment. You may believe that the injuries sustained after an auto accident are minor. Proper medical treatment helps ensure that you have not sustained any internal injuries that you may not be aware of.
File a Police Report
Even if no one sustained injuries, you still need to call 911 and request law enforcement assistance. When officers arrive, jot down each one’s name and badge number. Answer their questions honestly, but don’t volunteer any unasked for information, especially your thoughts on exactly what happened or who caused the car accident. Be sure to ask the officers for the number of their police report. Also ask when and where you can get a copy of it, including how much it will cost you.
According to the South Carolina Legislature, drivers must report all accidents involving injuries to law enforcement immediately. If there are no injuries and only limited property damage, then drivers may file a report later with law enforcement within 15 days.
Gather the Appropriate Documentation
While waiting for officers to arrive after a car accident, collect information from all other drivers involved in the accident, including the following:
- Full name, address, phone number and email address
- Driver’s license state and number
- Auto insurance company name, policy number and phone number
Use your cell phone to take pictures of each driver’s license, auto insurance card, your vehicle and each additional vehicle involved in the car accident. Don’t rely on verbal communication. Having as much information as possible will only help you and your case later on. Try to keep this exchange as civil and friendly as possible. However, do not apologize for causing the accident or indicate in any way that you think you may have caused it.
Recovering Damages After an Auto Accident Injury
After surviving a car accident, the emotional and economic toll it takes can be staggering. You are not only dealing with the mental anguish that comes with being involved in a crash, but you may also be experiencing severe physical harm as well.
Common injuries associated with motor vehicle accidents include:
- Burn injuries
- Back and neck injuries, such as whiplash
- Brain and head injuries
- Broken bones
- Spinal injuries
- Soft tissue injuries
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention explain that the cost of fatal accidents in South Carolina was a little over $1.5 billion in 2018. The figure represents the loss of wages and medical expenses for such accidents. Teens were the group with the largest costs associated with auto accidents.
Hiring a car accident lawyer ensures you have the financial ability to cover any losses that have occurred as a result of a crash. An auto accident attorney will also help you handle the paperwork that you will have to complete from insurance companies. This boosts your odds of receiving the insurance compensation you deserve.
Auto Accident Laws in South Carolina
Liability Laws for Columbia
When car accidents happen, it is essential to determine who bears responsibility for the resulting damage and medical bills. Determining fault impacts everything from your insurance claim and level of liability to the amount of confusion you may endure during the claims process.
All drivers in South Carolina must have liability auto insurance, according to Forbes. The state requires a minimum of $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident for bodily injury and $25,000 for property damage. Drivers also must carry uninsured motorist coverage, which will protect them in the event of an accident with a driver who has no auto insurance. Policy limits must, at minimum, be $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident.
Statute of Limitations in Columbia
Each state has its own tort laws that determine the statute of limitations on a claim. In some states, this gives you just one year to file a claim in court, while some others may give you up to six years. The South Carolina Legislature states that the statute of limitations for taking a claim to court for injuries from an auto accident is three years. The timer begins on the date of the accident.
This is why it is important to consult with an attorney immediately after your car crash. Don’t wait and risk losing out on any compensation they can recover.
Work With an Experienced Auto Accident Lawyer Near Columbia, SC
After a car accident, you have enough to worry about. We can help you find an auto accident attorney for your unique case. Get the financial restitution that you deserve if you’re the victim of someone else’s conduct.
Submit a request online or call us today at (866) 345-6784 to get in touch with an experienced lawyer in South Carolina!