According to the South Carolina 2019 Traffic Collision Fact Book by the Department of Public Safety, there were 141,096 car crashes in 2019. In these car accidents:
- 927 were fatal crashes
- 2,629 resulted in serious injuries
- 35,903 resulted in minor to moderate injuries
- 55,173 people were injured
- 3,237 were seriously injured
- 1,006 people were killed
- 101,637 resulted in property damage
Other important South Carolina car accident stats in 2019 include:
- A person was injured every nine minutes
- A person died every 8.7 hours
- A person was killed in a drunk-driving accident every 30.8 hours
- A fatal crash occurred every 9.4 hours
- A crash resulting in injuries occurred every 13.6 minutes
- A traffic crash occurred every 3.7 minutes
- A collision that resulted in property damage occurred every 5.2 minutes
Liability in South Carolina Car Accidents
Liability means that an individual or entity is legally responsible or at fault for an accident. When pursuing an auto accident claim, you should have proof that the other driver caused the accident. However, proving fault is not always easy. In most cases, there may be many factors involved.
In some cases, these factors, like bad weather conditions, can’t be attributed solely to the driver. But while no one can control the weather, drivers have a legal duty to modify their driving by being more careful, slowing down, and allowing themselves more time to brake when driving in hazardous weather conditions. Additionally, in some car accident cases, multiple drivers, the manufacturer or the driver’s car, or a driver’s employer may be partially liable for the accident.
This is why proving liability for a car accident may require an investigation. While the at-fault driver’s insurance provider will investigate the car accident to determine whether their driver caused the accident, you have to remember that the insurer is only looking out for their best interests and not yours. This is why having a lawyer on your side to conduct a separate investigation into the accident is crucial to your claim.
Recoverable Damages in a South Carolina Auto Accident Claim
The damages you can potentially recover from a car accident included:
- Economic Damages: These are damages that you can assign a quantifiable and numeric price. They can include past and future medical expenses, lost earnings from missed time at work, and lost earning capacity, if going back to work won’t be possible because of your severe injuries.
- Non-Economic Damages: These include damages that cannot be associated with an actual dollar amount, like pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment for life, loss of companionship, or emotional distress, among others.
The Statute of Limitations for Car Accident Claims in South Carolina
The statute of limitations refers to a law that defines a specific time limit or deadline on plaintiffs’ rights to file their claim in court. For car accident claims, the time limit is commonly three years or sometimes less. This means that if you were injured in an auto accident or if a family member was killed in a car crash, you should file your claim as soon as possible. Consult with a well-qualified lawyer to know for sure.
Attempting to file your car accident claim after the statute of limitations has passed may result in the liable party pointing out the missed deadline and asking the court to dismiss the case. Unfortunately, the court may side with the defendant and decline to hear your case.
Consult with an Experienced South Carolina Car Accident Lawyer
Injured in a car accident in South Carolina? The Jeffcoat Firm can assist with your legal needs. Our experienced South Carolina car accident lawyer are ready to help you.
We will also handle all negotiations and communications with involved insurance companies to protect you from their sneaky tactics, so you can focus on recovering from your injuries. Fill out our online form or call us at 803-200-2000 to arrange your free case consultation with our experienced car accident lawyer in South Carolina today.
Car Accident FAQs
When Should I Call a Lawyer?
It’s always best to contact a car accident lawyer after getting injured in an accident due to another driver’s negligence. An experienced South Carolina car accident attorney can help you understand your legal rights and provide strategic and practical advice on your claim. Likewise, a lawyer will handle all the procedural and administrative work necessary to build your case and deal with the at-fault driver’s insurer.
What If the Driver Who Caused the Car Accident is Uninsured?
If you’ve sustained injuries in an auto accident with a driver who doesn’t have auto insurance, you can often file a claim against your underinsured motorist insurance policy, which is required for all drivers in South Carolina. You can also consult an attorney for other potential sources of compensation.
What if a Family Member Died Due to a Car Accident?
You should consult an experienced wrongful death lawyer to determine if you have a case for wrongful death. If you do, you can recover damages to compensate for the loss of your family member.