It was over in seconds, but it changed your life drastically. At Schiller & Hamilton, we understand the pain that you and your family have suffered if you have been hurt in an auto accident.
These can arise from any number of circumstances, from bad weather to distracted drivers and phone use, and can happen in parking lots or with rideshare drivers. We know the “domino effect” that an accident injury can have on a person’s job, family, and finances.
Contact the Rock Hill car accident lawyers at Schiller & Hamilton today. We offer free consultations, and you do not owe us a penny unless or until we secure compensation in your case.
About Schiller & Hamilton Personal Injury Law Firm
For more than two decades, our dedicated Rock Hill car accident lawyers have been helping crash victims secure the full and fair compensation they need to recover and move forward with their lives.
Our dedicated personal injury attorneys are proud that so many of our clients have thought to recommend us to friends and family down the line, and we work hard every day to exceed our clients’ expectations.
If you or a family member has been seriously hurt in a crash, you can expect the insurance company to call on its team of lawyers immediately. However, there are many mistakes that should be avoided, and you should act quickly to protect your legal rights by understanding the law.
For a free legal consultation with a car accidents lawyer serving Rock Hill, call 1-855-865-4907
How Could Our Rock Hill Car Accident Attorney Help?
At Schiller & Hamilton, we understand that people who have just been in a car accident might put calling an attorney well down the list of things to do. In severe vehicle collisions, your main priority should be to get the medical attention you need. Then there are the headaches of figuring out just how badly your own vehicle is damaged and what you need to do to get it fixed or replaced.
However, you should know that the decisions you make in the first hours and days following an accident can have important and long-lasting consequences for the eventual resolution of your injury and property damage claims. Our knowledgeable attorneys can work quickly to investigate your car accident claim, protect your rights, and take the legal and financial pressures off you.
Here are some of the ways that our auto wreck lawyers frequently help clients:
- Finding proper medical treatment and identifying ways to pay for it
- Getting complete and accurate estimates for car repair, reimbursement for rental cars, and compensation for loss of use
- Protecting your ability to cover living expenses during a period away from work or other income interruption
- Protecting your rights in dealing with law enforcement or insurance accident investigators
- Preserving eyewitness testimony, inspecting the damaged vehicles, documenting traffic conditions, and otherwise gathering the evidence that will be essential to proving your claims
- Ensuring that your injuries are documented through video, photographs, medical records, and emergency treatment notes
- Hiring experts to analyze the effect your injury will have on you over the course of your lifetime and how it will continue to cost you into the future
You can’t count on the insurance claims adjuster to look out for your interests in a car accident settlement. The insurer’s goal is to settle your claim for the lowest amount possible while protecting its own access to reimbursement from other sources.
Rock Hill Car Accident Lawyer Near Me 1-855-865-4907
Common Types of Car Accident Injuries to Sue for in Rock Hill
If you have been seriously injured in a Rock Hill car accident, you may be anxious to move forward with your case. However, you may have concerns that your injuries are not “severe enough” to warrant the pursuit of a car accident claim.
If your injuries have considerably impacted your life, and someone else is at fault for causing your injuries, why should you be stuck covering the costs? You shouldn’t.
With help from our Rock Hill car accident lawyer, you can make the culpable party pay. With that in mind, we see some injuries more often than others in area accident claims. These include:
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
- Third-degree burns
- Compound fractures and bone breaks
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Internal injuries and organ failure
- Back, neck, and head injuries
- Lacerations, abrasions, and contusion
- Spinal cord injuries
- Soft tissue injuries
If you were diagnosed with another type of injury not listed above, you could still have grounds for a car accident claim. You can explore your legal options further when you reach out to our Rock Hill car accident attorney for help.
Who Is Responsible for Causing Your Car Accident?
Determining fault is one of the most important tasks a car accident lawyer will have. To start, some of the more common causes of car accidents involve negligent driving.
When irresponsible drivers get behind the wheel, they can cause devastating and life-threatening injuries. Some examples of negligent driving could include:
- Driving over the speed limit
- Failure to yield to the right-of-way
- Failure to stop at a traffic light or stop sign
- Failure to use a turn signal
- Following too closely
- Road rage
- Aggressive driving
- Driving while fatigued
- Drugged or drunk driving
- Distracted driving
However, negligent drivers are not the only reason motor vehicle accidents happen. When auto parts malfunction or are defective, several parties could be responsible, such as:
- Safety inspectors
- Auto parts designers and manufacturers
- Auto parts distributors and suppliers
- Motor vehicle dealerships
- Maintenance technicians
- Other third parties
There is also a chance dangerous road conditions could have caused or contributed to your car accident. Examples of dangerous road conditions include:
- Unsecured road construction work
- Missing street signs or traffic lights
- Obscured street signs
- Large potholes
Several parties could be at fault for accidents that dangerous road conditions cause, including:
- Safety inspectors
- Government officials
- The South Carolina Department of Transportation
- Government agencies
- Contractors and subcontractors
- Other parties
Because car accidents can occur in Rock Hill in so many ways, we will examine how your accident occurred to determine who is liable for the crash and your injuries.
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Evidence to Support Your Insurance and Civil Claims
In Rock Hill car accident claims, the burden of proof is based on a preponderance of the evidence. This is different from the burden of proof in criminal court, which requires guilt to be proven beyond a reasonable doubt. The burden of proof may be less in civil court, but your attorney will need to present compelling evidence to prove your case.
The evidence must show the defendant is more than likely at fault for causing your accident or resulting injuries. With that in mind, some evidence claimants use to prove fault in a Rock Hill car accident claim include:
- Cell phone records
- Social media posts
- Communication exchanges
- Police reports
- Accident reports
- Reports from accident reconstructionists
- Reports from injury reconstructionists
- Chemical blood alcohol test results
- Witness statements
- Expert testimony
- Photos of your injuries
- Photos of the property damage
- Video footage of the collision
- Safety logs
- Maintenance records
- Medical records
What to Expect From an Insurance Company After a Rock Hill Accident
After you have been in a car accident, you likely will deal with the insurance company soon after. South Carolina is a fault state for car insurance and accident purposes. This means that instead of filing a claim with your insurance company, you will file a claim with the liable party’s insurer.
However, if the liable party does not have auto insurance or any other type of insurance, or their insurance company does not have to cover your damages, you may need to prepare for court. Whether the insurance company is financially obligated to you remains to be seen.
However, you can expect an insurer to argue that they are not responsible for paying you. The insurance company is going to lose money if it approves your claim. You can expect it to try to reduce its financial obligation wherever possible.
Fortunately, we know the tactics insurers can use, so we protect your rights and interests as we seek recovery for you. We will never pressure or allow you to settle for less than your claim is worth.
What Happens When You Are Accused of Sharing Fault for the Car Accident?
It should not come as a surprise if the defendant argues that you are partially at fault for causing your injuries or the accident itself. South Carolina is a modified comparative negligence state with a 51% threshold. If your portion of liability exceeds the threshold, you lose your chance to recover compensation within the civil court system.
If you share fault but do not meet the threshold, you can expect your injury settlement to reflect a shared fault deduction. The amount of compensation that will be subtracted from your injury settlement will be based on your percentage of liability.
For example, if you were not wearing your seat belt when a distracted driver struck you, the jury might find you 20% at fault for your injuries. If the jury awards you $1 million, your injury settlement would be reduced by 20%, leaving you with $800,000. Since shared fault can impact your case’s outcome, hiring an attorney to evaluate your liability accurately can ensure your Rock Hill car accident case is correct before you file it.
What Types of Compensation Can You Receive After a Car Crash?
After a severe vehicle collision, many victims focus on the problems that arise in the immediate aftermath. Emergency room bills, missed time from work, and car repair expenses can quickly add up.
During this vulnerable time, insurance companies may try to jump in and offer lowball settlements to relieve the panic over initial expenses. Do not sign anything or accept any payments without talking to our experienced attorneys. Our team will want to thoroughly evaluate your losses to make the argument for maximum compensation. This may include current and future medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, pain and suffering, and punitive damages.
Current and Future Medical Expenses
Even if your health insurance covers many of your medical bills related to the accident, we will pursue the full amount billed by the health care provider. This is often in excess of what your health insurance company paid due to the discounts these companies have negotiated with providers. In addition, our local auto accident lawyers will explore compensation options through your own Personal Injury Protection (PIP) policy, known as MedPay.
If you are unable to work or are forced to take a lesser-paying job due to your injury, our team will also demand payment for the reduction in future earnings.
We will pursue the costs of repairing or replacing your vehicle as well as any other personal property that was damaged in the crash. In addition, we will demand compensation for the diminished value of the vehicle as a result of the wreck.
Pain and Suffering
It’s tough to think about putting a price on the physical, emotional, and psychological toll an accident takes on a person. However, our team will work with you to document how your injuries have affected you, and we will demand that this suffering be accounted for in any settlement or award.
Under certain circumstances, our attorneys will seek damages that are meant to punish the at-fault party for intentional or extreme misbehavior. This may be the case in crashes involving drivers who were drunk or under the influence of drugs.
Tips to Protect Your Rights After a Collision in Rock Hill
The moments after a motor vehicle crash can be chaotic for everyone involved. And although you may feel powerless to control the situation, there are steps you can take to protect your rights to compensation down the road:
Get Help As Soon As Possible
In addition to ensuring you receive the necessary treatment for your accident injuries, visiting a doctor will allow you to start the documentation needed for a claim. Our team will collect and keep track of your medical records over the course of your personal injury case.
Report Your Accident to the Police
The accident report filed by the responding officer could contain information that will be helpful in proving your case. Our attorneys will obtain a copy of this report and launch our own investigation into your automobile accident.
Get Names and Contact Information From the Other Driver and Any Witnesses
Our lawyers will contact the at-fault driver’s insurance company and interview witnesses to determine what everyone saw and heard during the car accident.
Take Photos of the Vehicles, Your Injuries, and the Scene
Our lawyers could help you recover traffic footage from the accident and take pictures of your property damage.
Be Careful With What You Say
Never apologize or admit fault. Do not discuss your case with friends, family members, or acquaintances. You never know how your words may be twisted and used against you later by the insurance company.
Stay Off Social Media
The insurance company will monitor you any way they can to see if your injuries are affecting you the way you claim. A simple photo of you smiling at a birthday party could be used to try to prove that you were enjoying life, even if you were still in extreme pain at the time.
Contact a Rock Hill Car Accident Lawyer for Help
In addition to personal injury claims, our compassionate attorneys also help families who have lost loved ones file wrongful death lawsuits in pursuit of the compensation they need to heal and get back on solid ground financially.
If you are ready to discuss your case with a seasoned Rock Hill car accident lawyer, contact Schiller & Hamilton today for a free consultation. With a long track record of success in both settlement negotiations and jury trials, our attorneys are always prepared to fight for the maximum compensation our clients are entitled to receive.