Car accidents can occur in many different ways. The type of car accident that you might have may depend on the road that you are driving on, the type of vehicle that you are driving, the time of day, and where you are located. Regardless of the type of car accident that you might have, it can cause injuries to you and any passengers who may be riding in your vehicle. If you are injured in an accident that was caused by someone else, you may have legal rights to recover damages. Contact our car crash attorneys to learn more.
- Front-end collisions
- Hit and run accidents
- Rear-end collisions
- T-bone accidents
- Multiple Vehicle accidents
- Fatal car accidents
- Minor involved accident
- Drunk driver accidents
- Texting while driving
- Driving for employer accidents
Front-end collisions are also known as head-on collisions. These are accidents in which two vehicles going in the opposite direction collide into each other's front ends. Head-on collisions often cause fatalities because of the strong physical forces that are released in the collisions. These collisions might be avoided by paying attention to the road, making sure that you stay in your lane, watching street signs, and not driving after you have drunk alcohol or taken drugs. If you are traveling on a two-lane road, be careful when you pass another car.
Hit and run accidents
Hit and run accidents can be especially devastating to injured victims. These accidents occur when a driver flees the scene of the accident instead of waiting for help to arrive. If you are able to do so, try to snap a picture of the other car's license plate or write it down. Call the police, and get treatment for your injuries. It is a good idea for you to purchase additional uninsured and underinsured motorists coverage as an endorsement on your insurance policy. If a driver flees and is not found, you can file a claim with your own company under your UM/UIM coverage. If the driver is found, you may be able to recover damages from his or her insurance company. Punitive damages may also be available to you if you were seriously injured in a hit and run accident.
Rear-end collisions are among the most common types of accidents. In these accidents, a vehicle crashes into the back of the vehicle immediately in front of it. According to a study that was conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in 2007, 87% of rear-end collisions are caused by the rear driver's failure to pay attention to traffic in front of him or her. Even at relatively low speeds, rear-end collisions can cause serious injuries to people.
T-bone accidents are accidents that occur when one motorist collides into the side of another vehicle. These accidents normally happen in intersections when a driver fails to stop for a red light or runs a stop sign. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, T-bone accidents account for 25% of traffic fatalities that happen each year.
The NHTSA reports that 37,133 people were killed in motor vehicle collisions in 2017. The IIHS reports that 924 fatal accidents happened in South Carolina in 2017, resulting in the deaths of 988 people. Millions of people are also injured each year in traffic accidents.
Crashes involving multiple vehicles
In crashes involving multiple vehicles, there may be many people who are injured. This means that the liability limits of the at-fault driver's policy may be quickly exhausted. In South Carolina, drivers only have to carry insurance with the following minimum liability amounts:
- $25,000 per injured person
- $50,000 for two or more injured people
- $25,000 for property damage
This is another reason why it is important for you to have additional uninsured and underinsured motorists insurance coverage as an endorsement on your automobile insurance policy. If the at-fault driver has insufficient insurance to pay for your losses, you can file a UIM claim with your own insurance company. The UIM coverage will pay for the difference between what you can recover from the driver's policy and your losses up to the limits of your UIM coverage. Following a multiple car accident, it is imperative for you to investigate the scene as quickly as possible. Taking pictures and getting witness information can help accident reconstruction experts to determine which driver was at fault.
Fatal car accidents
When fatal car accidents happen, the victims' family members can file a wrongful death claim against the driver who caused the accident. Under S.C.Code Ann. § 15-51-10 et. seq., the administrator or executor of the estate of the deceased person may file the wrongful death lawsuit for the benefit of the family members.
Minor involved in a car accident
If your minor child is injured in a car accident because of the negligence of someone else, there are some additional steps that must be taken. South Carolina has rules in place for minor settlements to keep minors or their parents from wasting the money. You can file a lawsuit on your child's behalf. You must be appointed by the court as a guardian. Under the minor settlement rules, settlements of more than $2,500 for minors in personal injury claims must be approved by a South Carolina court. If the minor will receive more than $25,000, the court will need to review the settlement offer to make a determination about whether it is in the minor's best interests to accept it. A verified petition must be filed in the court about the settlement offer. If the court approves it, the money may be held for the minor in one of two ways.
You can ask to be appointed as your child's legal guardian or conservator through a process in probate court. The funds will be held in an account, and they cannot be released without a court order. The other way to hold the money for a minor is a structured settlement. The money will be placed in an annuity and can be structured to pay different amounts to your child over time. Structured settlements help to keep your child from wasting the money that he or she receives.
Drunk driver accidents
Accidents involving drunk drivers may cause substantial property losses and catastrophic injuries. When these types of accidents occur, it is possible for you to recover compensation for your losses. It is also possible to get punitive damages against the driver who drove drunk and caused your injuries. Our law firm works with the victim's advocate in the criminal court matter against the drunk driver as well.
Texting While Driving
If you are injured in an accident that was caused by someone who was texting while driving, you may be able to recover punitive damages. However, it can be difficult to prove. The NHTSA found in a study that texting while driving is more dangerous than drunk driving. Despite this, many people continue to text while they drive and endanger other people around them.
Having a car accident while you are driving for your employer
If you have a car accident while you are driving for your job, you can file a workers' compensation claim with your employer's workers' compensation insurance carrier. If you are coming to work or driving home after leaving work, you cannot get workers' compensation.
However, if you have an accident while you are driving during your job, you have the right to recover workers' compensation and to file a personal injury lawsuit against the other driver. You must seek the workers' compensation benefits first, or you will elect your remedies. This means that if you settle your auto accident liability claim before your state workers' compensation claim, you will not be able to file a workers' compensation claim.