Top 12 Personal Injury Lawyer FAQs
As experienced Aiken, SC lawyers, we regularly field questions from the public about personal injury law. There is a lot of inaccurate information on the web, so we are glad that you’ve found your way to our website to get accurate information about this field of law. Below, we highlight some of the FAQs and give the best answers.
Do I have a personal injury case?
You may if you’ve suffered bodily injuries in an accident which wasn’t entirely your fault. These are typical personal injury cases. Luckily, you can meet with a lawyer to determine whether you have a case. Schedule a free consultation and explain how you were hurt.
What’s the first step I should take after an accident?
Dial 911 for all appropriate measures and then collect as much information from the scene as possible.
Can I afford an attorney?
Most personal injury lawyers in South Carolina work on contingency. Essentially, this means a lawyer doesn’t request any upfront attorneys’ fees. Instead, if he wins your case, he takes a percentage of any settlement or jury award. In other words, your attorney won’t get paid unless you get paid.
Can I negotiate my own settlement?
Possibly. A better question is whether you should. There are many variables at play with personal injuries, and an attorney knows best how to request compensation.
Can I sue if I’m not hurt?
It depends. You can certainly sue for any property damage. And though you might feel fine immediately after a crash, your injuries could slowly emerge in the following days. Common injuries that are slow to develop include concussions and back injuries.
How long must I wait for my settlement?
The length of time depends on many factors. For example, is fault in dispute? Are your injuries continuing to worsen? Discuss a timeline with an attorney during a free consultation. In our experience, disputes involving fault are often the hardest to resolve in a fast manner.
What compensation can I receive in a personal injury claim?
In South Carolina, you can receive compensation in the form of damages for all economic and non-economic losses. Generally, economic losses are things like the medical care you received to treat your injuries, as well as any lost wages or property damage. You can easily calculate these amounts. If you missed 4 weeks of work and are paid $600 a week, then you lost $2,400 in wages due to the accident.
Non-economic losses are things like pain, suffering, emotional anguish, inconvenience, loss of enjoyment of life, etc. Bodily injuries do more than cost money—they also degrade a person’s quality of life. You can ask for compensation to try to make up for these losses.
Can I receive compensation if I was partially at fault for the accident?
It depends. South Carolina lets accident victims sue so long as they are not primarily at fault. In other words, you can be up to 50% to blame. If you are more than 50% at fault, you can’t receive compensation. There is another stipulation, though. Let’s say you are less than 50% to blame. Although you can receive compensation, your proportion of fault reduces the amount. This is determined at the end of the case. It’s best to speak with a lawyer to have a reasonable idea of the expected numbers.
How do I pay for medical care following an accident?
If someone else is to blame for your injuries, they will owe you the medical bills in a settlement. If you need help immediately to pay for medical bills, consult an attorney for more information. Often they have Doctors they work with and resources.
Can I receive compensation if I was hurt on the job?
Yes. In that case, you can make a workers’ compensation claim. Workers’ comp covers all necessary medical care to treat your injuries, along with wage loss benefits if you can’t work. Workers’ compensation benefits are no-fault, so it doesn’t matter who is to blame for the accident.
Do I really need a lawyer?
In most cases, yes, even to help read over agreements. At our firm, we immediately collect evidence and handle all communications with insurance adjusters. This frees up our injured clients to focus on their rehab and health. Based on our experience, we can also properly value your claim and negotiate for a fair settlement. Too many people who negotiate without a lawyer’s help settle for too little compensation, and they have no way of paying their bills.
How much time do I have to sue?
Generally, South Carolina gives an injured victim three years to file a personal injury lawsuit in court. This deadline is found in the statute of limitations,S.C. Code § 15-3-530. There are some exceptions. The best thing to do is immediately reach out to a personal injury attorney at Surasky Law today to schedule a free consultation.