7 Types of Personal Injury Cases
Personal injury is a broad area of law that includes accidents resulting in injuries. Most personal injury cases are based on negligence, meaning the defendant caused injury by failing to use reasonable care. However, no two personal injury cases are alike, and an experienced attorney can use his expertise to carefully review the facts of your case to determine whether you can support a legal claim.
At Surasky Law, our Aiken, SC personal injury attorney has helped people injured in all sorts of accidents. Below, we look at 7 of the most common types of personal injury cases. Please contact us as soon as possible to review your case.
Car accidents are a common sight in South Carolina. In 2019, the Palmetto State saw over 140,000 collisions. About 55,000 people suffered injuries, and there were over 900 fatalities. These car crashes had many causes:
Failure to yield
South Carolina requires that motorists have insurance in the event of a crash so victims receive some compensation for their medical care and other bills. Sadly, many drivers are uninsured, and other victims are struck by a driver who flees the scene before the police arrive. Securing compensation for a car accident is a real challenge.
Large commercial vehicle accidents are very different from regular car wrecks. These big rigs can cause devastating injuries in a crash with a passenger sedan or a pedestrian. Truck accident cases often have many interesting legal issues, including liability. For example, the following parties could be at fault:
Reckless or negligent truck drivers
Trucking companies that negligently hire and supervise employees
The federal government has passed sweeping regulations on the industry, but many drivers and employers violate these regs on a consistent basis.
Pedestrians are struck in crosswalks, parking lots, and on the sidewalk. They face unique challenges bringing claims because some drivers might flee the scene or lack insurance. Many insurance companies automatically blame pedestrians for any accident and might fault them for jaywalking or for failure to wear reflective clothing.
Premises Liability Claims
Many of our clients are injured on someone’s property due to a hazard the visitor wasn’t warned about. South Carolina law dictates duties to those who own or control property, but many owners are lax. Premises liability claims include some of the most common accidents we have seen:
Slip and falls
Trip and falls
Building collapse or fire
Violent attacks due to negligent security
We have brought claims for injuries suffered on private property, public buildings, and in big box stores and other businesses. Generally, you can’t sue if you were trespassing on the property, but different rules apply to children.
Some lawyers consider dog bite cases to be a type of premises liability claim. But South Carolina has a separate law governing dog bite cases (S.C. Code § 47-3-110). Specifically, an owner is strictly liable for a dog bite if the victim was not trespassing when the dog attacked them. For example, if you were invited to visit someone’s home and were attacked, the owner is on the hook for all damages caused by the attack, regardless of whether the owner was negligent. In this way, dog bite cases differ significantly from most premises liability claims which look at how carefully the owner maintained his property.
Landlords can also be at fault for a dog attack when they know an animal is vicious or they have some sort of control over it. For example, a landlord who volunteers to watch a dog can be responsible when it attacks. A defect on the property could also contribute to an attack, such as a fence that is in disrepair, allowing a dog to escape the yard.
Products Liability Claims
Defective products harm countless people due to some flaw in their design or manufacture. Most of us expect products to work as expected and never even think we might suffer a serious injury when one explodes or malfunctions. Other accidents stem from the lack of necessary safety instructions or warnings.
The federal government and manufacturers recall hundreds of products every year: clothing, furniture, medicine, automobile parts, and recreational equipment. A lawsuit can hold manufacturers and possibly others liable for your injuries.
Thousands of people are injured every year on the job. These workplace accidents have many causes, but the most common are overexertion, lifting, pulling, falling, and repetitive motion injuries. Other injuries are caused by catastrophic accidents like fires, explosions, or building collapse. Toxic chemical exposure is another key cause of occupational illnesses.
South Carolina’s law on workplace accidents is complicated. Workers can qualify for workers’ compensation benefits, but they typically can’t sue their employer. They might be able to bring a third-party claim for a defective product or if they are injured by a customer or vendor.
Although most accident victims survive, some, unfortunately, succumb to their injuries. A wrongful death claim can be based on any type of personal injury case. Our clients are usually people who lost a spouse or child in a car or other accident and wonder how to hold the defendant accountable.
In South Carolina, the estate’s executor (who should be named in the will) files the lawsuit. But family members receive the compensation, and they should hire an attorney to help them with the case.
Schedule a Consultation with Surasky Law Today
Our legal team knows how to build a personal injury claim the correct way to maximize our client’s odds of success. Please call our law firm to get started with a free consultation. We can review your medical records and listen to you explain how you were hurt. If you hire us, we will get started right away fighting for compensation for your injuries.