Car Accident Attorneys in Columbia, SC
If you or a family member was injured in an automobile crash, you may be seeking the services of a personal injury lawyer that has experience litigating and settling car accident cases. You’ve come to the right place! The Columbia car accident lawyers at the Strom Law Firm LLC are successful in resolving auto accident cases across South Carolina—for maximum value.
From the time a crash occurs, our law firm works to secure the evidence necessary to provide you with the best financial recovery that the law allows. a car accident lawyer will appreciate and understand the possible impact an auto accident has on your physical, emotional, and financial health. Also, when you retain our law office, you can be assured that your case is getting handled by an experienced car accident lawyer who has your interests first and foremost. Contact our Columbia personal injury attorneys through this website or call us at 803-252-4800.
Know the Law & True Value of Your Case
Many car accident attorneys market themselves as ‘experts’ in handling auto accident claims. South Carolina does not designate areas of expertise for a car accident lawyer, but we believe that the consistent results achieved by car auto accident attorneys at the Strom Law Firm LLC make our office the attorneys best positioned to represent you or a loved one after a serious crash with injuries.
Cars are a uniquely ordinary fixture of life in Columbia, SC. As such, driving automobiles can easily be taken for granted. The sudden impact of a car accident can be devastating and shocking to unexpected drivers. Most importantly, the effect often remains well past the time of impact. Columbia car wreck victims often face medical hurdles and obstacles for months and years in cluding pain and suffering beyond the accident.
If you have experienced an injury resulting from a car accident, call the Columbia car accident lawyers at Strom Law Firm at 803-252-4800 or contact us online to discuss your potential claims.
What Steps Do I have to Take After My Car Crash?
There is no way to prepare for an automobile accident! Unfortunately, the actions (or inactions) you take after a collision can impact the final outcome of your case. In order to present the most favorable results, we need our clients to take these steps to secure important evidence for your case.
Should I Contact My Insurance Company After My Accident?
If you wait too long to report to your car insurance company what happened, you may be denied compensation or the path to obtaining compensation could be harder. Never admit fault in your case, even if pressed to make a statement declaring your responsibility. Be honest about the facts. But be a journalist—do not editorialize. Some people are unsure what to say about your case, tell them that you need to speak with your family lawyer first.
Should I Contact the Cops After My Car Accident?
Alert law enforcement and police about the accident. Relay the facts and only the facts involving your case—again, do not editorialize—to the trooper. Also, ask for a copy of a police report or how to get a copy after it is filed.
The driver or owner of a vehicle who causes, property damage, injury, or death or damage in excess of $1,000.00 must submit a report to the South Carolina DMV as soon as possible, and no later than ten days after the crash.
The individual people who own and/or operate the vehicle must also report crashes using the South Carolina DMV Website Report form. Additional information is available from the Division of Public Safety website on how to obtain and file the appropriate forms. Check out their website or contact our accidents lawyer at 803-252-4800, if you need more information.
Should I See a Doctor After My Car Accident?
If you or a loved one are unfortunately involved in a car crash, first things first, seek immediate medical attention for their injuries. Although you may not initially believe that you are injured, some injuries are not obvious, even to those who are injured. In some people, injuries will take days or even weeks to fully develop, and it’s completely necessary to be treated as early as possible to protect your health.
Moreover, it is important to be treated early, because such treatment ensures that medical records are kept to document your injury, which will be very important if you are later forced to file a personal injury claim. Also read all of the follow-up instructions your receive upon discharge. Even if you or a loved one do not have any visible injuries, consult with a physician. You or a loved one may be unaware of injuries due to a state of shock or concussion.
What Info Should I Exchange With the Other Driver?
Trade your telephone, address, insurance company, full legal name, license plate number, and additional contact information with all other drivers involved in the vehicle accident. Note if the other driver appears drunk and relate that to the investigating officer on your case.
How Do I Document Damage After a Car Accident?
Write down what you saw and heard while the event is fresh on your mind. If you’re too hurt to write, ask someone you trust to transcribe or record your account. Also, note if there are cameras on buildings near the crash.
Should I Take Photos of the Accident?
Photographs help insurance adjusters investigate your case. You may need them if your case goes to trial. Also, it may be helpful to take pictures of the inside of the other drivers car for evidence of drunk driving. Make sure you can read everything including all the important letters and numbers in your pictures. If you are the victim of a drunk driver, your claim may have greater value.
Interview Witnesses About the Columbia Car Accident
Record their accounts. Note that almost every smartphone has a recorder function for a maximum of 8 minutes per segment, so you can easily record witness observations about the scene of the accident on your smartphone. Try to interview every person who was a witness and ask them to say all of their contact information on the recording. Ask if anyone noticed if the other driver was on his phone. You may be the victim of distracted driving.
Should I Contact a Car Accident Lawyer after my
Do not go it alone. Involving an experienced Columbia car accident attorneys can ensure your rights are protected from the insurance company and you to obtain fair compensation for your injuries and medical expenses. You want full value when you settle your claim
Over the past decade, the Columbia SC based Strom Law Firm LLC has recovered over $2 Billion in compensation on behalf of clients, including people with injuries in automobile accidents.
Minor Injuries Can Lead to Major Injuries
Seemingly minor injuries like whiplash can suddenly take a serious turn for the worse, and in some situations, become deadly:
- Internal bleeding – Internal bleeding is a life-threatening consequence of trauma. The condition can arise with most organs or blood vessels in the human body. Injuries including those in Car crashes often involve blunt force trauma, when your body collides with another object at high speed. The most common causes of internal bleeding injuries are:
- Traumatic Head Injury
- Liver and spleen damage
- Injuries near the lungs and heart
Signs of internal bleeding will vary, depending on the injury’s severity and location, but some symptoms to keep an eye on include:
- Abdominal Pain
- Deep Purple Color to Skin
“Talk and Die Syndrome” After Car Accident
- Talk and Die Syndrome – If you or a loved one experiences trauma to the head during a car accident, there may not always be immediately obvious signs of injury or pain. You could be suffering from a condition known colloquially as “Talk and Die Syndrome.”
You or your loved one may seem fully lucid and able to functionally walk and talk, all while internally suffering from an epidural hemorrhage. Victims, unaware of a fractured skull or bleeding and swelling, might attempt to carry on with regular activities. Some symptoms might later include nausea, a severe headache, and sudden sleepiness.
“Talk and Die Syndrome” could be fatal, so if you or a passenger suffered a blow to the head during a car accident, seek medical attention even if you feel perfectly fine. Advise medical professionals that you struck your head and it may be injured. It is of the utmost importance that such conditions are treated immediately before the condition deteriorates.
After you have been in an auto accident, never decline medical attention. You may be able to walk and talk, but the chance for internal non-obvious injuries is too high to risk your life. Also, do not sign anything from the other driver’s insurance company without letting a car accidents lawyer read it first.
Below are Some Common Injuries Related to Auto Crashes:
- Back & Neck Injuries: The impact of a collision can put tremendous forces on cervical and lumbar vertebrae. In some instances, the disc can be damaged, sometimes referred to as a herniation. In other situations, the impact can result in a spinal cord injury requiring ongoing medical care.
- Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI): A sudden jolt from a crash can cause a skull fracture, contusion, or bleeding on the brain. Some of these catastrophic injuries can require a lifetime of medical treatment.
- Joint Damage: Pain and stiffness are common complaints raised by many people following a crash. The underlying condition may be damage to a joint such as a hip or shoulder.
- Broken Bones: High impact and rollover collisions may exert incredible force on bones.
- Fractures to the tibia, fibula, femur, sternum, and ribs are common.
- Burns: While many people think of burns related to a gas explosion, other burns may result from airbag injuries, battery explosions, and other chemicals released during a crash.
- Death: Over 37,000 people lose their lives in auto crashes each year. Sadly, auto-related fatalities continue to be a leading cause of death of people under 20-years-old in Columbia.
The Emergence of Uber & Lyft in Columbia Personal Injury Litigation in the Midlands
The number of rideshare trips taken in Columbia, South Carolina has grown significantly. At the Strom Law Firm LLC, we think it saves lives and encourages everyone to avoid drunk driving and use these services.
Unfortunately, vehicles driven by Uber and Lyft may be operated by people who work as drivers as a side-hustle and have little safety training. Consequently, we are also seeing more and more Rideshare accidents. Check out these links on our website to read about Rideshare injuries
Preserve Your Claim: Get a Columbia Attorney at the Strom Law Firm
After being in a car accident, you should take several steps to preserve your rights. After receiving medical care, assist law enforcement with their accident report. It is important to document all of the details of your accident for potential future litigation.
Never speak with the driver of the other vehicle. You cannot know what they will say or what they might choose to hear. They may be posturing for a future legal claim. When motives are not known, it is important to avoid conversation.
Most insurance companies will attempt to speak with you in an effort to settle your claim against the other driver. Do not speak with these companies. You should always have your case reviewed by an auto accident lawyer before settling too quickly. Many insurance companies will attempt to take advantage of accident victims in frantic and confused states of mind.
Our clients are the top priority at Strom Law Firm LLC. We understand the complex difficulties of suffering from car accident injuries, and the wide array of physical and financial consequences that accompany such an accident. Our car accident attorneys are committed to fighting the at-fault driver’s insurance company for you to get the damages to which you are entitled.
Columbia Car Accident FAQ
It can happen in an instant, anywhere throughout Columbia. One minute you are driving on the open road, and the next, you are being thrown through your windshield, only to wake up to traumatic injuries, astronomical medical bills, and a lot of worries about the future.
Victims of motor vehicle accidents often have numerous questions and concerns about what happened, and what they are supposed to do next following a car crash. This post will discuss some of these frequently asked car accident questions, what legal action you can pursue following a car crash, and how a skilled Columbia car accident attorney can help you.
What actions do I need to take following a Columbia car accident?
Being involved in a motor vehicle accident is stressful and frightening. Yet, even though you may feel overwhelmed by everything going on, the actions you take following a motor vehicle accident can help protect your health and safety and your legal rights.
That is why if you are ever involved in a car accident, make sure you:
- Contact the police: Immediately after your car accident, call 911. These police officers can get to the scene and provide help to all those who need it, including emergency medical assistance. Additionally, these officers can get to work investigating the accident. The police report that they create will document their findings, providing you with vital information if you decide to pursue a legal claim.
- Gather evidence: Try to collect as much evidence from the accident scene as you can. This evidence should include photographs or videos of the vehicles involved in the crash, any visible injuries, any skid marks on the road, the weather conditions at the time of the accident, traffic signs near the impact, and any other evidence that can help show what happened.
- Get additional driver information: Make sure to get information from the other drivers involved in the collision, including names, contact information, driver’s license numbers, and insurance information.
- Witness statements: You cannot expect the police officer to get every witness’s name and contact information from the accident scene. That is why if there were people who saw the accident, it is important to get their name and number. Their statements can provide you with critical evidence that can help you prove what happened and who was at fault.
- Contact our experienced Columbia car accident attorneys: Following your accident, you need to contact an experienced Columbia car accident attorney. These lawyers can help you figure out your legal options, prepare the best case on your behalf, and go after the damages you deserve.
My Columbia car accident injuries appear minor. Do I still need to see a doctor?
Yes, even if you do not think your injuries are serious, you need to get checked out by a doctor. Why? Often, it can take days for a serious injury to manifest, and delaying treatment can worsen the injury and lead to devastating outcomes. That is why following your motor vehicle crash, you need to get examined by a medical professional. These physicians can verify if you have any of these hidden injuries, such as brain trauma or internal bleeding, and provide you the treatments you need.
In addition, doctors can write about your injuries in their medical report, including the cause and extent of such injuries. This report can be crucial for your claim, especially if the insurance company decides to argue that you received these injuries from a subsequent event and not from the motor vehicle crash.
How can I determine if the other driver was at fault for my Columbia car accident?
For you to recover damages for your motor vehicle accident, you need to show that the other individual or motorist was at fault for your injuries. This includes either showing that the other individual intentionally harmed you, or your injuries resulted from their negligence.
To show that the other party was negligent, you need to prove:
- The liable party owed you a duty of care. When driving a motor vehicle, motorists owe those on the road a duty of care to drive as a reasonable person would to avoid foreseeable injuries.
- The liable party breached this duty. As a motorist, breaches of this duty can include- driving under the influence, distracted driving, speeding, or even texting and driving.
- This breach of duty caused your injuries. To prove this causation element, you need to show that the liable party’s actions were the actual and proximate cause of your injuries. For instance, consider a scenario where the liable party was texting and driving and struck your car because they were not paying attention and the accident resulted in you breaking your arm. This situation can qualify as proving that the liable party breached their duty, and their actions lead to your injuries.
- There were damages. Finally, you need to show that your injuries resulted in significant damages. To detail these damages, you need to demonstrate relevant evidence of your injuries and your monetary losses. That is why you must keep complete and detailed records of your property damages, expenses, and injuries.
When you retain a skilled Columbia car accident attorney, they can promptly get to work gathering the critical evidence needed to prove these necessary elements.
The insurance company is calling me following my Columbia motor vehicle accident. Should I talk to them?
Following a motor vehicle crash, the insurance company will be trying to contact you. However, before you start believing that the insurance company will work with you and get you the money you need, you need to think again. The insurance company, like any other business, wants to make a profit.
To achieve this goal, they will try to do anything they can to get you to admit fault so that they can deny or reduce the amount of your claim. That is why if the insurance adjuster is calling, you need to be careful. Avoid making any statements where you take fault for part of the accident or apologize for anything that happened.
Better yet, you should only provide the insurance adjuster with basic details of the accident and indicate that all future discussions will be through our Columbia car accident attorneys. Once your lawyer takes over, they can handle these discussions and ensure you do not say anything that can affect your case.
How long do I have to file a motor vehicle accident injury claim in Columbia?
The statute of limitations is a law that establishes the maximum amount of time you have to initiate legal proceedings from the date of an alleged offense. This means in Columbia, you have three years from the date of the motor vehicle accident to file a claim. If you do not file a claim within this deadline, you can’t pursue compensation for the injuries you sustained in your accident.
One other critical aspect of the statute of limitations is numerous exceptions can result in your time to file being extended or shortened. For instance, if your motor vehicle injury claim is against a governmental agency, the statute of limitations is reduced to two years.
In general, it is best to pursue a legal claim as fast as possible. Over time memories of the accident can fade, witnesses may no longer be available to testify, and crucial evidence can disappear. That is why speaking to a car accident attorney as quickly as possible can ensure critical legal documents and motions are filed on time.
What damages can I recover following my motor vehicle accident in Columbia?
If you can show that another party was liable for your injuries following a motor vehicle accident, you can be entitled to certain damages. In Columbia, these damages include economic, non-economic, and punitive damages.
Economic damages: These damages are compensation you receive as a result of monetary losses you suffer because of the car accident.
These damages are easy to quantify and include:
- Medical bills, including past, current, and future medical expenses, such as ambulance rides, hospital stays, doctor visits, surgeries, and prescription medications.
- Lost income including past, current, and future earnings lost because your injury prevents you from working
- Lost earning capacity
- Personal property damages such as damage to your car
- At-home nursing care
- Rehabilitative services including physical and vocational therapy
- Household replacement services, such as cleaning services or child care services
- Other out-of-pocket expenses
Non-economic damages: These are subjective losses resulting from your accident that are not easily quantified.
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Loss of enjoyment of life and activities
- Loss of a limb
- Loss of reputation
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of consortium
Punitive damages: Unlike economic and non-economic damages, which are intended to compensate the victim for their injuries, punitive damages are meant to punish the wrongdoer for their actions and to deter them from committing the act again in the future. These damages are rarely awarded because they require the victim to show that the defendant acted grossly negligent. In addition, South Carolina caps these damages at $500,000 or three times the victim’s actual damages, whichever is greater. Depending on the facts, there may be several exceptions to this limitation.
Are there certain factors that can influence the value of my compensation if I was injured in a Columbia motor vehicle accident?
Unfortunately, no attorney can give you an exact figure regarding how much compensation you can collect following a car accident. This is because calculating compensation for a Columbia car accident is rather difficult, as numerous factors can influence your claim’s value.
Some of these factors include:
- The severity of the injury – does it include a head injury, a traumatic brain injury, or a spinal cord injury
- The types of medical treatments required
- The length of these medical treatments and whether you will need more
- Are the injuries permanent or result in a disability?
- Did the accident result in lost income?
- What is the victim’s ability to work following a motor vehicle accident?
- Are additional replacement services required following the motor vehicle accident, such as childcare?
- What is the disruption to normal daily activities?
- How credible are the evidence and witnesses?
- How certain is the liability?
When you work with a knowledgeable car accident attorney, these lawyers can determine which of these elements may affect your claim and, in response, prepare the best case to obtain maximum compensation.
Why do I need to contact an experienced Columbia car accident attorney following my motor vehicle accident?
Motor vehicle accident lawsuits are not only complicated and confusing, but they require extensive evidence to help prove liability and damages. Consequently, if you have been injured in a car accident, it’s wise to have an experienced Columbia car accident attorney fighting on your behalf.
These lawyers can:
- Answer the questions you have while also providing you with the legal options you can pursue.
- Investigate your motor vehicle accident, gather critical evidence and reports, and interview relevant witnesses that can help prove who was at fault for your accident.
- Handle the negotiations and discussions with the insurance company, ensuring your case is treated with fairness and respect.
- Take your case to trial if the other side is unwilling to negotiate and fight for maximum compensation.
If you or a loved one has been harmed in a motor vehicle collision in Columbia, do not wait any longer. Contact an experienced Columbia car accident attorney at the Strom Law Firm, LLC today and let us fight for the justice you deserve.
Contact A Car Accident Lawyer Today
Automobile accidents can happen at any place at any time. Cases of distracted driving are increasing, and too many (drunk drivers) drivers drive under the influence of drugs and alcohol. Many drivers are simply reckless. Depending on the severity of your injuries, car accident expenses can be astronomically high. Nobody should be forced to spend their own money on recovery resulting from another’s negligence. Take control and take action against the responsible driver.
If you have been injured in a car crash in Columbia or in Richland County, contact us today. We offer free case evaluations and we do not collect a fee unless we recover for you or a loved one on your case. Contact our team of experienced Columbia accident lawyers by calling 803-252-4800 and find out if we are able to help you.
Here’s what Jocelyn C. said about us on Google:
“We retained Atty Jessica Fickling to help us after a terrible car accident. She and her paralegal Mallory were wonderful! Professional, skilled, savvy – we couldn’t have asked for a better legal team. Many thanks!!
Rating: 5/5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Check out all of our Google reviews!