Personal Injury Attorney in Columbia
Numerous people are injured seriously in accidents each day in Columbia alone. The CDC estimates that every year, at least 28,000,000 people across the country seek medical attention in emergency facilities for injuries caused by accidents. Such accidents can occur in a variety of ways. Many need to need the help of experienced Columbia Personal Injury Lawyers.
Personal injury may occur as a result of a slip and falls, automobile accidents, motorcycle accidents, work-related injuries, and the list goes on.
Many of these accidents are caused by the negligence or carelessness of another person or company. When such an accident is caused by another party, the victim may be entitled to recover compensation for their injuries and other costs. Such compensation can include property damage, medical expenses, lost income, quality of life, and mental suffering.
When you or a loved one are injured by an accident, or if an accident has resulted in wrongful death, whether it is a car accident or you have an injury on someone’s property or business, it is important to consult an injury attorney to understand whether you have a valuable claim.
Types of Personal Injury Accident Claims
There are many different types of accidents that cause accidental injuries. The steps to take in approaching each case are unique. Strom Law Firm’s experienced and skilled Columbia personal injury lawyers have spent their careers successfully taking on and managing cases that arise from a variety of circumstances:
After being in a car accident, it is important to take steps to protect your rights, like seeking medical attention immediately, and notifying your own insurance company that an accident has occurred, and contacting experienced Columbia Personal Injury Lawyers.
Following an automobile accident, many insurance companies often reach out to the other drivers involved to ask for statements. It can be critical to speak with a lawyer before you give any statement to an insurance company. Also, insurance companies may attempt to make early settlement offers that do not take into account the full value of your medical bills, or treatment, or the time you were away from work, away from your family, or the activities you were not able to do while injured. Always have your case reviewed by a personal injury lawyer before settling too quickly. Many insurance companies will work hard to take advantage of vulnerable accident victims.
Slip and falls
Slip and falls accidents are some of the most commonly occurring personal injury and can often be caused by the negligence or carelessness of another person or a business owner. Businesses and homeowners have certain responsibilities to keep their property safe for visitors, guests, and paying customers, and are responsible for, accidents that happen caused by conditions on the property, including defective conditions. When you slip and fall, it is no laughing matter. A slip and fall often result in a violent collision with the ground, which can cause serious personal injury to the most healthy among us, let alone the damage caused to our elderly neighbors.
It is important to speak with an attorney following your slip and fall, because, at the time of the accident, you may not even realize the fall was someone else’s fault. Whether you’ve slipped on a wet floor in a grocery store, tripped over a raised sidewalk, fallen on a tire stop, or encountered a broken handrail or other condition that was not otherwise obvious because of paint, or a curb, or suffered a slip and fall in any number of other ways, contact the slip and fall attorneys at Strom Law Firm immediately to discuss your slip and fall today.
Even the most skilled and experienced riders can be involved in a motorcycle accident that result in serious injury and often multiple injuries from one accident. Injuries range from Road Rash and broken bones to traumatic brain injury and spinal cord damage. Sadly, these accidents can be fatal, leaving families behind with unpaid bills and the loss of a loved one.
Rarely will a motorcyclist will not need medical treatment following an accident. They often require transport by emergency medical services (EMS) to a hospital. Medical bills and other expenses add up quickly. Fortunately, an injured victim may be entitled to compensation from negligent drivers and other parties.
Boaters and boating accidents can often lead to injuries and even deaths. Some situations where boat operators may be at fault include::
- The operator was inattentive due to his phone or others on the boat.
- The vessel had mechanical issues that were ignored.
- The boater was under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
- The boater was moving too fast.
- Boat operator inexperience
While South Carolina does not require boat operators to carry insurance, every boat operator or owner should carry liability insurance, and many do. It is important to hire an attorney to work towards securing compensation from boat owners and their insurance policies when you or a loved one is involved in a boat accident resulting in serious bodily injury or death.
Truck accidents happen far too often across America. Truckers may be on the road for too long, over-worked and tired, and, as such, may make mistakes. Trucking accidents cause serious and many times irreparable injuries to drivers and passengers on the road when a large truck encounters a coupe, sedan, SUV, or even a truck or farm vehicle. An eighteen-wheeler’s size and weight make it capable of destruction when accidents occur. Whether an accident is caused by a driver’s carelessness, a decision by a trucking company to put an unqualified or overworked driver on the road, by a maintenance problem, or by a defect in the truck or cargo’s manufacturing, those responsible must be held accountable for injuries.
Bicycle accidents and pedestrian accidents
Disappointingly, drivers often treat road cyclists as afterthoughts on Columbia roads, which too often leads to catastrophic accidents. The most common causes of these accidents include:
- Aggressive drivers.
- Failure to yield a right-of-way.
- Poor visibility.
If you have been involved in a bicycle accident or have otherwise been harmed by the carelessness of a driver on Columbia roadways, consult an experienced Columbia bicycle accident injury attorney. A pedestrian accident lawyer or motorcycle accident lawyer may be essential to serving as protection from insurance companies trying to settle quickly with you.
Additional Areas of Personal Injury Law
- Medical malpractice – Medical providers, too often, become careless and fail to fulfill their duty of care. Whether injured during surgery, diagnosis, or routine care, hospitals, practices, doctors, nurses, and other clinical and administrative staff, who fall below the standard of care should be held accountable.
- Bus accidents – It can be environmentally and financially friendly to travel by bus, but when a bus runs into a car or pedestrian, significant injury can occur.
- Nursing home abuse – Nursing home abuse and neglect may present itself in several ways. All can cause significant physical, mental, and emotional damages to vulnerable victims.
- Physical Neglect
- Failure to provide services
- Failure to adhere to a plan of care
- Financial abuse
- Physical altercation
- Sexual battery
- Emotional abuse
- Premises liability – More than just slip and falls happen thanks to unsafe conditions in stores and on other people’s property. Dog bites, drowning, falling objects, hazardous conditions, and allowing dangerous activities, etc. can all fall under the broad topic of premises liability.
- Dangerous prescription drugs
- Dog bites – Too often, individuals who take every preventative measure are still bitten by dogs. Many of those bites can be very severe.
- Defective products – Flawed products are put in the market all the time. When products have caused injury or are likely to cause injury, and are made available to the public, the manufacturers, distributors, and retailers of those products must be held accountable.
Common Injuries in Personal Injury Claim
Our Columbia accident injury clients suffer from various injuries. Some victims have their entire life altered or even ended by one mistake of another person. Our Columbia personal injury lawyers have experience representing clients suffering from:
- Spinal cord damage
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Broken and fractured bones
- Internal bleeding
- Soft tissue injuries
- Neck injuries and back injuries
- Burns and lacerations
- Loss of limbs
- Wrongful death
- Birth Injuries
- Class action lawsuits
9 Columbia Personal Injury FAQ
Accidents happen every day, and Columbia is no exception. Luckily, most of them only result in minor scratches, cuts, and bruises.
However, sometimes these accidents can result in disastrous outcomes, leading to not only debilitating injuries and skyrocketing medical bills, but also immense worry about what the future holds for the victim and their family.
If you have been harmed in an accident in Columbia, you most likely have numerous questions and concerns about what you need to do, who you need to call, and how you can get the legal help you require. This blog post will discuss some of these frequently asked personal injury questions, and hopefully provide you the answers you need to get through this traumatic ordeal.
1. What are the most common types of personal injury cases in Columbia?
One thing about personal injury is that it is a broad field that includes numerous types of injuries. However, in Columbia, there are a few personal injury cases that are particularly common.
These cases include:
- Motor vehicle crashes: If you are injured in a motor vehicle accident as either a passenger, driver, or pedestrian, you may be entitled to compensation for your financial losses and injuries.
- Product liability accidents: Defective or dangerous products, devices, and equipment can cause severe injuries. These product liability cases tend to result from improper warnings, hazardous products, defective medical devices, and faulty vehicle parts, as well as toxic substances. Those responsible for these defective products and equipment can include businesses, individuals, and even governmental entities who designed, sold, or manufactured the defective product.
- Slip and fall incidents: If you are injured because you slipped and fell on private or public property, you may be entitled to compensation for injuries you sustained. However, these accidents depend on the safety of the environment and whether the property was unreasonably dangerous to others.
Discussing your case with an experienced Columbia personal injury attorney can help you understand if you have a viable claim and what you need to provide to show liability and damages.
2. What steps should I take following my Columbia personal injury accident?
Following a personal injury accident, the scene is often quite chaotic and overwhelming. However, it is crucial to understand that the actions you take after an accident can not only help keep you safe, but protect your legal rights as well.
These steps include:
- Contact 911: After an accident, you need to call 911 immediately. These police officers can provide you the help you need and the necessary emergency medical attention required. They can also investigate the accident scene and write up their findings in their police report. If you decide to bring a claim, this information can be vital for your case.
- Gather evidence: If it is safe, make sure you collect as much evidence from the scene as possible. Take photos or videos of the accident, any visible injuries, any vehicles or devices involved in the accident, any dangerous conditions, weather conditions at the time of the accident, and any other evidence that can show what happened.
- Get details from those involved: If you were involved in a motor vehicle accident, make sure you get details from the other drivers, including their name, contact information, insurance information, and driver’s license number.
- Witness details: If there were individuals who saw the accident, get their name and number. Their statements can provide you with crucial evidence in terms of liability and who was at fault for the accident.
- Contact an experienced Columbia personal injury attorney: Contact us as soon as possible following your accident. Once retained, our lawyers can get to work investigating the accident, gathering critical evidence, and going after the compensation you deserve.
3. How do I know if I have a valid Columbia personal injury case?
The best way to know if you have a viable personal injury case is to contact our knowledgeable Columbia personal injury attorneys. We can set up a free consultation and go over your situation’s details. Based on these facts, we can let you know the specific laws in South Carolina, go over whom you might hold liable, and what you can expect to recover. Typically, if someone acted carelessly under the circumstances and their actions resulted in your injuries, you most likely have an actionable personal injury case.
4. If I feel fine after my Columbia personal injury accident, do I still need to see a doctor?
Following a traumatic accident, the rush of adrenaline through your body can temporarily reduce the sensation of pain. This can happen even if you suffered significant injuries. That is why it is critical to get examined by a medical professional, even if you do not think you are hurt. These doctors can carefully look you over and determine if you have any of these hidden conditions, such as head or brain trauma.
In addition, doctors can document their findings regarding your injury in their medical reports. These reports can provide you with critical evidence, especially if the other side tries to argue that the accident did not cause your injury.
5. How quickly do I need to file a personal injury claim in Columbia?
The amount of time you have to file a personal injury case depends on the statute of limitations of that state. The statute of limitations is a law that sets the maximum time that a party has to initiate legal proceedings from the date of an alleged offense. In Columbia, if you have been injured in an accident, you have three years from the accident date to file a claim. If you do not file your lawsuit within this allotted time, you may be barred from collecting compensation for your damages.
This time may be extended or shortened depending on the circumstances. For instance, if your claim is against a governmental entity, the statute of limitations is reduced to two years. That is why you need to speak with a personal injury attorney as soon as possible. These lawyers can go over your case and figure out exactly how much time you have to file your claim.
6. What types of damages can I recover in a personal injury case in Columbia?
If you were injured in a personal injury accident, you can recover damages for the harm you endured. These damages can include economic, non-economic, and punitive damages.
Economic damages: These are damages that result from verifiable losses that are easy to quantify.
- Medical bills including past, current, and future medical expenses (such as ambulance services, hospital stays, surgeries, doctor visits, and prescription medications)
- Lost wages including past, current, and future lost income if you cannot work due to the injury
- Lost earning capacity
- Rehabilitative services including physical and occupational therapy
- Personal property damages
- At-home nursing care
- Household replacement services (such as cleaning services or child care services)
- Other out-of-pocket expenses
Non-economic damages: These are losses that are rather subjective and are not easily quantified.
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of a limb
- Loss of reputation
Punitive damages: Economic and non-economic damages are referred to as compensatory damages because they are meant to compensate the victim for their losses due to their accident. However, punitive damages, on the other hand, are not intended to compensate but rather to punish the wrongdoer.
In Columbia, to get punitive damages, the victim needs to show that the defendant acted grossly negligent. Consequently, punitive damages are rarely awarded in the state. Additionally, there is a cap to these punitive damages of $500,000 or three times the victim’s actual damages, whichever is greater. However, depending on the case’s facts, there are several exceptions to this limitation.
When you work with an experienced Columbia personal injury attorney, these lawyers can help you figure out what damages you may be entitled to and help you pursue maximum compensation.
7. Are there factors that can influence a Columbia personal injury case?
Even if you are entitled to damages for your injuries, calculating personal injury compensation is not an exact science. Instead, it involves a complicated process of understanding numerous factors that can affect the value of a personal injury case.
These factors include:
- The severity of the injury (does it include a traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury, or head and neck injuries)
- The length and the types of treatments required
- Whether the injuries are permanent
- The ability to work following the accident
- The disruptions to daily activities
- The need for additional services following an accident
- Certainty of liability
- The credibility of the evidence and witnesses presented
- The emotional trauma following the accident
Discussing these factors with a skilled Columbia personal injury attorney can help you understand what elements can affect your case. In response, your lawyer can prepare the best case to combat these factors and fight for the compensation you deserve.
8. How long will it take for my Columbia personal injury case to settle?
Unfortunately, no attorney can give you an exact timeline of how long your case will take, even though the overwhelming majority of personal injury cases end up settling with the insurance company or the defendant. The length of time it takes to settle can vary dramatically depending on the circumstances of the case.
Generally, if a claim involves a serious injury and significant damages, it can take longer to settle because the insurance company will fight harder to not provide you with a more extensive amount of compensation. Additionally, if the case does head to trial, the process can extend substantially.
9. Why do I need to retain a Columbia personal injury attorney following my personal injury accident?
Personal injury cases are often complicated, detail-oriented, and require a thorough understanding of the state’s laws and regulations. That is why working with an experienced Columbia personal injury attorney following an accident is critical.
These attorneys can:
- Go over your case in detail, answer any questions you have, and provide you with the legal options available to you.
- Investigate the accident thoroughly, gather critical evidence, and interview relevant witnesses to establish fault and liability.
- Prepare the strongest case on your behalf, making sure that motions and legal documents are timely filed.
- Handle discussions and negotiations with the other side, ensuring your case is treated with fairness and respect.
- Bring in the experts such as accident reconstructionists, economists, doctors, and engineers to prove fault and damages.
- Take your case to trial if the other side is unwilling to negotiate and fight for the damages you are entitled to.
If you have been harmed in a personal injury accident, contact an experienced Columbia personal injury attorney today to fight for the compensation and justice you deserve.
Contact the Columbia Personal Injury Attorneys at Strom Law Firm Today
If you have been injured in an accident in Columbia, Richland County, or anywhere else across South Carolina, contact us. We offer free case evaluations and consultations, and we do not collect a fee unless we recover for you. Contact the experienced and skilled legal team at Strom Law Firm in Columbia at 803-252-4800 or contact us online and find out if we are able to help you.
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