South Carolina Motorcycle Accident Attorney
"What Should I Do if I'm in a Motorcycle Accident in South Carolina?"
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South Carolina Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
This page will help you learn what laws might impact your motorcycle injury claim in South Carolina or North Carolina, how to determine fault, and what damages you can recover after an accident. In addition, if you’re loved one was in a motorcycle accident and passed away, you may find the below information valuable too.
With so many beautiful routes, it’s unsurprising that there were 195,000 registered motorcycles in North Carolina and 113,000 in South Carolina. Unfortunately, both South Carolina and North Carolina are in the top five states with the most motorcycle fatalities per 10,000 register motorcycles. South Carolina holds the number 3 spot. North Carolina comes in at 5. These harrowing facts are scary and if you’re reading this page you or someone you loved may have been injured in a motorcycle accident. We want to help you.
Often times when people or their loved ones are involved in a motorcycle wreck, their first thought might be to file an insurance claim with their insurance company or the other driver’s insurance company. While filing with insurance is often the best way to recover compensation, we strongly recommend you do not negotiate with the insurance companies alone. Insurance companies’ bests interests are not your best interests – insurance companies’ best interests are those of their shareholders. We know because Chase spent years successfully representing both insurance companies and plaintiffs against insurance companies.
If you were recently in an accident, the sooner you call an attorney the more likely it is we can gather crucial evidence. For example, a potential client involved in a motorcycle accident outside of Columbia, SC called me six days after the accident occurred. The rider suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI) and could not remember details of the accident. I was able to send a team out to scan the potential location of the accident and we discovered that a nearby church had cameras. However, the camera footage at that church automatically deletes in 7 days. Fortunately, we were able to recover the video footage from those cameras because our client reached out to us in time to recover the video. If the client would have waited one day longer, they may have lost that footage. Our attorneys can and will help as soon as you call.
From the beaches at Myrtle Beach, Hilton Head Island, or Outer Banks to Table Rock Trail, Blue Ridge Parkway, and curvy Appalachian Mountains, North and South Carolina are filled with scenic motorcycle-riding routes.
Chase has successfully represented plaintiffs in multimillion dollar cases. He also has experience fighting both for and against the insurance companies. He knows how to value cases, how to handle aggressive insurance companies, adjusters, and their attorneys. If you’re ready to send information to see if Chase can help with your case, you can Fill Out Our Intake Form by submitting a request or calling (555) 555-5555.
If you’re interested in how our systems work, contact us and we’ll send you a care package with all of our information.
6 Things to do When You’re in a Motorcycle Accident in South Carolina
What Should You Do After a Motorcycle Accident in South Carolina?
If you are in a motorcycle accident, whether you are driving or a passenger, there are a few steps you should take. We understand you may not be able to do all of this because you are hurt or in shock. We never judge our clients for doing what they need to do after a crash.
If you are able to do so after a collision, you should:
- Call 911 or Your Local Police Department – You want law enforcement and emergency responders to arrive as soon as possible to provide medical care and control traffic to reduce the risk of further accidents and injuries.
- Get Medical Care – You may be taken by ambulance to a local hospital or emergency room. If you do not go to the ER by ambulance, have a friend or family member take you to there or to a trusted physician for a full exam. You should see a doctor as soon as possible after a collision. Often times, people in motorcycle accidents may have injuries they cannot see. Unfortunately, however, because riders are exposed motorcycle accident injuries can be severe.
- Exchange Insurance Information – Ask for the other driver’s name, contact information, insurance company, and insurance policy number. If you or your loved one could not exchange this information, don’t worry. We can still help.
- Collect Evidence – There is evidence you can gather at the scene of a collision that can be very helpful. Use a phone to take pictures and video of the crash and surrounding property damage. Also, ask for witnesses’ names and contact information.
- Keep a Journal – After the accident, keep a journal or daily log to record how you feel and what you do each day. Include the activities you can or cannot do including going to work, household chores, playing with children or friends, or any other activities. This may help refresh your memory months later of how you felt.
- Call a South Carolina Motorcycle Accident Attorney – When you are in a car crash and suffer injuries, the best way to protect yourself is to contact an experienced car accident lawyer
If you are able, we recommend keeping a journal or daily log after a motorcycle accident. Journals help you remember what you may have felt at the time of the accident, help you recall details, feelings, your surroundings, and possible struggles you were facing. A journal can be in many forms – it can be handwritten, typed, spoken on your phone, video recorded. Journals can also help with mental health after an accident.
Who Is Liable of my Motorcycle Accident in South Carolina?
Who is “at fault” in my motorcycle accident?
South Carolina motorcyclists and other motor vehicle drivers have a duty to exercise reasonable care to avoid injuring others on the road. If this duty is violated, the motorcyclist or motor vehicle driver will likely be found negligent (i.e., at fault).
Examples of actions that might result in a motorcyclist or motor vehicle driver being found negligent include:
- Drunk driving
- Distracted driving
- Running a red light
- Turning into oncoming traffic
- Following too closely
What happens if both the plaintiff and the defendant are at fault for a motorcycle accident?
South Carolina follows the modified comparative fault rule. Under this rule, the plaintiff’s damages are reduced by the plaintiff’s degree (or percentage) of fault. What’s more, if the plaintiff is more than 50% at fault, they are prohibited from recovering any damages.
North Carolina is one of the few states that follows the “pure” contributory negligence rule. Under this rule if you’re involved in an accident in North Carolina and it is determined that you were even 1% at fault for the accident, you cannot recover against the other party for any damages you received in the accident.
What is Negligence in South Carolina?
The person at fault for the collision is the person whose negligence caused in the crash. Negligence is the failure to act as a reasonably prudent person would under the circumstances. While driving, a reasonable driver would be careful, they would obey traffic laws, they could be cautious to avoid crashes, and they wouldn’t be distracted, the list goes on. When a driver is negligent, they are careless. They act in a way that increases the risk of a crash.
The negligent car driver also may be liable for your injuries. By pursuing a third-party insurance claim against their auto insurance policy, or by filing a personal injury lawsuit against them, you can seek compensation for your physical, psychological, and financial injuries. An additional party, however, also may be liable for your injuries either because they contributed to the crash, or because of South Carolina or North Carolina’s liability laws.
Car Owner Liability in South Carolina
It is common for drivers to be in vehicles that are not their own. Family members and friends may borrow each other’s cars, a driver may rent a vehicle from a major chain or another person’s vehicle through a car-share platform. Under all of these circumstances, both the driver and the vehicle owner may have auto insurance policies that apply to the crash. You may be able to file a claim against the driver’s policy and the car owner’s liability policy.
Not all car motorcycle crashes happen because of negligent drivers. Some motorcycle accidents occur because of a defective car part. After every accident, we carefully investigate what went wrong. We will review whether there were any active recalls for that motorcycle. We also may have the motorcycle inspected to determine if a particular part may have failed prior to the collision. If we determine a defect was the underlying cause of the crash, we will pursue compensation from the vehicle manufacturer or seller.
Employer Liability in South Carolina
If the at-fault driver was working at the time of the crash, and driving was part of their job, then their employer is typically liable for the crash and your injuries. By working with an experienced South Carolina auto accident attorney, you can pursue compensation from the businesses’ liability policy. This can be helpful, as businesses often have higher policy limits than individual drivers.
Dram Shop Liability in South Carolina
If the driver who caused your or your loved one’s crash was intoxicated at the time, then talk with your Carolina motorcycle accident lawyer about South Carolina and North Carolina’s dram shop laws. The vendor that knowingly sold or provided alcohol to someone under 21-years-old or to someone who was noticeably intoxicated can be liable for damages the intoxicated person causes. If we can identify the individual or business that supplied the drunk driver with alcohol just prior to the crash, we can pursue compensation from that party. Call an experienced South Carolina and North Carolina Dram Shop attorney today.
If you were injured in a car accident, the first step is usually to pursue compensation through an insurance claim. Insurers require you to notify them of a claim within a reasonable amount of time. This is something you need to do right away. If you wait several months, your claim will likely be denied.
You may need to pursue compensation through a personal injury lawsuit. This you have more time to do, but still not an infinite amount of time. In South Carolina, you have three years from the date of the accident to file a personal injury lawsuit.
Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents in South Carolina
A number of studies have examined the causes of motorcycle accidents in the US. Most of these studies found that the vast majority of motorcycle crashes occur at intersections and result from human error (attributed either to the motorcycle rider or the driver of another vehicle).
A small percentage of crashes are the result of vehicle problems (such as mechanical defects) or environmental factors (such as adverse weather).
Motorcycle accidents or wrecks could be the result of someone else’s negligence for not seeing you. It could be as a result of a product defect related to something on your motorcycle like the tires or brakes. Or it could have been because of poorly maintained roads or construction areas. KLG can help in all of these situations and more.
In most cases, motorcycle accidents happen because of someone other than the rider. When a car is turning or changing lanes, a motorcycle might be in their blind spot. If they collide, the odds do not favor the rider. Accidents like this are common in South Carolina and North Carolina.
Common causes of motorcycle accidents include:
- Cars attempting to pass motorcycles
- Distracted driving
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol (Drunk driving)
- A motorcycle being rear ended
- Trucks accidents from attempting dangerous maneuvers
- Switching lanes or turning without yielding
Common Types of Motorcycle Accident Injuries in South Carolina
Whether you are riding through I-95, Charlotte, I-20, or the Blueridge Parkway, there is no barrier between you and the road. You may get thrown from your bike, or even worse, through a windshield or suffer road burn, broken bokes, and brain injuries.
Any accident is serious, but motorcycle riders are at a higher risk. In addition to riding an unenclosed vehicle, you have very little protection.
Injuries commonly seen in motorcycle accidents include: