One of the ways to explore the many scenic destinations in our state is by motorcycle. If you ride one, you might want to know what happens after a motorcycle accident in South Carolina. A South Carolina motorcycle accident attorney can advocate on your behalf so that you can focus on getting better.
How We Establish the Other Driver’s Liability
We cannot automatically sue the other driver from the motorcycle accident because car drivers are not always at fault in these collisions. We have to prove all four of these factors to hold the other driver accountable for your losses:
- The other driver owed you a legal duty. Everyone who operates a motor vehicle on public streets has an obligation to drive safely and obey the traffic laws.
- The defendant breached the duty of care. It is negligence when someone’s conduct fails to measure up to the legal standard. Let’s say that the other driver ran a stop sign and crashed into you when you had the right-of-way. That driver was negligent because he failed to drive safely and obey the traffic laws.
- The negligence caused the accident. The collision happened because of the driver’s careless act of running the stop sign.
- You must have quantifiable losses. Physical injuries satisfy this required element.
When we can prove all four of these factors, we can go after the defendant for money damages. Sometimes more than one person is at fault in an accident. South Carolina follows “modified comparative fault,” which means that if you were 51 percent or more at fault, you will not get any compensation from the other parties. As long as you were less than 51 percent to blame, you can qualify for money damages.
How Helmets Affect Your Right to Compensation
South Carolina law only requires motorcyclists under the age of 21 to wear helmets. Not wearing a helmet cannot impact the percentage of fault, regardless of your age. If you were not wearing a helmet and you were under 21, that fact could reduce the amount of compensation you can get from the other driver.
The Settlement Value of Your South Carolina Motorcycle Accident
We cannot say how much money you might be eligible to pursue until we talk to you and investigate your accident. The amount of compensation you could go after will depend on the facts of your situation. Every motorcycle accident is different.
Here are some examples of the types of compensation we have won for our clients:
- Damages for lost wages can replace earnings you lost, whether wages, salary, self-employment or other forms of regular income, because of your injuries.
- You can usually include the reasonable cost of the medical treatment you needed for your injuries in your claim.
- You might be able to include in your claim the value of property damage, like the cost of fixing or replacing your motorcycle.
- Pain and suffering damages address the physical discomfort and emotional distress you experienced because of the collision and your injuries.
- Punitive damages can be an option in cases of outrageous conduct on the part of the defendant. For example, if we can prove that the at-fault driver purposely went after you and intentionally crashed into you on your motorcycle, we might have a claim for punitive damages in addition to the other compensation.
A South Carolina motorcycle accident attorney can answer your questions and handle your claim for compensation from the at-fault party. Contact us today.