What compensation can I get after a car accident?

South Carolina is an at-fault state regarding handling car accident compensation. The person who caused the crash is financially responsible for paying your medical bills and other expenses, but how does this process work? When you hire a skilled Greenville car accident lawyer from Smith Jordan Law, they can guide you through filing insurance claims and advise whether you should pursue a personal injury lawsuit.

car accident compensation

What damages does car accident compensation cover?

There are two kinds of compensatory damages from car accident claims: economic and non-economic. Economic losses are any expense you can support with a receipt, bill, or repair estimate, such as:

  • Medical bills
  • Lost income while you recover
  • Rehabilitation and therapy costs
  • Repair or replacement for your vehicle

Non-economic losses describe your pain and suffering. Insurance policies resist paying for these losses, so you may need to take the at-fault party to court to recover damages such as:

  • Physical pain and suffering
  • Anxiety, depression, and other mood disorders
  • Emotional anguish
  • Mental distress
  • Loss of enjoyment of activities
  • Loss of personal and professional reputation

Your car accident attorney can help you with the special calculations required to estimate the financial relief you deserve for your non-economic damages.

How can I file auto insurance claims for compensation in South Carolina?

Every driver in South Carolina must carry minimum amounts of liability insurance for bodily injury, property damage, and uninsured motorists. The minimums for each policy are as follows:

  • Bodily injury: At least $25,000 for one person and $50,000 per accident for more than one person
  • Property damage: At least $25,000 per accident
  • Uninsured motorist: At least $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident

Your insurance company must also offer Underinsured Motorist coverage with the same limits.  Your attorney can handle the insurance negotiations and paperwork for you to secure fair compensation for your car accident. They can identify and file against multiple at-fault parties and guide you through using your uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage if necessary.

What if I am partly at fault for the car accident?

Insurance companies will likely challenge your claim. South Carolina uses a modified comparative negligence rule, and insurance companies will attempt to reduce their liability by claiming you bear substantial blame.

You can still claim car accident compensation if you are less than 50% at fault, although the same amount will reduce the settlement. For example, if you claimed $100,000 in damages but were found 25% liable, your settlement would be 25% less, or $75,000.

Your auto accident attorney will fight back against the insurance company’s attempts to blame you. If the insurer won’t meet your demands, your lawyer can file a lawsuit to hold them accountable.

How can I maximize my compensation after a car accident?

Get medical attention as soon as possible after the accident. Your health is the most important thing.  People often don’t realize that they’re injured for days or weeks.  People often think that the pain will go away or that they just need to tough it out when they’re suffering from a severe injury that needs immediate medical attention.  If an ambulance is at the scene, get evaluated by the paramedics. Follow up with your doctor within 24-48 hours to ensure you aren’t suffering any undiagnosed injuries. Seeing a doctor protects your health and establishes a link between your condition and the accident.

Keep all receipts for everything related to the crash and your injuries, such as medical bills, travel mileage, estimates for auto repair, and replacement costs. Start a pain journal to record your feelings, which your attorney can use to support your claim for non-economic damages.

Finally, don’t talk to anyone about your accident, and don’t post about it on social media. Insurance companies and opposing counsel will use this against you to claim your injuries are not as severe as you claim.

Learn more about compensation for car accidents

After a car crash, you need experienced legal representation to help you obtain the compensation you deserve. Act quickly to avoid insurance companies who may try to take advantage of you as you recover. Call Smith Jordan Law at (864) 343-2222 or use our online form to schedule a free consultation today.

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