Who Pays For Car Accident Compensation In South Carolina?
The effects of a car accident can be devastating. You can be left with a serious injury that requires costly medical treatment. You may be unable to return to your job for weeks or months. Meanwhile, you are losing income and the bills keep coming in. You should be compensated for your injuries. But where will the money come from?
Dealing with insurance companies can be a complicated and frustrating process. The car accident attorneys at Twenge + Twombley have the experience and resources you need to get the compensation you deserve. We will explore all your options for paying for the damages you've suffered, so you can focus on recovering from your injuries.
What are my options for getting financial compensation?
South Carolina is a "fault" state for car insurance. In general, the driver who caused the accident is considered "at fault" and responsible for paying damages. But in reality, it's usually more complicated than that. The "at-fault" driver may not have enough insurance to cover your damages. And you may be found partially responsible for what happened, affecting the amount of damages you can recover. But there are basically three options for getting compensation.
You can file a claim with your own insurance company.
This is an option no matter who was at fault for the accident. If the other driver was at fault, your insurance company is likely to seek reimbursement from that driver's insurance company. This is known as a first-party claim.
You can file a claim with the at-fault driver's insurance company.
This is known as a third-party claim. When the other driver was clearly at fault, by law that driver is responsible for paying damages. But getting the insurance company to pay the full value of your claim is challenging. Typically, an insurance company will make a settlement offer that is too low. We take a tough stance on your claim and will work to negotiate a more favorable settlement.
You can file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver's insurance company.
Sometimes, the insurance company takes a hard line and won't agree to a fair settlement. Or they may say you were at fault for the accident. If negotiations don't produce the result we want, we will fight the insurance company in court. Our legal team knows how to build strong cases that get results.
South Carolina also uses comparative fault rules. This means you could be found partially responsible for causing the accident. But if your fault is determined to be 50% or less, you can still recover partial compensation.
Do I have enough insurance?
In South Carolina, all drivers required to buy car insurance. Every policy must carry minimum liability limits of:
- $25,000 for the injury or death of one person
- $50,000 for all injury or death in a single accident
- $25,000 for property damage
But the damages in a serious car accident can easily exceed these limits. It's a good idea to add as much coverage as you can, so you'll be protected financially.
There is also optional coverage that can help protect you. If you are ever hit by an uninsured or underinsured driver, having UM/UIM coverage can help pay medical expenses and lost wages. Personal injury protection (PIP) provides additional compensation, whether or not you are at fault for an accident. And collision coverage helps pay the costs of repairing the damage to your car, or the cost of replacing it.
Having an experienced attorney handling your case can make a big difference. Put Twenge + Twombley to work for you. Come in for a free case evaluation, where we can go over your options. Call 866-452-6315 or contact us online.