Head-on collisions are one of the most serious types of motor-vehicle crashes, bringing the potential for catastrophic injury or death and substantial property damage. If you have suffered injuries or lost a loved one to a head-on collision, you can trust a Columbia head-on collisions attorney at Shelly Leeke Law Firm to manage your case with compassion, skill, and fierce advocacy. Our Columbia personal injury lawyer are ready to help you take that next step on the road to recovery.
Head-On Collision Statistics
Head-on collisions occur when cars driving in opposite directions experience a front-to-front crash. In a single-car head-on collision, the vehicle collides with a stationary object, perhaps a road barrier or telephone pole.
Of the 38,824 fatal traffic accidents reported in the United States during a recent year, 1,064 occurred in South Carolina according to Insurance Information Institute (III) data. Of the 38,824 deaths, 3,631 or 10.2% were head-on collisions.
Data from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) shows a fatality rate of 58% for vehicle occupants involved in head-on, or frontal, crashes. Those who survive head-on crashes are likely to sustain serious injury.
Injuries Commonly Experienced in a Head-On Collison
Frontal collisions are forceful, as the vehicles involved are likely to be traveling at moderate or high speeds. The hoods of each vehicle are often crumpled or crushed, and while they may absorb some of the force, it is usually not enough to protect victims. Plus, the twisted metal and shattered glass bring further opportunity for harm.
Injuries commonly experienced in head-on collisions include whiplash, spinal cord damage, brain trauma, blunt force trauma, internal bleeding, back injuries, broken bones, lacerations or amputations, and disfigurement.
The severity of the injury is matched by the severity of its consequences. Victims often cannot work, experience chronic pain, diminished physical and/or cognitive functioning, and emotional trauma, among other devastating life changes.
You Must File on Time
South Carolina has a three-year statute of limitations for filing personal injury claims. While this may seem like a long time and make you think you can handle filing and fighting for compensation on your own, there are several reasons you need to partner with a head-on collision attorney in Columbia as soon as possible.
Working through your injuries will take most of your time and energy. Surgeries, therapies, other interventions, and general recovery will dominate your schedule and may continue for quite a while. You simply will not have the physical or mental bandwidth to manage your case successfully on your own.
Your lawyer has connections to experts, the experience of examining an accident from every angle, and knows how, where, and what kinds of evidence to collect to support your case. By partnering with a lawyer quickly, you give them the time they need to carry out this investigation and evidence collection and file your claim on time. Finally, the sooner you contact a lawyer, the sooner your lawyer can file, and the sooner you can expect to see financial relief.
South Carolina’s Fault Laws Can Affect Your Settlement
South Carolina is a fault state and operates under a comparative fault code. This means the party who caused an accident and the victim’s subsequent injuries is responsible for paying the victim compensation. However, there are specific elements of the statutes that can affect your ability to collect.
Victims can only pursue a settlement if their level of fault is less than the other party’s. If you hold 49% of the fault and the other party holds 51% you can file, but if you are the one holding 51% of the blame, you cannot.
If the court determines you own culpability, the settlement you collect is reduced in proportion to your fault. For example, if your settlement amount is $200,000 and you hold 10% of the fault, you will collect $180,000, or 10% less than the total calculated amount.
A Head-On Collisions Attorney in Columbia Will Protect Your Settlement
With a lot of money on the line, insurance adjusters representing the at-fault party will work diligently to avoid making a fair payout, or even pay you at all. Their goal is to protect their assets, not your future, and unfortunately, insurance companies have developed effective and often dishonest strategies to assign blame to others–including you–or drag out negotiations as you struggle.
Do not speak to any insurance adjusters or others representing the at-fault party. It is far too easy to say something seemingly harmless only to have your words used against you. When you have a Columbia head-on collisions lawyer speaking on your behalf, you avoid these risky conversations and their unintended consequences.
The team at Shelly Leeke has extensive legal knowledge and negotiating skills. Take comfort knowing your head-on collisions lawyer in Columbia will not fall for unethical tactics and will expose unfair insurance company maneuvers that seek to rob you of your rightful compensation.
What to Expect from a Settlement
Settlement amounts vary from case to case, but you can count on your head-on collisions lawyer in Columbia to seek the highest amount possible. Your lawyer will consider aspects of your situation and calculate an amount covering:
- Medical costs and anticipated future expenses
- Lost earnings and lost future earnings and benefits, depending on your ability to work going forward
- Destroyed or damaged property
- Pain and distress, both physical and emotional, caused by the accident, your injuries and their lasting effects
- Reduced quality of and enjoyment of life
- Additional accident or injury-related expenses
It is not easy to anticipate and account for the many losses your injuries have and will continue to incur. If you forget something or just make a mistake in your calculations, you could stand to lose out on collecting the money you need. An experienced lawyer will not miss any details and will seek an amount to cover your financial losses, your emotional suffering, and your need for justice.
Our Dedicated Team Is Here for You
The lawyers at Shelly Leeke have the knowledge, skill, and experience you need for a successful case outcome. Reach out today we are always available to arrange a free case review with a Columbia head-on collisions attorney. Our firm is dedicated to delivering the settlement you need to secure your financial future and acknowledge your suffering.