While parking lots are often the scene of minor fender-benders, they also see an unfortunate amount of serious accidents. When a pedestrian or cyclist is hit by a car, regardless of the car’s speed, their lack of protection makes them vulnerable to severe injury. Even if not hit by a vehicle, a slip or fall in a parking lot can cause significant harm.
Shelly Leeke is a law firm dedicated to speaking up for injured victims in North Charleston and securing the compensation they need for a stable future. Reach out to a Shelly Leeke North Charleston parking lot accident attorney if you have been injured in a parking lot accident, and get the help you need from our North Charleston personal injury lawyers.
How a North Charleston Parking Lot Accident Can Occur
Despite pedestrian crossings or reduced speed requirements, accidents in parking lots are not uncommon. In some cases, a vehicle driver fails to give a pedestrian the right of way or ignores pedestrian crossings or other road markings. Other times, a pedestrian may try to squeeze between cars or not see that a vehicle is backing up from its parking spot and sustain a hit.
Delivery trucks, frequently entering and exiting parking lots to load or unload, pose a significant danger to other vehicles or pedestrians. They impair other drivers’ ability to see their surroundings or, upon collision, cause serious damage simply due to their size and weight.
Improperly maintained parking lot surfaces are another danger. Potholes, uneven surfaces, or debris raise the possibility of pedestrians taking a fall, and if icy lots are not treated, there is an opportunity for cars to skid and people to slip. Whatever the case, if you sustain an injury in a parking lot accident in North Charleston, Shelly Leeke Law Firm is here to help.
What You Need to Do Following a Parking Lot Accident
The safety of all involved is paramount, so before doing anything else, determine if emergency medical services are required. If you cannot move without causing further injury, stay put and wait for an ambulance.
Even when your injuries do not create an emergency situation, you must seek medical attention promptly. The effects of some serious injuries, such as brain or internal bleeding or a traumatic brain injury, can take time to show.
By seeking medical attention, you protect your health and your case. Treatment will prevent your condition from deteriorating. It also ensures the at-fault party cannot blame a worsening injury on your failure to seek treatment instead of on their negligence.
Take photos or video of the scene, your injuries, the vehicle involved, and any other factors contributing to your accident. Record contact information from witnesses. Stay on the scene, unless it is medically impossible until police arrive and make an accident report, as your parking lot accident attorney in North Charleston will use this evidence to build your case.
Determining Fault Can Be Tricky in Parking Lot Accidents
“Right-of-way” is not always as clear-cut in parking lot scenarios as it is on roadways. There are people pulling in and out of spaces, walking in the paths of cars, and double-parking to make a fast pick-up. Drivers and pedestrians do not always act predictably, creating hectic situations.
The at-fault party or parties and their insurance companies will take advantage of this confusion and find ways to lay blame on you, or just about anyone else, to avoid owning up to their negligence and paying your deserved compensation. Since South Carolina operates under a comparative fault system, the amount of the total calculated settlement amount is reduced by your determined percentage of fault. Insurance companies will seek to inflate your level of fault by just about any means possible.
Having an experienced North Charleston parking lot accident attorney investigate the circumstances of your accident is critical to producing a successful outcome. Your attorney knows what evidence to collect, how to fight back against unethical insurance company practices, and how to protect your settlement.
Potential At-Fault Parties
Based on the circumstances of your accident, the at-fault party could include, among others:
- A careless driver who crashes into you because of distraction, recklessness, or simple error
- The parking lot property owner who failed to keep the lot free of damage or obstacles or keep the surface safe for car or foot traffic, causing you to fall or lose control of your car and experience a crash
- A truck company, if their delivery vehicle malfunctioned, perhaps through a failed emergency braking system, and rolled or crashed into you
If you left your car in a parking lot and came out to find it damaged, the individual responsible for that damage is legally required to leave a note with contact information under South Carolina Code §56-5-1220. When damage is extensive or if the individual did not leave a note, contact a North Charleston parking lot accident lawyer to help you gather evidence such as security camera footage, identify the at-fault party, and hold them accountable.
Compensation You May Be Entitled to Collect
The amount of a settlement depends on the severity of your losses. Do not risk underestimating those losses and missing out on deserved compensation. Your experienced parking lot accident lawyer in North Charleston will handle this assessment with care and precision.
Though each case is different, you will likely be entitled to collect compensation for:
- Income: Lost wages, lost future wages, and other applicable employment benefits.
- Medical Needs: Accident-related treatments and anticipated future interventions and care
- Property: Belongings or vehicles damaged or destroyed in the accident
- Pain: Physical and emotional suffering
- Quality of life: Inability to enjoy activities, social engagements, and life in general because of the accident’s long-term effects
Your attorney will consider any additional losses or new expenses incurred by the accident and your injuries, ensuring you are justly compensated.
Take the First Step Toward Financial Recovery and Justice
Accident victims often feel confused and helpless in the aftermath of the incident. If you take the first easy step and contact Shelly Leeke Law Firm, a dedicated North Charleston parking lot accident attorney from our team will take care of the rest of your case for you.
Residents of South Carolina have depended on us for positive outcomes for over a decade. We look forward to hearing from you and working toward your successful recovery.