Car accidents may not always be clear cut incidents in which one driver takes the blame and the other obtains compensation for the damage done. If it is discovered during the investigation that a driver is partially at-fault in a car accident, determining compensation for both parties may take a turn and become extremely complex. Most drivers may not know or understand what happens next when they find out that they are partially at-fault in a wreck. This can leave them worried about whether they will be able to recover compensation for their injuries or any other expenses associated with the accident.
South Carolina Law Governing Personal Injury Cases
In South Carolina, modified comparative negligence is used in determining car accident compensation. The level of liability for each party in the wreck factors into what percentage of compensation to which the driver is entitled. Although the claimant will receive compensation in a claim if applicable, it may vary according to how much responsibility for the wreck that the driver has. For example, if a driver held about 30 percent accountability for the accident, the individual may only receive about 70 percent of the amount of damages available from the other driver. Drivers who have contributed 50 percent or more of the blame will be barred from recovering damages through a personal injury lawsuit.
Differences over who assumes fault in a car wreck may result in one driver taking a percentage of blame while the other accrues a different percentage despite who may be suffering more from injuries. In order to determine the percentage of liability, several factors must be considered and carefully evaluated.
After the accident, a police officer will write up a report by examining various pieces of evidence including interviews conducted with witnesses and drivers, photographs and video, traffic citations, and vehicle damage. Insurance adjusters will review the claim and the police report as well as medical documentation and car accident evidence. They will estimate the percentage of fault by the drivers involved in the crash. If one or both parties disagree with the determination made by the insurance company, the injured party may opt to file a personal injury lawsuit against the driver responsible for the wreck. If the case goes before a judge, the level of compensation will ultimately be determined in the courtroom. A car accident lawyer may be able to negotiate with the insurance company or convince a judge and jury that the claimant carries less responsibility in the accident or even none at all.