At Elrod Pope Accident & Injury Attorneys, our team of Fort Mill motorcycle accident lawyers knows the toll that motorcycle accidents have. Physical injuries, emotional trauma, and financial hardships quickly make the path forward uncertain. For over 40 years, we have helped injured motorcyclists in Fort Mill, South Carolina recover damages and get back on their feet.
Why Should Elrod Pope Accident & Injury Attorneys Handle My Motorcycle Accident Case in Fort Mill, SC?
Since opening our doors in 1980, Elrod Pope Accident & Injury Attorneys has represented hundreds of motorcycle accident victims. We have helped motorcyclists recover over $100 million in compensation for injuries and other damages.
By working with a Fort Mill personal injury lawyer at our law office, we help you with the following:
- Specialized knowledge: Our Fort Mill personal injury lawyers thoroughly understand South Carolina’s traffic and personal injury laws. This includes state-specific motorcycle regulations and insurance laws crucial to your case.
- Insurance negotiations: Insurance companies settle most motorcycle accident claims. Our lawyers know how to negotiate with insurers to get you compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and other damages.
- Liability and fault: Our team can help establish liability and fault in your case.
- Investigation: We have a team skilled in conducting investigations. Our lawyers gather evidence, such as traffic camera footage, witness statements, and police reports, to build a strong case.
- Expert Testimony: We have a network of medical professionals, accident experts, and other specialists who can testify if your case goes to trial.
- Court Representation: Our Fort Mill motorcycle accident lawyers will represent you in and out of court.
- No Upfront Costs: We work on a contingency fee, meaning no upfront cost for you.
A lawyer can bring immense value to your motorcycle accident claim in Fort Mill, SC. If you or a loved one has been injured, schedule a free initial consultation today with our Fort Mill motorcycle accident lawyer.
How Many Motorcycle Accidents Happen Each Year?
Motorcycle accidents are common in the United States. Fort Mill is no exception. According to the South Carolina Department of Public Safety, there were 2,215 motorcycle-involved accidents in 2021. Of those accidents, 396 people sustained serious injuries, and 173 people were killed.
What Causes Motorcycle Accidents in Fort Mill, SC?
A variety of factors cause motorcycle accidents in Fort Mill. Out of the thousands of motorcycle accidents in recent years, many repeat causes have emerged. Understanding these can help motorcyclists take increased precautions and safety measures.
Common causes of motorcycle accidents include:
- Driver negligence: This is the most common cause of motorcycle accidents. Negligent driving includes speeding, failing to yield, running stop signs, and not following traffic laws.
- Distracted driving: Accidents occur when drivers are distracted. Cell phones are a major distraction that takes a motorcyclist’s attention away from the road.
- Poor road conditions: Potholes, debris, and uneven road surfaces can be especially dangerous for motorcyclists. They can throw a motorcycle off balance, causing an accident.
- Weather conditions: Rain, fog, wind, and other weather conditions can reduce visibility and road traction, leading to accidents.
- Lane splitting: A motorcyclist driving between two lanes of stopped traffic can lead to accidents. This is common if lane splitting is unexpected by other drivers.
- Blind spots: Motorcycles can be easily obscured by other vehicles’ blind spots. This causes accidents when other motorists fail to detect before changing lanes.
- Sudden Stops: Rear-end accidents can result when a vehicle abruptly stops and a motorcyclist cannot stop in time.
A thorough investigation is required to determine the exact cause of any accident. This can require collecting evidence, speaking to witnesses, or using accident reconstruction experts. A lawyer can help you investigate the cause of your accident and determine liability.
What Are Damages and What Can I Recover for My Motorcycle Accident in Fort Mill, SC?
“Damages” refer to the compensation you may be awarded for an injury or loss. In motorcycle accidents, damages are typically categorized into economic and non-economic damages. The damages available in each case vary.
Economic damages are out-of-pocket expenses that can be easily quantified and proven with documentation.
Economic damages include:
- Medical expenses: This covers past and future medical care, including hospital bills, surgeries, medication, physical therapy, and any long-term care needs.
- Lost wages: Compensation for any work and earnings you lost due to the accident. It also includes diminished earning capacity for the future if you cannot return to the same job.
- Property damage: The cost to repair or replace your motorcycle and any other personal property damaged in the accident.
Make sure to save documents, like receipts, to show your economic damages.
Economic damages are more subjective and not as easily quantified.
Non-economic damages include:
- Pain and suffering: Compensation for the physical pain and emotional distress you have endured and will continue to endure.
- Emotional distress: Compensation for the psychological impact of the accident, which can include conditions like depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
- Disfigurement: Compensation for permanent scars or other disfigurements caused by the accident.
- Loss of Consortium: Compensation for the impact the injuries have on the relationship between you and your spouse.
A motorcycle accident lawyer can help you quantify your non-economic damages.
These damages are not awarded in every case. They are generally considered separate from economic and non-economic damages. Punitive damages are intended to punish the at-fault party for their conduct if it was reckless or egregious, and to deter similar conduct in the future.
What Is Negligence and How Do I Prove It?
Negligence is a fundamental concept in personal injury law and motorcycle accident cases. Negligence refers to a failure to behave with the level of care that someone ordinarily would have exercised under similar circumstances. This can be a conscious act or a failure to act.
To prove negligence in your motorcycle accident, you need to establish four essential elements:
- Duty of care: You must show another person caused your injuries and owed you a duty. All drivers are responsible for operating their vehicles safely to avoid harming others on the road.
- Breach of duty: You must show that the person breached their duty. For example, if a driver were speeding or failed to yield the right of way, that would breach their duty of care.
- Causation: You must show that a breach of duty caused your injuries.
- Damages: You must show you suffered actual damages, such as bodily injury or property damage, as a result.
Proving negligence requires evidence.
Evidence in a motorcycle accident often includes:
- Police report from the accident
- Witness statements
- Traffic camera or surveillance footage
- Cell phone records
- Accident reconstruction reports
- Photos of the accident scene, damages, and injuries
- Medical records to document the injuries
- Expert testimony regarding standard care, causation, and the extent of the injury
A Fort Mill motorcycle accident lawyer can help gather this evidence. They will present it compellingly to establish negligence and prove your damages.
What if I’m Also Responsible for My Motorcycle Accident in Fort Mill, SC?
You are not necessarily without recourse if you are also responsible for your motorcycle accident. This is because South Carolina applies a rule known as comparative negligence. Comparative negligence means your damages will be reduced by the percentage of fault you share in the accident. However, if you are 50% or more responsible for the accident, you will be barred from recover damages.
If you are partially at fault for the motorcycle accident, your compensation will be reduced by your percentage of fault. For example, if you are found to be 30 percent responsible for the accident and the total damages are $100,000, you could recover 70 percent of the damages, which is $70,000.
Your percentage of fault is determined by the evidence presented in the case. If you believe you may be partially at fault for your motorcycle accident, it is critical to consult with a lawyer. They can help you determine who is at fault and minimize fault attributed to you.
How Long Do I Have to File a Lawsuit in Fort Mill, SC?
The statute of limitations in South Carolina sets a deadline for filing a lawsuit. For personal injury cases, including motorcycle accidents, you typically have three years from the accident date to file a lawsuit against the parties you believe are responsible.
It is important to pay attention to this deadline because if you try to file a lawsuit after the statute of limitations has expired, your case will likely be dismissed. You will lose your right to seek compensation through the court system.
How Much Does It Cost to Hire Elrod Pope Accident & Injury Attorneys?
Our Fort Mill motorcycle accident lawyers work on a contingency fee. This means our lawyer’s fees are contingent upon winning your case or securing a settlement. If we do not win your case or obtain a settlement, you do not pay any lawyer fees. This allows all injured motorcyclists to retain a case at no upfront cost.
If you or a loved one has been injured, schedule a free consultation today.
Contact Our Experienced Fort Mill Motorcycle Accident Lawyers
If you or a loved one has been involved in a motorcycle accident in Fort Mill, South Carolina do not navigate the process alone. Our experienced Fort Mill motorcycle accident lawyers are dedicated to advocating for your rights and securing the compensation you deserve.
We understand the challenges you are facing and can guide you through every step of the legal process. To discuss your case and explore your rights, contact one of our Elrod Pope Accident & Injury Attorneys today or call (803) 902-4045 for a free consultation.