Fatal Car Accidents in South Carolina
Jan. 17, 2023
The loss of a family member can be very emotional and painful, especially when caused by someone else's negligent actions. Fortunately, the surviving loved ones of the decedent may be able to hold the at-fault party liable and seek compensation for their unexpected loss by filing a wrongful death claim or lawsuit. A highly-skilled South Carolina personal injury attorney can educate you about your options to seek wrongful death damages after losing a loved one in a fatal car accident.
At Duncan and Nobles LLC, we understand how difficult it can be for you and your other loved ones during such a grieving period. As your lawyer, we can represent you compassionately in your wrongful death claims and attempt to recover the maximum possible damages for your loss. Our firm proudly serves clients across Rock Hill, South Carolina, and surrounding areas throughout Chester County and Lancaster County.
Common Causes of Fatal Car Accidents
A fatal car accident is an auto accident that causes someone else's death. Here are some common causes of fatal car crashes:
Aggressive or reckless driving
Driving while under the influence of controlled substances or alcohol
Bad weather conditions
Veering into another driver's lane
Swerving and avoiding
Failure to yield
Overcorrecting or oversteering
Failure to obey traffic rules, stop signs, and red lights
If you believe that a negligent party's actions caused your loved one's untimely death, you should speak with a practiced car accident attorney right away. Your lawyer can review all of the facts of your personal situation and help file your wrongful death claims.
Filing a Wrongful Death Claim After a Fatal Car Accident
When a person dies in a fatal car accident caused by a negligent party, the decedent's surviving loved ones may be entitled to seek damages through a wrongful death claim. Even though there is no amount of money that may be sufficient to bring back the deceased person, filing a wrongful death action can help hold the responsible party accountable for their actions and compensate the decedent's survivors for their unexpected loss.
In addition, the monetary compensation obtained from a wrongful death claim or benefit can give the surviving loved ones of the deceased person a much-needed financial boost and security to cover the expenses for the funeral, any lost income, and outstanding medical expenses before the victim's death. Also, this can provide a way to lessen the chances that such an unfortunate event doesn't occur to another individual or other families.
What Constitutes Wrongful Death in South Carolina?
Under South Carolina law, a wrongful death is a death that occurred due to negligence or wrongful acts from another person. According to South Carolina Civil Remedies and Procedures, whenever the death of a person is caused by the wrongful act, neglect, or default of another, the wrongdoer (at-fault party) shall be liable to an action (survival action) for damages.
Who Can File a Claim?
Under South Carolina wrongful death law, only the personal representative (executor or administrator) of the decedent's estate may be legally allowed to file a wrongful death claim. However, any monetary compensation and damages recovered from the survival action will be for the benefit of the decedent's surviving loved ones.
What Needs to Be Proven to Constitute Wrongful Death?
In order to establish a wrongful death claim in South Carolina, the claimant must prove the following elements:
The at-fault party owed a legal duty of care.
The duty of care was breached.
A death occurred.
The death was caused by the defendant's neglect or wrongful actions.
Surviving family members have suffered damages.
An experienced South Carolina wrongful death attorney can assess every aspect of your case and help file your claims as soon as possible.
Time Limits for Filing
In South Carolina, the statute of limitations for wrongful death claims is three years from the date of the death. This means that a civil action must be filed within three years of the victim's death.
Here are some possible damages that may be recovered by filing a wrongful death claim in South Carolina:
Medical expenses incurred before the person died
Loss of care, support, guidance, or counsel
Pain and suffering experienced by the surviving loved ones
Funeral and burial expenses
Loss of financial support and benefits
Lost earning capacity
Loss of love or companionship
Loss of the deceased person's judgment, knowledge, and experience
Punitive damages or exemplary claims to serve as an additional punishment to the at-fault party for their reckless or deliberate actions
A skilled legal counsel can walk you through the wrongful death claims process and attempt to recover the maximum available damages and benefits for your loss.
Skilled & Compassionate Legal Advocacy
Losing a loved one is heartbreaking. The sudden loss can affect you emotionally, financially, and mentally. Nevertheless, you don't have to face the financial burden and challenges all alone. At Duncan and Nobles LLC, we have the diligence and resources to protect and represent clients in their wrongful death cases. As your attorney, we can investigate every aspect of your case and explore your options to recover damages. Using their extensive knowledge, our reliable team will fight vigorously for your rights, help hold the at-fault party accountable, and seek fair financial compensation to cover your damages and losses.
Contact us at Duncan and Nobles LLC today to schedule a simple case assessment with experienced wrongful death attorneys. Our lawyers can offer you the support and legal guidance you need during such a difficult period. We proudly represent clients across Rock Hill, South Carolina, and surrounding areas throughout Chester County and Lancaster County.