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If you were hurt in a collision caused by an intoxicated driver, you have a right to pursue compensation through an insurance claim or lawsuit. South Carolina law allows victims to bring civil cases against negligent drivers who cause them to suffer physical, emotional, and financial harm.

A Pickens drunk driving accident lawyer from Hammack Law Firm will review your case for free. We represent victims of traffic accidents in Pickens County and across South Carolina.

Holding a Drunk Driver Accountable in a Pickens, SC, Crash

According to the South Carolina Department of Public Safety (SCDPS), Pickens County had four drunk driving deaths and 149 non-fatal driving under the influence (DUI) collisions in 2019. Statewide, SCDPS reports that almost half of all fatal crashes involve a driver over the legal limit. There are nearly 22,000 DUI arrests in the state each year.

Under S.C. Code of Laws § 56-5-2930, impaired drivers convicted of a first DUI in a criminal court may face:

  • A fine of up to $400, as well as additional assessments and surcharges
  • Imprisonment from 48 hours to 30 days
  • Suspension of their driver’s license for six months

In addition, Hammack Law Firm will develop a civil case on behalf of the crash victims. This civil case also has consequences for the drunk driver. To recover compensation, we will need to show they acted negligently, carelessly, or recklessly. This does not necessarily require us to show they were drunk.

For example, imagine a drunk driver failed to maintain their lane and caused a head-on crash with your vehicle. While having evidence to show they were drunk will only help the case, our attorneys will focus on proving negligence. In this case, this requires proof to show:

  • The driver had an obligation to remain in their lane
  • They crossed the centerline, violating traffic law
  • This action caused your collision
  • You suffered injuries in the crash

Most of these cases settle without going to trial. However, we sometimes need to sue the driver to force the insurer to offer a better settlement or present our case to a judge and jury. When this occurs, we have three years to get started under S.C. Ann. § 15-3-530. We need to get started as soon as possible after your crash to ensure we have time to develop a solid claim.

Damages Recoverable in a Civil Case Against a Drunk Driver

The damages our team will recover for a traffic accident victim, including those in a crash caused by an impaired driver, depend on the injuries, losses, and costs they experienced. As a part of building a claim, our team identifies these and puts a fair settlement value on the case. This lets us know what we need to recover during negotiations.

Examples of common damages in these crash cases include:

  • Ambulance transportation
  • Emergency department evaluation
  • Medical treatment, including hospitalization
  • Therapy, rehabilitation, and follow-up care
  • Future medical needs
  • Other care-related costs
  • Lost wages and reduced ability to earn if there are lasting injuries
  • Property damages, including car repairs
  • Pain and suffering
  • Disfigurement and disability
  • Other intangible losses

Recovering Wrongful Death Damages

Under S.C. Ann. § 15-51-10, South Carolina families who lost a loved one in a DUI crash can recover wrongful death damages. This requires the decedent’s personal representative to file a claim. Usually, this is:

  • The executor of their will
  • The administrator of their estate plan

We can identify the correct party during a free consultation.

When we represent a family in a wrongful death action in Pickens, the recoverable damages could include:

  • Medical expenses
  • Funeral and burial costs
  • Other related expenses
  • Lost income
  • Loss of services
  • Other financial losses
  • Loss of companionship
  • Loss of emotional support
  • Loss of parental guidance
  • Other intangible losses

Hammack Law Firm Gives Every Client One-On-One Attention

At Hammack Law Firm, we strive to offer a small firm feel backed by big firm experience. Our warm, supportive, compassionate, helpful team develops a personal relationship with every client.

We give each case the time, attention, and resources it requires, including one-on-one time answering the client’s questions, addressing concerns, and helping them understand their rights. We want to build a strong case for them while also putting them at ease about what to expect and allowing them to focus on their healing and physical recovery.

In client reviews and customer testimonials, our former clients often report feeling like close friends or a member of our family. We believe this is because of our actions on their behalf, the time we spend with them, and how hard we fight to get justice on their behalf.

Our goals include:

  • Holding negligent drivers accountable for their reckless actions
  • Seeking financial compensation for every client
  • Getting results for accident victims and recovering money damages for them

When necessary, we are not afraid to take a DUI crash case to trial. While most cases settle, we investigate and prepare each case like we will need to sue. This allows us to present stronger evidence to the insurer and recover an appropriate settlement at this stage more often.

Our attorneys work based on contingency. We do not charge upfront fees and do not ask our clients to pay hourly. Instead, we use our resources and time to develop the case and then charge a percentage of the payout for our attorney’s fees. If we do not recover compensation in your case, we will not charge you for these fees.

Speak to a Traffic Accident Team Member for Free Today

At Hammack Law Firm, our drunk driving team will review your case and explain your legal options for seeking justice. We provide these consultations and answer questions for free. We want you to understand your rights and how we will help. Call (864) 326-3333(864) 326-3333 to speak with our team serving Pickens today.

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