Charleston Car Accident Attorneys

Clawson | Fargnoli | Utsey Trial Lawyers

Representing Car Accident Victims in South Carolina

If you were injured or if someone you love was killed in a car accident, it can be incredibly challenging to navigate the aftermath of the crash. At Clawson Fargnoli Utsey, LLC, we understand what you have been through, as well as the difficulties that still lay ahead.

Our Charleston car accident attorneys have more than 20 years of combined experience, including past experience in insurance defense. We know what insurance companies will do to try to lowball injured individuals or deny claims—and we know how to fight back against these tactics.

Call us or contact us online to schedule your free initial consultation with a car accident lawyers in Charleston.

South Carolina consistently ranks among the most dangerous states for motorists due to the high number of accidents, injuries, and deaths on our highways and roads. According to the South Carolina Department of Public Safety (SCDPS), there was a traffic collision every 3.7 minutes in South Carolina in 2018 (the latest year for which data are available).

Additionally, in 2018, one person was killed every 8.5 hours and one person was injured every 9.1 minutes in South Carolina. Overall, this amounted to more than 1,000 people killed and a staggering 58,000+ people injured in the state in 2018 alone.

As your personal injury law firm, we are dedicated to guiding you through the legal process while simultaneously advocating tirelessly for your rights.

We seek to maximize our clients’ recoveries through aggressive negotiation and skilled litigation, an approach that has helped us successfully recover millions of dollars for our clients to date.

If you were involved in a car accident in Charleston or any of the surrounding areas, put a powerful and proven team on your side.

What Should You Do Immediately After a Car Accident?

Immediately after an accident, most people feel some degree of shock and uncertainty about what to do next. However, there are some important steps you should take immediately after the crash to protect yourself and your right to seek recovery.

After being in a car accident, take the following steps (if possible):

  • Check for Injuries: First, check yourself and others for injuries. If necessary, call 911. Do not move anyone who appears seriously injured but, instead, wait for paramedics to arrive.
  • Call the Police: Contact local law enforcement, have them come out to the scene of the accident, and request an official accident report.
  • Report the Accident: By law, you are required to report any accident in South Carolina that results in injury, death, or property damage valued at $1,000 or more to the DMV.
  • Exchange Information: Be sure to get the name, contact information, and insurance information of the other driver(s)/people involved in the crash.
  • Document the Accident: Take pictures of the crash and your injuries, get the name and contact information of any witnesses, and write down everything you can remember about the accident.
  • Seek Medical Attention: Always see a doctor after a car accident, even if you believe you were not seriously injured. You may have underlying injuries, which can take days or weeks to appear.
  • Follow Your Doctor’s Advice: Follow all your doctor’s recommendations and treatment plans, including additional testing, follow-up appointments, medications, and physical therapy.
  • Notify Your Insurance Company: Under your policy, you may be required to notify your insurance company about the accident right away.
  • Refrain from Talking to the Other Driver’s Insurance Provider: Avoid talking to any adjusters from the other person’s insurance company. You do NOT need to provide a statement.
  • Contact an Attorney: The best way to protect your rights and better your chances of securing the full compensation you are owed is by contacting a car accident attorney who can help.

At Clawson Fargnoli Utsey, LLC, we offer contingency fees, meaning we do not collect any upfront or out-of-pocket fees. Instead, we only get paid if we recover compensation for you. There is no risk in talking to a Charleston car accident attorney at our firm about your potential case; contact us today to learn more!

How Long Do You Have to Report a Car Accident in South Carolina?

In South Carolina, you are required to report any motor vehicle accident that results in bodily injury, death, or property damage amounting to $1,000 or more to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) within 15 days of the accident. If you fail to report the accident in the required timeframe, you could face several insurance penalties and lose your right to pursue a personal injury claim against the at-fault driver.

There are two ways to report an accident to the DMV in South Carolina. First, if law enforcement comes to the scene of the accident, the officer will provide you an FR-10 form. You must then present this form to your insurance provider, and they must complete it and submit it to the DMV within the 15-day timeframe.

If the police did not come to the scene of the accident, you must obtain, complete, and submit an FR-309 form to the DMV within 15 days of the accident.

How Do You File a Car Accident Claim in South Carolina?

Depending on the circumstances of the accident, there are several ways to file a car accident claim and recover compensation for your damages, including your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more.

Because South Carolina follows a fault-based system, the most common method of pursuing compensation is filing a claim against the at-fault driver. To do this, you will need to prove that the other driver (or another party) caused the accident and is, therefore, liable for your damages.

What Are the Common Causes of Auto Accidents?

Proving liability typically involves investigating the cause of the accident. At Clawson Fargnoli Utsey, LLC, we investigate claims to determine if an accident was caused by:

  • A negligent, distracted, or drunk driver
  • An aggressive or reckless motorist
  • A manufacturer or distributor that produced an auto defect
  • A construction company that created a defective roadway
  • Poor or nonexistent road maintenance
  • Third-party negligence, such as a negligent bicyclist or pedestrian
  • A negligent rideshare operator, such as an Uber or Lyft driver
  • A commercial vehicle/truck driver or mass transit operator

Once we have identified the liable person or party, we immediately begin building our clients’ cases, working to understand the nature of their injuries and the full extent of their damages.

If you are unable to pursue compensation from the at-fault driver—for example, if you were involved in a hit and run or similar situation in which you cannot identify the at-fault driver or the liable party is not able to pay—you may have other options for compensation. This might include filing a claim with your own insurance provider under a collision policy or uninsured motorist (UM) claim.

What Types of Damages You May Recover?

Regardless of the specific circumstances involved, our Charleston car accident lawyers are ready to help you fight for maximum compensation for your damages, including but not limited to:

  • Current and future medical expenses
  • In-home care costs
  • Lost income, wages, and other employment benefits
  • Lost future earnings
  • Disability/lost earning capacity
  • Pain and suffering
  • Counseling services/therapy
  • Lost quality of life
  • Property/vehicle damage and repair costs

Our attorneys have successfully recovered millions of dollars on behalf of the injured, as well as the families of those wrongfully killed. We have the experience, resources, and in-depth legal knowledge needed to effectively advocate for you.

How Can a Car Accident Attorney in Charleston Help With Your Injury Case?

After a car accident, you may feel overwhelmed and uncertain about what to do next. You might be unsure of how South Carolina car accident laws work or you may be wondering about the legal process. You may even have questions about the types of damages you can recover after a Charleston car accident. With an experienced South Carolina car accident lawyer on your side, you will never have to face these worries alone.

A skilled Charleston injury lawyer will take an in-depth look at each case and make sure that nothing falls through the cracks. Your lawyer will investigate claims to determine if any other parties were involved—and how they could potentially be held liable for their negligence. Additionally, Charleston car accident attorneys are prepared to negotiate aggressively with insurance companies to maximize compensation without going to court if possible. If necessary, your attorneys should have the skills and knowledge to take your case to court and represent you.

At Clawson Fargnoli Utsey, LLC, we understand the complexities of car accident claims. We use our skills and knowledge to ensure that your rights and best interests are protected every step of the way. Our attorneys can provide you with assistance in numerous ways, including:

  • Making sure you meet all deadlines/file paperwork on time
  • Negotiating with insurance companies to maximize your recovery
  • Investigating the cause of the accident and identifying liable parties
  • Communicating on your behalf throughout the claims process
  • Filing a lawsuit if necessary (exceeding policy limits)
  • Building an ironclad legal strategy for maximizing compensation

Our goal is always to secure maximum compensation as quickly as possible, so you can move forward from an unfortunate accident with financial stability.

Why Choose an Accident Attorney in Charleston at Clawson Fargnoli Utsey, LLC?

When it comes to pursuing compensation after a car accident, you need a legal team with the right experience. Attorney Sam Clawson and Attorney Christy Fargnoli both have prior experience defending motor vehicle accident claims on behalf of major corporations, like State Farm, Nationwide, Allstate, GEICO, USAA, Travelers, and Safe Auto. Representing at-fault drivers for insurance companies allowed our team unique and extensive insights, knowledge, and experience that many other plaintiffs’ attorneys simply do not have.

Now, at Clawson Fargnoli Utsey, LLC, we use our in-depth understanding of how insurance companies operate to aggressively negotiate on behalf of injured victims. We know what it takes to secure favorable settlements, and we are fully prepared to go to trial when insurance companies try to lowball our clients.

We not only know South Carolina’s traffic laws inside and out, but we also understand the state’s insurance laws and personal injury processes.

Our Charleston car accident lawyers are equally well-versed in insurance coverage disputes and bad faith claims. No matter how complex your unique situation may be, we are ready to help you fight for the maximum compensation you are owed.

For personal attention and client-driven representation, call Clawson Fargnoli Utsey, LLC at 843-970-2700. Your initial consultation with our car accident attorney in Charleston is free.

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At Clawson Fargnoli Utsey, we never lose sight of the fact that our clients are real people facing real challenges.

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