Our brain controls all our bodily and mental functions, so it is no surprise that injury to the brain can have devastating effects on victims and their families. Brain damage can produce changes in personality, intellect, creativity, and memory; in severe cases, brain injuries can lead to paralysis, inability to communicate, coma, or death. Survivors may require financially draining medical and rehabilitation costs, need life-long care, and may never be able to work again.
If you or a loved one has suffered a brain injury due to another party’s negligence or fault, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses through insurance or a personal injury lawsuit. While no amount of money can make up for the suffering a brain injury can cause, a settlement will ease your financial burdens and pay for the care and treatment you need to rebuild your life.
South Carolina personal injury laws are complicated, making mistakes is costly, and insurance companies will try to deny claims or accept the lowest offer possible, but you do not have to fight for a settlement on your own. The experienced South Carolina brain injury lawyers at Whalen Montalvo know how to deal with insurance companies, build your case, and advocate for you in court. We can take the burden off you by handling all investigations, negotiations and legal hurdles needed to prove liability and fight for the compensation you deserve.
We offer a free consultation to discuss your case and determine the best way to move forward. There are no costs to you unless and until we win a settlement, so call us today to get started.
When the brain is injured, the result is usually total or partial paralysis below the point of injury, which can be life-changing and overwhelming to both victim and family members. After such a serious injury, it is important to seek an attorney you not only trust and feel comfortable with but one who has the experience and resources needed to handle your case. Here are some reasons why we believe that Whalen Montalvo is your best choice:
After a serious brain injury, in any personal injury case, it is important to start investigations quickly, while evidence is available and witnesses can be found. Once you retain our Whalen Montalvo legal team, we will start working on your case immediately. We will:
Brain injuries often have catastrophic affects, and our Greenville brain injury attorneys will fight for an award called damages that covers all the costs, losses and pain and suffering from your injuries. South Carolina allows the recovery of both compensatory and punitive damages.
Compensatory damages are for both economic damages, to cover your monetary costs, and non-economic damages, for those that don’t have a specific dollar value but negatively impact your life.
Economic damages may include:
Non-economic damages may include:
Punitive damages. In some rare cases, when it can be proven that the defendant’s actions were “willful, wanton, or reckless,” you may also be awarded punitive damages. These are intended to punish a defendant and to deter such behaviors in the future.
South Carolina does not limit the amount of economic or non-economic damages that you can recover in brain injury cases, except for cases naming government defendants. South Carolina limits punitive damage awards to the greater of three times the compensatory damages or $500,000.
Because brain injuries are so devastating and expensive, judges and juries tend to be sympathetic, and settlement amounts may range from the thousands to millions of dollars. The amount awarded depends on the individual circumstances of the case and factors such as the severity and permanence of the injuries and the costs involved, the amount of lost earnings and the ability to work in the future, and the availability of insurance coverage and assets. The jurisdiction where the case is heard and the skill and negotiating power of your attorney also play a significant role.
Proving negligence is an essential part of every personal injury case. Our brain injury lawyers in Greenville must show by the evidence from our investigations and expert witness testimony that another party or parties (the defendants in the case) were negligent and at fault for causing the accident that caused your injuries. This means establishing the existence of following elements:
There are many ways someone’s negligence can result in an accident that causes brain injuries. Common examples include a landlord who failed to clear ice from a walkway, causing a slip and fall, or a driver who was drunk and drove through a red light and crashed into a car. In some cases, there are multiple parties who may have contributed to the accident; our attorneys would look to name them all as defendants in the lawsuit, as they all may have insurance and assets that can go toward a settlement.
When dealing with a serious brain injury, you are bound to have questions and concerns. These are best answered at your free initial consultation, but to get started, here are some answers to questions our attorneys are often asked:
Should I Speak to the Insurance Companies?
No, the less you say to insurance companies, the better. Insurance companies want to pay out as little as possible and often use tactics such as getting you to accept a lowball offer for less than your case is worth, or tricking you into admitting you were at fault for your injuries. Tell the insurance company to speak to your attorney, and let Whalen Montalvo handle all communications and negotiations.
What If My Loved One Died from a Brain Injury?
In the terrible event that your family member dies from a brain injury, our attorneys can file a wrongful death claim to receive compensation. According to South Carolina law (Section 15-51-10 and 20), when a death is caused by the wrongful act, neglect or default of another, a wrongful death claim may be brought for the benefit of the deceased’s spouse and children, and, if there are none, for the deceased’s parents or heirs.
Is There a Time Limit for Filing a Case?
Yes, South Carolina has a deadline, called a statute of limitations (Section 15-3-540), for filing personal injury and wrongful death cases. There are some exceptions, but in general you have three years from the date of the accident or the date of the death to file a lawsuit and two years to file a suit against a governmental defendant. If you do not file on time, the courts will likely dismiss your case.
What If I Did Something to Contribute to the Accident that Caused My Brain Injury?
Even if you contributed to the accident, you may still be able to get a settlement, due to South Carolina’s modified comparative fault rule (Section 15-38-15). As long as you are less than 51 % at fault, you can recover damages, but damages are reduced by the percentage you are found to be at fault. If you are found to be 51 % or more at fault, you cannot receive compensation.
Do I Need a Lawyer to Handle My Case?
While technically you can file a case on your own, South Carolina’s modified comparative fault rule makes it especially important to have legal guidance, as you are barred from recovering compensation if found to be 51 % or more at fault. The defendant and their insurance company will have attorneys trying to prove you were negligent, and an experienced brain injury lawyer knows how to refute their arguments and fight for your rights.
When you retain our Whalen Montalvo attorneys, you can rest assured that we will be there to answer all your questions and keep you informed throughout the entire legal process.
If you or a loved one has suffered a brain injury caused by someone else’s negligence, the legal team at Whalen Montalvo is ready to help. Let us take the burden off you and handle all legal hurdles and requirements necessary to fight for a fair settlement, so you can concentrate on getting better.
Call us today for your free, no-obligation consultation.
Get Help Now (864) 770-7710
Get the best legal representation possible. Give the Greenville, SC attorneys at Whalen Montalvo a call today at (864) 770-7710 or use our online form.