Serious Personal Injury & Fatality Cases
We take for granted what we can do daily – simple activities such as tying our shoes or walking to the front door – but someone who is catastrophically injured can lose those abilities. Even worse, that individual may be confined to a wheelchair, use crutches, or a cane for the rest of his/her life, or suffer serious injuries such as partial paralysis, brain damage, or even in the most severe cases, death. Enduring such limitations not only affects us physically, but also emotionally and mentally.
You are not alone in this battle. It’s very important that someone who suffers an injury seek legal counsel immediately (if unable to do so personally, a family member should do so immediately.) Circumstances of your serious personal injury or wrongful death case change with time, so it’s imperative that a knowledgeable lawyer be engaged immediately so the evidence can be preserved.
Barrow Law Firm is ready, willing, and able to help handle your serious personal injury and wrongful death case due to motor vehicle accidents, defective products, premises liability accidents, substandard medical care, and other negligent acts. Don’t delay! Contact our office now.
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Traffic accidents typically involve cars, trucks, automobiles, or motorcycles. However, they can also include bicycles or pedestrians who get hit by cars, bicycles, trucks, or motorcycles.
If you were involved in a traffic accident, it is imperative that you contact our office as soon as possible so that we can preserve the evidence. As time goes on, circumstances of the case change, as witnesses cannot be found, memories fade, skid or tire marks wash away or fade with rain or traffic that passes over the scene. Your accident and injury lawyer needs to be engaged immediately so we can talk to witnesses, take photographs, collect evidence, and account for all elements of the incident.
There are essentially two types of defects in products:
- Dangerous or poor product assembly. Perhaps a manufacturer negligently installed a guard on a toy or device, or there is a manufacturing defect as something went wrong on the assembly line. Even when products are designed correctly, things can go wrong when they are built. Manufacturers may forget to bolt something down or put a screw in, and the person that uses the product gets injured. Safety features and warnings are required on many products for this very reason.
- Improper product design. An example is failure to design safety guards, kill switches, and failsafe systems to prevent or at least minimize injuries to users and consumers. Many cigarette lighters were designed with bright colors and features that emulated toys intended for young children, leading to injuries when children found a lighter and played with it as a toy. Machine and equipment operators suffer traumatic hand amputations because of the failure to design and install safety features which prevent such injuries.
If a defective or dangerous product injured you, a family member, or friend, then we need to consider how it happened to establish whether legal action is appropriate. Manufacturers and designers must follow safety standards, including eliminating hazards, guarding against hazards, and/or warning of the hazards, all intended to protect users and consumers. Barrow Law Firm will help you determine if you have a legal case.
There are many types of dangerous properties, from residential homes to commercial properties. Homeowners, builders, contractors, and architects must take legal steps – identify, eliminate, guard, and warn – to ensure safety for the general public and avoid injuries from premises. Types of construction may be defective and not meet safety standards or building codes that are intended to make buildings strong and safe in their design and construction. Stairways – whether residential or commercial – must be designed with standards to be reasonably safe to avoid someone stepping on a lip on a stairway or stumbling over a landing that is not clearly marked.
Not only does construction and design need to meet these codes and standards but also the public buildings must be properly maintained. Many times you’ll see brightly colored “wet floor” caution signs that shopkeepers use to inform the public of a dangerous area. They may also put up handrails around uneven stairs or pavements. It is their duty to inspect and make sure the property is safe.
In some cases hazards can’t be eliminated. This is why the law indicates that additional procedures must be implemented to guard and warn the public about the hazard.
Whether you tripped on an oil leak in an auto parts store or fell in a grocery or retail store and suffered injuries, Barrow Law Firm is here to assess your personal injury case and help obtain appropriate compensation for the wrongs visited upon you. It is our job to help our clients who have suffered injuries caused by others. Our team of experienced counselors and litigators care about your case and welcome you to contact our office about an initial consultation to discuss the appropriate and necessary legal steps to obtain justice.
Sub-Standard Medical Care
More than 98,000 people die yearly because of medical mistakes, which is almost three times the number of people killed annually in traffic accidents. Many of those mistakes occur in hospitals and nursing centers. Causes of fatal or permanent injuries range from medication errors, improper medical or nursing monitoring, negligent observations, surgical blunders, substandard medical technique, ignoring or misreading lab results, failure to comprehend and appreciate impending medical or nursing dangers, failure to take proper medical histories, improper use of medical equipment, and misdiagnosis of medical conditions. The list goes on and on.
If you or a loved one have suffered from medical mistakes, be sure to contact Barrow Law Firm as soon as possible so that we can preserve evidence and assist in providing justice to those who have been wronged.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do you have questions about Barrow Law Firm, Serious Personal Injury or Wrongful Death cases? Consult our FAQ’s below, and then contact us directly for additional information. We are more than pleased to address any of your Personal Injury questions or concerns.
What does the law classify as Personal Injury and how am I compensated?
The law recognizes that if someone is injured or has suffered a loss from negligence of a third-person, then the equities require the third-person to “make it right” by compensating the injured person for all of his/her losses – whatever they may be. If a person suffers a serious personal injury and has medical bills and is out of work or unable to attend to daily actives of living, then the law requires the wrongdoer put the innocent person back in the same position they were in before the injury occurred, as best as possible. The law recognizes that the wrongdoer must compensate for the losses the person has suffered.
Our goal at Barrow Law Firm is to represent those that have been injured and obtain as much compensation as the law will reasonably allow under the circumstances. For instance, if the behavior of the wrongdoer is outrageous, such as a drunk driving 90mph down the road and causing a crash, such an offender must not only compensate his victim, but also must suffer punishment for his willful, wanton, and reckless conduct.
What are some examples of Serious Personal Injury cases?
Incidents can happen to anyone, and there are several types of injuries – ranging from minor and moderate to severe, and ultimately wrongful death. We welcome all types of cases. If you are unsure if your incident falls under our purview, please contact our law office.
Here are some examples of Personal Injury and Wrongful Death cases:
- A fall resulting from dangerous property or negligence by a business owner or municipality. Whether you are young or 50+, there is a potential that you may trip, slip, and fall, resulting in minor or severe injury, ranging from embarrassment and bruises to fractures, brain damage, and even death. Sometimes our clients have become immobilized or suffer permanent injuries. The law demands that compensation must cover not only the short term but long term as well, including lifetime permanent injuries. An injured person is entitled to one financial recovery only, so it must be tailored and fashioned to cover the future as best as possible.
- Other cases may involve a young victim such as a 20-year-old who is struck by a vehicle, thereby suffering a head injury after falling off his skateboard or bicycle. These individuals may have to endure occupational, physical, and speech therapy as well as other treatment modalities, including, in some cases, lifetime medical care of varying degrees.
- Hazards that aren’t readily eliminated, such as uneven sidewalks in downtown, historic Charleston, SC. Sometimes uneven sidewalks are shaven eliminate the lips and rough surfaces, but often this is not feasible. Many cases result from trips or falls on these sidewalks in Charleston. Often those who own or maintain the sidewalks try to blame the pedestrian for not paying enough attention to where they were going. Generally, the municipality will be sued if it’s a public street, but if it’s a sidewalk in a shopping center, for example, the owners of the shopping center are likely to be held responsible.
There are innumerable types of personal injury or wrongful death cases which develop from various fact situations. No two cases are the same; each brings its own circumstances for consideration. At Barrow Law Firm we make every effort to analyze each factual situation, sift through the details, seek to understand the subtleties and nuances involved, and apply the appropriate legal principles to those facts with a view toward obtaining appropriate compensation for our clients. It is important that you contact our office immediately so we can review the incident and move forward in the most efficient legal manner.
How is fault determined?
As a reference, here are a few examples:
If a car hits a pedestrian or bicyclist and the pedestrian is following traffic laws (i.e. walking on crosswalk or sidewalk), then the driver of the motor vehicle is usually at fault.
The person who gets injured – whether a pedestrian or vehicle driver – can be charged with contributing to the accident as determined by a judge or jury. In this event, the fault is balanced between or among those involved. Compensation for the injured victim will be adjusted accordingly. For example, if the court finds the injured party responsible for 10% of the accident, then his compensation will be adjusted down by 10%. This adjustment applies only when both parties are partially at fault.
Joint fault can also be an issue when two bicycles or two vehicles – both partially at fault – run into each other or if a pedestrian/bicyclist who is not using a crosswalk, sidewalk, or following traffic laws is hit by a car.
Arrange your initial, free consultation with our experienced team of trial lawyers now. We’ll listen and help build your case, determine fault, and preliminarily assess proper compensation.
What do I do if I have dangerous property? What steps do I need to take?
The law clearly states that an owner of the property upon which others are invited or expected to enter must take proper steps to seek out and find dangerous or hazardous conditions, eliminate any known dangerous or hazardous conditions, guard against them, and/or warn of their existence. To put it simply, here are the steps for dealing with dangerous properties:
- Identify the hazard. Perhaps there is a dangerous split-level floor in a restaurant or stairway, or maybe there is a waterfall in the woods. The owner of the company or land must address the hazard by first acknowledging that it exists.
- Next, that individual – if reasonable and possible – must eliminate the hazard by redesigning or rebuilding.
- However, if the hazard or danger cannot reasonably be eliminated, then the owner must guard against the hazard by creating a physical barricade to make prevent people from encountering it. An example would be installing a fence around the hazard.
- Lastly, coupled with guarding against the hazard, the owner can also issue a warning about the potential hazard – such as a warning sign that says, “Don’t get too close to the waterfall.”
Childproof caps on medicine bottles are an everyday example of this system at work. The companies have noted that there is a hazard if a child gains access to the medicine, and since the hazard (the medicine) cannot be eliminated, access is prevented through the passive guard consisting of the child-proof cap; warning labels add further information for the public, thereby encouraging consumers to keep medicine out of the reach of small children.
What does the law try to accomplish with personal injury cases?
The law tries to accomplish three purposes:
- Obtain proper, reasonable, and fair compensation for an injured person;
- In an appropriate case, punish the wrongdoer for any willful, wanton, reckless, or outrageous behavior;
- Make an example of the wrongdoer’s willful, reckless behavior as a deterrent.
Exemplary or punitive monetary damages are intended to punish the wrongdoer, but the larger, societal purpose is to make an example of the wrongdoer. Essentially, the jury or judge has the right and authority to make an example of the wrongdoer and to broadcast that example to the public to inform others that wanton, reckless, and willful behavior will not be tolerated in our society. The purpose is to deter future egregious wrongdoing, such as drunk driving, placing dangerous products on the market, selling unsafe medications, or providing grossly negligent medical care.
What are the punishments for injuring someone severely?
On the civil side of the court case, exemplary or punitive monetary damages take the form of a civil fine payable by the wrongdoer to the victims of his wrongdoing. To assure that the civil fine fits the offensive behavior but simultaneously accomplishes its societal purpose, a special judicial process is implemented by the court which carefully reviews all aspects of the situation.
On the criminal side of a court case wherein the state or other governmental agency prosecutes the defendant (such as a person charged with felony drunk driving involving personal injury), any monetary fine assessed by the court is paid to the governmental agency, not to the victims of the wrongful conduct.
How is the compensation determined?
The compensation due to an injured person is determined by the extent of the losses. Substantial losses warrant substantial compensation. Likewise, relatively moderate losses warrant moderate compensation.
Ultimately, a jury or judge determines what is fair compensation in the event the parties to the controversy are unable to resolve the matter through negotiation or mediation. Most situations involve insurance companies, and it’s therefore critically important that you have able counsel in your corner to do battle with them. Insurance companies have battalions of adjusters who are highly trained advocates for their companies, and their purpose and function is to pay as little as possible or nothing at all. They do nothing but handle claims all day long, so they are quite skilled at their jobs. Clients need skilled counsel on their side to do battle for them.
The law recognizes certain factors to be considered in determining the amount of fair and reasonable compensation, including:
- Medical expenses
- Damages to property
- Loss wages
- Loss vacation time or sick leave from work
- Compensation for intangibles, which can not be regularly calculated
- Inability to attend to daily activities due to pain, suffering, and the inconvenience and frustrations of having your body or mind impaired
The idea is to return the injured person to the same position she occupied before the injury, as best as possible, keeping in mind that many times no amount of money can restore the person 100% in a catastrophic case. Money can replace lost wages, past medical expenses, maintenance medical care, lifetime medical care, and can many times be used to take away the moments that make up a dull day.
We can help you make the proper determinations during our initial and ongoing consultations with you. Please contact our office if you have questions about compensation due to a serious personal injury.
I was injured, now what do I do?
After you contact our office, we will gather the facts to determine how the injury occurred, and make a preliminary assessment of responsibility. For example, a pedestrian that darts out in front of a car will likely take the lion’s share of responsibility if the motorist driving is within the speed limit and maintaining a proper lookout. On the other hand, if the motorist is speeding, going too fast for conditions, texting, or has been drinking, and runs over a pedestrian on a crosswalk, then fault will be established differently.
We try to ascertain what happened, obtain police reports, take pictures of the scene of the incident, talk to witnesses, otherwise preserve evidence, and then we’ll make a preliminary assessment of the degree of responsibility of all of those involved.
What is your experience with Personal Injury cases?
Elliott Barrow has been involved in representing those suffering Serious Personal Injury and Wrongful Death for more than 30 years.
Do you offer free, initial consultations for Personal Injury cases?
Yes. We understand that you or a loved one has experienced a significant loss, and our concerns for you and your family are heartfelt. We encourage you to engage with an experienced lawyer before the circumstances of your case have changed. If you’ve suffered a serious loss, please don’t delay. Delay works to the advantage of those who are responsible for your losses. Our team will be happy to schedule a time to review your case immediately. Contact our office now.
What can I expect in my initial consultation?
When you meet with our firm, we will gather information from you to assist us in analyzing your legal challenges. Specifically, we will:
- Investigate the circumstances of your situation
- Apply legal principles to the results of the investigation
- Provide a case evaluation
- Explain whether we believe you have a valid claim or defense
- Work with you to develop a plan of action to achieve your goals
The entire process normally takes about an hour, and by the end of our consultation we will have an understanding of all pertinent issues, those that can be resolved by agreement as well as those that may require mediation or litigation. A plan of action will be developed, and financial arrangements will be made.
How can I contact you?
We welcome you to contact our staff at our office during our business hours below. However, if you have an immediate request, please email us directly at email@example.com or complete our online contact form.
Barrow Law Firm
1051 Chuck Dawley Blvd
Mt. Pleasant, SC 29464
843.352.1440 (phone) | 877.434.4404 (toll free)
Mon – Fr: 9:00am – 5:00pm
Sat: By Appointment
Sun: By Appointment