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Car Wreck Kills Woman: Modified Comparative System For Negligence

Personal Injury AttorneyA three-vehicle collision on Interstate 26 resulted in the death of a Columbia, South Carolina woman. The South Carolina Highway Patrol reported the accident occurring when all three cars involved headed east near Piney Grove Road when an SUV spun out of control, flipping over the interstate.

Thereafter, the SUV struck another SUV. The second SUV flipped over the median, killing the 53-year-old woman driver. While the first SUV was at a stop, it was hit by a third car. The only reported casualty was that of the woman; no one else was injured. The South Carolina Highway Patrol is investigating the accident for possible negligence.

Negligence is defined as “the failure to exercise the standard of care that a reasonably prudent person would have exercised under similar circumstances.” In South Carolina, there are four essential elements: (1) that there was a duty of care owed by the defendant; (2) the plaintiff must show that the defendant breached that duty of care; (3) the plaintiff must illustrate that the breach of such duty caused the injury to the plaintiff; and (4) plaintiff must show damages.

Different states utilize different forms of negligence systems. South Carolina uses the modified comparative system for proving negligence. This is also known as the 51 percent rule, and under this system, a plaintiff may only receive damages from a defendant if the plaintiff himself can prove that he is less than 51 percent responsible for his injuries. Therefore, the defendant is only responsible for those injuries he caused, and further, he must be more than 50 percent at fault.

If you or a loved one has been involved in a car wreck and have suffered personal injuries, you may be entitled to contribution for your injuries. Call the law offices of Reeves, Aiken & Hightower, LLP for a consultation toll free at 877-374-5999.