Charleston, South Carolina is a great city. There’s a reason why the Holy City is continuously ranked as the best city in America year after year. As a result, tourism is by far one of the leading economic factors that feed Charleston’s communities. An estimated nearly 5 million people visit Charleston every year. However, with an increase in tourism comes an increase in people and traffic, and an overall increase in the likelihood that accidents will occur.
With so many people visiting Charleston on a daily basis, it is inevitable that accidents will happen when traveling and exploring our lovely city. From car and boating accidents to product defects and premises liability accidents, these types of injuries occur even while people are on vacation. When you have been injured due to the negligence of another person or corporation while on vacation in Charleston, South Carolina, you may be wondering what you should do in regards to hiring legal representation. Should you hire a lawyer back in your home state or should you hire a local attorney here in Charleston, South Carolina?
You Need A Local Personal Injury Lawyer For Your Charleston Injury Claim
If you have been injured in an accident while visiting Charleston, or anywhere else in South Carolina for that matter, your claim will need to be filed in South Carolina and in the county where the accident occurred. Although not convenient for the plaintiff, that is the way the legal system works. Therefore, when looking for a personal injury lawyer to handle your accident claim, you will need to hire an attorney that is admitted to practice in South Carolina. Only lawyers that are admitted in South Carolina and in good standing with the South Carolina Bar Association are allowed to practice in the state of South Carolina. A South Carolina personal injury lawyer will also be familiar with South Carolina law, the local judges and court system, and likely have a local network of expert witnesses.
Lastly, you will also need to find a lawyer who has the means and technology to handle your case over a long distance. Our law firm can handle your initial consultation over the telephone and we schedule videoconferences for important meetings with our out-of-state clients. While we can handle the initial consultation and most of the litigation process without the client physically coming to the office, if a lawsuit is ultimately filed and prosecuted, you will have to be able to appear for your deposition, attend the mediation, and appear for the trial of your case.
We Help Out-Of-State Residents Who Have Been Injured In Charleston, South Carolina
One option our law firm always considers for out-of-state residents that have been involved in an accident while visiting South Carolina is the possibility of filing your case in federal court. There are certain jurisdictional requirements that must be met but assuming you and the defendant are residents of different states under the law, and your damages exceed $75,000.00, you have the potential to do so. The benefit of filing your claim in federal court is that it is a much more streamlined process. Federal court requires the parties to enter agreed-upon scheduling orders so that you know specific dates certain events in the litigation process will occur. Federal court also allows you to get a date certain to try your case, meaning you will know well in advance when your day in court will be (as opposed to state court where you are on a rolling docket and may not know until the day before).
Lastly, many attorneys simply prefer to try cases in federal court because there are certain trial tactics and psychological benefits that come into play. In essence, many jurors simply have a preconceived notion that cases are much more “important” when they are litigated in federal court, which can be a benefit to plaintiffs under certain circumstances. An experienced South Carolina personal injury lawyer will be able to explore your options and explain to you in detail what is best for your case.
We want everyone who visits our lovely city to enjoy everything Charleston has to offer. In the unfortunate event that you are the victim of a car accident, boating accident (including cruise ship accidents), defective product, premises liability, or any other type of personal injury accident, the Law Office of Jared C. Williams, LLC, has experience helping out-of-state residents in their time of need. Please feel welcome to contact our office to discuss your options and get a free consultation about your injury case.