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Columbia Personal Injury Lawyer > Sumter Hit & Run Accident Lawyer

Sumter Hit & Run Accident Lawyer

Law enforcement investigators resolve fewer than 10 percent of these crashes. But the Sumter hit & run accident lawyers at the Stanley Law Group favorably resolve over 90 percent of these claims.

People flee the scene of accidents for various reasons. Some fear the consequences, usually because they have no insurance or questionable citizenship status. Others don’t know they caused a crash or don’t know they have a duty to stop (South Carolina law requires all motorists to stop and render aid, regardless of accident fault). Still others are aware of the aforementioned low law enforcement closure percentage, and they simply believe they won’t get caught.

Since most hit-and-run investigations start from square one, police investigators often quickly give up. That’s especially true because, due to the burden of proof in criminal court. They have such a high mountain to climb. More on that below.

But a Sumter hit & run accident lawyer is dedicated to victims. Lawyers don’t give up until they obtain the best possible results under the circumstances.

Sumter Hit & Run Accident Lawyers in Criminal and Civil Court

These two forums serve different purposes. Criminal courts punish offenders. If you were accused of hit & run, we can connect you with a top defense attorney. Furthermore, since South Carolina is a comparative fault state, you may still be entitled to compensation.

However, we primarily focus on hit & run victims and their rights in civil courts. These courts don’t “blame” anyone for anything. Instead, they compensate victims. This compensation usually includes money for economic losses, such as medical bills, and noneconomic losses, such as pain and suffering.

The burden of proof is different in these courts as well. Criminal court prosecutors must establish guilt, or legal fault, beyond any reasonable doubt. A Sumter hit & run accident lawyer must establish negligence, or a lack of care, by a preponderance of the evidence, or more likely than not.

In other words, to prove guilt in criminal court, the state must call a competent witness to the stand who got a good look at the driver at or near the time of the wreck. But a civil lawyer must usually only identify the vehicle’s owner. It’s more likely than not that the owner was driving the car.

Evidence in Hit & Run Claims

Because of the lower burden of proof in civil court, a little evidence usually goes a long way. Some examples include:

  • Surveillance Video Footage: Cameras almost never record footage of drivers’ faces, especially at night. But they often do record partial plate numbers and vehicle damage, even at night.
  • Additional Witness Statements: Chances are, somebody saw something. However for various reasons, these people do not voluntarily loiter at accident scenes to speak with police officers. Private attorneys, often working with private investigators, find these witnesses and secure their cooperation.
  • Stakeouts: Sitting and waiting for a vehicle to appear may be the most important evidence-gathering tool. Most people drive the same route pretty much every day and night. So, criminals often return to the scene of the crime.

The minimum burden of proof is enough to prove a case, but not enough to obtain maximum compensation. Minimum efforts usually yield minimum results. There’s usually a relationship between the amount of evidence a victim presents and the amount of money jurors award.

Count on a Dedicated Sumter County Lawyer

Injury victims are entitled to substantial compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced Sumter hit & run accident lawyer, contact the Stanley Law Group. We routinely handle matters throughout the Palmetto State.

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