Traveling During the Holiday

Skilled Charleston Injury Attorneys Resolve Complex Injury Accident Cases

The holidays are here, and as a result many South Carolina residents will be traveling outside of the state to visit friends and family members in other parts of the country. Similarly, many others will be traveling from all across the country to visit loved ones in the Palmetto State. Just because the holidays are supposed to be times of merriment and fellowship does not mean that accidents cannot happen. A trip to a Myrtle Beach restaurant can result in a serious slip and fall for family visiting from California. A Clinton, South Carolina family can be struck by a negligent driver while traveling through Florida. When vacation-related injuries occur, the already-complicated recovery process becomes even more complex.

A Question of Jurisdiction and Venue for Your South Carolina Injury

Vacation-related injuries are particularly complex because jurisdiction and venue are likely to be an issue. Both issues concern where your personal injury case can and should be filed. A court must have jurisdiction over both you and the allegedly-negligent person in order to be able to hear your case and award you compensation, if you are successful. Similarly, a court must be an appropriate venue and be convenient for all of the parties.

Looking first to jurisdiction, there may be more than one court with jurisdiction to hear the case. If you are a South Carolina resident injured while on vacation in another state, you may be able to file your case in:

  • The state in which the allegedly-negligent defendant resides or, if the defendant is an entity such as a corporation, a state in which the defendant does business (which may or may not be in South Carolina); or
  • The state in which the accident occurred.

(If out-of-town friends or family were visiting you in South Carolina and were injured while in Charleston or elsewhere in the state, they could file their case in South Carolina or in whatever state the allegedly-negligent defendant resides or does business.)

The plaintiff must also file his or case in an appropriate venue. A court that has jurisdiction over the parties in a lawsuit is also an appropriate venue if it is convenient for the parties and witnesses, if the court is able to easily apply the relevant law, and if evidence relevant to the case can be easily produced for the court.

If I Am Injured in a State Other than My Home State, Should I Hire a Local Attorney?

You know to consult with an attorney after suffering a serious injury or loss, but should the attorney you consult with be licensed in a particular state? It is advisable to begin by speaking with an attorney licensed in your home state (whether South Carolina or otherwise). Depending on your situation and the circumstances surrounding your injury, you may be able to file suit against the negligent defendant in your home state. This attorney can advise you whether you need to retain counsel in another state in order to proceed with your claim.

Under the judicial rules of some states, your local, home state attorney may be able to assist in representing you in another state under the general supervision of an attorney licensed in that other state. Your home state attorney will be able to advise you whether this is possible in your case.

Consult With a Columbia Personal Injury Lawyer Today

Whether you were injured in South Carolina while visiting friends and family or you live in South Carolina and were injured while out-of-state, your first call should be to the knowledgeable and seasoned legal team of Joye Law Firm. We will carefully review the facts and circumstances of your injury accident and can provide you with guidance and advice as to what state court(s) will have jurisdiction over your case and which court(s) will be an appropriate venue for your case.

If your case can be brought in South Carolina, trust the personal injury lawyers of Joye Law Firm to use their decades of combined legal experience to aggressively pursue compensation on your behalf. We are intimately familiar with the procedural and substantive laws applicable to personal injury cases, and we will strive to help you obtain a favorable judgment that will provide you with full and fair compensation. Call our firm, or contact Joye Law Firm online, for assistance today.

About the Author

Mark Joye is the Head of the Litigation Department at the Joye Law Firm. A Board-Certified Trial Advocate with nearly 30 years of litigation experience, he currently serves on the Board of Governors for the American Association for Justice and is a past president of the South Carolina Association for Justice. In a recent trial, Joye headed a trial team that secured $17 million for a family killed in a tractor-trailer accident.

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