South Carolinians should not have to fear that they will be injured by a drunk driver when traveling in our beautiful state, but sadly that fear is a reality for many. South Carolina consistently ranks as one of the worst states in the U.S. for drunk driving incidents. While our firm cannot prevent these wrecks from occurring, we can hold drunk drivers accountable for the damage they cause. Accountability is exactly what Joye Law Firm attorney Brent Arant was pursuing when he represented a woman and her son who were injured at the hands of an intoxicated driver.
T-Boned by a Drunk Driver in Berkeley County
On January 19, 2020, a young mother and her 4-year-old son were leaving church. While driving on St. James Avenue (U.S. 176) in Goose Creek, S.C. our client proceeded through the intersection at Old Monck’s Corner Rd. and Bridgetown Rd. Unexpectedly, a vehicle traveling on Bridgetown Rd ran the red light and collided with significant force into the side of our client’s vehicle.
The Goose Creek Police Department arrived on the scene to take statements and detected alcohol on the breath of the at-fault driver. The driver refused a field sobriety test and was arrested. She was later charged with DUI. The damage to both cars was severe and they had to be towed from the scene.
Injuries and Medical Treatment
As a result of the collision, our client sustained a serious neck injury. An MRI of her cervical spine revealed a disc herniation at C4-5. During the months that followed the wreck, our client received intensive treatment, including several rounds of Cervical Epidural Steroid injections (CESI) and physical therapy. Over a year after the wreck, our client was still suffering from worsening pain in her neck and left arm. Her only option was surgery. Despite having a small child at home to care for, she was forced to undergo cervical disc replacement surgery in October 2021. The torn disc was surgically removed and replaced with an artificial one during the surgery. She faced a tough recovery both physically and mentally. Because of the terror she experienced in the wreck and subsequent suffering it caused, she experienced anxiety and PTSD and was treated by a mental health counselor to help her manage her symptoms.
The total amount of medical bills incurred by the plaintiff at the time of the initial demand was close to $100,000, reflecting the severity of her injuries and subsequent medical treatment.
Achieving a Just Settlement
Arant and his team, including Case Manager Shawn, approached the case with a methodical and thorough investigation. They diligently navigated through several layers of insurance coverage to ensure that all available sources of compensation were pursued. During the investigation, it came to light that the drunk driver had been charged with another DUI offense during the litigation process, highlighting a lack of remorse and accountability for her prior actions.
“We knew the community would stand behind our client and send a strong message, and we made sure the defense knew that, too. The tri-county area will not tolerate this kind of reckless, repetitive behavior that endangers its citizens,” explained Arant. “The insurance company’s only choice was to agree with us and bring the case to its just end.”
Through strategic negotiation and effective communication, Arant successfully compelled the insurance company, Geico, to agree to a settlement and pay every penny of their coverage. In January 2023, a settlement amount of $1.18 million was reached, ensuring just compensation for the plaintiff, and providing a clear deterrent to potential offenders.
Sending a Message on the Consequences of Drunk Driving
The successful resolution of this case represents a significant achievement for Arant and the Joye Law Firm. By securing a substantial settlement for our client, we not only provided the much-needed financial support for her recovery but also sent a powerful message to the community. “We hope this result will send a message that reckless actions have severe consequences and deter this type of conduct,” says Arant.
While we wish drunk driving collisions did not occur, we are grateful to be able to help compensate victims for their losses. If you or someone you care about has suffered injuries in a crash at the hands of a drunk driver, please seek legal guidance. Joye Law Firm practices across the entire state of South Carolina and has five office locations to best serve our clients, we can take your call day or night for a no-obligation, free review of your case.
Disclaimer: Past Results do not guarantee future outcomes.