If you are involved in a hit and run auto accident, you can potentially face huge financial costs. If you were hit and injured, in addition to recovering from your injuries, you should be ready to take certain steps to protect your rights.
An article at AllLaw offers more advice on what to do in the wake of a hit and run accident. The most obvious step is to track down the other party, using their license plate number, photo or video evidence, or eyewitness accounts. If that doesn’t work and the driver doesn’t turn themselves in, then you have two options (depending on the state):
1. File a no-fault insurance claim with your own insurer if you live in the District of Columbia or one of the 12 “no-fault” states.
2. File an uninsured/underinsured motorist claim. This is your only course of action in most states where the hit-and-run driver cannot be located.
Findlaw offers two more pieces of general advice. First, regardless of the state, always contact your insurance company as soon as possible. Second, consult an attorney just after you contact your insurance company.
A hit-and-run accident attorney can help you deal with the insurance company if they are slow to pay. More importantly, an attorney will help you sue the responsible driver for financial losses and pain and suffering. A law firm with personal injury experience, like Carter Mario, can recover your financial losses and a little more, if the hit-and-run driver can be found.
The individual who was injured in the accident is able to sue for medical expenses, lost wages, pain, and suffering. The individual who fled the scene is also liable to face a judgment for punitive damages, which are a way of punishing and deterring morally reprehensible conduct like fleeing the scene of an injury accident. If the person suing was not injured, he or she is still entitled to be fully compensated for any costs resulting from the accident.
If you suffered injuries and serious financial losses in a hit and run auto accident, you need to discuss your case with an experienced accident attorney as soon as possible after the accident. Do not wait until the police find the other driver.