Hit and Run Accident: What do I do?
February 1, 2019 | Personal Injury
Kristina Georgiou, Associate
What to do if You are Involved in a Hit and Run
If you are in a car accident or collision and the other driver leaves the scene without talking to you or leaving their insurance information, it’s called a hit and run accident. Whether you were in your vehicle when it was hit or someone dented it in the parking lot when you weren’t around, you have been a victim of a hit and run accident. We are here to help you fight the insurance companies to get every penny that you are owed to pay for your damaged vehicle or any injuries you may have sustained.
FAQs About Hit and Run Accidents
What Do I Do After a Hit and Run Accident?
You will be dealing with a major adrenaline rush and immense stress if you’re a victim of a hit and run. It is important to stay calm and make sure that you or anyone else involved are ok. After that you need to gather as much information as you can.
It is important to get as much information as you can because more information:
- Increases the chances of police officer tracking down whoever it was that hit you
- Helps your car insurance company finalize its decision about your claim
First, get as much information as you can about the car that hit you, such as:
- Model and Make of the car
- Color of the vehicle
- License plate number.
- Other identifying features
Also, look around for witnesses and get their names and contact information. You can provide the police and insurance company with the information for your case and for the investigation.
Finally, take the following steps before leaving the scene:
- Record the time and location that the hit and run accident occurred
- Take pictures of the scene and any evidence like part let from the other car
- Take pictures of your car to show damage and possible paint from the other car
What if my car was hit when I wasn’t in it?
If the hit and run occurred when you were away from your parked car, you still need to gather as much information as possible. Witnesses and photos are also important even in this case of a hit and run accident.
It is important to make sure you can prove that you are not trying to defraud your insurance company. It is important to show that you have a valid claim for your hit and run case. Some drivers will drive recklessly, hit an object and try to claim that they were the victim of a hit and run. Because there are untrustworthy individuals you need to be able to prove that you are not attempting fraud yourself; the best way to do this is to gather all the proof you can while you are able to.
Filing a Police Report
According to the DMV, When someone hits you and drives off, you may feel compelled to chase them in your car. This can cause you to drive recklessly and get into another accident. You could also be the victim of retaliation from the other driver. A better idea is to call the police as soon as possible. File an accident report that includes the names of any witnesses and other important details. Even if the police do not find the driver who hit you, having a police report can speed up the auto insurance claims process. The police report can also give you an official document to rely upon later.
Filing a Hit and Run Claim
If you can identify the individual who hit you, it is possible to find the insurance information from law enforcement or from your insurance company. Then you can work and file a claim with their car insurance company. If the driver who is responsible for the hit and run did not carry adequate protection, you can try to get your money with a lawsuit and a hit and run accident claim. If you are unable to identify the person who hit you, you can seek payment from your insurance company to pay for your repairs and medical care. In a few states, car insurance companies waive your deductible for hit and run claims.
Will a Hit and Run Claim Raise My insurance Rates?
Whether a hit and run claim will raise your car insurance rates depends on what state you live in. Your rates should not go up at all so long as you are not deemed responsible for the accident. You should speak to your insurance provider about any questions you have about your policy. They can explain the details of what is and is not covered and how claims affect your payments.
Contact Us Today
Victims of a hit and run accident often feel angry and confused, and it can be unclear how to get compensation for damages and injuries. However, there are steps you can take to create a smoother experience, should you be in this unfortunate situation. If you have any questions about a hit and run accident you have been in or what your next legal steps should be, contact us today. We are here to help you get the compensation you deserve for a hit and run accident that you have been in. Contact a car accident lawyer now to get started and to give yourself a fighting chance.
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