A car accident is never an anticipated occurrence, but there is a chance you will be involved in one at some point in your lifetime. Being in an accident is bad enough but what do you do if the other driver flees the scene? How do you get compensated for the property damage and possible personal injury that has occurred?
What Constitutes a Hit and Run?
The other driver’s choice to flee the scene is considered a hit and run situation. A hit and run occurs when a person is accused of not stopping after an accident has taken place which has resulted in vehicle damage, property damage, injury or death. This is a very serious criminal charge. Depending on the details of the situation, this offense can be considered a misdemeanor or a felony.
If you’ve been hit, were injured, and the other driver left the scene of a car accident, you may be covered under the Uninsured Motorist clause of your vehicle insurance policy.
Don’t Leave the Scene
First, try to remain as calm as you can. Assess your physical situation and that of your passengers. Second, call 911 and let them know if you or anyone in your vehicle has been injured. They will dispatch both the police and emergency services. The police will take the necessary information and create a police report. If you have already been transported to the hospital, the police will follow up with you after you’ve been admitted.
You may feel like moving your car. Stay put unless there is imminent danger in leaving the car as-is. If you are in further danger and you are able to drive the car, move to a close location where it is not impeding traffic. If possible, take pictures of the accident before you move your car. Also, if there was a witness to the accident, try to get their contact information.
Even if you feel like you haven’t been injured, it’s important to pay attention to your body for any stiffness or pain that you may start feeling. Sometimes symptoms appear a few days after an accident. At this time, seek medical treatment, then call a personal injury attorney.
Call an Attorney
Even if you don’t think that you are badly injured, you should still seek an attorney to get compensation for your medical bills and pain and suffering. You should report this accident to your insurance right away, to discuss your personal property damage. However, don’t do a recorded statement. You should decline the recorded statement until you have an attorney representing you. Then the attorney will be present during the recorded statement. Insurance companies typically record all of the phone calls that they receive, and they are obligated to turn all of their evidence over to the police. If you’ve said anything that wasn’t accurate or you don’t want something to be used against you in court, you don’t want a record of that information floating around.
If you have been injured, handling a Personal Injury claim yourself can be very difficult. It will take weeks, maybe months of back and forth with your insurance company to reach a settlement. An attorney already knows what your case should be worth and how to maneuver through the process. Also, the attorney will spend the time and effort obtaining each and every medical record that is incurred during the treatment phase. All you have to focus on is taking care of yourself, getting to your medical provider’s appointments and getting better. We will handle all of the parties that are a part of your case. The attorney and staff will be available to you throughout the process at all times.
Call us today for a FREE consultation.