If you are facing the unfortunate consequences of a hit-and-run accident, continue reading and reach out to our skilled personal injury attorneys.
What are the consequences of a hit-and-run?
At-fault drivers in a hit-and-run case often encounter significant consequences. At the very least, they will face a misdemeanor charge, but the possibilities differ relying on the case’s precise details. For instance, if you suffered injuries or lost someone in a hit-and-run collision and either you or the police can pinpoint the driver that hit you, they will almost surely face felony charges.
Some other possible consequences of a hit-and-run accident include the following:
- The driver’s insurance premiums will increase dramatically.
- If the at-fault driver does not have insurance, they face further penalties for driving without insurance.
- If the police find the driver committed any other crimes, such as driving under the influence, at the time of the hit-and-run accident, they can also encounter charges for those crimes.
- The driver could encounter a civil lawsuit.
- The department of motor vehicles will likely implement even more penalties.
- Every accident has special circumstances, and each state has its own laws governing hit-and-run accidents.
- These cases can quickly become very complicated and difficult. You may find it essential to pursue legal action, and a personal injury lawyer can supply an expert opinion on this type of case.
What are the common causes of hit-and-run accidents?
Hit-and-run accidents can occur almost anywhere, and more times than not, the driver who hit you panicked and ran without considering the consequences. Some other reasons a driver may run include the following:
- They failed to purchase the proper car insurance and do not want to face the financial repercussions. The immediate reason that people drive without insurance is that they cannot afford it, so it is safe to believe that they would struggle to pay out-of-pocket for damages.
- They were driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Even a first-offense DUI can come with big legal consequences, and the drunk driver faces substantial consequences if their actions result in injuries.
- They have outstanding warrants or other legal issues. Most states need you to contact the police for any accident resulting in injuries or significant property damage. Someone wanted by the police may run to avoid getting caught.
If you are the victim of a hit-and-run collision, there are still a few essential things you can do to protect your rights immediately after. First, commit the license plate number to memory or take a photo if you can get to your phone in time. Then contact the police regardless. Next, take pictures of the damages and the surrounding scene before seeking medical attention. Even if you feel okay, you should see a doctor as soon as possible in case you have internal or latent injuries. Lastly, think about speaking with an attorney about what you can do next to obtain compensation for your losses.
How can you cover the damages from a hit and run?
Just like with any car accident, you usually turn to insurance for compensation. Without information about the other driver, your only option is to file a claim with your insurer. If you have uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, you should at least have a way to repair or replace your damaged vehicle. If you live in one of the 12 no-fault states, you will turn to your personal injury protection insurance to cover medical bills and lost wages associated with your injuries. You may also check with your health insurance provider to see if any necessary treatments for your injuries are covered under your policy.
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