If I am the victim in a hit and run, what should I do?

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If I am the victim in a hit and run, what should I do?

I was involved in a hit and run. The owner was present but was not driving at the time. The owner was the passenger. Both the driver and the owner ran off leaving the owners car. The driver later turned himself in to the police. I have submitted claims to both the owners and the drivers’ respective insurance companies and both claims were denied. I know I can sue but what should I do?

Asked on October 13, 2011 under Accident Law, Illinois

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Assuming you don't have your own insurance which will reimburse or compensate you, all you can do is sue--that's your chance to prove that the other party(ies) were at fault and are responsible for your losses or damages (e.g. medical bills, property damage, lost wages, possibly pain and suffering, for serious-enough injuries). You don't have to take the insurer's denials as the last word, but may sue if you feel you are are entitled to compensation.

You would sue the driver (since if he drove carelessly, recklessly, etc., he is personally responsible) and the car's owner, too (since the owner of a vehicle is responsible for the actions of anyone he or she permits to drive the car); by suing both, you'd increase your odds of ultimately being paid. Good luck.


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