What to Do After a Hit and Run Accident

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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Written by Jeffrey Johnson
Insurance Lawyer Jeffrey Johnson

UPDATED: Jul 16, 2021

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If you have been injured in a hit-and-run accident, your actions afterwards will impact your ability to find the responsible party and collect the compensation you need.  If the police are able to track down and identify the party responsible for your hit-and-run injuries, you can pursue a claim with his or her insurance company, or file a lawsuit.  If the party responsible is not found, you will need to file a claim with your own insurance company.  In either event, you can consult an experienced attorney for assistance in getting the compensation to cover your damages.

Immediately After the Hit-and-Run Accident

After being injured in a hit-and-run, you are likely to be disoriented, in pain, and not functioning at your best.  If possible, you, or someone you trust, should take the following steps at the scene or as soon as possible:

  • Remember everything you can about the car that hit you, including the color and model and state on the license plate. 
  • If you weren’t aware of the details at the time, try to remember where the driver was positioned relative to you. That might tell you roughly how high the driver was sitting in the car, which could jog your memory about whether it was an SUV or a low-rider.
  • Take photos of the scene – although your version of events will likely be given significant weight, it does not hurt to have photographic evidence to support your story.
  • Get the medical attention you need, and have your physician give you a long term diagnosis that projects the ongoing treatment and rehabilitation you will need.
  • If you speak with your insurance company, stick to the facts and avoid casual offerings such as “I’m fine,” or “I should have seen him coming” – anything you say can give the company a reason to deny or short pay a claim.
  • If the police can track down the responsible driver, consult an attorney for your legal options

Hit-and-run injuries can result in expensive and ongoing medical treatment, so it is important that you take the steps that will help you recover money to assist your recovery.  If you have questions about your specific case, contact an experienced personal injury attorney for a consultation.

Uninsured Motorist Coverage and Hit-and-Run Accidents

If a hit-and-run driver or an uninsured driver causes your injuries, the uninsured motorist coverage portion of your car insurance policy should pay for damages. Uninsured motorist coverage is designed specifically to protect you in the event of an accident with someone with no liability insurance coverage. A hit-and-run driver is, for this purpose, usually treated the same way. The uninsured motorist coverage in your policy pays for medical treatment, rehabilitation, loss of wages and other damages. If you have this coverage but don’t know the details, or are unsure if you have this coverage, contact your auto insurance carrier to find out.

Getting Help after a Hit-and-Run Accident

If uninsured motorist coverage is not part of your insurance policy, it might be more difficult to recover anything from your insurance but your basic medical bills. Talk to an experienced personal injury attorney in your state to find out if you have a chance to recover what your hit-and-run accident claim is worth. You may have your case assessed for free by completing the Free Advice case evaluation form, which involves no cost and no further obligation.

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