Why Do I Need to Hire a Hit and Run Accident Attorney?
Getting into a car accident can cause stressful and traumatic injuries. If the driver who caused the wreck fled the scene, it only adds insult to your injuries, and you likely feel scared and uncertain as to what to do next. After all, you shouldn’t bear the costs of your injuries and other losses since the accident was not your fault. But how can you pursue compensation if you don’t know the driver’s identity?
Pursuing compensation following a car accident another driver caused presents complex challenges under the best circumstances. If the at-fault driver fled the accident, it can add to your difficulties in obtaining compensation and lengthen the time you must wait to get the compensation you need and the justice you deserve.
Contact an experienced hit and run accident attorney as soon as possible after the crash. A car accident lawyer may have the skills, knowledge, and resources to identify the driver, and they can offer other options for you to get compensation even if they can’t locate the hit and run driver.
The Benefits of Hiring an Attorney After a Hit and Run Accident
Hiring an attorney after a hit and run accident can provide you with:
Legal Knowledge and Guidance
Hit and run accident cases can involve complex legal issues and procedures. An experienced personal injury attorney can provide you with valuable legal advice and guidance throughout the process. They understand the intricacies of hit and run cases and can help you understand your rights, legal options, and potential outcomes.
Investigation and Evidence Gathering
An attorney can conduct a thorough investigation into the hit and run accident to identify the responsible party. They have the resources and network to gather evidence, such as witness statements, surveillance footage, and forensic analysis. This evidence can identify the at-fault driver and build a strong case for you.
Protecting Your Rights
Dealing with insurance companies and legal proceedings can overwhelm you when you’re recovering from injuries or dealing with emotional trauma. An attorney can represent you and protect your rights throughout the process. They can handle all communication with insurance companies, negotiate for you, and advocate for you.
A skilled attorney understands how to assess the full extent of your damages and calculate fair compensation. They can recover damages for medical expenses, property damage, lost income, pain and suffering, and other losses you may have incurred due to the hit and run accident. By building a strong case and presenting compelling arguments, they can maximize the compensation you recover.
Handling Legal Procedures and Paperwork
An attorney can take care of all the necessary but complex and time-consuming legal procedures and paperwork for you, handling everything correctly and within the required timelines. This saves you from the stress and confusion of dealing with legal formalities and allows you to focus on your recovery.
In some cases, a hit and run accident may require filing a lawsuit to pursue compensation. If your case proceeds to litigation, an attorney can provide skilled representation in court. They can present your case, argue on your behalf, cross-examine witnesses, and handle all aspects of the legal proceedings to increase your chances of a favorable outcome.
Overall, hiring an attorney after a hit and run accident can provide you with invaluable support, legal expertise, and peace of mind. They can help you navigate the complexities of the legal system, protect your rights, and secure the compensation you deserve for your injuries and losses.
Locating the Hit and Run Driver
An attorney can also work with local law enforcement to identify the driver and bring them to justice. When you report the accident and inform law enforcement that the driver fled, the police will investigate the matter and provide a detailed account of the accident.
However, your attorney can investigate the matter as well. They may employ other resources to expedite the process. For example, your lawyer could hire a private investigator who may track down the hit and run driver.
Eyewitness testimony can help. For instance, a witness may have noted the vehicle’s license plate number or can provide a detailed description of the hit and run driver. Additionally, a local auto repair shop may report working on a vehicle that matches the at-fault vehicle’s description.
What Are My Options for Compensation if I Can’t Locate the Hit and Run Driver?
Your options for obtaining compensation if you can’t locate the hit and run driver will depend on the state where you live and the uninsured motorist coverage you have, if any.
In no-fault insurance states, like Florida, drivers typically rely on their own auto insurance and must maintain the following levels of uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage:
- At least $10,000 in Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage
- At least $10,000 of property damage liability coverage
At-fault insurance states, such as Washington, do not require drivers to buy separate uninsured/underinsured coverage. However, insurance carriers must offer the coverage for purchase.
If you have UM coverage, you can file a claim with your own insurance company to seek compensation for your injuries. Additionally, PIP insurance coverage pays for medical expenses, lost income, and other related costs, regardless of who caused the accident. If you have PIP coverage, it can provide you with some compensation for your injuries and losses, even if you cannot identify the hit and run driver.
Also, many states, including Florida and Washington, have crime victim compensation programs that offer financial assistance to victims of violent crimes, which can include hit and run accidents. You must qualify for the program, and you can speak with your attorney about whether you could pursue compensation through the program and the eligibility requirements.
Hit and Run Accident Lawsuits
If you exhaust all other options for compensation, you can discuss with your attorney the option of filing a civil lawsuit against the unidentified hit and run driver. Most often, plaintiffs name “John Doe” as the defendant in these cases. Your attorney can explain the process and guide you through it. However, the success of a civil lawsuit depends on the availability of evidence, the strength of your case, and the applicable laws in your jurisdiction.
Also, you have a limited amount of time to file a lawsuit in civil court, so contact an attorney immediately to learn about your options and start the process.
Consult an Experienced Hit and Run Accident Lawyer Today
Not knowing the identity of the driver in a hit and run accident only adds to your frustration and stress about how you will receive compensation. Despite the challenges involved in obtaining compensation after a hit and run accident, you have options.
Act quickly and contact a personal injury attorney in Tampa to prepare your claim and submit it to your insurance company. A lawyer can handle all aspects of the process to relieve you of some of the stress and worry so that you can focus on your physical recovery. Your attorney can also work diligently to identify the hit and run driver and hold them accountable for your pain and suffering.
Request A Free Consultation Today!
Boohoff Law P.A. – Seattle Office
2200 6th Avenue, Suite 768 Seattle,
Phone: (877) 999-9999