From individuals and families to rideshare providers, buses, and commercial truckers, Los Angeles roadways are consistently buzzing with traffic as residents and visitors hustle to get from point A to point B.
To keep everyone safe, the state of California has traffic laws requiring everyone to behave responsibly. The majority of people obey the rules of the road, but others are not as conscientious, and accidents do occur. Collisions can be devastating for victims, with severe financial, physical, and emotional repercussions.
Most of the time, at-fault drivers stop and face the consequences of their actions. However, other drivers flee the scene, a phenomenon known as a hit-and-run. In addition to legal charges, hit-and-run drivers may be required to recompense their victims for losses.
If you or a family member suffered from a hit-and-run car accident, the Los Angeles hit-and-run accident lawyers at Ben Crump Law, PLLC, can help you pursue justice. Call 800-959-1444 to speak with a team member to schedule a free consultation.
California Car Accident Laws
In California, drivers are expected to pull over at a safe location and provide “reasonable assistance” to the other parties after a collision under CA Veh Code § 20002. This may include getting insurance and contact information, calling an ambulance if a victim needs medical attention, or notifying law enforcement. It can also include leaving a note with contact information if the at-fault driver cannot locate the property owner. This may suffice if a driver hits a parked car in a lot, for example.
A hit-and-run is any incident in which a driver flees the scene without notifying law enforcement or exchanging information with the other parties involved. This is a criminal offense in California.
In addition to criminal charges, the state of California allows victims to bring a civil suit against hit and run drivers. Civil action can allow victims to pursue compensation for their losses.
Victims must abide by the statute of limitations, the timeframe within which someone can bring a lawsuit against another party after an incident. In California, the statute of limitations for a personal injury case, including a hit-and-run vehicle collision, is two years, per California Code of Civil Procedure § 335.1.
Seeking justice for a hit and run incident involves an intricate legal process. In addition to identifying the at-fault driver, someone must gather evidence, design a strategy, and present their case to the court to prove the defendant caused the collision and knowingly departed without fulfilling their obligation to provide reasonable assistance.
A Los Angeles hit and run accident lawyer can help.
For a free legal consultation with a hit and run accidents lawyer serving Los Angeles, call 800-598-7557
Types of Compensation for Hit and Run Accidents
Hit and run accidents can cause property damage as well as physical injury and emotional pain and suffering that may last for months or years. Damages can include the cost to repair or replace property, such as a car or building, and the cost of immediate and ongoing medical care. Other losses can include lost wages and diminished earning capacity, as well as emotional trauma. If the collision is fatal, the victim’s family may seek compensation for funeral and burial costs.
If you or a loved one are a victim of a hit-and-run collision, an attorney can support you by seeking the following types of compensation on your behalf:
- Cost to repair or replace property, including the cost of a rental car while yours is in the shop.
- Lost income or earning capacity.
- Current and reasonably anticipated healthcare costs.
- Financial awards for emotional pain and anguish.
- Cost of a funeral and burial if the victim dies as a result of their injuries.
How to Seek Compensation
A state can take a “no-fault” or “fault” stance on vehicle collisions. Because California is a “fault” state, victims can seek compensation from their insurance company or that of the responsible party. In a no-fault state, in contrast, a victim is limited to seeking compensation from their own insurance provider.
Pursuing compensation from the responsible party is contingent upon identifying them, which can be challenging with a hit and run. Fortunately, you do not have to go through this time-consuming and complex process alone. A Los Angeles hit and run accident lawyer may be able to help you.
Once you have identified the responsible driver, you can request compensation for your losses from their insurance provider. California state law requires drivers to have a minimum amount of liability insurance coverage for this situation. However, the insurance company may attempt to avoid paying altogether or offer you a settlement amount that is less than you deserve. An insurance provider can do this by claiming their policyholder was not responsible at all or that you were at least partially at fault for the incident.
You may also experience difficulties if the other driver was uninsured or underinsured. In this case, you may need to seek compensation from your own insurance provider. If you do not have underinsured or uninsured driver coverage or your provider does not agree to compensate you for the full extent of your losses, you may want to bring a civil claim against the other driver instead. If the driver does not have the resources to pay you, it may be difficult to recoup your losses. A hit-and-run accident lawyer can help you bring a civil suit in this instance.
Los Angeles Hit and Run Accident Lawyer Near Me 800-598-7557
How a Los Angeles Hit and Run Accident Lawyer Can Help
Faced with the aftermath of a hit and run collision, you might feel overwhelmed and uncertain. An attorney can support you by negotiating a settlement on your behalf or representing you in court. Here are some steps they can take to do this:
- Gather evidence to prove fault and document damages.
- Build a strategy based on your case.
- Pursue justice and compensation on your behalf.
- Communicate with insurance companies on your behalf.
- Communicate with you throughout the process to update you on the progress of your case and answer any questions you have.
Call Ben Crump Law, PLLC
Hit and run collisions can be devastating for all involved. Whether your losses include property damage, personal injury, wrongful death, or all of the above, it is important to try to bring those responsible to justice through legal action. Count on the lawyers at Ben Crump Law, PLLC, for guidance. Call 800-959-1444 to talk with a team member today.