Hit and run crashes are a relatively common type of car accident in the US. According to the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, one incident happens every 43 seconds, often resulting in severe injuries, fatalities, and extensive property damage. Even if the at-fault driver has a reason for leaving the crash scene, it does not erase the fact that their actions are illegal.
Most hit and run victims tend to have limited options for legal recourse because they often cannot identify the person who hit them. If this happened to you, a Raleigh hit and run accident lawyer from Ben Crump Law, PLLC might be able to help you. Our team will help you bring the liable parties to justice. Get in touch at (800) 598-7557 for a free initial consultation.
What to Do After a Hit and Run Accident
The actions you take immediately following a hit and run accident could significantly impact your case.
Stay at the Scene
If you notice that the other driver left the accident scene, refrain from pursuing them. You may not be in good condition to do so. Instead, stay put or move your vehicle somewhere safe to prevent further injury.
Call the Police
Once you are in a safe place, notify the authorities immediately. A police report will document the accident as a hit and run, which is essential to your insurance claim. Give as much information as possible to help the police identify the driver, such as a partial plate number or the car’s make or model.
Get Medical Care
Whether or not you feel pain, it is still best to seek medical attention. Visit your doctor or the emergency room to get treatment and accurate evaluation. Some injuries do not exhibit symptoms immediately, taking a few days or weeks after the accident to show up.
Notify Your Insurer
Make sure to contact your insurance company right away. Generally, you have to file a report within a specific period to make a claim. Inform them that you were a victim of a hit and run accident. Chances are, your claim will be against the uninsured motorist policy, which is a required coverage in North Carolina.
Seek Legal Help
You have the option of hiring a hit and run accident lawyer to help you with your case. Regardless of what legal recourse you take, they will help you to ensure that you get fair compensation from the insurance company or liable party.
For a free legal consultation with a hit and run lawyer serving Raleigh, call (800) 598-7557
You Have Three Legal Options as a Victim
North Carolina is an at-fault insurance state. It means that those responsible for the accident should pay for the damages, such as medical costs, lost earnings, property repairs or replacement, and other incurred expenses. For financial recovery, you have three options:
File a Claim with Your Insurance Provider
Your only legal recourse, especially in a hit and run accident, is to file an uninsured motorist claim with your insurer. If they can identify the at-fault driver, they will reimburse payouts from the other party’s insurance company.
Pursue a Claim Against the At-Fault Driver’s Insurer
Under the traditional fault system, injured victims should seek compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurance carrier. However, it may be impossible in hit and run accidents with no insurance information exchanged between involved parties.
File a Lawsuit
A lawsuit should be your last option for recovery. Most injured victims only take this recourse if they are unsatisfied with the insurer’s offer or reluctance in settling the claim. Some insurance carriers may also question liability in the accident, allowing them to deny your request for compensation.
If this happens, a Raleigh hit and run accident lawyer from Ben Crump Law, PLLC can take your case to trial. They will help you get what you deserve. Call us today to speak with one of our team members.
Raleigh Hit and Run Lawyer Near Me (800) 598-7557
Proving Fault in a Hit and Run Crash
If you suffer injuries from a hit and run accident, you may have an actionable personal injury claim against the driver. However, you can only seek compensatory damages if you can prove their clear-cut liability in the incident. Simply because you are a victim does not mean you have no contribution to the collision.
North Carolina follows the contributory negligence principle concerning shared fault. It means that you cannot recover any damages if you are partly to blame for the accident. If your actions were careless or negligent, you have no right to compensation. Chances are, it is an issue that an insurer may raise during settlement negotiations since they want to minimize their monetary payout.
If the at-fault driver remains unidentifiable, it is challenging to prove that you are not responsible for the accident. Without legal support, the burden of proof becomes a significant hurdle. That is why a hit and run accident lawyer can be helpful with your case.
Your legal representative will gather evidence, including photos, surveillance footage, police reports, witness statements, and accident reconstruction expert’s testimonies to establish the other party’s liability. Once you can demonstrate that you are free of any fault, the insurance company should cover all of your accident-related expenses.
Reasons to Hire a Lawyer
Being involved in a car accident is a harrowing experience for anyone. Moreover, the claims process is usually more complicated with hit and run collisions because of the unidentified at-fault driver. Many injured victims mistakenly believe that recovery is no longer possible. However, it is not.
Regardless of your legal option for claims, it can help to retain the services of a Raleigh hit and run accident lawyer. At Ben Crump Law, PLLC, we will carefully investigate the circumstances surrounding your claim to ensure that you receive a fair settlement offer from the insurance company. If the at-fault driver is located, your lawyer will pursue a claim through the liable party’s insurer or a lawsuit.
To get started, reach out at (800) 598-7557 for a free case evaluation.