Any type of involvement in a major motor vehicle accident can be devastating. The situation might become even more challenging, however, if you are the victim of a hit and run and accident. As a Sarasota hit and run accident lawyer may advise, you are likely to find it challenging to hold drivers responsible for causing your accident if you cannot identify them.
Fortunately, you do have options if you or a loved one suffer injuries and property damage in a hit and run accident. Under the Florida Motor Vehicle No-Fault Law, as explained in Florida Statutes § 627.7407, you may be eligible for compensation from your personal injury protection (PIP) and uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) coverage. You can call Ben Crump Law, PLLC, at (800) 598-7557, to learn more about the avenues of compensation that might be available to you.
Hit and Run Accidents
Hit and run accidents happen for many reasons and occur more commonly than you might realize. Drivers may leave the accident scene because they do not have the insurance coverage the law requires, or they do not have valid licenses and want to avoid criminal charges. They also may flee the scene when they have existing criminal warrants, they are operating stolen vehicles, or they have other potential legal problems that might arise.
Although cellphones, surveillance videos, and other advances in technology have made it easier for law enforcement officials to identify drivers responsible for causing hit and run accidents, identifying these individuals is not always possible. Fortunately, the no-fault insurance laws in Florida can provide options for compensation. As a result, you might need to look at the full range of alternatives for seeking payment if you have suffered injuries in a hit and run accident.
For a free legal consultation with a hit and run accidents lawyer serving Sarasota, call (800) 598-7557
How Your PIP Policy Works
According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV), you must show proof of personal injury protection (PIP) and property damage liability (PDL) insurance coverage in minimum amounts of $10,000 each before you can register a motor vehicle under state law.
“PIP covers 80 percent of all necessary and reasonable medical expenses up to $10,000 resulting from a covered injury, no matter who caused the crash,” according to FLHSMV. This coverage for medical expenses is available no matter who caused the crash. You typically must seek medical treatment for your injuries within 14 days of the collision’s occurrence to be eligible for PIP coverage. If you miss this window, your PIP provider might deny your claim for benefits.
Sarasota Hit and Run Accident Lawyer Near Me (800) 598-7557
How Your UM/UIM Coverage Works
Unlike PIP insurance, state law does not require you to carry UM/UIM insurance coverage when you register a vehicle. However, insurance companies must offer this coverage to you when you are purchasing mandatory motor vehicle insurance. This type of insurance coverage is available up to your policy liability limits.
UM/UIM provides you with coverage for your accident-related expenses when you are involved in an accident with a hit and run driver. This coverage also may be available if you are in an accident with a driver who does not have insurance or enough insurance to cover your accident expenses.
Filing Claims with Your Insurance Company
Although you might think filing a claim with your own insurance company after an accident, whether for coverage under PIP, UM/UIM, or both, your insurance company may not always cooperate with paying your claim.
A Sarasota hit and run accident lawyer can review your situation and identify available expenses to include in your claim, as well as obtain the documentation necessary to support those expenses. Some of the evidence that legal counsel can help you gather in this situation may include:
- Medical records of your injuries
- Employment and salary records to show lost wages due to an inability to work
- Police reports and eyewitness statements
- Traffic or surveillance camera video footage of the crash
Putting together a comprehensive and well-supported claim from the outset of your case can help your chances of receiving a full and fair settlement offer from your insurance company. By getting legal assistance in filing your insurance claim, you can get critical answers to your important questions.
Ben Crump Law, PLLC, can walk you through the entire legal process and help you collect the documents you will need to build a solid case. We will handle all paperwork needed to file your personal injury case, and we will make sure to file it with the court on time. Give us a call today.
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Filing a Claim Against the Hit and Run Driver
In some hit and run accidents, police may later identify the driver that caused a car accident that left you with injuries. For example, video footage from nearby businesses or a partial license plate that a witness to the accident provides may allow law enforcement authorities to identify responsible drivers.
If you suffered severe injuries in the accident, you might be able to file a claim against the insurance policy covering the at-fault driver. If the driver had no insurance coverage at the time of the crash, however, this type of claim may not be an option. Likewise, you may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit in some cases.
Again, however, if the responsible driver is the sole liable party for the crash and owns no significant assets, obtaining compensation directly from him or her could be more challenging. An attorney can also advise you with this matter.
If you are considering taking legal action in your hit and run case, keep in mind that the sooner you act, the sooner we can start working for you. Florida’s statute of limitations for personal injury actions is four years from the day an accident occurs, as explained in Florida Statutes § 95.11. While this might seem like a long time, it can go by quickly when building a case and negotiating with insurance companies, which can time.
Recover Compensation for Your Hit and Run Accident
Ben Crump Law, PLLC, offers legal representation in motor vehicle accident cases, including hit and run accidents, on a contingency fee basis. You pay nothing upfront while you recover from your injuries.
We will not receive a fee unless we win a settlement for you. This fee structure allows you to keep your focus where it should be—on your health and your family.
Call our legal team at (800) 598-7557 today to learn more about your options for compensation when you have suffered injuries in a hit and run accident. In this situation, a Sarasota hit and run accident lawyer may be able to help.