A hit and run is basically a situation in which one person or more is involved in a collision. However, this person or people tend to leave the accident site without offering any sort of aid, any important information, or without filing the report of the crash to the required authorities.
In many states and places, this act of leaving the scene of the accident without any help or reporting being at fault is completely illegal and against the law. It doesn’t matter if you were at fault or not, but it is still against the law and could be considered a felony as well.
In case the other driver is unidentifiable, you would be required to pay the expenses of the crash, and if you have full coverage of auto insurance, then the damages your property or belongings face would be covered by the policy you have.
Hence, there would be a serious need for you to cover yourself, for which you would need to speak to the insurance provider. They tend to guide you better whenever you need help and can lead you in the correct direction.
However, it is important to understand that hit and run isn’t only wrong but also illegal, and you can suffer a lot because of it.
Everyone has a chance of being a victim of a hit and run, so make sure you read the article further to get to know what to do in that case and which appropriate measures to take. You might even need to hire a hit and run accident lawyer.
Make sure you know the signs of what makes an accident a hit and run
Car accidents or any accidents that might occur on the road tend to be extremely stressful. If someone hits and runs, you would obviously feel completely helpless because you won’t know what to do next, as the person involved would’ve run off.
However, it is important to know what makes it a hit-and-run case. When it comes to traffic laws, the act of someone knowingly causing the accident and then taking off without any provision of aid or information is a hit and run. However, in other laws, if someone isn’t injured or hurt, it isn’t a hit and run.
In this case, first of all, make sure that you don’t flee. You need to stay and talk to the witnesses and the police. The collision would need to be documented carefully for the insurance company and the police as well. It would be tricky to file it if the other person has taken off, but it still needs to be done.
What shouldn’t you do after a hit and run?
The one thing you should make sure you don’t do after the hit and run is to flee from the scene of the accident. If you do this, you would be creating trouble for yourself and put yourself in a tough and compromising position as well.
You won’t be able to talk to any eyewitnesses. Many eyewitnesses knew exactly what happened and might’ve noted the number plate of the car or physical description of the person who fled.
This is important information that you would need to know, especially when it comes to filing insurance claims and reports.
Moreover, it is best if you don’t wait to call the police because the faster you do, the better chances the police would have at trusting you with the information and filing a report, which gives you better odds of filing a successful insurance claim.
Here are a few things you should do after a hit and run.
If someone in your car or you is injured, make sure you call 911 ASAP. Severe injuries need to be treated as soon as possible, as there is nothing more important than the well-being and health of the people involved in the accident.
Hence, calling 911 should be your first priority after the accident occurs. Once you are done and assured that you and the person injured with you are perfectly fine and healthy, then you can go on to the next step, which is calling the police. However, if there isn’t any need for a 911, make sure you don’t flee from the scene and ask witnesses about what they saw.
Get as much information about the driver as you can
If you stay at the accident scene, make sure you ask around the witnesses for whatever they say, everything down from the number plate to the model, color, and type of vehicle. Make sure you look for any pictures or cameras to identify the car yourself.
Call the police
Make sure you call 911 as well as the police as soon as possible. If anyone is injured, then you should call 911 as the first priority. However, if no one is hurt, make sure you call the police because it would be better for you.
Make sure you don’t take long and don’t wait a couple of hours before making a call to the police.
This is because, after a hit and run, the police department won’t be able to do much. However, if you call the police as soon as the accident takes place, you won’t lose the opportunity to catch the other driver who fled, and you can also act faster.
Moreover, when the officer on the scene of the crime makes a report, make sure you get a copy of it, as the insurance company might need it as a part of the claim you file.
Contact your insurance company
Once you are done with the formalities of the police procedure, make sure you contact the insurer to file a claim. It is better to do this right after you are done with the police because the sooner you call, the better it would be, as the insurance company would recognize your issue better.
Make sure you try to file a claim on the same day the accident occurred as well. Typically, you can file a claim within 30 days of the accident’s occurrence, but it is best to take fast action, as then you would have better odds of being successful at it.
Conclusively, a hit and run are against the law, but it still happens a lot. People flee the accident scenes because they don’t want to be held responsible for the accident, or they might just get scared.
However, it is important for you to take the steps required to file a claim and don’t flee from the scene of the accident, or else you won’t be compensated for your loss.