Getting into a car accident is always disconcerting, but the experience can be particularly unnerving if it involves a hit-and-run. Amid the sudden shock and possible injuries, the driver who should be held responsible just vanishes, leaving behind a cascade of questions and concerns. As a team experienced in handling vehicle accidents, Walker Texas Lawyer hopes to offer the necessary guidance to victims through this comprehensive article.
Understanding Hit and Run Accidents
Hit-and-run accidents occur when a driver involved in a collision- be it with another vehicle, a pedestrian, or a fixed object- chooses to flee the scene rather than stay to deal with the fallout. In Texas, all motorists must remain at the scene of an accident that results in injury or property damage. They must exchange identification and insurance information and offer help where needed.
Unfortunately, some drivers dodge their responsibilities, often due to factors like lack of auto insurance, suspended licenses, prior traffic violations, or substance abuse. No matter the motivations behind escaping an accident scene, a hit-and-run driver, if caught, can anticipate criminal prosecution, potential civil lawsuits, and additional repercussions. However, locating the culprit can be daunting despite the prevalence of surveillance cameras and smartphones that frequently record vehicular mishaps. Therefore, promptly contacting the police following a hit-and-run incident is crucial. The police can investigate to identify and catch the offending driver. Moreover, the police report will play an integral role in substantiating your injury claim.
What To Do If You Are In a Hit and Run Accident
Step one is always to ensure your safety. If the hit-and-run driver remains unidentified and unapprehended, you may feel deprived of justice. However, recovery and safety should be your primary concern immediately after such an incident. If possible, move to a secure location, away from the flow of traffic.
Call the police right away. Even if the other driver cannot be immediately located, police reports provide valuable evidence when filing an insurance claim. Record the details of the accident as precisely as possible, including the vehicle’s appearance that hit you, and take photographs of the damages. If there are any eyewitnesses, take down their contact information.
I Was In A Houston Hit-and-Run Accident. How Can I Get Compensation?
When the hit-and-run driver is identified, our team at Walker Texas Lawyer can advocate for your rights and launch a personal injury claim against that person. This claim remains valid regardless of whether the individual receives formal charges or a criminal conviction.
We aim to secure compensation for lost earnings, medical expenses, property damages, and emotional suffering by harnessing our legal expertise. It’s also possible to seek punitive damages, intended to penalize the dodging driver and dissuade similar actions in the future.
If the driver who fled the scene remains unidentified, you have options. You might achieve compensation through your insurance company if you’ve opted for Uninsured Motorist (UM) coverage. All insurers in Texas are obligated to present their clients with this coverage. It’s designed to protect drivers and passengers injured in accidents involving uninsured drivers – including hit-and-run situations.
Should you utilize UM coverage, the minimum payout must align with Texas state law’s mandatory requirements – $30,000 per injured individual, a cap of $60,000 for injuries per incident, and $25,000 towards property damage.
It’s crucial to remember that stringent deadlines surround UM claims — swift action is vital. Missing the submission window can result in your claim being dismissed by the insurer. Therefore, in the aftermath of a hit and run, it’s paramount to contact the police immediately and seek medical care. Official police and medical records can significantly bolster your personal injury claim when evidence is required.
How Can A Lawyer Help Me With A Hit And Run Accident?
Navigating the aftermath of a car accident can be unnerving and emotionally taxing. The complexity intensifies in the case of a hit-and-run incident. While victims can file a claim independently, engaging the services of a skilled attorney can be instrumental in obtaining comprehensive compensation for all damages correlated to the accident.
It’s advisable to consult with a car accident lawyer about your incident, regardless of whether it results in a viable case. To ensure you’re aware of all your legal possibilities, reach out to a personal injury attorney. Most not only provide a free initial consultation but also operate on a contingency fee basis.
Why Consult Walker Texas Lawyer?
After a hit-and-run accident, victims are often left dealing with physical recovery and financial worries from mounting vehicle repair and medical bills. At Walker Texas Lawyer, we have a knowledgeable team ready to assist. We will conduct a meticulous investigation, even engaging private investigators where necessary, to identify the elusive driver.
If the hit-and-run driver cannot be identified, we will guide you through the complexities of UM coverage. Walker will work with insurance companies to settle your claim. Insurance companies often aim to deny claims or pay as little as possible, but our team is committed to ensuring you receive a settlement appropriate to your loss.
Our goal is to obtain justice for our clients, and we are prepared to take your case to court should that become necessary. When in a car accident, trust Walker Texas Lawyer to fight for your rights. Contact us today for a free consultation as you fight for recovery and justice.