How to Handle a Hit-and-Run Accident
Any car accident can be devastating, but a hit-and-run is adding insult to injury. You can hardly process that you’ve been in an accident when you notice the vehicle that hit you is bolting away, the driver trying to escape the consequences of their actions.
You watch, in shock, as they disappear in the distance. What do you do? You’re injured and your car is damaged, but how can you seek justice for your damages when you don’t know who hit you?
If you ever find yourself in a hit-and-run accident, you may feel angry, confused, and unsure of what to do next. However, it’s important to stay calm and take the necessary steps to protect yourself and your rights. In this guide, we’ll discuss the essential things you need to know about how to handle a hit-and-run accident.
1. Stay Calm and Assess the Situation
Take a deep breath, try to relax, and focus on what you need to do. Check yourself and your passengers for injuries, and if anyone is hurt, call 911 right away.
If you are not injured and can move safely, check on the other driver and passengers involved in the accident, as well.
2. Call the Police Immediately
Even if no one is injured, you need to call the police immediately. Hit-and-run accidents are a serious crime, and you need to report the accident to the police. They will come to the scene, investigate the accident, and file a police report.
A police report is essential for any accident, but it is especially important for a hit-and-run claim. The police can also conduct an investigation to try and identify the driver who hit you.
3. Gather Information
While you wait for the police to arrive, try to gather as much information as you can. Write down the make, model, and license plate number of the other vehicle if you can. Take pictures of the damage to both vehicles and the location of the accident.
It can be difficult to gather information about the person who hit you if they make a quick escape. If you can, try to take a picture of the vehicle and write down anything you remember about the car.
4. Check for Witnesses
If there are any witnesses, ask for their contact information. Witnesses can be valuable in hit-and-run accidents, as they may have seen the other vehicle’s license plate number or can describe the driver. You can also use witness testimony when developing your claim.
5. Document the Scene
Take pictures of the accident scene and the damage to both vehicles. This will be useful when you file a claim with your insurance company, since evidence like photos or videos can help improve your case. For example, you can use photos to show the severity of your injuries or the damage to your car.
6. Contact Your Insurance Company
Contact your insurance company as soon as possible to report the accident. Provide them with all the information you gathered, including the police report number, witness statements, and pictures of the damage. If the police can’t identify the person who hit you, you can seek compensation through your own insurance company.
7. Seek Medical Attention
If you or anyone in your vehicle is injured, seek medical attention right away. Even if you feel fine, it’s important to get checked out by a medical professional. Injuries can be hidden, and symptoms may not show up immediately.
Seeking medical treatment benefits your own health and safety, but you can also use your medical records as evidence. Your doctor can identify the severity of your injuries and prove that they were a result of the accident.
8. Follow Up With the Police and Your Insurance Company
Follow up with the police and your insurance company to make sure they have all the information they need. Keep copies of all the paperwork, including the police report and your insurance claim. Ask the police if they’ve identified the person who hit you. If so, you can pursue a claim through their insurance company. If not, you can seek compensation through your own insurance.
9. Consider Hiring an Attorney
If you were injured or suffered significant property damage, you might want to consider hiring a West Virginia hit-and-run accident lawyer.
Filing a claim, especially when you’re dealing with a hit-and-run, can be overwhelming. Your attorney will do all the work for you, from gathering evidence to communicating with the insurance company, so you don’t have to.
Let an experienced car accident lawyer handle your case so you can recover in peace. They will ensure you get fair compensation for your damages.
10. Be Prepared for the Emotional Impact
A hit-and-run accident can be a traumatic physical and emotional experience. It’s important to take care of yourself during this time. Focus on recovery and getting back to normal life while your lawyer fights for your justice.
Remember, you can seek compensation for pain and suffering, such as emotional distress, mental anguish, and physical pain. So, record any suffering you’ve experienced as a result of the hit-and-run so you can recover compensation for it.
Contact Miley Legal Today
Hit-and-runs can be emotionally taxing. After you’ve been hit, you’re left feeling lost and confused. How could someone hit you and flee the scene of the accident? Unfortunately, hit-and-run accidents occur more often than we’d like to admit.
If you or someone you know has been involved in a hit-and-run accident, contact Miley Legal. Our West Virginia car accident lawyers will do what it takes to ensure you’re fully compensated for your damages, whether or not we can identify the person who hit you.
You can count on us. Call us today to schedule your free case review.