Victim of a Hit & Run? 5 Things to do Now
When a motorist hits property, a pedestrian, another motorist or causes a collision and takes off from the scene, it is a hit-and-run run incident. Even, if they lie about what happened it is still a hit-and-run. If this happens to you, then information is your best weapon. These are the five things to do immediately if you were a victim of this crime.
Pull Over Safely
If you are even able to drive and you see the person who hit you leaving you behind, then you might be tempted to chase and catch the suspect. This is an instinct you have to avoid at all costs. It could make things bad for you legally and physically. This is especially true if you are hurt and road rage endangers other drivers too. If you do anything, try to remember the description of the car and license plate number.
Immediately Call 911 Once You Are Safely Parked
Even if you were unable to get the vehicle’s description or plate number, you need to get a police officer there immediately to report the crime. Also, due to adrenaline, you may be unaware you are injured or how bad the injuries are, so getting a paramedic on the scene to give you a medical evaluation is a good idea. Failing to contact the police right away will cause problems for your insurance later, and when you get a hold of your attorney, they will tell you did the right thing by calling the police immediately.
Before you get a hold of your attorney, gather as much evidence as possible. First, you might want to go through this crash checklist. Next, take pictures of every single area of damage and from all angles. Finally, you need to write down everything you can remember from the time of the crime.
Look for Witnesses
The only witnesses you have will be the people that stop to help you. Or potentially, the people who are witnesses to a crime. Make sure you write down their contact information and stories. There is a good chance someone saw the plate number of the culprit if you did not. If they did, you can give it to the police and your insurance company, so the insurance company can attempt to recuperate costs from the person responsible.
Contact Your Insurance Company
After you have dealt with police, dealt with any injuries and gathered evidence from your vehicle and witnesses, you have to call your insurance company. If the motorist responsible cannot be found there are different types of insurance you may have depending on what state you are in. It is a ton of jargon best handled and explained by a legal expert. You will have to get a hold of your attorney at this stage.
Knowing what to do ahead of time will make things a little easier. Also, before this does happen to you, you should talk to your insurance agent about it hypothetically. It might be worth it to you. It depends on where you live and the frequency of accidents and crime. This could impact a clause put into your insurance to cover you.