A hit and run accident is defined as a collision caused by a driver who leaves the scene of the accident. The injured party can be a pedestrian, motorcyclist, or the occupant of another vehicle. Hit and run accidents cause thousands of injuries and fatalities each year throughout Indiana and the United States.
Under Indiana law, leaving the scene of an accident is a crime. A driver is required to stop, provide information, and wait for the police, if necessary. If someone is injured, the driver must remain at the accident scene and provide reasonable assistance until emergency responders arrive to help those injured in the car accident.
A charge of failing to stop (hit and run) is a Class A misdemeanor in Indiana. A conviction on a charge of hit and run can result in up to one year in jail and fines up to $5,000. If the hit and run accident results in serious injury to another person, the charge is elevated to a Class D felony, which may result in up to three years in prison and fines up to $10,000.
After a hit and run accident you may believe you cannot recover compensation for injuries because the driver who caused the collision is unknown. This is not necessarily true.
Can I Receive Compensation For A Hit And Run Accident?
Yes, you may be entitled to recover compensation for a hit and run accident. After you have seen a physician and you are taking care of your health, you need to contact a personal injury attorney. A hit and run accident claim can be a bit more complicated than a typical accident claim. Your personal injury attorney will proceed in one of two ways, depending on whether the driver has been identified.
If Hit and Run Driver is Identified
If the hit and run driver has been identified, your lawyer will begin investigating the traffic accident and pursuing a claim against the hit and run driver’s insurance company. Even though the driver may have been charged with a crime (leaving the scene of an accident), your lawyer must still provide evidence to prove the driver caused the collision and you suffered damages as a result of the collision. Because the driver’s insurance company may try to deny fault by claiming their insured was wrongly accused, you need an experienced personal injury attorney to fight for your right to receive full compensation for your injuries.
If Hit and Run Driver is Never Identified
If the hit and run driver is never identified, you may still be able to recover compensation for a hit and run accident. Your insurance company steps into the role of the hit and run driver’s insurance company under your uninsured motorist coverage. In other words, your insurance company pays your damages as if it represented the hit and run driver. However, you still should consult with a personal injury attorney.
Even though you may be dealing with your own insurance company, you still need an attorney to protect your right to recover full compensation for your damages. Your insurance company will treat your claim as any other accident claim — it will do everything it can to reduce the amount it must pay to settle your claim. An insurance company, even though it may claim to put its customers first, always seeks to pay as little as possible for an accident claim. This is simply a part of doing business to make a profit.
Contact Our Office For A Free Case Evaluation
If you have been injured in a hit and run accident, we want to help. Contact The Ken Nunn Law Office at 1-800-CALL-KEN or 1-800-225-5536 to schedule a free, no obligation legal consultation with a Bloomington, IN personal injury attorney.