Getting behind the wheel of a car comes with a significant amount of responsibility. A driver that causes damage to another person's vehicle in any way is legally bound to take responsibility for his or her actions. Failing to do so could be classified as a hit and run.
If you are the victim of a hit and run accident, understanding what to do next can help you find the driver responsible in order to access the financial resources you are entitled to.
1. Write down as many details as possible.
When you have been the victim of a hit and run accident, the other driver hasn't stuck around to exchange insurance information with you. This means that you will need to locate the driver in order to take the appropriate action.
Once you have ensured that you and your passengers are safe, take the time to write down as many details as possible. Record the make, model, and color of the vehicle that hit you. If you were able to see the driver, write down any identifying traits (hair color, gender, etc.). Recording details while they are fresh in your mind will prevent you from forgetting valuable information that may prove useful in the future.
2. Contact the police.
It is critical that you contact the police after being involved in a hit and run accident. A police report will help you prove your case when trying to obtain financial compensation from both your own insurance company and the insurance company of the other driver (once he or she is located).
The police will play a critical role in helping to locate the missing driver. Leaving the scene of an accident carries both civil and criminal penalties, so you should always coordinate closely with law enforcement officials when involved in a hit and run accident.
3. Retain a lawyer.
If a driver leaves the scene of an accident, it could be because he or she was driving impaired or did not have insurance. You may have to take legal action to get the financial help you need to cover the cost of repairs and medical care following a hit and run accident.
An experienced car accident attorney will be able to help you file a civil lawsuit against the driver who fled the scene of accident once he or she is found. A lawyer can also coordinate with your own insurance company to ensure maximum payout on your claim in the event the other driver is nowhere to be found.