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Understanding Your Rights After a Hit and Run Accident

Anderson Franco Law

Understanding Your Rights After a Hit and Run Accident

Victims of hit and run accidents may still be able to get money for their injuries. Just because the person who caused the accident is nowhere to be found does not mean that recovery is impossible. A person who was injured can still be compensated for their costs and damages. This blog post will explain how victims can recover after a hit and run accident. It is important for injury victims to know their rights and how to get the compensation they deserve.

Uninsured and Underinsured Insurance Policies

If you are a victim of a hit and run accident, you should look at your own insurance policy. In many states, like California, drivers can get uninsured motorist or underinsured motorist coverage. These types of coverage give victims money if the person who caused the accident does not have enough insurance or any insurance at all.

Uninsured motorist coverage applies when the at-fault driver has no insurance. Underinsured motorist coverage applies when the at-fault driver does not have enough insurance to cover all the damages. It is important to understand these types of coverage and how they can help you after a hit and run accident.

How To Make an Uninsured/Underinsured Claim

If you are a victim of a hit and run accident, the first thing you should do is make a claim with your own insurance company. You should ask your insurance company to cover all your losses. The insurance company will have two options: they can either deny your claim or accept it. If they accept your claim, they will compensate you for some or all of your injuries. If they deny your claim, you should investigate why they denied it.

What if the UIM Claim Is Denied

If your insurance company denies your claim, you have the right to ask for a copy of your insurance policy. Your insurance policy is a contract between you and your insurance company that explains when coverage benefits apply. Insurance policies with UIM benefits usually have a section that explains the coverage in detail. You should review your policy if your claim is denied. A claim can only be denied if the policy has specific exclusions. For example, some policies exclude certain drivers. If your insurance company denies your claim based on an exclusion, you should check this on your own.

Consider Other Available Policies

Many people who are injured in hit and run accidents do not realize that their injuries could be covered under their relative’s policies. Many insurance policies cover not only the policyholder but also their household relatives. Household relatives can include spouses, children, parents, and siblings. Understanding who can receive benefits and when is helpful for injury victims who want to get the most money for their claims.

A UIM Claim Example

Let’s consider an example to make this clearer: Andres is injured while riding as a passenger in Roberto’s car, which was hit by a hit and run driver. Andres has his own car insurance and lives with his sister Carla, who also has her own insurance policy. Even though a third-party driver caused the accident, Andres can still be compensated. Three different insurance policies can provide benefits if they all have UIM coverage.

  1. Roberto’s policy would likely cover Arnold because he was a passenger during the accident.
  2. Andres’ own UIM policy would provide him benefits.
  3. Carla’s insurance policy could also cover Andres’ injuries if her UIM policy applies to household relatives. This is true even if Carla was not involved in the car accident at all.

Enforcing Your Rights After a Hit and Run Accident

As the example above shows, there can be multiple ways to get insurance money to compensate an injury victim. Even when it seems like no money is available because the at-fault driver drove away, victims should explore all the different insurance policies that could apply. They should consider not only their own insurance policy but also their household relatives’ policies.

An experienced personal injury attorney can help identify all possible insurance companies that may provide compensation. At Anderson Franco, we have extensive experience representing personal injury victims, including those injured by hit and run drivers. We can advocate for you or your loved one’s injuries and help you get the compensation you deserve.

Steps to Take After a Hit and Run Accident

If you are involved in a hit and run accident, there are several steps you should take to protect your rights and increase your chances of getting compensated:

  1. Call the Police: Report the accident to the police immediately. They will create an official report that documents the incident.
  2. Gather Information: Try to gather as much information as possible about the accident. This can include the make and model of the other vehicle, the license plate number, and any details about the driver.
  3. Seek Medical Attention: Get checked by a doctor even if you think your injuries are minor. Some injuries may not show symptoms right away.
  4. Notify Your Insurance Company: Inform your insurance company about the accident and start the claims process.
  5. Keep Records: Keep all records related to the accident, including medical bills, repair costs, and communication with your insurance company.

Understanding Your Insurance Policy

It is important to understand your insurance policy and what it covers. Here are some key points to look for in your policy:

  1. Uninsured Motorist Coverage: This coverage helps if the at-fault driver has no insurance.
  2. Underinsured Motorist Coverage: This coverage helps if the at-fault driver does not have enough insurance to cover your damages.
  3. Exclusions: Check for any exclusions in your policy that may prevent you from getting compensated.
  4. Coverage Limits: Be aware of the coverage limits in your policy. This is the maximum amount your insurance company will pay for a claim.

How a Personal Injury Attorney Can Help

A personal injury attorney can be very helpful after a hit and run accident. They can:

  1. Review Your Case: An attorney will review the details of your case and determine the best course of action.
  2. Deal with Insurance Companies: They can handle all communication with insurance companies and ensure that your rights are protected.
  3. Gather Evidence: An attorney will gather evidence to support your claim, such as medical records and witness statements.
  4. Negotiate Settlements: They can negotiate with the insurance company to get you the best possible settlement.
  5. Represent You in Court: If necessary, an attorney can represent you in court to fight for your rights.

Common Misconceptions About Hit and Run Accidents

There are many misconceptions about hit and run accidents and what victims can do to get compensated. Here are some common myths and the truth behind them:

  1. Myth: You Cannot Get Compensated if the At-Fault Driver is Not Found: This is not true. You can still get compensated through your own insurance policy or the policies of your household relatives.
  2. Myth: It is Too Expensive to Hire a Personal Injury Attorney: Many personal injury attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, which means they only get paid if you win your case.
  3. Myth: Minor Injuries Do Not Qualify for Compensation: Even minor injuries can qualify for compensation. It is important to seek medical attention and document all injuries, no matter how minor they may seem.

Anderson Franco Represents Hit and Run Accident Victims

Being involved in a hit and run accident can be a very stressful experience. However, it is important to know that you have options for getting compensated for your injuries and damages. By understanding your insurance policy, taking the right steps after the accident, and seeking the help of a personal injury attorney, you can protect your rights and get the compensation you deserve.

At Anderson Franco, we are here to help. We have extensive experience representing hit and run accident victims and can guide you through the process of recovering compensation. If you or a loved one has been injured in a hit and run accident, contact us today for a free consultation. We will work tirelessly to ensure that you get the justice and compensation you deserve.

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