Hit-and-run accidents are jarring experiences that can cause serious injuries and damages. While you’re trying to figure out what to do next, you’re probably also worrying about finding the person who hit you. This situation can bring a lot of stress.
It’s important to know that you don’t have to go through this alone. The Solomon Law Group can help. Our Columbia car accident lawyers understand what you’re going through and how overwhelming this can be. We’ll stand by your side and get you the compensation you need so you can recover and get back to your everyday life.
What Constitutes a Hit-and-Run Accident?
A hit-and-run is a car accident where one party hits another car, a pedestrian, or a fixed object and flees the scene without providing help to anyone who might need it or giving information about their identity.
The act of a hit-and-run comes from leaving the scene. It doesn’t matter if it was the person at fault or the person who was hit.
There are different kinds of penalties for a hit-and-run: Criminal, administrative, and civil. The penalties can result in large fines and jail time.
What Do I Do After a Hit-and-Run?
You might not know what to do after you’re in a hit-and-run. Car accidents are difficult enough even when the other party wants to work with you and get everything sorted out.
If you’re ever in a hit-and-run, make sure you do the following:
- Check for Injuries. First, see if you need medical attention or can move safely.
- Get Available Information. If you’re able, try to remember the other car’s license plate or make and model. It would also help to photograph the scene to show the hit-and-run damage.
- Call the Police. Inform the police and tell them what happened. Only report the facts. Don’t guess or try to fill in any information that you don’t know.
- Get Witness Information. Someone might have seen the hit-and-run. Get their names and contact information if they’re willing to make a statement about what they saw.
- Report the Accident. Call your insurance company and inform them of the accident.
You should not do any of the following:
- Leave the Scene. Even if you didn’t cause the accident, this is still considered a hit-and-run. However, if you have to leave the accident to call the police or an ambulance, you can do so as long as you return to the scene.
- Chase the Other Party. After the initial crash, you might want to go after the other person who hit you. Don’t chase them because this is dangerous and will make the situation worse.
- Stay in the Road. Move your car out of traffic if you can. It isn’t safe to wait in the middle of the road.
Your main priority after a hit-and-run is your safety, health, and contacting the authorities. After you take care of that you can move on to calling a lawyer and starting your car accident claim.