Let Our Billings Hit-and-Run Accident Attorneys Pursue Your Compensation
If you were involved in a hit and run accident where a driver fled the scene of the crash, you may be entitled to monetary damages if you suffered personal injury and/or your property was damaged. While our Billings accident law firm can explain your recovery options, the following is an overview of what you need to know if you were the victim of a hit and run car crash.
The Aftermath of a Hit and Run Accident
Nearly 65 percent of people killed in hit and run accidents are pedestrians and bicyclists. Because they do not have the protection of a car body around them, pedestrians and bicyclists are most vulnerable if hit. The failure to stop and render aid or at least call the police and paramedics after hitting someone is one of the worst things a driver can do.
Though cyclists and pedestrians need to worry the most about hit and run accidents due to the extent of their injuries, cars can also face damage from a hit and run accident. Your vehicle may have been damaged in the parking lot or the driver may have hit your car and simply sped away without stopping to exchange information. It’s also not uncommon for homeowners or business owners to have suffered damage from a hit and run driver. Property damage is not uncommon and you may wish to receive the compensation you deserve.
No matter how you were affected by a hit and run accident, our Billings accident lawyers are here to help you navigate this difficult claim.
Hit and Run Accidents When the Victim is a Non-Driver
Motorcyclists, pedestrians, and cyclists are especially at risk in hit and run crashes. Given the severity of such accidents, some drivers may choose to flee the scene. Why? Some may be afraid that the accident resulted in very serious injuries and possibly even death. Some drivers may know that the accident was their fault. And in some cases, especially if the driver was intoxicated, he or she may not even be aware that they struck you.
Some motorists involved in hit and run crashes may only have to deal with vehicle damage and a few minor injuries. However, pedestrians, cyclists, and motorcyclists often suffer severe injuries in hit and runs. These injuries may require extensive medical treatment and result in lifelong disabilities. You may be unable to work while recovering or even face long-term unemployment. Your health insurance may cover your medical bills, but what about your lost income and pain and suffering? Hit and run accidents are always challenging but are particularly so for cyclists, pedestrians, and motorcyclists.
If you’ve been injured as a non-motorist in a hit and run case, the best thing you can do is contact a Billings motor vehicle accident attorney who has experience handling hit and runs. They can help you navigate these challenges, understand your options, and work to get the compensation you need to rebuild your life.
Hit and Run Accident FAQs
What are my coverage options?
If you are a motorist or motorcyclist, you will have to make a claim against your own auto insurance. The amount of coverage available will depend mainly on whether you have purchased uninsured motorist coverage. If you are a pedestrian or cyclist, you may need to look to your health insurance carrier. You may be able to recover at least a portion of any lost wages if you have disability insurance.
Admittedly, your options may be limited regardless of your situation. However, our Billings motor vehicle accident attorney can help you explore your coverage options and file your claim so that you can focus on your recovery.
How do I pursue a claim if I don’t know who the driver was?
First, you should file a police report if you were injured in a hit and run accident. Provide as much detail to the police as possible about whatever you can remember, such as the color, make, and model of the vehicle. If there were any witnesses, you should ask them to communicate with the police and provide you with a written statement regarding everything they can remember.
Our motor vehicle accident attorney can help try to identify the driver of the vehicle. Our team often works closely with private investigators and is skilled in gathering facts surrounding car accidents. They may be able to gain access to traffic cameras or other evidence that can help identify the driver.
Is it worth hiring an accident attorney to pursue a hit and run claim?
Most motor vehicle accident attorneys work on a contingency fee basis. This means that they do not charge you legal fees unless they are successful in recovering compensation. As a result, they will provide you with a candid assessment of your case and pursue it only if they believe they can help you get the just compensation you deserve.
Billings Accident Law Firm Explain What to Do After a Hit and Run
If you are involved in a hit and run accident, you are going to be shaken up. If you can, try to follow these steps after the crash:
- Secure your safety. Check yourself and others for injuries. If you are in a car that was hit and it is still operational, move out of the way of traffic. Do not chase after the fleeing driver as that could result in greater danger to you and your passengers.
- Call 911 as soon as possible. Even if you do not think you or others are seriously injured, you should dial 911 and report the accident to police and request an ambulance. You and your passengers need to be checked out by EMT professionals as sometimes the shock of the accident can mask symptoms. The driver who hit you might be intoxicated and you will want authorities to get them off the road if possible. And of course you want the at-fault driver caught so you can hold them responsible for your damages.
- Take photos and find witnesses. Document the scene with photos and/or videos. Ask any witnesses to provide their contact information.
- File a police report. Sometimes hit and runs occur when you are away from your car. As soon as you become aware that your car was hit, file a report so you have documentation that might be required by your insurance company.
Dealing With Auto Insurance Issues After a Hit and Run Accident
When you’re in an accident with an at-fault driver who doesn’t leave the scene, their insurance will typically cover the cost of injuries and damages. With a hit and run accident, however, your own insurance must cover the bills if the driver is not located. There are several different types of insurance that could potentially cover a hit and run accident, provided you have opted into the coverage. These include:
- Uninsured driver coverage
- Medical Coverage
- Personal injury protection (PIP) coverage
- Collision coverage
The best way to determine how to collect from your insurance company after a hit and run accident is to consult with Billings motor vehicle accident lawyers who can assess your coverage and your options.
Contact Us to Speak With Our Billings Hit and Run Accident Attorney
To speak with a Ragain & Clark, PC accident attorney about collecting compensation for injuries you sustained in a hit and run accident in Montana or Wyoming, contact us online. Initial consultations are always free. To call our offices directly, call:
Billings Office: 406-651-8888
Worland Office: 307-388-6400