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Am I Eligible for Compensation If Injured in a Hit-and-Run Accident?

You may be eligible for compensation if you were injured in a hit-and-run accident, but seeking damages can be more challenging. In some hit-and-run cases, authorities eventually identify the driver who fled the accident scene, which opens up additional avenues for pursuing compensation. Otherwise, your insurance policy may have uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage that you can access. 

You can discuss your case with a car accident lawyer to get clear on your legal options. They can review your insurance policy and see what kind of coverage you have.

California’s Auto Insurance Requirements and Seeking Compensation for a Hit-and-Run Accident

According to the California Department of Motor Vehicles, all motorists must carry the minimum liability coverage, which includes:

  • $15,000 for injury or death to one person, such as another driver, passenger, or pedestrian
  • $30,000 for injury or death to more than one person
  • $5,000 for property damage

It’s important to note that this coverage only applies to another person or their vehicle if you are found liable for the accident. This is because California is an at-fault state. Unfortunately, the minimum liability coverage does not cover your medical bills, lost wages, or accident-related property damage.  

For this reason, it can be particularly concerning when you suffer injuries and losses in a hit-and-run accident. One of the main reasons an at-fault driver flees the crash scene is a lack of this minimum liability coverage. However, you may have other options for seeking compensation, and there is a chance that the authorities will identify the hit-and-run driver.  

If You Carry Additional Coverage Under Your Auto Policy

Although optional in California, you may have selected various kinds of coverage that can apply to your losses in a car accident that wasn’t your fault. For example, you may carry:

  • Personal injury protection (PIP)
  • MedPay
  • Collision coverage

A car accident attorney can look into your auto insurance policy to see which types of coverage would apply to your losses. Unfortunately, these coverage options do not usually apply retroactively, so you must have purchased them before the hit-and-run accident to use them.

If Law Enforcement Identifies the At-Fault Driver

If authorities eventually identify and track down the driver who fled, you can file a hit-and-run injury claim with their insurance provider. Keep in mind that the at-fault driver in your hit-and-run accident may not have insurance. Even if they do, your injuries and financial losses, such as property damage, may exceed the minimum coverage. 

In this case, you also have the option to file a personal injury lawsuit against the liable party. A car accident lawyer can help you take legal action. They can handle the claims process or a hit-and-run injury lawsuit from start to finish while you rest and recuperate. 

Recoverable Hit-and-Run Accident Compensation You Can Seek After a Crash

Compensation for hit-and-run injuries depends on the extent of your condition and how it will affect your life going forward. Your injuries may warrant awards for both current and ongoing losses, as well as non-economic losses. Look at some of the potential damages that may apply to your hit-and-run accident case:

  • Current medical expenses, including ambulatory care, hospital stays, surgeries, and medication
  • Ongoing medical expenses, such as in-home aid and rehabilitative services
  • Pain and suffering
  • Lost quality of life
  • Scarring and disfigurement
  • Lost income, including missed bonuses and benefits
  • Reduced earning capacity if you cannot earn your pre-injury income
  • Property damage, such as vehicle repairs and replacement costs
  • Out-of-pocket expenses related to your hit-and-run accident

Hit-and-run accident attorney services include assessing your losses. You will want to be sure to seek fair compensation, and an auto accident attorney can gather evidence to substantiate these losses. For example, they can use your medical records, medical bills, and wage statements to support your case. 

Seeing a Doctor Can Help You Seek Compensation After a Hit-and-Run Accident 

Nothing is more important than your health. Even if you do not require emergency medical care but worry about paying for medical bills, see a doctor as soon as possible. You wouldn’t want to worsen any seemingly minor injuries into severe conditions. Seeing a doctor can also help support your case for compensation, whether you’re filing an insurance claim or lawsuit. 

You must show the connection between the car accident and your injuries. You will also need a doctor’s prognosis to seek future medical expenses. This is why you should never delay or forgo seeing a physician after any auto collision. Play it safe and protect your health and your legal rights after a hit-and-run accident. 

You Can Hire a Hit-and-Run Accident Lawyer on Contingency

You don’t have to pay upfront attorney’s fees to start a case. Many personal injury law firms operate on a contingency fee basis. They take their attorney’s fees as a percentage of your potential compensation. This allows them to begin working on your case immediately without causing you any more financial strain. 

You will also rest assured that your attorney will seek fair compensation and dedicate their time to your case. Their outcome depends on yours. 

Call Us to See If You Are Eligible for Compensation If Injured in a Hit-and-Run Accident

You deserve a chance at justice and fair compensation after a hit-and-run accident. Our legal team at KJT Law Group can help you pursue it. We can explore your legal options and review your insurance policy. Call us today at (818) 507-8525 to access your free initial consultation. 

Act quickly, as California’s statute of limitations deadline, CCP § 335.1, generally gives you only two years to file a personal injury lawsuit. 

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