Drivers involved in collisions in California are expected to stop and exchange insurance and contact information with other involved motorists. In cases where an injury or death occurs if a driver fails to stop, that driver may face criminal charges for a hit-and-run accident.
Victims of a hit-and-run accident can face many challenges in seeking compensation for crash related losses. First and foremost, the accident victim may be unable to find and/or identify the driver responsible for causing the crash.
It is imperative that victims of a hit-and-run accident understand all options available to help recover compensation for their car crash losses. A Long Beach car accident attorney can provide guidance and representation following the accident.
What if a Hit-and-Run Accident Driver Cannot be Found After a Long Beach Car Accident?
Collision victims are normally able to pursue a case for compensation against another driver, provided the victim can prove injuries were directly caused by the other motorist. A personal injury case allows the victim to pursue compensation by filing a claim with the insurer of the at-fault driver pays for medical costs, wage loss, pain and suffering, and emotional distress.
In the case of a hit-and-run accident, the victim does not know who the other driver and therefore cannot file a claim. This could result in significant uncompensated losses for the victim.
Motorists who are harmed by a hit-and-run driver should contact law enforcement as soon as practical after the crash occurs. The police will conduct an investigation into a hit-and-run accident, especially when serious injuries or fatalities occur. If the driver who fled the crash scene is identified and found, the crash victim may proceed with a case against the hit-and-run driver. The plaintiff in this type of personal injury claim will need to prove the driver:
- Was the motorist involved in the crash.
- Was negligent, violated the rules of the road, or drove in an unreasonably unsafe manner.
- Caused the crash as a direct result of his or her negligence and unsafe driving.
Evidence from a police investigation and police report can be used both to show the defendant actually was the driver involved in the hit-and-run and to demonstrate that driver caused the collision.
Uninsured Motorist Coverage is Important in a Hit-and-Run Accident?
If the driver is unable to be found, the hit-and-run crash victim cannot pursue a case against him and must explore alternative ways to get motor vehicle accident compensation. Some car accident victims have uninsured motorist coverage, optional coverage that can be purchased as part of their car insurance policy. Those with uninsured motorist coverage can make a claim for damages with their own auto insurer. Their auto insurer will stand in for the driver who is supposed to be providing the compensation but who cannot be sued because he cannot be found.
Victims without uninsured motorist coverage will have no option but to cover their own losses, unless they can identify other defendants who may have been partially responsible for causing injuries. If road defects or vehicle defects were a partial cause or contributor to the crash, it is possible the victim could pursue a case against car manufacturers or road designers in an attempt to recover at least partial compensation for crash losses.
Get Help from a Long Beach Accident Attorney
Your Injuries are Personal to Me
I provide legal representation to clients who sustain injuries in Long Beach accidents, including hit-and-run crashes. I explore all options for recovering compensation for car accident victims.
Call the Law Office of Michael D. Waks at 888-394-1174 or use the convenient online contact form to schedule a free consultation. You are under no obligation and you will never pay any money unless you recover damages for your injuries. I offer bilingual services as part of my comprehensive approach to legal representation and I am available 24/7 to talk to you about your case.
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