The other driver could be dangerous — he or she may have fled because the police have an outstanding arrest warrant. The police are trained to deal with dangerous individuals. It is also their job to find people who flee the scene of a car accident, because it is a violation of state law.
Under New Jersey Revised Statutes a , any driver knowingly involved in an accident that caused injury or death must remain at the scene until fulfilling the requirements under subsection c. This section requires the driver to present his or her driver's license and vehicle registration to the victim and the police. The driver must also give his or her name and address to the victim and police.
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Another reason not to chase the other driver is that it might not be safe to do so. If your vehicle was damaged in the crash, it might be unsafe to operate. Pull out your smartphone and start taking pictures to document the scene.
This includes taking pictures of the following:. You should also keep an eye out for any witnesses, including bystanders or customers or employees of local businesses. Ask them what they saw and take notes. Make sure to get the names and contact information for all witnesses so you can contact them again in the future. Look around for any cameras that may have captured the accident. Note where these cameras are for future reference. A New Jersey car accident lawyer may be able to obtain footage from these cameras, which could be crucial to obtaining compensation from your claim.
After watching the car flee the scene, call the police to report that you were in an accident and the other driver fled. Give the dispatcher all of the information you collected about the other driver. This will be relayed to officers who may be able to catch the driver. Whether they catch the driver or not, police will come to the scene of the accident to complete an accident report. Provide them with all of the information you have collected and explain what happened.
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Ask the officer how you can obtain a copy of the report , as it is a vital piece of evidence for your insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit. It serves as an official record of what happened and helps link your injuries to the crash. You need to be evaluated by a trained medical professional to diagnose all of your injuries and begin treatment. It is important to be examined by a trained physician because he or she can discover injuries you may not have known about because they weren't immediately causing symptoms. For example, you might not notice symptoms of whiplash for hours or days after the crash.
The doctor will note all of your injuries and your treatment plan in your medical records. Your records will also note that your injuries were caused by the crash. Our New Jersey hit-and-run accident attorneys understand the difficulties of collecting fair compensation after a hit-and-run crash. We are prepared to guide you through every step of the process, pursuing all compensation to help you get back on your feet. Car insurance claims in New Jersey are governed by a no-fault system, which means accident victims must first seek compensation from their own insurance policy, even if they were not at fault for the crash.
This also applies to hit-and-run accidents, regardless of whether the police find the other driver or not. You should contact your insurance company as soon as possible after the accident. Explain that you were in a hit-and-run accident, the police have been contacted and are searching for the driver, and you are going to get medical treatment.
Stick to the basic facts and nothing else. Avoid discussing your opinions or attempting to gauge the severity of your injuries. Insurance companies will do whatever they can to deny or devalue a claim and giving incorrect information could hurt your chances of recovering compensation. There are various coverages that could provide compensation for a hit-and-run accident, depending on whether or not the police find the driver who fled the accident scene.
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If the other driver is found and he or she is insured, our New Jersey hit-and-run accident lawyers can pursue compensation from your collision and personal injury protection PIP coverages, up to the limits of your policy. Collision coverage provides compensation for damage to your vehicle while personal injury protection compensates you for:. Unfortunately, there are many times where police are unable to locate the driver who left the scene of an accident. When this happens, you can still pursue compensation for medical expenses through your PIP coverage, as this is available regardless of who caused the accident.
This provides compensation for property damage and medical expenses from the crash, up to the limits of your policy. You can also obtain compensation from this coverage if police find the driver but the individual either has no insurance or lacks enough coverage to pay for your damages.
Filing an Insurance Claim After a Hit-and-Run Accident
This often happens in hit-and-run cases — the reason many people flee accidents is because they have no insurance. Our hit-and-run accident lawyers in New Jersey know how to determine what types of insurance coverage are available to you after a hit-and-run accident.
While most car accident cases are resolved through car insurance claims, some victims may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit to recover certain forms of compensation. In a hit-and-run accident, this option only exists if police find the driver who left the scene of the crash. If you chose to purchase the standard car insurance policy, you were required to make a choice about having a limited right to sue or an unlimited right to sue.
Both options have different rules about when you can file a lawsuit and the forms of compensation you can pursue. If you selected an unlimited right to sue, you can file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver to obtain compensation for pain and suffering for any injury, no matter how minor or severe. You will still have to pursue other forms of compensation through a car insurance claim.
When you select this option, it applies to your spouse, children and other relatives who are living with you and are not covered by another car insurance policy. If you chose the limited right to sue option, you can only sue for pain and suffering if you sustain one of the following permanent injuries:. RSS feed "new jersey injury claims who to hire what to do and know your options".
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