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Hess Law LLC March 4, 2024

I Was Involved in a Hit and Run. Do I Still Have a Case?

Any accident involving a motor vehicle can be stressful and overwhelming, but a hit and run is particularly distressing. A hit and run is when a driver involved in an accident leaves the scene without stopping to provide their information or offer assistance to the victim. It can involve various types of accidents such as car crashes, pedestrian incidents, or even property damage. 

As someone who's dealt with these cases, I know that understanding what a hit and run is can be crucial for victims. It's not just about the immediate shock and confusion; it's about knowing your rights and how you can protect yourself. 

Kansas No-Fault Law and Hit and Run Cases 

In Kansas, which operates under a no-fault car insurance system, individuals involved in a hit and run still have the possibility to seek compensation for their damages. Under this system, your own car insurance policy provides Personal Injury Protection (PIP) benefits which cover medical expenses, lost wages, and rehabilitation costs, regardless of who is at fault. This means that even if the driver who hit you is not identified, you can file a claim under your PIP coverage. 

However, it's important to note that PIP does not cover property damage, for which you would typically look to your collision coverage or uninsured motorist property damage coverage, if you've opted for it. The no-fault law can influence your case because it limits your ability to sue the other driver unless your injuries meet a certain threshold. This threshold generally pertains to the severity of the injuries or if medical expenses reach a certain amount. In instances where the at-fault driver is unknown due to a hit and run, the scope for legal action may be limited, but an experienced attorney can help you through your situation. 

What to Do if You Are Uninsured 

If you are the victim of a hit and run and do not have your own car insurance, the situation becomes more complicated, but you still have options. First and foremost, report the incident to the police immediately. A timely police report is crucial for any further steps.

After reporting, consult with local legal aid organizations which can offer guidance on what resources might be available to you. In some states, there are victim's funds or community resources dedicated to helping those who are uninsured. Additionally, an attorney may be able to assist you in finding alternative avenues for seeking damages or compensation for your losses. Remember that each state has different laws and provisions for uninsured motorists, so it's important to seek advice pertinent to your region and circumstances. 

Your Rights as a Victim 

When you're a victim of a hit and run, you have certain rights that can help you seek justice and compensation for your losses. While these rights may vary depending on the jurisdiction, you generally have the right to report the incident to the police and seek medical attention for any injuries sustained.  

I can't stress enough how important it is to gather as much information as possible about the incident. This could be anything from a description of the vehicle involved to the license plate number if available, and any witness statements. These details can aid in identifying the responsible party and holding them accountable. 

Steps to Take After a Hit and Run 

If you find yourself the victim of a hit and run, there are immediate steps you can take that may improve your chances of resolving your case successfully: 

  • Contact the Police: As soon as it's safe to do so, call the police. A formal police report is critical in a hit and run case, as it officially documents the incident and can be vital in an insurance claim or lawsuit. 

  • Seek Medical Attention: If you've been injured, prioritize your health and get medical care immediately. Even if you feel fine, some injuries may not be apparent right away. 

  • Document Everything: Take photos of the scene, your vehicle, and any injuries you sustained. Write down everything you remember about the other vehicle and any details that stand out. 

  • Look for Witnesses: If anyone saw the accident, ask for their contact information. Witness accounts can provide crucial evidence for your case. 

  • Notify Your Insurance Company: Inform your insurance of the hit and run. Depending on your policy, you may be covered under uninsured motorist protection. 

  • Consult with a Lawyer: A lawyer who specializes in hit and run accidents can provide guidance on your rights and the best course of action. 

Remember, the more evidence you're able to collect, the stronger your case may be. Acting swiftly and deliberately can make a significant impact on the outcome of your situation. 

Building Your Case 

Building a strong case after a hit and run can be challenging but it is possible. Providing all the information you're able to gather to the police and cooperating with their investigation can go a long way and even lead to the identification of the responsible party. However, even if the driver remains unidentified, it's important to remember that you still have rights. Working with an experienced personal injury attorney like me can help you navigate the legal process and maximize your chances of a favorable case.

Dealing With Insurance Companies 

After a hit and run, you'll likely need to communicate with your insurance company to file a claim and seek compensation for your losses. But here's a word of caution: insurance companies may try to minimize your claim or offer a settlement that doesn't adequately cover your damages. It's best to seek legal counsel to make sure you're making the decisions that are in your best interest.

You Have Rights. Use Them.

Before doing anything, consult with a personal injury attorney. I can negotiate on your behalf and ensure that you receive fair compensation for your medical expenses, property damage, lost wages, and other related losses. 

Remember, being involved in a hit-and-run doesn't mean you're without options. By understanding your rights, taking prompt action, and seeking legal guidance, you can pursue justice and obtain the compensation you deserve.


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