CALL (800) 863-5312 to speak with Colorado Springs Hit and Run Lawyers
Hit and runs occur in seconds but the damage to a victim’s vehicle can be extensive. Plus, the injuries caused to innocent drivers can be long-lasting. When the other driver speeds away from the scene of an accident without following the proper procedure of exchanging contact and insurance information, hit and run crash victims are often left feeling helpless and confused.
The attorneys at Zinda Law Group have experience representing hit and run victims. Call us today at (800)-863-5312 for a free attorney consultation with skilled hit and run attorneys in Colorado Springs.
What is a Hit and Run Accident?
Across the US, there is more than one hit and run accident every minute. A hit and run accident occurs when a driver intentionally leaves the scene of an accident and does not stop to provide contact or insurance information, or help individuals injured in the accident. Drivers may flee the scene of an accident because they are not licensed or insured; some panic after the collision, are under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or are afraid that talking with the police will reveal unrelated crimes.
Colorado law requires that when an accident results in an injury, the driver must immediately stop their vehicle at the scene of the accident, help injured crash victims, and exchange contact information. When victims are injured and the other driver fails to stop and follow this procedure, criminal charges can be brought against the driver.
What TO do after a Hit and Run Accident
After an accident, most victims assume that the other driver will pull over and exchange information. However, a hit and run can happen in a matter of seconds when a driver speeds off after a crash. As an accident victim, there are several steps you can take immediately following a hit and run.
1. Do Not Leave the Scene of the Accident
While your instinct may be to chase down a hit and run driver, this can put you in danger and make it more difficult to later find witnesses who saw the accident occur. If you are able, move your car out of traffic and off to the side of the road.
2. Pay Attention to the Details
It is important to pay attention to as many details as possible after a hit and run. This could include the license plate number or the make, model, and color of the car. Any distinguishing features, such as bumper stickers or damage from the accident, may help police locate the car involved in the accident. The time of day, location, and the direction the driver headed after the accident can also help police to locate the driver.
3. Call the Police
After a hit and run, you should call the police. They will file an accident report and take down any identifying details that you can recall in order to help track down the driver of the other vehicle. They may also speak to witnesses who saw the accident and take a statement from them. Be sure to ask the police department for a copy of the accident report or how to access this report once it becomes available.
4. Seek Medical Attention
If you are seriously injured, you may be unable to pay attention to any details or wait around to speak with police about the accident. Instead, you should call 911 and seek immediate medical attention. If you do not receive medical treatment at the scene of the accident, you should visit your doctor as soon as possible to determine whether you need medical treatment.
5. Document Your Damage
As soon as possible, be sure to take photos of the damage to your car and any injuries you sustained in the accident. You should also take photos of the location of the accident and gather any witnesses’ contact information.
6. Document Your Expenses
It is important that you keep track of all receipts and paperwork related to your accident. In order to receive compensation later on, you will need to show the financial impact of a hit and run accident. This could include:
- Hospital and doctor bills
- Physical therapy expenses
- Chiropractor invoices
- Documented time taken off from work due to injuries
- Receipts for the repair or replacement of your car
- Receipts for the use of a rental car while yours is repaired
7. Document Your Expenses
After you’ve been in a car accident, your insurance company needs to be notified. You should explain that you were the victim of a hit and run accident and see what coverage your policy offers you.
How insurance works in a hit and run accident
After a hit and run accident, many drivers are left wondering who will pay for the damage to their car, medical bills, and other expenses incurred because of the accident. When a driver responsible for the car accident leaves the scene before exchanging insurance information, victims may feel lost as to where to turn to recover the expenses.
When the driver responsible cannot be identified, you should file an uninsured motorist coverage claim with your insurance company. This type of coverage works as if the driver responsible for the accident had stayed at the scene but did not have adequate insurance coverage for the accident. In Colorado, drivers need to carry a minimum coverage of $25,000 for injuries or death to a single person, or $50,000 for all injuries due to a single accident, and $15,000 for property damage.
If your car insurance company fails to honor your uninsured motorist coverage policy or offers you an unfair settlement amount, a hit and run attorney may be able to assist you in pursing the compensation you deserve. Zinda Law Group lawyers in Colorado Springs are familiar with accidents of all kinds in the area where your incident occurred, so they will be better able to help you calculate the true value of your damages, too.
What Can a Hit and Run Lawyer Do for Me?
Our Colorado Springs car accident lawyers are here to help walk you through every step of the process. This may include ensuring you receive proper medical treatment, investigating the accident, interviewing witnesses, collecting crash reports, negotiating with the insurance company, filing a lawsuit, and going to trial if necessary.
At Zinda Law Group, we can help you determine the damages you are entitled to and will work to hold insurance companies accountable so that a hit and run accident does not leave you paying for an accident that wasn’t your fault. Our attorneys may work with your insurance company as well as the other driver’s insurance company, if the other driver can be located, to come to a solution so that you do not have to pay. The amount of compensation you are eligible for will be affected by factors such as the extent of your injuries, the amount of your medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages, and damage to your vehicle.
What If the Police Find the Driver Responsible for the Accident?
If the driver involved in the hit and run is found, you may be able to file a claim with their insurance. The other driver may also be facing criminal charges for fleeing the scene of an accident. These criminal charges will not affect your ability to file a civil case for damages to your car and expenses from any injuries you sustained.
What If the Police Can’t Find the Driver Responsible for My Injuries?
The police have a number of ways to track down drivers involved in hit and run accidents. They may rely on surveillance cameras, eyewitnesses, or social media to try and find the responsible party.
Unfortunately, there are still some cases where police are unable to identify hit and run drivers. This may leave victims feeling uneasy and without a sense of closure. While the victim’s insurance may be able to help compensate them for the financial costs of an accident, it can be hard to repair the loss of trust in a community.
Will My Insurance Rate Increase If I File a Claim?
Unfortunately, even when you are the victim of a hit and run, some insurance companies may raise your rates. Although it doesn’t seem fair, insurance companies may increase your rate if you file an uninsured motorist claim. Many times, it will depend on your driving history and if you have been in previous car accidents. However, over time, insurance companies may also lower your rates after they are raised as a result of an accident.
CONtact a Lawyer who handles hit and run cases
At Zinda Law Group, our hit and run attorneys have helped many accident victims get the compensation they deserved after suffering from injuries after hit and run cases. We may be able to help investigate the accident you were involved in, negotiate with insurance companies, and help ensure that you don’t pay for an accident that’s not your fault.
Furthermore, we believe an accident victim should never have to worry about being able to afford excellent legal representation. That is why we offer 100% free consultations and a No Win, No Fee Guarantee; you pay nothing unless we win your case.
If you have been injured in a hit and run accident, call Zinda Law Group at (800)-863-5312 to receive your free consultation with one of our experienced Colorado Springs car accident lawyers today.
Meetings with attorneys are available by appointment only.