Being involved in an auto accident can be a traumatic experience, leaving a victim with injuries that may require costly medical treatment, as well as damage their vehicle and other property. Addressing these issues can be a complicated process following any type of accident, but it can become even more difficult in hit-and-run situations. If a driver fled the scene of a collision without stopping to make sure that others were okay or to exchange contact and insurance information, victims will often be left unsure about what they should do next. In these situations, it is crucial for accident victims to work with a personal injury attorney who can help them identify all sources of financial compensation that may be available.
Legal Options Following a Hit-and-Run
As is true in any car accident, victims of hit-and-run drivers will need to receive medical treatment. This may include calling 911 and having emergency medical technicians dispatched to the scene. Even if emergency treatment is not necessary, victims should visit a doctor as soon as possible to identify any health concerns related to the accident and ensure that they are taking the proper steps to make a full recovery. Doing so can provide evidence demonstrating the full extent of the injuries a person has suffered.
By working with an attorney after a hit-and-run accident, victims can determine whether it may be possible to identify the driver who did not meet their legal requirements to remain at the scene of the collision. A lawyer can obtain evidence such as security camera footage or witness testimony that may provide identifying details, which may include a vehicle’s license plate number, make, model, and color. If the identity of the at-fault driver can be found, they can be held liable for the victims’ damages.
Even if the driver who left the scene of the accident cannot be identified, victims will usually have other options for recovering compensation. Auto insurance policies in Wisconsin must include uninsured motorist coverage, which will address injuries and damages suffered by a policyholder in situations where the driver who was at fault did not have insurance. This coverage also applies to cases where the identity of the at-fault driver is unknown. Our attorneys can assist with filing uninsured motorist claims and ensuring that victims receive the full amount of coverage they deserve.
Phantom Motor Vehicles
Some accidents may not meet the traditional definition of “hit-and-run,” since a near-miss with another vehicle may cause a driver to lose control and collide with an obstacle or a third vehicle. This is known as a “phantom motor vehicle” accident. In these cases, victims may receive uninsured motorist coverage, but they will need to meet certain requirements.
A police report must be filed within 72 hours after an accident, and statements about the phantom motor vehicle must be corroborated by witness testimony or evidence provided by someone other than the victim. When filing an uninsured motorist claim, a victim must make a sworn statement within 30 days after the accident detailing the facts of the case and stating that the accident was caused by a driver whose identity cannot be verified.
Contact Our Green Bay Hit-and-Run Accident Attorneys
At Herrling Clark Law Firm, Ltd., our attorneys can provide the legal help you need following a hit-and-run or miss-and-run accident. We will work with you to gather the necessary evidence and assist with filing uninsured motorist claims, ensuring that you can receive the most compensation possible to help you recover from your injuries. Contact our Appleton car accident lawyers today at 920-739-7366 to arrange a free consultation.