It can be terrifying to be involved in an accident caused by a motorist who flees the scene. Besides being left alone to deal with the wreckage, an injured victim may not know how to pursue the compensation they need to pay for medical expenses and property damage. Unfortunately, police investigations do not always succeed in identifying the at-fault driver.
If you are in this situation, it can be useful to have a dedicated car accident lawyer in your corner. The attorneys at Smith Hulsey know what to do after a hit-and-run in Gainesville and could advise you throughout this difficult time.
The first step after a hit-and-run accident is to go to the hospital to check any injuries and get emergency medical care. It is critically important to receive treatment for even minor symptoms, as insurance companies will only take injuries into account if they have been documented.
After seeking medical attention, a hit-and-run victim should contact an experienced attorney nearby, even just for an initial call. It is important for an injured person to touch base early on to ensure that they do not make ill-advised moves when dealing with their own or other parties’ insurance companies.
Many people are fearful about reporting an accident, especially if they think they may be at fault or if they believe it was just a minor crash. However, their own insurance company will find out eventually, and it is more beneficial to notify them early on.
If an injured victim waits too long to contact their insurance after a hit-and-run in Gainesville, they risk voiding uninsured motorist policies that could be crucial in recovering damages. Many insurance companies only give 60 days for a person to notify them of a traffic collision.
After a hit-and-run, dealing with insurance companies is more complicated than if the at-fault driver is known. Even if the vehicle is identified, it may have been stolen by the fleeing motorist and registered under someone else’s policy. In these cases, the insurance company will often deny responsibility for an injured victim’s losses.
However, contacting one’s own insurance adjusters can be key in resolving property damage issues like getting a rental car or getting their car appraised, inspected, and repaired. A skilled attorney can help hit-and-run victims move through this process to ensure they have their daily transportation needs after a car wreck.
People often think that insurance companies are entitled to know every detail of their injuries, medical treatment, and current health status after a traffic crash. Contrary to this belief, hit-and-run victims do not need to disclose any of this information until they are ready to make a settlement demand. Georgia gives people two years from the hit-and-run accident date make these demands.
However, seeking legal counsel early on can help a Gainesville resident ensure that they have a strong case before speaking with insurance adjusters about their personal injuries. Our supportive attorneys are also skilled at protecting hit-and-run victims from the incessant questioning of insurance companies.
Not knowing which insurance company is responsible for damages can be difficult for victims who are struggling to pay for their medical costs and other expenses associated with the accident. Those hit by fleeing motorists should contact police immediately after the incident, but investigations can take a long time, and in many cases the driver is never found.
If you are in this situation, do not delay in contacting a local attorney to discuss other options for pursuing recovery, such as through the uninsured motorist policy of your own coverage. A seasoned lawyer at our firm could explain what to do after a hit-and-run in Gainesville and work tirelessly toward a positive outcome to your case. Call today to set up a free consultation.
Smith Hulsey Law