Being hurt in a vehicle accident is bad enough, but a hit-and-run accident is even worse. It can be very difficult to hold the negligent driver responsible if they flee the scene of the accident. However, there are things you can do to locate the driver and apply for legal compensation as warranted.
File a Police Report
Call 911 immediately to file a police report. An officer will be dispatched to collect information about the accident and your injuries. Provide as much detail as possible about what happened. Take pictures of your car and the surrounding areas, such as street or sidewalk objects like a tipped-over trashcan that the guilty driver might have knocked over during the incident.
Get Medical Attention
Contact your doctor or go to the nearest hospital or clinic emergency department. Call an ambulance or EMS if necessary. Give a full report about what happened as well as any symptoms you are experiencing, such as abrasions, scrapes, sore muscles, broken bones, lacerations, dizziness, headache, or other problems that may be related to the accident. Follow the doctor’s guidelines, take medications as directed, and get physical therapy or other extended treatment if needed.
Consult a Personal Injury Attorney
As soon as you can, contact a lawyer who specializes in personal injury or car accidents. The attorney can explain your rights and responsibilities as well as assist in tracking the person responsible for your injuries. You can learn what to expect from the legal process and start preparing a thorough collection of documents and records along with other tasks you can do to facilitate the process.
Try to Locate Witnesses
With an attorney’s advice, ask people in the area of the accident if anyone is aware of witnesses on the day and time it occurred. Public businesses might have employees or customers who saw what happened, and they could prepare a written statement of objective observations that might be usable in a legal proceeding. Your attorney, if you retain one, can also assist in searching for witnesses and providing expert witnesses if needed.
A hit-and-run accident can be very serious, and if damages are involved, a skilled lawyer might be needed to advise you on how to track the responsible driver and collect evidence. With a coordinated effort, you have a good chance of presenting your claim in court to get fair consideration of your injuries and losses.
Author information: Anita is a freelance writer from Denver, CO. She studied at Colorado State University and now writes articles about health, business, family, and finance. A mother of two, she enjoys traveling with her family whenever she isn’t writing. You can follow her on Twitter @anitaginsburg.