What To Do After a Hit and Run in Charleston
Being involved in a hit and run accident is a traumatic experience. Not only are you left dealing with the damage to your vehicle, but you may also be dealing with injuries, both physical and psychological. The aftermath of a hit and run can be overwhelming, but it’s important to know what to do to protect your rights. Take the following steps after a hit and run accident in South Carolina.
Steps to Take After a Hit and Run Accident
Call the Police
The first step you should take after a hit and run is to call the police. Even if you aren’t sure that you want to file an insurance claim, it’s important to call the police so they can file an official report. Always get a copy of the report. It will be useful if you decide to take further action later on. Additionally, reporting the accident is the law. In South Carolina, you must report the accident to the DMV within 15 days if law enforcement doesn’t show up on scene.
Get Medical Attention
If you’ve been injured in a hit and run, it’s important to get medical attention right away, even if you don’t think your injuries are serious. A medical professional can assess your injuries and give you a better idea of what kind of treatment you may need.
Write Down As Much Information About the Other Driver As You Can
Write down as much information as you remember, including the make and model of the car, any part of the license plate if you saw it, and what the driver looked like. Even if you only have partial information, it may be enough for the police to track down the other driver.
If there were any witnesses to the accident, try to get their names and contact information. They may be able to provide valuable information about what happened and help corroborate your story. They may have seen the driver or the license plate number.
File an Insurance Claim
Once you’ve taken care of your immediate needs, you can start thinking about filing an insurance claim. If the other driver has been found and they have insurance, their policy should cover your damages. However, if the other driver can’t be found or they don’t have insurance, you may have to rely on your own uninsured motorist coverage.
Check for Video Footage
If there are any security cameras or traffic cameras in the area, they may have captured footage of the accident or the fleeing vehicle. This footage can be invaluable in helping to identify the other driver.
Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer
Dealing with insurance companies after a hit and run can be tricky, so it’s important to have an experienced advocate on your side who knows how to navigate these types of claims. An attorney can also help you identify possible sources of compensation.
Obtaining Compensation After a Hit and Run
The following are some examples of coverage that might provide compensation for your injuries and property damage after a hit and run accident.
Uninsured Motorist (UM) Coverage
This is one of the most common types of coverage that people think about when they’re in an accident with an uninsured driver. Uninsured motorist coverage can help pay for your medical bills if you’re hit by an uninsured driver or a hit and run driver.
Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Coverage
Personal injury protection (PIP) is a type of no-fault insurance that can help pay for your expenses, regardless of who was at fault.
If you’re involved in a hit and run accident and have PIP coverage, your insurance company will typically help pay for the following expenses:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Funeral costs
- Other out-of-pocket expenses
Being involved in a hit and run accident is a scary experience. You may be injured, your car may be damaged, and you may be left feeling shaken up and alone. It’s important to know the basics and understand that you have options. If you need help, contact us to schedule a free consultation with a Charleston car accident attorney.