After securing your medical needs and contacting 911 if necessary, the first step is to contact the police immediately. It is very important to properly document the incident and to maximize the ability of law enforcement to identify the culprit.
This will also protect your right to certain insurance benefits.
Many insurance policies require that you file a police report within 24-hours of the incident, or you may be disqualified from recovering Uninsured Motorist Benefits under policy exclusions. Uninsured Motorist Benefits provide an injured person with compensation for injuries arising from the accident involving a hit-and-run driver. Other policies provide that a police report must be made after an accident as soon as, reasonably practical, to preserve your right to uninsured motorist benefits. To be safe, it is prudent to report the accident within 24-hours to avoid any legal arguments that the insurance company could use to avoid their obligation to pay such benefits.
You should also document all physical evidence establishing that a hit-and-run vehicle was involved in an accident. Sometimes insurers will dispute that a hit-and-run vehicle was involved in an accident with your vehicle. Photograph any evidence of damage or paint transfer onto your vehicle. In a case for uninsured motorist benefits, our office was able to preserve paint transfer markings and utilize scientific analysis of the paint which established that the paint was from an automobile manufacturer.
This evidence was very helpful in proving that a hit-and-run automobile was involved in the accident with our client. It is important to retain all physical evidence that is helpful to prove that a hit-and-run vehicle was involved in the crash.
It is also important to obtain the names and phone numbers of any potential witnesses. If you do not do so at the accident scene, you likely will not be able to identify these witnesses at a later date. You should provide any witness information to the investigating police department. Your attorney may also be able to locate potential witnesses by obtaining 911 calls or call logs. Many times there will be witnesses who will call 911 that would not otherwise be identified by the injured person or the police. This frequently provides relevant testimony in injury cases. Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), 1976 PA 442. http://www.legislature.mi.gov/documents/mcl/pdf/mcl-act-442-of-1976.pdf It is prudent to contact an experienced personal injury attorney after an accident to protect your legal rights.
If you have been a victim of a hit and run accident and have suffered injuries, it is extremely important to have an experienced lawyer review any injury claim. The personal injury attorneys at Logeman, Iafrate & Logeman can help.
Our Ann Arbor personal injury law practice is prepared to handle claims involving car accidents, uninsured accidents, motorcycle accidents, truck accidents, wrongful death, pedestrian accidents, traumatic brain injury, no fault, and more. Our highly experienced attorneys have helped countless clients throughout Michigan recover losses and rebuild their lives for over 45 years! Call us today to speak with an experienced attorney. Free Consultations.