After an accident, it’s common to stop and exchange insurance information with the other driver, then to work with the other driver’s insurance company to cover losses that your insurance does not cover or that are the fault of the other driver. But what do you do when the other driver has no insurance, or when their insurance doesn’t cover all of your losses? Worse, what do you do when the other driver flees the scene in a “hit and run,” leaving you with no idea who they were or who to contact?
An experienced lawyer can help you explore the following options:
Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage
Your auto insurance policy may include coverage for uninsured/underinsured motorist accidents, if you chose to purchase this coverage. Uninsured/underinsured coverage pays for injury bills and property damage resulting from an accident in which another driver does not have insurance or does not have enough insurance to pay for all of the damages they caused, even after the limits of their policy are met. Your lawyer can help you determine whether you have this coverage, what its limits are, and how to get a full and fair settlement.
Contacting the Authorities
When a driver runs into you and then flees the scene, first call the police to report the “hit and run” accident. Leaving the scene of an accident isn’t just an inconvenience to you—it’s also a crime in California. The sooner you report the accident, the better chance police have of tracking down the other driver.
Then, contact an attorney. Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage often covers the results of hit and run accidents as well, and it can help you even if you were a pedestrian or bicyclist at the time of the accident.
If you’ve been injured in an accident only to discover the other driver has no insurance, doesn’t have enough insurance to cover your needs, or has fled the scene before you can find out what their insurance coverage is, it’s time to start looking at alternative options for getting your losses covered. Fortunately, by working with an experienced California car accident lawyer, you can identify ways to ensure your needs are met.