Any car accident carries with it the potential for serious ramifications and trauma. This is especially true of hit and run accidents, which can happen to drivers and pedestrians alike. The nature of hit and run accidents can leave a victim feeling helpless.
To seek the compensation you deserve, you will want to make sure you have an experienced attorney by your side. Our team at Grossman Green PLLC in Louisville, Kentucky represents victims and their families after they have suffered injuries caused by drivers who fled an accident scene. With that in mind, here is some guidance regarding what to do if you have been involved in a hit and run accident.
Kentucky Law and Hit & Run Accidents
When it comes to hit and run accidents in Kentucky, it is important that you know how the law operates. Kentucky is a “no-fault” state, meaning drivers can take advantage of Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage from their own insurance company after a car accident in order to obtain $10,000 for out of pocket expenses like medical bills and lost wages.
Kentucky drivers are required to carry personal injury protection coverage (PIP). The coverage applies whether you were operating a vehicle involved in the accident, a passenger in a vehicle, a pedestrian, or a bicyclist.
You can typically purchase higher levels of coverage, but the minimum level of personal injury protection pays $10,000 which can be used to pay for:
85% of lost wages due to the injury (with a maximum of $200 per week)
Other related costs, such as replacement services
Underinsured or Uninsured Motorist Coverage
After a hit and run accident, there will obviously be things you won’t know — mainly, who the other driver is and whether or not they are insured. That’s where uninsured motorist and underinsured motorist coverage come in. These are coverages on your own insurance policy for which you pay a premium each month. The coverage requirements vary by state.
Uninsured Motorists coverage (UM) protects you if your vehicle is hit by a driver without auto insurance, or if you’re involved in a hit and run. Your insurance will cover your and your passenger's injury claims up to your policy limit.
Underinsured Motorists coverage (UIM) applies when the driver who causes the accident has liability insurance, but the limit isn’t high enough to cover the damages. In this case, the other driver’s insurance would pay first, and your UIM coverage would make up the difference in value of your injury claim, up to your own policy limit.
It is extremely important to discuss a potential UM or UIM claim with an experienced attorney because in Kentucky, policies in your household may "stack." That means that, depending on how you pay your premiums and how the insurance policy is written, you may be able to stack your policy limits for UM/UIM coverage on one another to potentially double or triple your coverage.
Steps to Take After a Hit & Run Accident
Every moment counts after a hit and run accident. If you are able, you should try to follow the steps below in the immediate aftermath of the accident.
Call 9-1-1 to report the accident to the police and get an ambulance if you need it. Of course, when the police arrive, cooperate with the police when they arrive and ask how to obtain a copy of the accident report.
Take photos of your vehicle and its damage, the location of the crash, and anything else that may help illustrate what happened. You’ll also want to make sure to take photos of any injuries and record anything you remember about the car and/or driver who hit you, especially if you caught the license plate number or can describe the vehicle.
Talk to Witnesses
Ask any bystanders or other drivers who stopped whether they saw the accident and gather their contact information. Ask witnesses if it would be OK if you could call them later to discuss the incident and encourage the witness to stay and tell the police what he or she saw.
Seek Medical Attention
In many cases, you will have suffered some type of injury in the hit and run accident. Consequently, make sure to seek medical attention from the emergency medical services that will respond. After that, make sure to get examined by a doctor. A doctor’s report documents your injuries and how they occurred.
Inform Your Insurance Carrier
Report the accident to your auto insurance carrier. If the hit and run driver is not identified and apprehended, then you may need to file a claim against your uninsured motorist insurance for coverage of the accident. Your insurance company should tell you what information is needed to process your claim and what to expect during the claims process.
Put a Skilled Louisville Hit & Run
Accident Attorney On Your Side
Our team at Grossman Green PLLC understands how difficult being involved in a hit and run accident can be. We will fight for your compensation and help you seek the outcome deserve from either the insurance company or the at-fault driver. If you have been involved in a hit and run accident, contact us today for a free consultation by calling us or visiting our website.