hit and run accident

Do’s and Don’ts of Chicago Hit & Run Accidents

In a perfect world, hit and run accidents would not occur. The sad truth is that’s not the world we’re living in. Sometimes people leave the scene innocently not realizing that an accident has occurred. Others may leave the scene because they were drinking, didn’t have a valid license or car insurance, or simply panicked.  

In Chicago, leaving the scene of an accident is a criminal offense. If you’ve been involved in a hit and run accident, consult with an experienced hit and run accident attorney as soon as you are able. 

What Should I Do if I’ve Been in a Hit & Run Accident

If you, your property, or your vehicle was hit by a driver that then fled the scene, there are several actions you should take to protect yourself and others:

  • DO: Stop immediately and stay at the scene.
  • DO: Call 911 after you’ve stopped your vehicle in a safe place. Report the accident and get medical assistance if required. A police report is a vital objective record of what happened that you may need going forward. 
  • DO: Take pictures and videos of the accident scene. This includes any relevant road signs, traffic signals, or road conditions that could help in terms of an insurance claim or a court case. 
  • DO: Get the names and contact information of any witnesses to the accident.
  • DO: Contact an experienced hit and run attorney for a consultation.

What Not to Do in a Hit & Run Situation

Here are some tips on what not to do if involved in a hit and run accident. Doing them could negatively impact any future claim or case you may have.

  • DON’T: Leave the scene of an accident. 
  • DON’T: Admit that you were at fault for the accident or apologize for your actions. Any admission might be used against you in any insurance claim or legal case. Even if you think you were at fault, it’s quite possible that you weren’t. Keep your composure and limit your answers to factual information regarding the accident. 
  • DON’T: Take your time to report the accident. Tell the police as soon as possible. A police report can be a key piece of evidence in any insurance claim or court case. 

How Will I Get Compensation for Damages? 

In Illinois, all drivers are required by law to insure their vehicles. The goal is to make sure that everyone involved in an accident will have financial recourse for their damages. 

Typically in the case of a car accident, both drivers will exchange their insurance information. Illinois is a comparative negligence state, which means the insurance companies will often offer a settlement based on how much at fault each driver was and what the damages were. 

However, in a hit and run accident case, there is no other driver’s insurance company to file a claim with. In this situation, you will have to file a claim with your own insurance company’s uninsured motorist policy that the state required you to purchase.

You’re going to want an experienced personal injury attorney to help you make this claim. Dealing with insurance companies can be stressful and confusing if you aren’t used to how they operate. Ultimately, they are businesses that want to pay out as little to you as possible. A seasoned attorney knows their strategies and will make sure your interests are represented. 

Contact a Chicago Hit and Run Accident Attorney for a Consultation

If you were involved in a hit and run accident, you are very possibly recovering from serious injuries, dealing with property damage, and feeling stress over missed time from work. You’ll want an experienced hit and run accident attorney on your side.