What do I do if I was on my bike and got hit by a car and the car feld the scene of the accident?
Unfortunately this is a common occurrence and most people injured in bike accidents have a tough time understanding how the auto insurance for their car or a family member’s car will assist you in bringing an injury claim for your bike accident. If you have auto insurance or live with a family member that has auto insurance than you have a provision within that auto insurance policy that protects you in the event you were struck by an uninsured or hit and run driver. It makes NO difference that when the car struck you that you were not in a car. You can be a pedestrian crossing the street or on your bike when you got hit. This is perfectly ok and you are entitled to a recovery.
This insurance coverage is called Uninsured (UM) Motorist Coverage and if you read our blogs you know we talk about this coverage a lot. Most people envision auto insurance coverage as a mean of paying for repairs for damage to your car or damage you caused to someone else’s car and they also understand that if you were injured by another’s negligent driving than you can make a claim with their insurance company. BUT, what most of us don’t realize is that all of these same auto insurance policies are required to provide UM coverage in the event that the negligent driver fled the scene of the accident. As the owner of your insurance policy you pay a premium each month to your carrier to include this clause in your policy.
Statistics have hit and run accidents occurring almost 600,000 times per year which accounts for almost 10% of all car accidents. If 1 out of every 10 car accidents involves a hit and run driver, you would think that more people would be aware of the UM provisions of their policy – unfortunately this is not the case. Another problem people face is (a) the concern that if they make a claim against their own insurance company their rates might go up or their auto insurance carrier might drop them and (b) why should I make a claim with my own insurance company when the accident was someone else’s fault. First, your insurance company does not penalize you for a claim that was made when you were not at fault. Second, you pay your auto insurance premium each month or quarter and one of the things you are paying for is coverage in the event that someone hits you with their car and leaves the scene of the accident. Does it make sense that your insurance company is going to charge you a fee each month for this coverage yet you are going to hesitate to utilize the coverage you’re paying for when this happens.
As we said above, if 1 in every 10 accidents involves a hit and run driver than there’s a good reason your insurance policy includes this type of coverage and you should never hesitate or feel bad for making a claim when you’re getting charged each month by the insurance company for this coverage option.
At the law firm of Stein & Shulman, LLC our skilled attorneys have a ton of experience both inside and out of the courtroom handling UM claims. Speaking to one of our attorneys on the phone is FREE. Call us today at 312.422.0500 and let’s get your case off and running quickly.