What to Do After Being in a Hit-and-Run Accident
A hit-and-run accident is the most traumatic of motor vehicle accidents; for one, you are abandoned by the other driver to deal with the aftermath, possibly in an injured state, and with a damaged vehicle; for another, you will be overwhelmed with thoughts and emotions, flustered about what to do next.
But the first task is to keep a cool head. If your children or friends were in the car at the time, they will also need you to stay calm.
Notify the Police
The second task is to stay close to the scene of the accident and in a safe place. The victim of a hit-and-run accident has a legal obligation to remain on the scene.
The third task is to call the police. Even if you and your passengers are not injured, or you don’t have insurance, all accidents need to be reported; a police report verifies that an accident occurred. As you wait for the police to arrive, collect yourself and try to gather as much pertinent information as you can, including:
- a description of the driver and/or passengers
- the direction the other driver was headed in
- the license plate of the other car
- the make, model, and colour of the other car
- contact information of witnesses
- the time and location of the accident
- images of the scene and damage to your car
Remember that any information about the accident and the other driver will be helpful to the police. Don’t criticize yourself about the information you cannot remember.
Contact Your Insurance Company
Get in touch with your insurance company as soon as possible because they may send their own team to investigate the scene of the accident and gather information if it’s a serious one. You also have a limited amount of time to file a claim for benefits.
Nova Scotians can breathe easier with the Insurance Act that helps victims injured by unidentified and uninsured drivers. Depending on the insurance you have, they’ll handle the towing of your car and even supply you with a rental.
Once everything has calmed down and you can think straight, commit your memory of the entire accident to paper so you have a personal copy of the events. This version of the events should set the scene just prior to the accident with information about the weather, what frame of mind you were in, and where you were going.
As a worst-case scenario, resolving car accident claims can take years. With a written record, you’ll be able to use it later on when your memory is fuzzy about the details.
Your Car Accident Lawyers
MacGillivray Injury and Insurance Law are experienced with hit-and-run cases and know that you deserve to be compensated for all injuries and damages incurred. Contact us today and we’ll help you through this.