A car accident is stressful enough without an at-fault driver adding insult to injury. Yet that’s exactly what happens when you’re injured in a hit-and-run accident.
Fortunately, New York drivers have a lot of recourse for pursuing compensation after a hit-and-run accident.
No-Fault Laws May Mean Your Own Insurance Pays
In most cases, you can’t bring an auto accident law suit against a driver unless you suffered a “serious injury" that exceeds your no-fault benefits. You can also sue for pain and suffering.
This means your own insurance company may already pay most of your expenses, and your uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage may pick up the rest of the slack. You may still require an attorney’s help, however, as UIM/UM won’t kick in unless you can prove that the driver was uninsured, or that you were injured in a hit and run.
The New York Motor Vehicle Accident Indemnification Corporation May Step In
You are required by law to have insurance, but not all of the people who are injured by hit-and-run drivers will have auto insurance coverage available at the time of the accident. An alarming number of hit-and-runs are crimes against pedestrians and individuals who are on bicycles. Auto insurance won’t cover that.
If the accident is reported within 24 hours of the incident and your attorney sends a Notice of Intention to MVAIC within 90 days of the incident then MVAIC will pay the claim. You will absolutely need an attorney’s help to file an effective claim with MVAIC.
Tracking Down the Driver May be an Option
Hit and runs are a crime, so the police should already be looking for the driver. If they can be found, then you can press a personal injury lawsuit against them just like you would against any other driver. In addition, the hit and run may also trigger the award of punitive damages, which are rare but which can be a valuable addition to any personal injury settlement.
Get Help Today
You are unlikely to get compensation for a hit and run accident on your own, so don’t delay. Schedule a free consultation to get help today. The earlier you involve an attorney the more likely you are to bring your case to a good outcome.