Being involved in a hit and run accident in Chicago is certain to be a life altering experience. It is important to receive immediate legal assistance after such an event, no matter who is determined to be at fault. In actuality, fault does matter in the city of Chicago because of the lack of a mandatory uninsured motorist insurance coverage law, but we will get to that later. With hit and run accidents becoming more and more common throughout the Chicago area (with some estimates pegging it at 11 percent of the total number of accidents), it is important to consider your legal rights moving forward.
Filing a Claim With Your Own Insurance Company
All drivers in the state of Illinois must have automobile insurance. That law has been on the books for decades. Currently, limits are set at a minimum of $25,000 per person, in addition to $50,000 per accident. As mentioned, however, there is not a requirement that a driver have either personal injury protection or uninsured motorist covered.
Because of this lack of legislation, you may find it more difficult to receive financial compensation that is due to you from your insurance company after a hit and run accident. Any compensation that you do receive may be further limited by the type of policy that you have, the coverage amounts, and various other factors. This is why you will want a lawyer on your side from day one. Dealing with insurance companies can be tricky enough. However, it can be even more frustrating when there is not another party to pin the blame on because the driver was foolish enough to leave the scene of a crime.
Ironically, not all hit and run accidents are the fault of the driver that flees the scene. You might actually cause the accident, but for whatever reason the other party chooses to leave before a police report or finding of fault can be determined. Such a situation also can cause grief because your insurance company might be hesitant to close the case in the event that the other party comes forward at a later date.
What You Should Do If the Other Party Leaves the Scene of an Accident
Naturally, a hit and run accident infers that one or more drivers have fled the scene of the accident. Many people rightfully wonder what they should do in this event. In reality, you would go through many of the same actions that you would in a normal accident. That begins with contacting the police as soon as you are physically able to. Remember to make sure that yourself and any passengers are not seriously injured before doing so.
When the police arrive on the scene, make sure that they file a report. You should also request a copy of this police report, as it will be of great benefit to your lawyer as they seek assistance with your insurance claim. You will also want to immediately write down as much detail as you can about the other vehicle that was involved in the accident. Even if you were just able to record a partial license plate number, that could prove invaluable to police. It is illegal in the state of Illinois to flee the scene of a car accident, regardless of whose fault it is. The police will attempt to locate the other party, so information that you can give will prove helpful in such a situation.
Contact An Experienced Chicago Hit and Run Attorney
There will surely be multiple things going through your mind in the immediate aftermath of a car accident. You will be worried about time off work, getting your car fixed, dealing with the insurance company, and so much more. Add to this the growing uncertainty of not having the other party in the accident stepping up to accept fault and it is easy to see things spiraling out of control. Thankfully, you do not have to deal with any of this on your own.
You will want to contact an experienced lawyer right away to help you deal with the insurance companies involved and ensuring that you receive the financial compensation that is due you. A lawyer will help get a finding of fault issued, work with the insurance company to get your car fixed and get you the money that you need to get your life headed in the right direction once again. Contact our office today for a consultation and learn how we can begin assisting you immediately.
The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. Learn more about DUI by reading this wikipedia page.