Uninsured Motor Coverage: Hit & Runs
May 18, 2022
Sustaining injuries in a car accident caused by a negligent driver is always traumatic and stressful. Being injured in a hit-and-run crash is even worse. How can you pay your medical bills, cover the wages you lose while you’re unable to work, and find compensation for your pain and suffering when the person at-fault disappears?
It happens more than you think. A hit-and-run accident occurs approximately every 43 seconds in the United States. Moreover, in 2020, 2,564 people were killed in crashes involving hit-and-run drivers and thousands more were injured, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
At Chambers & Aholt, LLC, we represent clients injured in Georgia hit and runs. We explore all avenues for compensation and relentlessly pursue what we find. If you have been injured in a hit and run in Decatur or in Floyd, Dekalb, Fulton, Gwinnett, Polk, Cobb, Douglas, or Clayton counties, we may be able to help.
What Is Uninsured Motorist Coverage?
Uninsured motorist coverage is protection you pay for in your own auto insurance policy. It provides coverage for the policyholder if they are hit by a driver who does not have auto insurance. The policyholder can also access this coverage if the at-fault driver leaves the scene of the accident without providing information about their insurance coverage.
Georgia does not require auto owners to carry uninsured motorist coverage, although insurance companies are required to offer it. Policyholders must decline uninsured motorist coverage in writing.
What Does Georgia Require When a Hit and Run Occurs?
It is illegal in Georgia to leave the scene of an accident, regardless of who caused it. The law requires that the names, contact, and insurance information of those involved be exchanged. Moreover, if the crash causes injury or death or property damage in excess of $500, or if a driver involved in the accident leaves the scene, the law requires immediate notification of law enforcement.
What Are the Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Provisions Under Georgia Law?
A motorist involved in a hit and run is insured up to the limits of their uninsured motorist coverage included in their own policy if they have that coverage. The amount the insurer will compensate its insured depends on the value of the insured’s economic and non-economic losses. The attorneys at Chambers & Aholt, LLC can assist you in determining the value of your losses so that you maximize what you are entitled to from the insurance coverage that you purchased to protect you when you are injured by someone who is uninsured.
Your uninsured motorist coverage can also protect you when the at-fault driver has coverage that is inadequate to compensate you for all of your losses. Depending upon the coverage type and limits that you purchased for situations where the at-fault driver has insufficient insurance coverage, the attorneys at Chambers & Aholt, LLC can help you determine the amount of coverage that is available beyond the coverage maintained by the at-fault driver. Once the amount of coverage available from all sources of insurance is established, the attorneys Chambers & Aholt, LLC will assist you in proving the extent of your losses so that you can seek the compensation that you are due.
What Should I Do If I’m Involved in a Hit and Run?
There are some steps you should take, if you are able to do so, if a driver flees the scene of the crash:
Get to a safe location and stay there until help arrives. Under no circumstances should you attempt to pursue the fleeing driver.
Note as many details as you can about the driver and the vehicle, such as the make, model, and color of the vehicle. Note any scratches, dents, broken mirrors, tinted windows, parking permits, bumper stickers, dealership name, license plate number and state of issue, and any other distinguishing characteristics. If you saw the driver, note any descriptive information about them, such as gender, race, hair, or whether they were wearing a hat or glasses.
If there are witnesses, obtain their names and contact information.
Call 911 to have the proper law enforcement and emergency responders dispatched to the scene and share all information with them.
Contact your insurance company and advise them you were involved in a hit and run. They should open a claim number which you can use to access your medical payment benefits and/or your uninsured motorist coverage if you have them.
Contact an experienced personal injury attorney so they can begin right away on the investigation of the circumstances of the crash and available insurance coverages.
Uninsured Motorist Coverage Attorneys in Decatur, Georgia
It is always a wise decision to work with an experienced personal injury attorney if you have been injured by another driver. Insurance companies, whether yours or someone else’s, will work hard to pay out as little money as possible or to deny claims completely.
Finding coverage for compensation following a hit-and-run accident is even more challenging but one that Chambers & Aholt, LLC is up to. We have helped clients in Decatur and the surrounding area recover compensation for their injuries and other damages under the worst of circumstances.
If you have been injured in a hit and run, time is of the essence. Call Chambers & Aholt, LLC now to schedule a free consultation to discuss your options.