What Should I Do if I’m Injured in a Hit-and-Run Accident in California?

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Accidentally bumping into another vehicle or property can happen. However, if a driver flees the scene without providing their information or ensuring no one is injured, it can qualify as a hit-and-run accident. Under California law, leaving the scene of an accident is illegal, meaning you could be subject to hefty fines, license suspension, and even jail time. Therefore, it’s crucial to understand the proper steps to take after a collision to minimize the consequences and safeguard your legal rights to compensation. If you’ve been injured in a hit-and-run accident, it’s in your best interest to contact our proficient Santa Clara County Car Accident Attorneys, who can help you hold responsible parties accountable for their negligence.

What is a Hit-and-Run Accident?

Unfortunately, even the safest drivers who take every precaution can be involved in a collision due to another driver’s negligence. A hit-and-run accident occurs when someone hits a vehicle, person, or someone else’s personal property. The person operating the vehicle that caused the damage then flees the scene to evade liability.

What Steps Should I Take After a Hit-and-Run Accident in California?

Without realizing it, accident victims often make avoidable mistakes that diminish their ability to recover monetary compensation for their damages. It’s important to know how to handle the situation if it arises to avoid criminal consequences and protect your legal rights. That said, if you’re involved in an accident, you are required by law to stop immediately. If you leave the scene of the accident, it can be classified as a hit-and-run. After stopping, you should determine if everyone is okay. If there are any injuries or severe property damage, you must contact the police.

Even if injuries seem minor, seeking immediate medical attention is imperative. You must call emergency services to have your injuries thoroughly examined by healthcare professionals. This will ensure you receive the treatment and care you need. If there are no injuries, drivers should safely move to the side of the road to asses the damage and exchange insurance information. Keep in mind you will have to fulfill the burden of proof. Therefore, it’s beneficial to gather as much evidence as possible.

It can be distressing to learn that the other driver fled the accident. However, if this is the case, you should not chase after them, as they could be dangerous. Leave apprehending the driver to the police. The best way to help the police locate the driver is by making detailed notes about what you can recall about the accident. This includes any identifying details about the car or the driver. For example, you should make note of the car’s license plate number, make, model, and color. If you could get a look at the driver, you should not have any physical characteristics. Furthermore, if there were any witnesses, you should gather their contact information as they may be able to corroborate your claim later on.

If you’ve been injured in a hit-and-run accident, please don’t hesitate to contact a compassionate attorney from the Law Offices of Brian J. O’Grady, who can help you fight for the justice you deserve.