Hit and Run Lawyer
Hit-and-run accidents represent the worst in driving practice; the failure to stop and render aid or at least call the police and paramedics after hitting another person or vehicle is the worst response to an accident a driver can make. Some drivers may fear that the pedestrian, bicyclist, or vehicle occupants were seriously injured or even killed. Other drivers may be fully aware that the accident was their fault, and fear the consequences. Intoxicated motorists may not even be aware that they struck a person.
It is most common for hit-and-run accidents in Towson and Baltimore Maryland to include pedestrians and bicyclists, although car-on-car accidents also occur on highways. Baltimore hit-and-run accidents not only injure people but also property. Drivers returning to their vehicle in a parking lot often find damage to their vehicle while the guilty party is long gone, not even having left a note.
Filing a police report may lead to the identification of the fleeing vehicle, but if you have been injured by a hit-and-run driver, let Baltimore hit and run lawyer John J. Leppler help you recover your damages. He has extensive experience with cases involving car accidents, bicycle accidents and pedestrian accidents.
How Does Insurance Work for Hit-and-Run Accidents?
If you are paying your automobile insurance, you may have uninsured motorist coverage if another driver hits you or forces you off the road and flees the scene. Uninsured motorist coverage requires you to make a claim against your own insurance company. Remember that your insurance company will go to great lengths to avoid paying for your damages, or to pay as little as possible.
For this reason, and so many more, your first phone call after you are safe following an accident should be to a Baltimore hit and run attorney. John Leppler’s personal injury law firm in Towson, MD, will be on your side and your side only, and will handle the insurance company, analyze your potential claims during your free initial consultation, and provide you with your legal options for getting compensation to cover your injuries and medical bills.
Hit and Run FAQs
You probably never want to be in a position where you require the services of a hit and run accident attorney, but it is preferable to the alternative. Victims of hit and run accidents can end up in compromised positions. They often end up badly in need of compensation, but they may also not know where to get it from.
These FAQs will shed more light on that important matter and help you to learn more about Maryland’s hit and run laws, how to identify suspects in hit and run cases, and the different ways to obtain compensation in those scenarios. Protect yourself against the worst-case scenario by using the information provided in these FAQs.
Maryland Hit and Run Laws
To fully understand what your options are if you are the victim of a hit and run accident, you must first understand the relevant laws. Those laws indicate that any driver involved in a car accident in the state of Maryland must fulfill certain obligations. The obligations are detailed below.
The Driver Who Caused Bodily Injury or Property Damage Must Remain at the Scene of the Accident
If you accidentally hit another car or pedestrian, you are obligated by Maryland law to stay at the scene of the accident. You should return to the scene even if you accidentally drove past it. Crucially, you are obligated to stay even if you do not know if someone was hurt or property was damaged. According to the law, you can be guilty of a violation as long as you reasonably should have known that those outcomes were possible.
The Driver Who Caused Bodily Injury or Property Damage Must Render Reasonable Assistance
Next, the law also requires the driver who caused the accident to provide reasonable assistance to those who need it. Reasonable assistance in that scenario could come in the form of calling 911. If you see that the other driver is hurt, you should call emergency responders to the scene so they can assist.
The Driver Who Caused Bodily Injury or Property Damage Must Provide Their Information
Drivers who caused the accident must also provide their information to the party they troubled. Information to provide includes their name, address, and their vehicle registration number. They must also show their driver’s license if requested. If the people in the other vehicle are incapacitated, the erring driver must provide their information to a responding police officer or go to a nearby police station.
Penalties for Hit and Run Suspects
A person guilty of committing a hit and run violation can receive substantial penalties. If the driver knew that they damaged another person’s vehicle as they fled, they could be imprisoned for up to two months and fined a maximum of $500.
Hit and run suspects in cases where the victim was badly hurt may have to pay a fine of $5,000 and go to prison for up to five years. In cases where the victim dies, the fine is increased to $10,000 and the maximum sentence doubles to ten years.
How to Identify Hit and Run Drivers
Victims in hit and run accidents often find themselves in the unenviable position of trying to seek justice against a person they do not even know. Things can happen so quickly during a car accident that even taking a look at the vehicle’s plate number may not occur to you. Thankfully, there are still things you can do to try and identify your assailant.
Check out Video Recordings
Cameras are everywhere these days, and you can use that to your advantage as you pursue your assailant. Ask your hit and run attorney in Baltimore to get a hold of recordings if possible. Once the recordings are in your possession, the two of you can go through them in search of the irresponsible driver.
Talk to Witnesses
Speaking to people at the scene of the accident is also worth your time if you were involved in a hit and run accident. Even if you did not see the vehicle that hit you, the witnesses might have. Ask them to share what they know so you can get potential leads.
Go to the Police
Coordinating with the police is highly recommended if you were involved in a hit and run accident. Your hit and run accident lawyer in Towson, MD, can get in touch with the police if you still need time to recover. Instructing your lawyer to deal with the police is also smart because it prevents you from making a potentially costly mistake.
Types of Compensation in a Hit and Run Case
How do you secure compensation in a hit and run case? You can sue the negligent driver once you find them, but what can you do in the meantime? After all, your bills will not go away simply because your assailant is still on the loose.
You will be glad to know that there are other ways to claim compensation in hit and run cases, and they do not require finding the guilty driver beforehand.
File an Uninsured Motorist Insurance Claim
Uninsured motorist insurance is required in the state of Maryland, and you can use it if you were the victim of a hit and run accident. File a claim against your insurer to be compensated for the losses you sustained.
Payouts from uninsured motorist claims are also substantial. Since they are supposed to cover actual and general damages, you should pay for your bills easily while you are in recovery.
File a Personal Injury Protection Claim
If you got personal injury protection coverage when you purchased your insurance, then you can use that to supplement your compensation. Personal injury protection pays for things like medical bills and lost wages. Claiming it should not be difficult since the insurer is often required to provide a personal injury protection payout regardless of who the guilty party is.
Speak with a Baltimore Hit and Run Accident Lawyer Today
Baltimore Hit and Run Lawyer John J. Leppler understands the frustration you feel as the victim of an accident. Our law office offers all the services you hope for in a law firm but rarely receive at the bigger firms, including free consultations, 24/7 accessibility, attention to detail, personalized and customized attention to the details of your unique case, same-day responses to messages, a confident approach toward insurance companies and opposing attorneys, and an experienced track record are all linchpins of Mr. Leppler’s services.
As an experienced Baltimore personal injury lawyer, John is here to help. Contact us online or by phone at (443) 955-1989 for a same-day response to schedule your free consultation.