The immediate aftermath of a hit and run car accident is a frightening experience for any person involved. If you were harmed by the driver of another vehicle and they did not remain at the scene, you may be at a loss as to how you should proceed. Fortunately, there are several helpful measures you can take to reduce your risk of further injury and maximize your potential compensation for your suffering. Speak with a seasoned Chattanooga lawyer to determine exactly which steps you should take after a hit and run accident.
The first step that a person should take after being injured in a hit and run is to get off the road and move to a safe place. If their injuries prevent them from doing so, they should call for medical attention as quickly as possible.
Once they are out of immediate danger from being struck by other vehicles, they should gather what information that they can and write down what they recall about the driver that fled the scene, such as their license plate number, and prepare to talk to law enforcement or medical personnel when they arrive. It could also be important for someone injured in this kind of accident to document the scene by taking pictures or videos, if possible.
After completing these steps, the individual should go to a medical facility to be evaluated for any injuries they may have sustained. A person may experience an adrenaline rush and not be able to properly process pain in the moments after the accident, but still have severe underlying medical issues that need to be immediately addressed.
As soon as the injured person has given their statement to the police, seen medical personnel and been attended to by EMS or a doctor, they should contact a Chattanooga attorney for assistance with their hit and run claim. Enlisting legal representation early on could give them the best chance of recovering for both their property damages and personal injuries. Efficiently and safely taking care of these steps following a hit-and-run accident could ensure that the injured person isn’t left in a dire financial situation after their collision.
The lawsuits that arise from hit and run accident cases can lead to significant monetary awards, depending on the severity of the damage caused by the at-fault driver. If it can be proven that a defendant was negligent in the operation of their motor vehicle and also attempted to escape liability for the resulting physical damage and personal injuries, a plaintiff may have a high chance of receiving compensation.
A hit-and-run case is similar to other negligence-based lawsuits for motor vehicle accidents. The plaintiff will have the opportunity to recover economic damages for easily identifiable costs such as medical bills and property destruction. A Chattanooga hit and run lawyer could present these damages to a judge or jury during a case, and the harm will be assigned a total dollar amount.
It is typically more difficult to prove non-economic damages in these kinds of cases. These damages are more difficult to quantify and include compensation for pain and suffering and lost personal and professional opportunities. To prove non-economic damages in court, an expert who studies the extent of harm suffered by people hit and run plaintiffs may be called to testify. Testimony from the injured party themself regarding how the accident has upended their daily life may be compelling as well.
In hit and run accident cases, there can be an enhancement that is not available in many other types of claims. Punitive damages allow a jury to go beyond the scope of compensatory damages and are awarded with the purpose of punishing the defendant for their reprehensible conduct. These damages awards are often substantial and could greatly increase the value of a plaintiff’s claim if significant injury can be established in court.
If you have suffered harm at the hands of a negligent driver who fled the scene of their car accident, you may be entitled to financial compensation. A skilled Chattanooga lawyer could prove that the person who left the crash failed to uphold their duty as a responsible driver and that they owe you damages as a result. Call today to schedule a consultation with a member of our team and learn more about your options.