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If you’ve been hurt in a car accident or pedestrian accident with a driver who fled the scene, a hit and run accident lawyer from Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys can help. Responsible drivers know you’re supposed to wait for emergency services and exchange information after an accident. But some drivers ignore the rules of the road. They may be afraid of what will happen to them, and instead of staying at the scene of the accident, they will run.

Since 1959, our car accident attorneys have helped clients throughout the United States. We have received national recognition for our trial victories and outstanding client service. We have been named among the Best Lawyers in America (via Best Lawyers) and Best Law Firms (U.S. News and World Report) and are board-certified by the National Board of Trial Advocacy. Most importantly, we get results. Call or email our hit and run car accident attorneys today to arrange a free consultation. No settlement, no fee.

What Are the Consequences of Fleeing the Scene of an Accident?

hit and run law attorney Mackenzie Wilson discussing a case with an employee

If a driver leaves the scene of an accident, they may face a third-degree misdemeanor charge, which can carry up to one year in prison and a fine of up to $2,500 or more if someone was injured in the accident. Fleeing the scene of an accident is illegal in all 50 states.

While fleeing the scene of a crash can have serious consequences, it’s not entirely uncommon. According to a recent study by the AAA Foundation, nearly 11 percent of all reported auto accidents involved a hit and run driver. Approximately 6 out of 10 fatal hit and run victims were pedestrians.

In Pennsylvania, a hit and run accident is a criminal act. The law requires you to stop and exchange information with the other driver in the event of a crash. If someone is hurt in the accident, fleeing the scene amounts to a felony hit and run.

What are Examples of Hit and Run Crashes?

Hit and run accidents are crashes in which a driver flees the scene without stopping or without an exchange of information. This can happen in a variety of circumstances. For example, the NHTSA recently reported that “nearly 1 out of every four pedestrians killed in traffic crashes in 2021 (23 percent) were struck by hit and run drivers.” Hit and run attorneys can help with accidents that include one party fleeing the scene after:

  • A driver gets into an accident with another vehicle.
  • A driver hits a stationary object, like a parked car. 
  • A driver hits a pedestrian, causing injury or wrongful death.

What is the Difference Between a Hit and Run Accident and a Typical Car Accident Case?

Personal Injury Lawyer specializing in hit and run crashes

While the basis of a hit and run collision and a car accident is the same, the process to recover compensation can be a bit different. If you live in a no-fault insurance state, your insurance company will likely cover the damages for hit and run accidents. But, if you have fault insurance coverage, it does become complicated.

For those with at-fault car insurance, additional coverage packages may need to be purchased to cover damages. These optional coverages include:

  • Uninsured motorist (UM) coverage: Uninsured motorist coverage provides insurance coverage for bodily injury and property damage sustained by you or the passengers in your vehicle following an accident involving an uninsured driver or a driver who can’t be located.
  • Underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage: This applies when the at-fault driver has insurance but doesn’t have enough insurance to cover the damages and injuries. UIM coverage comes in handy in such situations, as it will cover the remaining costs, so you don’t have to pay for them out of your pocket.  
  • Personal injury protection coverage (PIP): PIP coverage provides up to $10,000, regardless of who’s at fault or if the collision was a hit and run accident.

It’s important to note that both UM and UIM coverages are optional in Pennsylvania. This means that when you’re setting up your insurance policy, you’ll need to decide if you want to include them. 

If you are unsure what type of coverage you have or how much compensation you may be able to collect from the insurance after the hit and run accident, contact your insurance company or meet with a hit and run accident lawyer to learn more.

What To Do After a Hit and Run Accident

accident law attorney John Mulcahey working at his deskIf you are involved in a car accident and the other driver leaves the scene, don’t panic. First, you should get help for any injuries you or your passengers may have. It’s essential to contact the police and give them as much information as you can about the car that hit you, including make, model, and, if possible, license plate number. Speak with any witnesses near the scene of the accident who may have seen the other vehicle. Note any paint transfer left on your car, and take photographs.

Seek medical attention as soon as you can. Even if you don’t think you are injured, getting checked out by a doctor is always important. If you are injured, remember to record any expenses related to that injury. This includes keeping track of medical bills, doctor’s appointments, lab results, and time you have lost at work because of the accident. You will also want to start the claims process with your insurance.

Your next step after a hit and run accident is to get the police report. This will be important for your case because it will have a record of the accident plus the contact information of the other driver if they are found.

Finally, speak with an experienced hit and run accident lawyer at Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys. Our law firm works closely with expert investigators to obtain witness statements and review surveillance footage to track down hit and run drivers. You still have some options if the at-fault driver cannot be found. Uninsured motorist coverage on your insurance policy exists for just such a predicament.

Common Hit and Run Injuries

Hit and run accidents can leave drivers hurt, with injuries ranging from bumps and bruises to life-threatening conditions. The shock of a hit and run accident can be immense, and the injuries can vary greatly. Here’s a breakdown of common injuries:

  • Head: Concussions, brain trauma
  • Neck and Back: Spinal cord injuries, whiplash 
  • Internal: Damage to organs
  • Bones: Fractures, breaks
  • Cuts and Scrapes: Lacerations, bruises

In the worst cases, this can include permanent disability, disfigurement, or wrongful death. No matter how severe the accident seems, getting medical attention is crucial after a hit and run, even if you don’t think you’ve been injured. Injuries from accidents may not be apparent right away and can worsen over time. Getting an early diagnosis and starting treatment can help prevent further complications and increase your chances of a full recovery. It’s better to be safe than sorry and prioritize your health and well-being.

What Kind of Damages Can I Recover After a Hit and Run Crash?

Hit and run injury lawyers chris munley, marion munley, and robert munley III of Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys

Following a hit and run accident, you can collect economic (financial losses) and noneconomic damages (nonfinancial losses). Hit and run accidents can leave you with anything from surface-level scrapes to property damage, lifelong injuries, and other impacts on your quality of life. Experienced hit and run lawyers can help ensure you get a fair settlement to recover from a hit and run driver. 

Economic damages refer to the money someone loses after a hit and run accident. Economic damages may also consider future financial losses expected to happen because of the accident.

  • Lost Wages: After an accident, you may be left with injuries preventing you from returning to work. Or from completing work duties in the same way you were able to before. You can include any lost earnings in your hit and run case. This number can be hard to enumerate, so you must have a hit and run lawyer to help you quantify how much you are owed.
  • Property Damage: When hit and run crashes cause damage to your vehicle or other property, you should include that in your personal injury case. Maybe the hit and run driver took out a mailbox or other stationary object other than your car. A hit and run lawyer can help you identify all of the property damage due to your accident.
  • Medical Bills: If you’ve been injured in a hit and run, you must seek immediate medical attention and pursue compensation to cover any injuries. A personal injury attorney can help you understand how you can pursue compensation as an injured person.

Noneconomic damages are losses that cannot be valued in terms of money. These damages are meant to compensate someone for the negative effects of an incident that has impacted their life, even if they haven’t caused a direct financial loss. It can be challenging to determine the value of noneconomic damages as they are often subjective and vary based on the particular circumstances of each case.

  • Loss of Enjoyment of Life: After a hit and run accident, you may be unable to participate in activities you used to enjoy due to your injuries. The pain, trauma, and long-term effects of such an accident can be overwhelming, making it difficult to adjust to your new reality. 
  • Pain and Suffering: Physical injuries after a car can range from soft tissue injuries such as soreness, muscle strains, or whiplash to broken bones. This also includes emotional distress like anxiety, depression, fear, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and difficulty sleeping.
  • Scarring and Disfigurement: Severe injuries from car accidents of any type can result in disfigurement and permanent scarring. The scars resulting from such injuries can also be a constant reminder of the traumatic event, making it challenging for the individual to move on and resume their daily routine.
  • Loss of Consortium: When a spouse becomes the victim of a hit and run accident, they may experience profound emotional distress and a loss of intimacy with their partner. In such cases, the non-injured spouse can seek compensation for the loss of the benefits of marriage, including emotional connection, companionship, and support. This compensation can help alleviate the financial burden and emotional strain caused by the accident.

Your Next Step: Call a Hit and Run Attorney at Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys

At Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys, we help hit and run accident victims file a personal injury claim or a wrongful death lawsuit to recover compensation for medical bills, rehabilitation expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

A hit and run accident lawyer can help your case in many ways:

  • Investigate the accident, especially if you are struggling to identify the at-fault driver. This includes collecting video footage from nearby cameras or other sources and interviewing witnesses.
  • Dealing with your insurance provider (and any other necessary car insurance companies) on your behalf. This ensures you receive a fair settlement for your case.
  • Go to trial if necessary. An experienced lawyer and legal team can build your case, using expert witnesses and accident recreation to prove you are owed compensation for your injuries.

If you or someone you love has been injured in a car accident, an experienced hit and run accident attorney at Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys is ready to fight for you today. Our services do not cost you a penny unless we recover for you. Call today or use our online form to schedule your free consultation.

Hit and Run Accidents FAQs

Any car accident is stressful to be part of. But when the at-fault driver flees the scene, and you are left with property damage and injuries, it can be catastrophic. Learn more about frequently asked questions in hit and run accidents below.

Why Would a Hit and Run Driver Flee?

Despite the law clearly stating what needs to happen in the moments following a car accident, a hit and run driver may find any variety of reasons to flee the scene. Common reasons car accident lawyers see drivers flee accident scenes are:

  • Intoxication or driving under the influence of drugs
  • Driving with a suspended license
  • Driving without car insurance
  • An outstanding warrant for the driver’s arrest
  • Stolen car
  • The liable driver didn’t realize they were in an accident

Even if the motor vehicle accident was an honest mistake, fleeing the scene can cost you more than just paying an insurance charge.

What Shouldn’t You Do After a Hit and Run?

Following a hit and run or another type of wreck, you should never chase after the other driver involved or engage in a confrontation. Instead, you should take note of any descriptions of the car involved, including the license plate number and the driver, to supply to the police and let them handle the rest.

Further, you should speak to any witnesses who may have photos or videos of the wreck or are willing to give a statement to the police. Ensure you get their contact info so your lawyer can contact them later if necessary. Car accidents are complex enough, but when the driver flees, you may need a motor vehicle accident attorney who can track down the negligent party. Lawyers can do everything from utilizing an investigator to review the details and track them down to collecting any pertinent video footage from nearby cameras.

How Do Car Accident Lawyers Find the Driver Responsible?

Though finding the driver who fled may not be necessary, knowing their identity can be more beneficial when seeking financial recovery. Because of this, your hit and run accident lawyers or personal injury lawyers will do everything in their power to find the other driver.

This will include gathering evidence from the scene, meeting with witnesses, reviewing your personal injury claim, calculating your medical expenses, and reviewing the accident scene. If they can find the other party’s insurance information, you are more likely to succeed in hit and run cases. But, if the driver cannot be found, it will be against your insurance company to get compensation.

What Happens if I Don’t Seek Immediate Medical Attention After a Hit and Run?

Just like any other auto accident, when a hit and run accident occurs, being checked out by a doctor is good for you, as you’ll know the extent of your injuries and helps preserve your case. Any law firm will tell you that it is essential to have medical documentation that shows you suffered real injuries and losses in car accidents and not sometime after the fact.

Even if you are not hurt, your hit and run accident lawyer will tell you to be checked out at a medical facility right away.

How Much Will it Cost Me to Hire a Hit and Run Accident Lawyer?

It will cost you nothing to hire us. Our law firm understands the financial burden that can result from personal injuries, especially those caused by hit and run accidents. To ease your worries, we work on a contingency fee basis, meaning that you don’t have to pay us anything upfront and don’t owe us anything unless we win your case. We will take a percentage of your settlement or court award as our fee. 

Moreover, we offer a free initial consultation to all our clients. During this consultation, you will have an opportunity to discuss the details of your case with one of our experienced legal professionals. They will help you understand the legal process, answer any questions you may have, and provide you with a clear understanding of your options. This consultation is entirely risk-free, so you can rest assured that you won’t be charged any fees for this meeting.

How Can Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys Hit and Run Accident Attorneys Help Me?

Contact Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys for a free consultation if you have been involved in a motor vehicle accident or a hit and run. Our hit and run accident attorneys will review your claim in our free case evaluation and help you determine your next steps.

Personal injury law is complex, and when you are in a collision where the driver has fled, it’s all the more important to have a personal injury attorney by your side who has experience with hit and run crashes.

For a no-obligation, free case evaluation, contact the car accident attorneys of Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys today. We’re available 24/7 via phone, chat, or email.

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