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A driver hit me and then took off. Now what am I going to do?

Car accident wreckage from a hit and run

What are your options after a hit-and-run accident?

A man riding his bike in Pensacola one evening in May says he was “clipped” by a car, which caused him to crash and fall into unconsciousness. When he awoke, bystanders were helping him. He suffered ligament damage to his shoulder and scrapes to his back.

The injury victim, Quint Studer, told WKRG News 5 what happened and expressed gratitude to those who helped and supported him after the accident.

Fortunately, he is on the mend after his hit-and-run accident.

Unfortunately, many victims of such accidents in Alabama and across the country lose their lives or face serious, permanent injuries that can alter their quality of life.

Serious accidents can lead to expensive medical bills. Victims sometimes have to take time off from work, which means a loss of income. Some injuries force victims to end their careers.

Because so much is at stake, it’s important to know your rights after a hit-and-run accident.

Here's what drivers in Alabama need to know.

What do you do after a hit-and-run?

Hit-and-run accidents can have a variety of victims – from pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorcyclists to drivers and passengers in other cars.

To protect your rights after an accident involving a hit-and-run driver, follow these steps.

Take pictures

If you are able to do so, try to take a photo or video of the car fleeing the scene. If you don’t have your phone or a camera on hand, try to remember or write down details of the vehicle, including the make, model, color, and license plate number.

Call the police

Tell them you were involved in a hit-and-run accident and ask them to investigate. You should give them as many details about the other car and driver as you can. Remain at the scene until police arrive and never chase after a hit-and-run driver.

Seek medical assistance right away

You may need medical help immediately. Even if you think you are uninjured or your injuries are minor, see a doctor as soon as possible. Some injuries, such as whiplash and concussions, are not immediately apparent until hours or even days after a crash.

Does insurance cover a hit-and-run accident?

You may need to file a claim with your own insurance company. If you purchased uninsured motorist coverage, you should be able to obtain compensation for your losses up to your policy’s limits since a vehicle that flees the scene of a crash is a "phantom vehicle" and automatically considered uninsured. If the hit-and-run driver is identified, you may be able to file a claim against their insurance policy. Unfortunately, some drivers flee accidents because they don’t carry any insurance.

After a hit-and-run, don't hesitate. Call Dean Waite.

If you were injured or a loved one died in a hit-and-run accident, you should at least contact an attorney for a free initial consultation to learn your legal rights and explore all your options.

An attorney working for you can launch an independent investigation of the accident and help you maximize the value of your insurance claim.

Hit-and-run accident claims can get complicated. Insurance companies – even your own – can make it difficult to get the compensation you deserve since they know you're in a tough spot.

They realize after a hit-and-run you're probably willing to accept any settlement offer they throw your way — even if it falls way short of what you're actually entitled to recover.

Don't let an insurance adjuster take advantage of you or try to minimize the value of your claim. Let our law firm deal with them and fight for maximum compensation.

Contact Dean Waite & Associates, LLC today to see how an experienced car accident lawyer in Mobile, AL can help with your claim.

There is no obligation. The initial consultation is free, and you pay nothing unless we win your case.

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