Getting into a car accident can be one of the most traumatic experiences in life. The physical pain and stress of a crash will only be compounded if you were hit by a driver that flees the scene.
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In New York, you are legally required to stop and exchange information with anyone who is involved in an accident – even if there are no injuries. Failing to do this is a serious offense called a hit and run, which can have a long-lasting impact on your life.
You face criminal charges if you are convicted of a hit-and-run, so it’s important to hire an attorney who can protect your rights. A conviction for a hit and run could result in serious fines, jail time, and a revoked or suspended driver’s license.
If the accident caused injuries, you should seek medical attention immediately. You may be suffering from soft tissue or concussion-related injuries, and it’s critical to have a doctor examine you as soon as possible.
Once you get the care you need, you should also file a claim with your insurance company to recover the money you’re owed for any damages. It’s best to do this as quickly as possible after an accident, as your insurance company will probably want to investigate the case before they pay out.
Your insurance will likely cover the damages to your vehicle and medical bills if you have collision coverage. However, if you’ve had to pay for any damages out of your own pocket due to the hit and run, you may not be able to receive compensation from your insurance provider without the help of a personal injury lawyer.
The penalties for leaving the scene of an accident vary by state. Some states have felony charges, while others have misdemeanor charges. You could end up with a criminal record that will impact your future employment prospects and increase your auto insurance costs.
In some cases, a felony charge will result in a lengthy jail term and fines. Similarly, a misdemeanor hit-and-run conviction can have negative impacts on your driving record and insurance rates.
If you are charged with a hit and run, you should contact an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible. An experienced lawyer can investigate the case and help you get the compensation you deserve.
You should also document the scene of the accident as closely as possible to ensure that you have all the details in hand. Take photos of the scene, your vehicle, and any damages. It’s especially helpful to write down all the details of any other drivers or vehicles that might have been affected by the accident, including license plates and make and model numbers.
Depending on the law in your state, you might be able to file a lawsuit against the driver responsible for the accident. This lawsuit could result in monetary compensation for any damage to your vehicle, your medical bills, and other expenses.
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