Were you injured in a car accident where the other driver left the accident scene? If possible, you could memorize the license plate. Of course, filing a police report and checking for witnesses who might have additional information could help identify the at-fault party. Photos you took of your car and the accident scene and ones obtained from dashcam and surveillance footage can also help.
Our personal injury lawyer will help you understand what you can do if the other driver flees the scene in Pittsburgh, PA. A lawyer can help you collect evidence that could help identify the at-fault driver. He can also help you explore the possibility of having your post-accident expenses covered by your insurance provider.
Your Car Accident Report Might Lead to the At-Fault Driver
A key piece of evidence in your personal injury case is your official car accident report. Per Pa. C.S.A. § 3744, the state requires you to file a report if anyone in either car is physically or fatally injured or if either car is in undrivable condition. Even if none of the legal requirements are met in your case, you should still file a report to:
- Trigger an investigation into the accident
- Alert police to a hit and run driver
A police report can also ensure the other driver, when found, does not attempt to change any relevant facts at a later date. It might also give your lawyer access to available cameras in the area and identify witnesses who saw the collision from varying vantage points.
Additional Evidence That Might Point to the Vehicle or Driver
If police are having difficulty identifying the car that fled the scene, you can also try to locate the at-fault party using one of these methods:
- Traffic, dash, and surveillance cameras that captured the fleeing vehicle’s license tag
- Witnesses and bystanders who may have done the same or who jotted down the tag number
- Car parts left at the scene that contain serial or VIN numbers or other identifiers
Obtain a copy of your police report as soon as it is available, which is usually within days of its filing. If your injuries prevent you from doing so, a personal injury lawyer will obtain your report for you.
For a free legal consultation, call 412-661-1400
What Damages Can I Recover After the Accident?
A car accident can do more financial damage than is usually immediately apparent. Assigning liability to the at-fault driver or seeking coverage from your own insurance company means you can collect:
- Known and anticipated medical bills
- Known and anticipated income loss
- Current and future pain and suffering
- Mental and emotional distress
- Property damage or total loss
Every car accident case is unique, and your damages might include line items that do not appear on this list. Review them with a member of our case assessment team to ensure all recoverable damages are included.
Who Pays the Damages If the Driver Is Never Identified?
Pennsylvania Insurance Department guidelines require auto insurance companies to offer drivers uninsured (UM) and underinsured (UIM) coverage. Drivers are free to forego these options, but they can add important value to your policy.
If the driver who fled cannot be found, your UM coverage will pay your accident-related expenses. If the driver is found but does not have enough insurance to fully cover your accident expenses, your UIM coverage will pay the remainder.
Even when seeking coverage from your insurer, a personal injury lawyer can help ensure you are not left with out-of-pocket expenses for an accident someone else caused.
Is There Still a Statute of Limitations if the Other Driver Is Unknown?
The Pennsylvania personal injury statute of limitations is generally two years from the date of the accident, according to Pa. C.S.A. § 5524. Understanding the statute of limitations is complicated, as factors can modify the deadline. If you turn to your insurer for coverage, the statute still applies. The best way to be sure not to miss the filing deadline is to let a personal injury lawyer handle your representation. He can explain any deviations from the typical statute and ensure your right to compensation is not put at risk.
Review Your Hit and Run Case Today
Were you struck by a hit-and-run driver in Pittsburgh, PA? You do not have to accept your financial losses because the other driver fled. Contact one of our team members to learn more about what you can do if the other driver fled the scene and still receive compensation for your losses. Contact one of our Berger and Green consultation team members by calling (412) 661-1400 today.