Chattanooga Hit and Run Accident Lawyer

A hit and run accident in Chattanooga means that a person has caused a car wreck then left the scene. The scene of an accident is considered a crime. It also shows that this person is not acting safely or reasonably and does not possess the proper appreciation for the importance of the safety and well-being of other people on the road. All local law enforcement officers will become involved in trying to locate the person.

A hit and run accident also has implications for insurance. If a person is the victim of a hit and run accident and the person who hit them cannot be found, then their uninsured motorist coverage comes into play. A person who causes a wreck and then runs away may not have insurance or is somehow already in violation of the law, and therefore fled the scene. Uninsured motorist coverage may impact the case whether the other driver is found or not. A distinguished car accident attorney can help you determine the next step to pursuing the damages you deserve.

Common Fact Patterns

Someone who has caused a hit and run incident has typically done something in violation of the law such as not having a valid drivers license or driving intoxicated. Chattanooga hit and run accident lawyers have also seen collisions involve someone driving someone else’s car without their permission or under the influence of illegal drugs. Often, these are the reasons the driver has fled the scene.

 

Defining Recoverable Damages

There are several damages that can be recovered from a hit and run case. The injured party can recover their medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life. Loss of enjoyment often means the loss of spending time with family, engaging in recreational activities or whatever it is someone does to enjoy their life. Individuals can also recover mental anguish damages like worry and anxiety about their health. Chattanooga hit and run accident lawyers help assess whether this accident is going to ruin them financially, whether the accident is going to ruin their career because all of these damages can be recovered.

Punitive Damages Requirements

Punitive damages in Tennessee require that the person who caused the accident acted in an intentional way or in a reckless or wanton (deliberate and unprovoked) way. That is easier to prove in a hit and run case because as soon as they cause a wreck, they show a wanton disregard for the safety of the person they hit by fleeing the scene. It still has to be proven that they had a higher level of disregard for the safety of others before the wreck. What they did after the wreck makes that easier to prove.

Following an Accident

After a hit and run accident, try to get their license plate number or a photo of their vehicle or a photo of them with a phone. Try to memorize everything about the vehicle (what kind of vehicle, how many doors, what color, distinguishing features or marks); how many people were inside, et cetera. Any evidence that can preserve the identity of who hit them is very important. Victims of hit and run have been known to chase down the driver and call the police while they were following them down the road; the police were able to catch the person who fled the accident.

Anything a person can do to try to figure out who it was that hit them, they should do. They should be very, very clear with the police. They need to contact the police immediately if they are able to; if they are not injured to the point where they cannot make a phone call. It is important to contact the police right away and give them a description of the other vehicle. Individuals should seek medical attention and call a Chattanooga hit and run accident lawyer. If the police have not found the vehicle, the attorney can assist in that via trained investigators. Whether the vehicle is found or not, the attorney will be able to assist with a claim against the insurance company.

Help from an Attorney

A Chattanooga hit and run accident lawyer can help in hit and run accident claims in a variety of ways. we often use former police officers as investigators, both because of their experience and because of their contacts within the police department.

Experienced attorneys are important in dealing with the insurance companies; dealing with uninsured motorists; hiring experts to analyze the cause of the accident and collect the proof of a hit and run accident which is not always a simple task. It is hard to prove that somebody ran a car off the road.