If you or a loved one was injured by a hit-and-run driver, you may be wondering why or even HOW you can or should pursue a lawsuit for your injuries. Who would be liable for the injuries sustained and any damages suffered if you don’t know who was responsible?
The answer is that your own insurance may pay for your injuries and your losses. The key is that you must have Uninsured Motorist coverage (UM) on your policy. UM is there for a reason, though many people decide to waive this coverage based on the higher premiums.
If a hit-and-driver is never found, then a claim against your UM benefits would be one way to seek to recover financial compensation for your injuries. Depending upon the wording of your policy and the UM coverage definitions and exclusions, you can seek compensation for damages from your own policy. Likewise, if you were a passenger in another vehicle that was struck by a hit-and-run driver, and you were injured, your UM and your driver’s coverage may be a way to recover your rightful compensation.
If there is one takeaway message, it is that we should all be thoughtful about the future when electing our coverages, and make certain that we have UM coverage, as well as UIM (Underinsured Motorist” coverage). UIM covers you for your injuries when the driver at fault does not carry ENOUGH coverage (therefore UNDERinsured) to pay for all of your damages. Of course, in the event you are a plaintiff in a case where you were hit and injured by an unknown driver, you will still need to prove that the unknown driver was the cause of the accident that resulted in your injuries.
Another way to pursue a hit-and-run is through something called the Pennsylvania Financial Responsibility Assigned Claims Plan (PFRACP). This is a fund provided by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania that, if you meet the criteria, will pay you benefits as if you were making a claim against an insured driver. The criteria is:
(i) It is a motor vehicle accident (as opposed to a motorcycle crash or some other accident, etc.)
(ii) The accident occurred in Pennsylvania
(iii) You do not own a motor vehicle
(iv) Either a police report was filed, or you were transported to a medical facility via ambulance
If you meet the criteria, you are eligible to receive up to a total of $15,000.00.
Contact the Law Offices of Jeffrey H. Penneys, P.C. to discuss your rights: 215-987-3550 (office) or 215-771-0430 (cell). Or reach us online at 1-800InjuryLaw.com, where you can fill-out one of our user-friendly contact forms.
Pennsylvania Hit-and-Run Lawyer for Injured Victims
The language in your policy and the coverages you have elected are ultimately the final say in how your injuries will be compensated. Some policies exclude hit-and-run drivers, and others may not allow for wage loss, though cover pain and suffering.
At the law offices of Jeffrey Harlan Penneys, Esq., great attention is given to each and every personal injury client we represent. Since 1995, Attorney Penneys has been championing the rights of injured Pennsylvanians. He is dedicated to seeking the maximum possible in financial compensation for his clients.
If you or someone you care about requires legal advice related to a hit-and-run accident in Pennsylvania, please contact us at your earliest convenience. We offer a free and confidential consultation, in which we will listen to the facts of your case and carefully review your policies to determine what coverage you have that may allow for compensation to be paid for your injuries. If you do not have the requisite coverage, depending upon the details of your case, there may be other avenues that could allow you to recover compensation. Call now!