How to Handle a Hit and Run in Charlotte
Within the state of North Carolina, uninsured motorist coverage is a mandatory type of car insurance coverage. Every driver must buy this type of protection in case the motorist becomes involved in a collision with a driver who doesn’t pay for the damage. Uninsured motorist coverage benefits a policyholder in cases where a driver causes a crash and the driver responsible for the collision does not have the appropriate minimum liability coverage to pay for losses. It can also provide coverage in hit-and-run accident cases.
In a hit-and-run, you may not know who the driver is who is supposed to compensate you. While the police will try to find a motorist who has left the scene of an accident resulting in injury or death, it is not always possible to track down a motorist who has fled a crash scene. Because you must have uninsured motorist coverage, you at least have the option of turning to your own insurer to get losses and damages paid.
What to do after a hit-and-run crash
After you become involved in a hit-and-run, here are steps to take to handle your claim and get compensated by an insurer:
- Call the police. The police may be able to find the driver. Even if they can’t, you will get an accident report showing the crash happened and was a hit-and-run. You’ll need this for your insurer.
- Get medical attention. You are going to have to prove to your insurer you got injured in the crash. You’ll need to show the extent of injuries and losses.
- Call your insurer. You need to tell your insurance company you got into an accident, the accident was a hit-and-run, and you are intending to make a claim on your policy.
- Review your insurance policy terms. Find out what the claims process is and find out what the maximum policy coverage is for uninsured motorist claims. Your insurer is not going to pay out more than the policy maximum.
- Proceed with an uninsured motorist claim. Your insurer stands in for the driver whose insurance should actually be paying. The insurer will pay what the hit-and-run driver should. The insurer will try to negotiate a settlement with you, and you will need to decide if you wish to accept the compensation being offered.
The best course of action is to seek the advice of an experienced personal injury lawyer as soon as possible after a serious or fatal traffic accident. If the insurer is not making you a fair offer or is not following policy guidelines and North Carolina laws on claims processing, you can contact an experienced car accident attorney for assistance in negotiating with the insurer to resolve your case. Your attorney can help you to try to convince the insurer to pay an appropriate amount.
If your own insurance company will not be reasonable despite your best efforts to reach a deal, there are options for taking legal action. It may be possible to file a lawsuit for bad faith, which can sometimes result in you being compensated by your insurer for a higher amount than the policy limits. Don’t hesitate to hold your insurer accountable if the insurance company does not pay appropriately when you make an uninsured motorist claim after a hit-and-run.