Every day, Californians use the state’s roads and highways to commute to work, take kids to school, and run errands. Unfortunately, accidents happen, and sometimes they involve hit-and-run drivers. In fact, according to U.S. Department of Transportation data, motorcycle hit-and-runs are on the rise nationwide, and California is no exception. If you’ve been a victim, it’s important to know that you have options and there may be ways to hold the at-fault driver accountable.
There are many reasons why such accidents happen. For instance, the driver may be intoxicated and trying to avoid a DUI, may not have insurance, and in other cases, may be driving a stolen car. Regardless of the reason, motorcycle hit-and-runs can leave victims with significant injuries, damage to their property, and mounting medical bills.
Next Steps to Follow
There are a few recourses available to victims of a hit and run accident in California. Start with filing a police report the soonest time possible. You will need to gather as much information as you can about the other driver, including a description of the car, the license plate number, and any other identifying information. Accident scene Photos and videos can also be helpful. If there were witnesses to the hit & run, ensure to collect their contact details as well, as this information will be valuable to police when tracing down the escaped driver. You will also likely need to file a claim with your insurance agency, even if the at-fault driver is eventually found. They will assist you through the claims process and may be able to offer additional coverage, such as uninsured motorist coverage.
Damages & Compensation
It’s not uncommon for hit-and-runs to result in significant damage to your motorcycle. You may also suffer injuries that require medical attention. All these expenses can add up quickly, and not all of them may be covered by your insurance policy. In some cases, you can seek compensation through a personal injury lawsuit against the defendant. If the driver is found and convicted of hit-and-run, you may also be able to seek restitution through the criminal justice system.
Generally speaking, the more severe your damages and injuries are, the more likely it is that you will be able to recover compensation. Also, the degree of negligence on the part of the at-fault driver will be taken into consideration. If they were intoxicated, speeding, or otherwise acting recklessly, you may be more likely to recover compensation. The strength of the supporting evidence will also play a role in your case. If there are witnesses to the accident or video footage of the incident, you may have a better chance of recovering compensation.
No one deserves to be the victim of a hit-and-run accident. Motorcycles are particularly worse off in these accidents, as they provide little to no protection to the rider. Following such an accident, it’s important to know that you have options, including filing an insurance claim, and a personal injury lawsuit. It’s necessary to consult with a lawyer to discuss your specifics and the best legal recourse.