In New York, when a motorist is involved in an accident, resulting in severe injury or property damage worth more than $1,000, they are legally required to alert emergency services if they are physically capable. Understandably, being involved in a collision can be an overwhelming and traumatic experience. The responsible driver may not uphold their legal duty to alert emergency services and instead panic and drive away. However, this can pose a significant problem for victims seeking compensation for the damages they’ve endured. If you have been injured in a hit-and-run accident, contact a determined Bronx Car Accident Lawyer who can help you hold responsible parties accountable for their negligence.
What exactly is a hit-and-run accident?
A hit-and-run accident occurs when a motorist hits a vehicle, person, or someone else’s personal property. The motorist operating the car that causes the damage leaves the accident scene without alerting emergency services or providing their personal identifying information on the damaged vehicle or property. Essentially, hit-and-run accidents occur when a motorist flees the scene to avoid liability. Failing to fulfill your obligations to the other driver by leaving the scene of an accident is considered a criminal offense, and those found guilty will be subject to harsh penalties.
What should I do if the other motorist flees the accident scene?
In the unfortunate event that you are injured in a hit-and-run accident, you should first alert the authorities. Calling 911 will ensure an ambulance will be dispatched to your location. It would be best if you didn’t try to apprehend them yourself. Immediately alerting the authorities will also give them a better chance of locating the other motorist. Essentially, you should leave discovering the other motorist to the police.
Although you should not attempt to apprehend the other motorist, you can help the police by gathering as much information as possible about the vehicle. This includes remembering the vehicle’s license plate number, a physical description such as the color, make, model, and other identifying characteristics about the vehicle, as well as any damage to the car you could see. Additionally, it is helpful to provide them with a physical description of the other motorist, such as their gender, height, hair color, and other identifying attributes that can help the police locate them.
What if the driver provides false information?
As confusing as this may seem, a hit-and-run accident isn’t limited to when a motorist hits your car and flees the scene. It is also considered a hit-and-run accident if you exchange information with the other motorist; they provide you with false information, such as a fake name and phone number. This action is the same as fleeing the accident scene as you will have no way to reach them as they have provided you with false personal information to avoid liability.
Even though it may be harder to recover compensation after a hit-and-run accident, do not give up hope just yet. Our seasoned Bronx car accident lawyers from James Newman, P.C. can help you fight to obtain the just compensation you deserve. Allow our firm to represent your interests today.