Hit and Run Accidents
Hit and Run Car Accident Lawyers in Phoenix
The number of hit and run accidents that occur each year in Arizona and across the United States is astounding. While various factors cause people to run when they are involved in a car crash, the fear of law enforcement seems to be the most common reason for fleeing the scene of the accident. In some situations, the at-fault driver may have been drunk or otherwise impaired when operating the vehicle. In other cases, the driver may have had an outstanding warrant, may not have possessed a valid driver’s license, or may even have stolen the vehicle. Regardless of the underlying factors, a hit and run event can cause serious injuries, leaving the victims wondering if they will ever be able to recover financial compensation for their losses. That’s where an experienced Phoenix hit and run accident attorney can make all the difference.
Hirsch & Lyon Accident Law P.L.L.C. is dedicated to protecting the rights of hit and run accident victims. We are available right now to discuss your options for recovery. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation so we can review your rights and help you retain the compensation you deserve.
Were You the Victim of a Hit and Run in Arizona?
One of the most important things you can do when you are the victim of a hit and run event is to obtain the license plate of the vehicle attempting to flee the scene. While getting this information may be impossible in some cases, law enforcement officials are usually unwilling to mount a serious investigation for a typical auto accident unless you have a license plate number.
In the event that the hit and run driver is found and has liability coverage, your accident claim will be handled the same as any other claim for compensation. If the at-fault driver cannot be located, you still may be entitled to collect compensation under your own insurance policy. A clause in your uninsured motorist coverage provides for this exact situation. However, the fine print of your contract includes specific conditions that you must meet before your insurance company will be required to compensate for your injuries.
Because these requirements are often buried in lengthy insurance policies and include both notice and time limitations, one of the best things you can do is to seek out the advice of a qualified attorney. The Phoenix personal injury attorneys at Hirsch & Lyon Accident Law are well experienced in handling hit and run accident claims. We encourage you to call our firm so we can review your policy to ensure you do not miss any of the conditions for recovery.
It is important to recognize that in the state of Arizona, uninsured motorist coverage only compensates you for your bodily injuries – it cannot be used to compensate for physical damages to your vehicle. Your collision coverage can, however, be used to collect the money you will need to fix your car in a hit and run situation. In these cases, it is always best to speak with a Phoenix hit and run accident attorney at our firm who can help you recover the maximum amount of money you are entitled to under the insurance policy.
Identifying the Driver
Drivers sometimes feel guilty after initially fleeing, and either return to the scene of the accident or turn themselves into police soon thereafter. In many cases, however, the driver may simply flee without intending to contact the injured victim or relevant authorities. If the defendant-driver successfully evades authorities, then this can lead to some difficulty in identifying them for the purpose of notification of service. Further, if you don’t have any leads on their name and identity, then you will not be able to recover damages.
Your auto accident attorney will help you in a number of ways. For example, there may be clues left at the accident site that may help piece together the identity of the defendant. Eyewitnesses may also be helpful in this regard. Alternatively, there may be surveillance footage of the accident, with identifying information (i.e., a license plate number) clearly represented in the footage.
In those rare instances where the driver simply cannot be identified, your Phoenix hit and run accident lawyer may be able to develop a case strategy in which you target the remaining liable defendants — perhaps the entity that controls the roadway — to secure at least partial compensation for your injuries.
How Your Phoenix Hit and Run Accident Attorney Can Weaken the Defendant’s Arguments
Hit-and-run drivers are typically a “bad sell” to the jury. Quite simply, the fact that they fled the scene will be interpreted as an admission of guilt, or at the very least, as indicative of some flaw in their moral character — this is particularly true in cases where the plaintiff has suffered serious injuries. If you are injured in a hit-and-run accident and you successfully identify the defendant and bring a claim against them, you are likely to have an easier time securing compensation.
Of course, hit-and-run accidents are not necessarily random. In many cases, a driver flees the scene because they have clearly violated the law in some way, and they are nervous about confronting authorities about said violations. For example, if the driver is intoxicated at the time of the accident, they may flee the scene in an attempt to avoid the substantial criminal and civil penalties.
If you can determine that there was some other violative behavior that led to the hit-and-run conduct, then you may further strengthen your claim (and in a drunk driving scenario, may even be entitled to a punitive damages award).
Schedule a Free Case Review With a Phoenix Car Accident Attorney
While being the victim of a hit and run can be a very scary and frustrating experience, it is important to know that you do have certain legal rights and options. If you have suffered injuries in a motor vehicle accident where the defendant-driver fled the scene of the accident in a hit-and-run scenario, then you may be entitled to sue and recover damages under Arizona law. Hit-and-run claims often involve unique conflicts that require skilled legal advocacy to navigate.
Given the likelihood of complication, it’s important that you seek the assistance of an experienced team of attorneys who have successfully litigated hit-and-run accident claims in the past.
The attorneys at Hirsch & Lyon Accident Law have decades of combined experience helping people who have been injured when an at-fault driver runs from the scene of the accident. When you contact our firm for a free consultation, our legal team will review your case and explain how we may be able to help you collect a fair recovery. Call 602-535-1900 today to speak with a Phoenix car accident attorney.