In this Article
You approach a traffic light and come to a stop. Everything seems normal when out of nowhere you get rear-ended. You are in shock, afraid, confused, and in pain. You look in your rearview mirror and the vehicle that struck your car is leaving the scene. Hit-and-run crashes can happen when you least expect leaving you with trauma, personal injury, and property damage. Insurance claims and legal action after the fact can often be overwhelming, as well. It is important to understand the consequences of a hit-and-run accident and, more importantly, what you can and should do during and after they happen.
A hit-and-run incident is a very serious matter. Under Illinois law, it is a crime for a driver to flee the scene of an accident before the police arrive. If prosecuted, it would be a Class A misdemeanor punishable up to 1 year in jail and/or a $2,500 fine in addition to probation for up to 24 months. Although there are serious criminal consequences, this does not stop many drivers from leaving the scene of an accident.
Hit-and-run incidents occur more often than you think, unfortunately. And not only do they cause personal injury and property damage, but they can also be fatal. Below are some sobering statistics about hit-and-run crashes in the U.S. gathered from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) and the AAA Foundation.
Being involved in a hit-and run crash can be traumatic and disorienting to say the least. But there are things you can and should do at the time of the accident to ensure your own health and safety and to hold the at-fault driver accountable. If you are in a hit-and-run crash, you should:
Every bit of information you collected about the incident will help in any potential claim made on your behalf. If the at-fault driver is located, then a claim would be filed with their insurance company for personal injury and/or property damage. If the at-fault driver cannot be located, then an uninsured motorist claim will be filed with your insurance company for your personal injuries and/or property damage.
It is always a good idea to have the best legal advice available in situations like this to help resolve the issue as quickly and efficiently as possible. If you are or someone you know is a victim of a hit and run accident, you should contact an experienced attorney as soon as possible. Contact the experienced Chicago car accident attorneys at The Kryder Law Group for a free consultation at 312-223-1700.