Let our Utah hit-and-run accident lawyers help you claim financial compensation if you’re the victim of a crash. We can work to hold wrongdoers accountable and claim the monetary payment you deserve.
Hit-and-run accidents are some of the most frustrating and confusing car accidents you can experience. You justifiably feel violated. Dealing with insurance companies and medical expenses can be overwhelming, and many hit-and-run victims find it difficult to get the rest and recovery they need for their injuries.
Let our Utah car accident attorneys use our training and expertise to deal with the hassle of your accident while you focus on healing. We will work one-on-one with you and handle every aspect of your case personally to ensure you get the compensation you deserve.
What Compensation Can I Receive for a Hit-and-Run Claim?
For many car accident victims, the effects of the crash can be devastating. However, you may deserve compensation for your injuries and suffering. The types of compensation you can receive for a hit-and-run claim can include:
- Medical bills
- Ongoing treatment for injuries
- Lost work and decreased income over time
- Mental injuries and treatment
- Emotional suffering
- Scars and permanent lifestyle changes
If you’re struggling after a hit-and-run accident, you’re not alone. Our Utah hit-and-run lawyers are ready to fight for justice and get you the compensation you are owed under the law.
How Can a Lawyer for Utah Hit-and-Run Accidents Help Me?
There are many tasks involved in getting justice for a hit-and-run accident. The investigation, evidence gathering, starting a case, complying with rules of civil procedure and settlement negotiations are all important tasks. Utah hit-and-run accident attorneys not only see the big picture, but they also take care of all of the steps necessary to make your claim a successful one.
Utah Hit-and-Run Laws
Hit and run accidents continue to be a serious problem in Utah. There are laws in place that punish drivers who flee with both criminal and civil penalties. These laws are meant to help victims find justice. In addition, they ensure that offenders bear the financial burden of their actions instead of victims. Our lawyers explain hit-and-run laws.
When is an accident considered a hit-and-run in Utah?
Utah Code § 41-6a-401 creates requirements for drivers who are involved in accidents. In general, they must stop and exchange information with others involved or people who may own damaged property. If the accident involves apparent damage of $2,500 or more, the driver must call law enforcement. An accident is considered a hit-and-run in Utah if the driver leaves the scene without complying with the requirements of § 41-6a-401 to stop, call the police and exchange information.
What is the criminal penalty for a hit and run in Utah?
A hit and run is a class B misdemeanor in Utah. The offender may serve up to six months in jail and pay a fine of up to $1,000. They may also owe the victim damages for the harm caused by their actions. If the crash causes serious injuries, it is a third-degree felony punishable by up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine.
Who covers my medical and other bills after a hit and run?
If the driver is discovered, they will need to pay for your bills with their insurance policy. However, drivers often leave the scene of an accident they caused because they do not have insurance. In this case, or when the driver who caused the accident cannot be found, the state considers them an uninsured driver. If this happens, you can seek compensation for bills from your own insurance company using your uninsured motorist coverage.
Can I use evidence of leaving the scene in a car accident case?
If your injuries and damages are worse because the other driver flees the scene, you can use it as evidence in your car accident case. In addition, if you disagree over the facts, there are no eyewitnesses, or you need to prove that the defendant was the driver of the vehicle, you can admit evidence that the other driver fled the accident scene.
Do I need to bring a civil case for leaving the scene if there is a criminal case?
A criminal case is an important part of holding the offender accountable. However, just a criminal case may not be enough for the victim to receive justice and the financial compensation that they deserve. There are some key differences in the civil case – expanded damages, a lower burden of proof, plaintiff-directed proceedings – that can prove vital to ensuring the victim’s rights are acknowledged and protected.
Learn your Rights. Get Answers. Free.
Hit-and-Run Car Accident Statistics
How serious is the hit-and-run problem in the United States? Here are some facts and figures:
AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety says that:
- A hit and run accident occurs every 4.3 seconds in the United States.
- Approximately 11% of all police-reported crashes involve at least one driver who flees the scene.
- About 2,000 people die annually in hit-and-run crashes.
- Hit-and-run crashes account for 4.1% of traffic fatalities.
- Most fatally injured victims are pedestrians.
- Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays are the busiest days for hit and run accidents.
- About half of hit-and-run crashes occur at night.
- 732,900 hit and run crashes occurred in 2016.
- Around 172,200 injuries result from hit and run crashes each year, accounting for 6.8% of all traffic injuries
How long do I have to file a car accident claim in Utah?
You have four years to file a car accident claim under Utah Code 78B-2-307. Even if you just start the claim within four years, you have met the deadline and you can pursue your claim in full.
What are pain and suffering damages?
Being the victim of a car accident changes your life in many ways. Some losses are direct financial losses like medical bills and lost income. However, other losses aren’t as concrete. Physical pain, emotional anguish and changed family relationships can be quantified and compensated as part of your pain and suffering damages.
What can I get for a hit-and-run accident lawsuit?
A typical car accident claim results in a settlement of $3,000-$75,000. In cases of severe injuries, damages can total $1 million or more. What you can get in your case depends on your actual losses, how strong your case is legally and what laws in your state determine compensation.
Can I have a lawyer for a hit-and-run accident?
Yes, you can have a lawyer of your choice for a hit-and-run accident. Your lawyer can help you throughout your case with the many tasks needed to receive financial compensation and maximize your case results.
What Should I Do in a Hit-and-Run Accident?
Being involved in any accident is stressful. Being in a hit-and-run accident can be extremely frustrating and even more worrisome. Since most accidents are different and vary case by case, giving specific advice is difficult. But here are a few things that may help you if you are ever faced with this type of situation.
1. Record the Scene
Try to get as much information about the accident as you can. Though it might not be possible, attempt to provide a description on the vehicle that hit you (make, model, and color, and if you can, the license plate number) and give this to your insurance company when it is time to file a claim. Giving this information to the police will also be beneficial when it comes to apprehending the individual who is responsible. Try to recall all the information you can about how the accident occurred. The location and the time of the accident are also important to note.
2. Find Witnesses
Witnesses can go a long way to help when investigating these types of accidents. Since you might be injured or disoriented after the accident, witnesses to the accident might be able to help you record the scene. Be sure to get their contact information for your records.
3. Look for Video
In today’s digital age, there may be video recordings from nearby businesses or even public videos that can help identify the responsible driver.
4. Don’t Chase the Hit-and-Run Driver
You might be tempted to chase the driver who hit you, but this is very dangerous. You don’t know what the driver may be thinking. If they fled the scene, they might try other maneuvers to get away from the accident. After being struck by a hit-and-run driver, it is in your best interest to stay at the scene and stay in control. Record what you can and contact the police to begin the investigation.
5. Call the Police
As mentioned, you should contact the police right away after the accident. You will need to file an accident report to officially record the scene. This might seem like a waste when you don’t have much information, but every detail could be helpful for your auto claims and personal injury claims later.
6. Unattended Vehicles
In these types of accidents, which sometimes happen at malls, schools, concerts or large parking lots, it is best to record the basic information (date, time, place, and damage) and contact the police. The parking lot operators may have video footage that can help.
This applies to all kinds of hit-and-run accidents: bicycle, vehicle and unattended vehicles.
Free Consultation Lawyer for Hit and Run Accident
If you have been in a hit and run, contact our lawyers for a free consultation. We know how difficult it is to deal with the insurance companies, witnesses and conduct your investigation. Let our lawyers handle your case from start to finish.