Traffic accidents can and do happen, not only in Atlanta but also throughout Georgia and the rest of the United States. When an auto accident happens, the normal protocol is not to leave the scene, call 911, and answer any questions that the police might have.
In some instances, however, a driver might hit another vehicle, motorcycle, or pedestrian, but instead of staying behind after the accident and taking responsibility, they flee the scene. That is referred to as a hit-and-run.
Under Georgia law, all drivers involved in auto accidents are required to stop immediately or return to the scene if the accident resulted in injury, death, or damage to property. If you were the victim of a hit-and-run accident, you need to contact the experienced car accident attorneys at Ted A. Greve & Associates as soon as possible. Our Atlanta hit and run lawyers are available 24/7.
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What Should You Do If a Driver Hits You and Leaves the Scene?
Here’s a breakdown of the steps to take following a hit-and-run accident:
If you call 911, the EMTs and police will come, both of which are crucial. While help is on the way, try recalling and perhaps writing down any details you remember about the vehicle that hit you, such as its make, model, color, and license plate number (even part of it). Supplying the police with this information will help them narrow down their search.
Seek Medical Care
Your health and that of your passengers and other victims of the accident is always a top priority. So, offer first-aid to any injured persons if you are able to do so before the ambulance arrives. Once the EMTs arrive, they will provide any additional medical care.
Identify Possible Witnesses to the Accident
Ask around to find out whether anybody nearby witnessed the incident. If you manage to find witnesses, don’t forget to ask for their names and contact information and write it down in case the police, your lawyer, or your insurance company needs to reach them.
Take Photos/Video of the Scene
If you are in a position to do so, take photos or video footage of the accident scene along with any damage to your vehicle. If there’s a transfer of paint from the vehicle that hit you onto your vehicle, make sure that you take photos/video of that too.
Call Your Attorney
A hit-and-run is a serious crime in Georgia and since such accidents are not always straightforward, you need to have a reputable auto accident attorney representing you. Fortunately, if you are in Atlanta, you don’t have to look far to find such an attorney since Ted A. Greve & Associates is one of the leading hit-and-run law firms in Atlanta. Contact us today to discuss your options.
Hit and Run Statistics in Georgia
On average, there are 682,000 hit-and-run accidents in the United States every year. In 2016 alone, there were 2,049 known hit-and-run fatalities in the United States. Of these, 72 of them were in Georgia. So, it is quite clear that hit-and-run is a serious issue not only in Georgia but also in the entirety of the United States.
Why Would a Driver Leave the Scene After an Accident?
Drivers may flee an accident scene for a variety of reasons, but most of these can be grouped into 3 main categories:
Drivers often think about their own self-preservation rather than their responsibility to report. There are many reasons drivers may be afraid. Some are not valid citizens and fear deportation, some have criminality to hide, some are driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, some just panic and enter a ‘flight’ mode, while others are fearful for their physical safety.
No Knowledge of the Accident
Drivers may also claim not to have knowledge of being involved in an auto accident at the time when it occurred. This is almost always linked to the type of vehicle they were driving at the time of the accident. For instance, those driving trucks or vans may claim they had no knowledge of hitting a motorcyclist or even another smaller-sized vehicle.
Too Trivial to Report
Drivers sometimes also claim that the incident/accident was just a minor one and often use this as justification for fleeing the scene/not reporting the accident. Interestingly, however, once they reflect on the incident they do admit to being partly to blame for the accident, but that their actions (fleeing the scene) wasn’t actually a crime.
What Damages Can Victims Get from a Hit-and-Run Accident in Atlanta?
Perhaps the most frustrating aspect of hit-and-run accidents is the fact that innocent victims are often forced to pay expenses out of their own pockets. The expenses may be significant, but a hit-and-run attorney such as Ted A. Greve & Associates can help in recouping them. Here are some of the damages recoverable by a hit-and-run accident lawyer:
- Property damage
- Household service costs in case of disability
- Lost wages due to missed work
- Costs to repair or replace the damaged vehicle
- Funeral expenses and other costs linked to a wrongful death
Expenses pile up quickly following an auto accident. Fortunately, the reputable hit-and-run attorneys at Ted A. Greve & Associates can help you recover damages and move on with your life. No amount of money can obviously erase your pain, but it can go a long way towards providing financial security moving forward.
If you choose Ted A. Greve to represent you, we will guide you through the complex legal process and ensure that you receive a fair settlement. Contact us today so that we can present you with all the legal avenues available to you and help you choose the most suitable one for your situation.
How Long Do I Have to File a Claim?
The time within which you are required to file your hit-and-run case is generally 2 years. However, you might be required to file even sooner if government entities are involved. If you were the unfortunate victim of a hit-and-run accident, don’t wait. The more time that passes after the hit-and-run, the more difficult it is to pursue the case.
Why Do I Need a Lawyer?
You need to hire a lawyer if you are the unfortunate victim of a hit-and-run accident for the following reasons:
Case Preparation/Filing a Lawsuit
If the party responsible for the accident is found, accident victims can sue them in civil court for negligence. It should not be too difficult to prove the case given the details of the incident. If the responsible party cannot be found, victims have to file a claim with their own insurance company. In either case, a lawyer will be instrumental when it comes to preparing the case and filing the lawsuit or claim.
The vast majority of hit-and-run claims and lawsuits today don’t end up in dramatic courtroom showdowns as depicted on TV. Instead, they are often settled out of court. However, negotiating with the responsible party themselves or their lawyer or their insurance company is not easy. You may easily be strong-armed into accepting an unfair settlement.
That’s why you need an experienced lawyer representing you. Your attorney can potentially do numerous things to speed up the negotiations and get you the compensation you are entitled to through a settlement.
Trial Preparation and Representation
Hit-and-run cases can quickly become very messy and complicated, particularly if insurance companies and other parties are involved. In such a situation, it might not be possible to reach a settlement. The only option left is to take the case to trial.
To have the best chance of winning, you need a lawyer with litigation experience. A lawyer with years of experience will fight for your rights for fair compensation against even the largest of opponents.
How Much Does a Car Accident Lawyer Cost?
The trusted auto accident lawyers at Ted A. Greve & Associates know just how difficult it is to be involved in a hit-and-run accident. Drivers that cause accidents and then flee the scene hope to escape financial liability.
We are ready to fight for your right to receive the compensation you are entitled to for your injuries and damages. You won’t be risking any money when you contact our legal firm to learn more about your legal options and aren’t obligated to retain our services. We don’t charge any upfront fees and only get paid if we secure compensation for you.
Contact the Atlanta Hit and Run Lawyers at Ted Greve
Have you suffered innumerable losses in a hit-and-run accident and have no clue as to where to turn to? If so, don’t give up hope. Instead, reach out to our compassionate auto accident attorneys in Atlanta at Ted A. Greve & Associates today.
We can help you to secure the compensation you are rightfully entitled to. With our help, you will get back on your feet within the shortest time possible. Get in touch with us today for your free, no-obligation consultation with one of our trusted Atlanta personal injury lawyers about your hit-and-run accident today.