After being involved in a Clearwater hit-and-run car accident, you have a legal right to seek compensation for your injuries and damages. If you were injured in a collision and want to hold the at-fault drivers liable for their actions; a Clearwater hit-and-run accident lawyer can help you recover damages.
Tasks Following a Hit-and-Run Car Accident
Florida statute of limitations allows victims to file a hit-and-run car accident claim within four years of the date of the accident. During this time, victims should complete the following items:
- Seek medical attention following the accident;
- Hire a hit-and-run car accident lawyer;
- Provide evidence of the accident, including the police report and any medical documents;
- Ask questions regarding the legal process;
- Attend legal meetings, including negotiations and/or court proceedings.
Once an attorney is hired, they will have the following duties to proceed with their case:
- Speak with the hit-and-run car accident victim;
- Gather evidence, including the police report, witness statements, video evidence, and medical documents;
- Speak with industry experts regarding accident recreation scenarios and sustained injuries;
- Answer questions provided by the victim;
- Create and file a legal claim on the victim's behalf;
- Represent the victim during negotiations and/or in court.
Possible Damages in Hit-and-Run Accident
After a Clearwater hit-and-run accident, you may be able to pursue the following damages and compensation for:
- Pain and suffering, which refers to the mental and emotional damage you have experienced due to your involvement in a hit-and-run car accident;
- Ambulance and other emergency services following the hit-and-run accident;
- Lost wages from your inability to go to work as you recover from your injuries;
- Property damage to your car and anything that was inside your car during the accident, such as car seats or a laptop;
- Medical treatment that may include prescriptions, physical therapy, or at-home medications.
The court might consider awarding damages proportional to your injuries, such as:
- If the injuries you sustained will significantly impact the rest of your life, the law allows you to seek damages that equal five times your medical bills and general financial losses;
- If you have minor injuries and anticipate the recovery to take a few days or weeks, the law allows you to seek damages equaling 1.5 times the cost of medical treatment.
Your attorney can follow the same process regarding the severity of your property damage as you seek compensation for the repair or replacement of your vehicle.
Settling a hit-and-run car accident case is the end goal, but there are several factors to consider when seeking a settlement offer. First, the at-fault party will look at your injuries and the severity of these injuries. We suggest you seek medical treatment quickly after your hit-and-run accident and see all treatment plans through to the end.
Second, the at-fault party will look at the accident scene and various conditions that may turn the odds in their favor for a win or smaller payout. Your hit-and-run car accident lawyer will work on your behalf to present a solid case with substantiated evidence to seek compensation for your injuries and damages.
With your car crash attorney, you will create a settlement number which you hope to obtain based upon your case and its supporting facts. During negotiations, it is up to your lawyer to settle on an amount that makes you happy. If a settlement does not occur, your claim may move to a courtroom to be heard by a judge and jury.
If Law Enforcement Arrests the Runaway Driver
Sometimes, law enforcement officers may apprehend the hit-and-run driver who fled the accident scene. In this situation, the at-fault driver may face criminal charges, while you have the right to institute a civil claim and seek damages against the driver.
Recognize that the individual may not have an insurance policy, and they may also lack the means to pay the claim out of pocket. In this case, your hit-and-run car accident lawyer will be essential in recovering any damages.
Understanding Florida's “No-Fault System”
Florida's a “no-fault state,” meaning the judicial system settles hit-and-run accidents involving minor injuries out of court. The traditional courts only deal with accidents that include severe injuries. Due to this, most people that have been injured in a Florida hit-and-run accident often choose to resolve their issues directly, collaborating with the relevant insurance agencies.
Regardless of whether you know who the at-fault party is, an insurance policy held by Florida drivers will pay 80% to cover your medical bills. Additionally, the law entitles you to receive 60% of your lost wages. Also, you may receive compensation to cover the costs of traveling to the hospital following the hit-and-run accident.
Your Attorney's Role
Personal injury attorneys typically review each case and advise victims on viable options for a maximum compensation settlement. Here's what you may expect a Clearwater hit-and-run accident lawyer to do:
- Negotiate issues on your behalf to try to secure the most favorable settlement;
- Provide you with transparent legal service;
- Coordinate with specialists and accident experts to ensure your hit-and-run accident gets an exhaustive, detailed investigation;
- Fight off the possibility of others blaming you or trying to share fault for the accident and the injuries you sustained;
- Manage the administrative aspects of your claim to meet the procedural deadlines.
Contact the Dolman Law Group
The team of attorneys at the Dolman Law Group serving the Clearwater area will work to file a hit-and-run car accident claim on your behalf. When you have been injured in a hit-and-run accident but don't know where or how to begin the process for compensation, we are here to assist you. Do not hesitate to reach out and schedule a free consultation today.
Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA
800 N Belcher Rd
Clearwater, FL 33765
Phone: (727) 451-6900