Can a Lawyer Help Me if I Was Injured and the Driver Fled the Scene?

No one wants to get into an accident as they make their way around Louisiana.  However, if the unfortunate happens and a car crashes into you, you assume the driver will do what’s legally required. They should stop, call for medical assistance if necessary, and exchange insurance details with you. Most drivers stop when they get involved in an accident.  However, some drive away from the scene and never return or contact law enforcement. If you were involved in a crash with a hit-and-run driver, you may think you’ll never get compensation. However, this isn’t the case. You should still reach out to an attorney after the accident.

Leaving the scene of a crash is a crime in Baton Rouge and elsewhere in Louisiana. If the accident results in serious injury or death, leaving the scene is a felony. Otherwise, it’s a misdemeanor. You need to report the accident to the police so they can track down the driver. Even if the police don’t find the individual, your attorney may be able to find another way for you to recover damages. That’s why you need to call a lawyer as soon as possible after the crash. Your memory will be fresh, and eyewitnesses will still be available to provide evidence.

Hit-and-run accidents are inherently stressful and complicated. You’ll be especially concerned if your injuries are serious and your car was badly damaged. The cost of seeking medical treatment and repairing or replacing your vehicle could be astronomical. If you can’t work, the impact is likely to be even more significant.  Fortunately, you don’t have to handle all the stress alone. A Baton Rouge car accident lawyer can assist you with your case.

A judge holding a gavel.

How Police Officers Track Down Hit-and-Run Drivers

Police use a variety of methods to find drivers who flee the scene. They’ll start by asking you and any other witnesses to tell them everything you remember. If you can recall even a partial license plate number, that will be helpful. However, knowing the make, model, or color the vehicle can also help the police to find the driver. Bystanders may also have seen something important. In addition to getting reports from victims and eyewitnesses, investigators also turn to:

Camera Footage

Many people have security cameras in their homes and businesses. There are also surveillance cameras installed by the government. One of these devices may have recorded the accident or captured the driver speeding away. This footage can assist officers in identifying the vehicle and/or driver. Once they know who the vehicle is registered to or who the driver is, they can track them down.

Neighborhood Canvassing

Motorists who leave the scene have to drive by homes or businesses when they make their escape. Officers often ask people in the community if they saw or heard anything. Even things that seem insignificant may be useful to the investigation.

Social Media

If the accident was serious, the police may appeal for information from the public via social media or even traditional media. They will ask people to come forward with any details they may know. Even if no one saw the crash, they may have seen a damaged vehicle speeding away. Sometimes, the driver comes forward after hearing the appeal.

What Lawyers Tell Their Clients Who Get Involved in Hit-and-Run Accidents

It is no doubt frustrating when a driver hits you and doesn’t even check to see if you’re okay. However, you need to keep your head on and take the appropriate steps. Assume that the driver will be caught, and the case will proceed like any other car accident case.

This means you need to seek medical attention immediately after the accident. Even if your injuries don’t seem serious, you shouldn’t take chances. When the driver is caught, you’ll need proof that they caused you harm.

You should also look around for eyewitnesses if you’re able. People who see an accident don’t always stick around until the police arrive, so you’ll need to move quickly. Get their contact details if you can and pass them on to the police and your attorney. You should also take as many photos of the scene as possible.

Let Our Baton Rouge Auto Accident Lawyers Help You!

At Bart Bernard Injury Lawyers, we’ll help you to get the compensation you need. In the best-case scenario, the police will find the driver and you can recover damages through their insurer. However, you may be able to draw on your uninsured motorist coverage to get compensation. If you get difficulty with your own insurer, your attorney can fight on your behalf.  Regardless of whose insurance company we have to negotiate with, our Baton Rouge auto accident lawyers will do everything we can to help you. Contact us today for a free consultation.