Someone Hit My Parked Car and Left, Now What?
You and a friend are enjoying a nice evening shopping, things are great, and you’re enjoying yourself. You get out to the parking garage only to find a tragedy that leaves you asking, “Someone hit my parked car and left, what do I do?” So we have compiled information and tips for you to follow if you are involved in a hit-and-run accident.
Checklist: What To Do After a Car Accident [Infographic]
What is a Hit-and-Run?
It is considered a hit-and-run when someone collides with your car, parked or in motion, and flees the scene without leaving information. It is a legal obligation to fulfill certain duties when you collide with another vehicle — for example, writing a note with contact information and insurance information. The driver who hit your car is required to find out who you are or make contact with you in the event of an accident. But what do you do when someone hits your car and flees?
What To Do At The Scene
Protect your rights and make sure the evidence stays preserved; with these steps, you can do just that:
Do Not Leave The Scene
While you may be tempted to follow the person who hit you, you shouldn’t leave the scene of the accident until the police have been informed and a report is made. Make sure you gather all the information at the scene of the crime and preserve the evidence the best you can.
Gather the information of any and all witnesses to the accident that you can.
Contact The Police
While only some states require by law that you report any accident, it is advised that this is always done. Even if a note is left, a police accident report should be filed for insurance purposes. Also, the report will document the evidence at the scene.
Document Location & Time
Make sure you document the time and location of the collision.
Take A Lot of Photos
Make sure you take plenty of photographs that show not only the scene of the accident but any damage or evidence of it as well. If you have a paint mark from the other car involved, make sure you get a close up picture of it.
File an Insurance Claim
If you want to expedite the claim process, make sure you reach out to your insurer immediately after the accident. The sooner, the better. Be prepared with all the information you can get, and the agent will tell you what information you need to file a claim.
Filing an Insurance Claim for a Hit-And-Run
If you can locate the person and gather their information, you can make a third-party claim through their insurance provider to cover the damages for repairs. However, if finding a person is impossible, you have to file the claim with your insurance company. If you have the uninsured motorist coverage, it will compensate you for accidents that are considered hit-and-run. Not all states require this coverage, so it is considered optional in many states. Make sure to discuss with your insurance company what your policy covers, and learn about what will cover a hit-and-run accident.
While no one wants to make the statement, ‘Someone hit my parked car and left, and I don’t know what to do.’ Always consult with a lawyer, even if it is a hit-and-run. Proper procedures allow you to recover any damages. An expert automobile accident attorney can guide you through the process of making a claim, increasing how much you will be given for your repairs or replacement car.