After an accident, all involved parties are required to remain at the scene
until police and emergency services arrive. Failure to do so is a criminal
offense called "leaving the scene of an accident" but more commonly
referred to as a "hit and run."
Florida's no fault auto insurance laws make it easier than in many
states to recover insurance compensation after this type of
car accident. Rather than relying on the at-fault driver's insurance, each driver
carries personal injury protection or "PIP insurance" which
covers you regardless of fault up to $10,000. This means that, even if
police never catch the driver that hit you, you can still get insurance
money to cover the cost of damages.
PIP may not be enough to cover the total cost of damages from your hit
and run accident. Many Florida residents purchase additional forms of
coverage such as uninsured motorist coverage (UM coverage). This provides
compensation for medical expenses caused by an at-fault driver who either
doesn't have insurance or fled the scene.
Crashes involving property damage, personal injury, or death carry serious
penalties in the state of Florida. In some cases, the court may order
the at-fault driver in a hit and run accident (if identified) to pay victim
Florida Statute § 316.027(2)(d) explains: "The court shall order
the driver to make restitution to the victim for any damage or loss unless
the court finds clear and compelling reasons not to order the restitution.
Restitution may be monetary or nonmonetary restitution."
If you were involved in a hit and run accident, we invite you to contact
a Clearwater car accident lawyer at Roman & Gaynor. Throughout our
nearly 50 years of collective experience, we have dealt with many types
of auto accident cases. We know the ins and outs of dealing with insurance
companies and courts after hit and run accidents.
Call us today for a free and confidential evaluation of your case.