The state has a fairly negative reputation when it comes to driver safety and the accident rates throughout the busiest areas of the state. Accidents happen every day for countless reasons, and when these accidents happen, the drivers involved have specific rights and responsibilities they must fulfill. Unfortunately, not all drivers who cause accidents take responsibility for their actions, and some will try to flee the scene of the damage they’ve done.
Hit-and-run accidents can occur in active traffic, but they are more likely to involve parked vehicles. For example, a driver may hit someone else’s parked car and then leave immediately to avoid taking responsibility for the damage they’ve done. If you return to your parked vehicle and discover that someone has damaged it but they did not leave a note, it’s easy to feel frustrated and distressed if you do not know how to hold them accountable.
If you find yourself in this situation, it’s wise to speak with a car accident attorney in Beverly Hills, CA. The right attorney can not only help locate the at-fault driver but also hold them accountable for the harm they’ve done. Hitting another vehicle or person and running is a criminal offense in the state, and the at-fault driver faces severe penalties even if they only caused property damage. Your attorney can help you understand how a criminal case against the at-fault driver could impact your recovery efforts and what type of compensation you should be able to claim from them.
Before you can recover your damages from a hit-and-run accident, you must identify the driver who caused the accident. If your parked car was hit, there may be nearby cameras that captured the accident and show the driver who caused it. Your attorney can help you determine the optimal way to obtain any such footage you may need. If anyone saw the accident happen, they may be able to provide a description of the vehicle and the driver, and your attorney can relay this information to local police.
Once the police have identified the driver responsible for the hit-and-run, they are likely to conduct an arrest. At this point, you can proceed with your recovery efforts while the state handles a criminal case against the defendant. Under California law, you have the right to seek repayment for your vehicle repair costs. If you were forced to arrange alternative transportation due to the damage to your vehicle or incurred other losses because of the accident, the defendant is liable for these expenses as well.
Connecting with an attorney that you can trust as soon as possible after your accident is the ideal method of recovering from any hit-and-run. The sooner you secure legal counsel, the sooner your attorney can begin guiding you toward the recovery you legally deserve.
If you accidentally hit a parked vehicle in California, you are legally required to stop and try to locate the vehicle’s owner. If you cannot locate the owner, you must leave a note with your contact information and insurance details for them. Failure to do so can lead to a hit-and-run charge. You will face criminal penalties in addition to paying for the damages you caused.
A hit-and-run can qualify as a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the level of damage caused. If the hit-and-run only resulted in property damage, a misdemeanor charge is likely, and the at-fault driver faces a fine, jail time, and other penalties at the court’s discretion. If a hit-and-run results in bodily harm or death, the at-fault driver is more likely to face felony prosecution. They will spend several years in state prison, larger fines than the misdemeanor penalty, and more depending on the severity of the harm done and their prior criminal history.
You have a much better chance of identifying and locating the at-fault driver with an attorney’s assistance. Your legal representative can work with local law enforcement to help find the driver who hit your vehicle. Once you determine fault for the accident, your attorney can help hold them fully accountable for the harm done. This may involve a car insurance claim as well as a personal injury suit, and you are more likely to succeed with both options with an attorney’s assistance.
Your insurance premiums should not increase if you have an accident due to someone else’s actions. Because you were not driving when your vehicle was hit, the accident should not affect your insurance at all. However, every insurance policy has different terms and conditions. Review your policy carefully so you are fully aware of the circumstances that may lead to a change in your premium rate.
State law allows you to seek complete repayment of all damages another party inflicted on you. When it comes to a hit-and-run accident, you may be able to claim compensation for your injuries if you were in the vehicle when you were struck by the at-fault driver. If someone hits your parked car, you will likely be able to recover the cost of repairing your vehicle and may have grounds for additional compensation based on the specific details of your case. An experienced attorney can help determine your case’s value.
Heimanson & Wolf, LLP, can help you navigate the aftermath of a hit-and-run accident with confidence. We have extensive professional experience helping our clients recover from unexpected accidents and will put this experience to work in your case. Contact us today and schedule a consultation with our team to learn more about the legal services we offer and how we can assist with your recovery.