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The Driver Who Hit Me Left the Scene: Now What?

  • Car accidents can be physically and emotionally traumatic for everyone involved. When you’re the victim of an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, the wreck may affect you even more because someone has flipped your life upside down without warning. Nothing makes a collision worse, however, than when the negligent driver who hit you leaves the scene of the accident.

    It’s horrible for someone to injure another person and not take accountability for their actions. Not only can you file a civil lawsuit against the driver once they’re found, but the hit-and-run driver can face criminal charges for leaving the scene. A Denver car accident lawyer from Justice for Colorado will review your case and use evidence to maximize your settlement in court. 

    File a Police Report for Your Vehicle Crash

    The first thing you must do after getting injured in a hit-and-run accident is call the police to file a police report and seek medical attention for your injuries.

    Even if you don’t think your injuries are severe, it’s important to get documentation of any bumps or bruises so you can use this documentation as evidence in your case. The police report will also document where the accident occurred and who was involved and explain that the colliding driver left the scene where you were injured.

    Begin Collecting Evidence for Your Accident Claim

    You should begin collecting evidence right away if you hope to have a strong case in court after finding the driver. If there are any remnants of the driver’s vehicle at the scene of the wreck, you can use these pieces to identify the driver’s car. Witnesses who saw the wreck in action may also help you find the driver. Video footage and photographs from traffic cameras or nearby stores can be helpful, as well. 

    Criminal and Civil Consequences for Hit-and-Runs

    Your lawyer will work closely with the police to find the hit-and-run driver and hold them accountable. Once the driver is found, the police will charge them in criminal court for leaving the scene of an accident where bodily injury took place. This can result in a felony conviction.

    Once the criminal case is resolved, you should have an easy time proving negligence in civil court, because you can use evidence from the criminal case for your civil case. In civil court, you can recover both economic and non-economic damages. 

    Economic damages may include things like medical expenses, lost wages from missing work, and property damages, while non-economic damages may include things like pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, emotional distress, scarring and disfigurement, and loss of consortium. In rare cases, the judge may also award you punitive damages as a punishment to the defendant for their wanton and reckless behavior. 

    Consult a Denver Car Accident Attorney

    Hit-and-run accidents can be terrifying because there’s no guarantee you’ll find the driver who hit you and successfully recover damages for your injuries. However, when you have a strong legal team and the dedicated Denver police force supporting you, the odds are in your favor.

    To speak with a Denver car accident lawyer from Justice for Colorado about your case, call 303-647-9691 to schedule a free consultation, or visit our website for more information.