Pennsylvania requires anyone involved in a car accident to stop their vehicle, exchange license and insurance information, and aid anyone injured in the collision. (75 Pa.C.S. §3742 and §3743). Sometimes, the person who caused the accident violates the law and flees the scene. Fortunately, that does not leave you unable to make a claim for the pain and suffering, wage loss, and medical bills caused by the accident. There is still a way to receive compensation for your losses.
If you are the victim of a hit and run driver, your own insurance company will provide help. Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage through your own automobile insurance will pay for your medical bills. Pennsylvania requires all insurers to provide a minimum of $5,000.00 of PIP coverage, but you can purchase a higher amount.
You can also buy additional insurance, called uninsured motorist coverage. Uninsured motorist coverage, also called UIM, protects you if you’re hurt by someone who doesn’t have car insurance or flees the scene of the accident. Uninsured motorist coverage (UIM) allows you to recover for your pain and suffering, wage loss, and medical bills, even if the driver that caused the collision left the scene and was never found. Because uninsured motorist coverage is not mandatory, it is important that you talk with your insurance agent to make sure you have this important coverage to protect you and your family.
It is very important you know that there are strict requirements for reporting an uninsured motorist claim involving a hit and run driver. You must both: 1) report the accident to the police (or proper government authority) and 2) notify your insurer within thirty (30) days of the collision. You have to do both things, not just one.
It is important to consult with an experienced car accident lawyer if you are injured in a hit and run accident. Your lawyer will make sure that your claim is reported properly and in time. You lawyer will review all the necessary paperwork from your insurance company so that you can pursue to the full amount of coverage available. If the insurance company says you don’t have uninsured motorist coverage (UIM), your lawyer will make sure that the insurance company can prove you were notified of your right to purchase the coverage and that you knowingly waived your right to do so in writing.
If you’ve been hurt in a car collision, contact the attorneys at Warren McGraw & Knowles to protect your rights and get you the compensation that you deserve.
Timothy Knowles is a graduate of Temple Law School where he was a staff editor on the Temple Journal of Science, Technology, and Environmental Law. Before entering private practice, he interned for Judge Abramson and Judge Carrafiello in the Court of Common Please of Philadelphia. As a result of his successes representing the injured and disabled, Tim has been named to the Pennsylvania Super Lawyers Rising Star list. This distinction is given to lawyers under 40 and to no more than 2.5% of lawyers in the state. Learn more about Tim here.