Being hit by another driver is stressful enough. However, the frustration you are dealing with goes up several more notches if the person who hit you fled the scene.
What are your options? Can you get compensation for your injuries, lost wages and more? The good news is that, in many cases, you can.
Your insurance coverage
Hopefully, you have car insurance, and in New Hampshire, your policy should include uninsured motorists coverage. According to the state’s insurance department, this coverage should help with “injuries result[ing] from an accident involving an at-fault uninsured driver, or a hit and run driver. It also protects against injuries caused by insured drivers whose coverage is less than your own.”
Of course, insurance companies frequently do not have your best interests at heart. Many are more have an interest in making a low settlement offer that they hope you will accept if you need money immediately. The thing is that when you suffer an injury, you do not always have a full picture early on of how severe your injury can be. An attorney can help negotiate a fair settlement that helps you in both the short term and the long term.
The police investigation
It is possible that, at some point, the police will identify and find the driver who hit you. Any information you can provide, such as the other car’s license plate number or partial number, is helpful. Witnesses at the scene may also be able to provide critical information. However, the authorities do not treat all hit-and-run cases equally. If your injury appears relatively mild, police might not devote many resources to the search for the driver, even if your injury has a high chance of getting much worse later. The reality is that the more serious your injury is, the more comprehensive the police search might be.
Furthermore, if police identify the driver three years after the accident, the statute of limitations often prevents a case from going forward. In the case of a death stemming from the accident, the three-year limit starts from the date of death.