According to the
Michigan Traffic Crash Facts, hit and run car accidents comprise of approximately 10 percent of all
Michigan motor vehicle crashes. In fact, in cities such as Detroit, Pontiac
and Flint, the numbers are substantially higher due to the fact that as
many as 50 percent of drivers on the road are driving cars uninsured.
So what can you do as a victim of a hit and run accident to protect yourself
in the State of Michigan?
Many victims fear that if they suffer injuries as result of driver who
fled the scene they may not be able to collect compensation for their
injuries. However, there are ways you can protect yourself should you
find yourself in such a situation.
The first claim you may be able to file is a no-fault insurance claim with
your auto insurance company. Fortunately for drivers in Michigan, you
may still be able to collect no-fault benefits as long as you are driving
with auto insurance. This is because Michigan is a no-fault state, meaning
it does matter who was at fault for the accident nor is the identity of
the other driver required to collect no-fault benefits. No-fault benefits
are your economic damages, therefore these benefits will cover any lost
wages should you have any, medical expenses, household chores, attendant
care services (in-home nursing care), and more.
What happens if you did not have your own insurance coverage?
There are some stipulations in which you still may be eligible to receive
these benefits, such as living with a relative who had car insurance.
Our car accident lawyers recommend that you have an experienced attorney
look into your situation to determine whether or not you may be able to
file a no-fault insurance claim with your own insurance company.
The second type of claim you may be able to file is called an uninsured
motorist claim. This claim will collect compensation for your pain and
suffering damages. Typically this type of claim would be filed against
the at-fault driver, but since the crash was a hit and run there is unfortunately
no one to hold at fault. Therefore, a hit and run victim must rely on
their uninsured motorist coverage on their own auto insurance policy to
collect pain and damages. However, it is very important to understand
that under Michigan law, drivers are not required to have such uninsured
motorist coverage and often times insurance companies do not disclose
this information for this reason. If you do not have this coverage on
your insurance policy, you will not be able to collect compensation for
your pain and suffering.
At the law offices of Goodman Acker, our Michigan car accident lawyers
talk to too many people where this has happened. We actively represent
clients who have been injured in a hit and run accident, helping them
obtain their no-fault benefits and their pain and suffering damages if
eligible, however it happens more often than we would like where we have
to tell an innocent client that they are not able to collect pain and
suffering due to the fact that they do not have uninsured motorist coverage
on their own policy.
The moral of the story?
In order to best protect you and your family should you be involved in
a Michigan hit and run accident, contact you insurance adjuster immediately
to find out if you have uninsured motorist coverage on your policy. If you don’t, then get some. It is often very cheap to add and it
will significantly help you in the long run if you or a loved one is injured.
Of course, if you have any questions or concerns regarding a hit and run
accident or uninsured motorist claims call our office today at
(248) 793-2010 to speak with one of our top rated Michigan car accident lawyers. We are
happy to answer any questions that you may have and discuss your case
with you. We offer a free, no obligation case review and represent our
clients under a contingency fee basis, which means no legal fees or costs
to you until you obtain a settlement or recovery. Our sole mission at
our firm is to provide our clients with the highest level of customer
service and that includes having a team of attorneys, paralegals and staff
that have the utmost reputation in the legal field. For over 30 years,
we have been helping accident victims obtain the maximum compensation
for their injuries. We can do the same for you.