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Fleeing the scene of an accident is a legal offense in Texas. Legally, all parties involved in accidents must exchange information with each other and report to the police. However, if a party flees the scene without fulfilling this requirement, then the whole matter will fall under the umbrella of hit and run accidents.

The problem with such accidents is that if the at-fault driver is not caught and apprehended, you’re stuck in a precarious position for seeking compensation for all the losses that you sustained because of this crash. Your insurance company may attempt to downplay your sufferings or use some technicality in your insurance policy to refuse you the payment you need.

This is where you should use your legal rights and have a team of experienced accident attorneys file a lawsuit in a Houston court of law..

Defining Hit And Run Accidents In Houston, Texas

a Houston Hit and Run Accident stop sign

Hit and run cases, as noted earlier, involve a driver who leaves the accident scene without exchanging information with the other driver.. Naturally, it is the driver who flees that is considered at-fault for the accident. Drivers tend to get nervous, or they may want to avoid the consequences of their actions, leading them to flee the scene.

In Houston, this behavior is common among drunk drivers who don’t wish to be charged with causing a drunk driving accident. Or perhaps, the driver may not be licensed, or may have a criminal record, or a pending legal obligation, or may have done so due to an error of judgment.

In any case, you were left alone to deal with all the damage caused by the recklessness and indifference of someone else.

Your injuries, property damage (any damage to your car), and pain will be your own problem unless the driver is caught. The police will construe this act as a misdemeanor on the part of the negligent driver, and if the accident was serious, it will become a felony.

The odds of getting that driver behind bars are slim unless the accident was severe. In most cases, victims are forced to approach their own insurance company to seek financial compensation for the losses they sustained.

Usually, the uninsured motorist coverage, which is a part of almost every auto insurance policy (unless you exempted it from yours – never do that), will help you cover these expenses. If the offender is caught then you can sue them for their negligence.

However, if that doesn’t happen, you’re stuck with your own insurance company for compensation. Sometimes, they may find reasons not to pay you, and if you see that happening, walk away. You have the legal right to sue your insurance provider to make them honor their commitment to you.

What To Do After Hit And Run Accidents In Houston, Texas?

Being a hit and run accident victim is not easy.. The physical and mental toll can be mounting, but you must gather your strength and get straight to business for securing financial compensation:

  • The one thing you should never do is to chase the driver, even if you can, because they may be armed or dangerous otherwise.
  • Call the police immediately and wait near the scene of the accident for the reporting officers to show up.
  • Before they do so, photograph everything, literally. Take photos of your car, your injuries, those of anyone else accompanying you, the accident scene, and anything that can help you get the details right.
  • Talk to all eyewitnesses if there were any and request them to share their contact information with you as they can testify your claim later on.
  • When the police officers report to the scene, lay down all the details in front of them, as best as you can remember.
  • Visit a doctor within 72 hours of the accident, and keep track of all of your expenses such as medical bills, lost wages, and out-of-pocket expenses that resulted due to this accident.
  • The hit and run investment may last for some weeks, so be patient here, but don’t delay the process unnecessarily.

The statute of limitations (shortened as SOL) puts a two to three years cap on filing a lawsuit for automobile accidents in Texas. While some exceptions may demand an extension of this deadline, you should not wait to contact an experienced lawyer for legal advice.

If your insurance company fails to do justice in your case, you will have to take things to a court of law.

Demanding Financial Compensation For Damages Caused By Hit And Run Accidents In Houston

As a vehicle accident victim, your claim for financial reimbursement to settle damages in a hit and run case may take a while to clear out since the offender is nowhere to be seen. However, you should still proceed with filing your claim with your insurance company.

A grey pick up truck that was involved in a hot and run in Houston

The economic and non-economic damages for which you can seek a reimbursement include, but are not limited to:

  • Covering up your medical expenses including bills for your hospital stay, surgery, physical therapy, medicines, personal care, psychiatric sessions, and so on.
  • Reimbursing for any property damage is reflected by the cost of repairs needed for your car.
  • Compensating for any loss of income, out-of-pocket expenses, and other economic losses that resulted due to the accident.
  • Reimbursement for any pain or suffering that you had to go through including any permanent disfiguration, loss of joy of life, loss of a loved one (wrongful death), disability, and so on.

Your lawyer can better help you with setting up a reasonable and fair demand for financial compensation within the legal frame of Texas.

On average, the settlement is somewhere between $10,000 and $25,000 for hit and run accidents, but it can be much more in your case if the crash caused major damage.

The Calhoun, Meredith, & Sims Law Firm Can Help You

The only thing worse than being involved in a hit and run accident is being denied help from your insurer in bad faith. This may not be your fault because insurance companies are known to play dirty with the rules and use minor technicalities to deny people their rightful compensation.

However, you are not alone, because the experienced team of lawyers at the Calhoun, Meredith, & Sims Law Firm will assist you in this endeavor. Our consultation session is free so don’t hesitate to call us. And we work on a contingency fee basis so you don’t have to worry about paying upfront either.

Give us a call, and we’ll do all we can to help you win your claim!

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