If you suffered a serious injury, or lost a loved one after a hit-and-run crash you may be wondering where to turn to recover compensation for your losses. Tennessee law requires drivers to stop at the scene of a car accident that they are involved in. Drivers are required to render aid and call for medical assistance if someone else is injured in the crash. Despite this common knowledge, you still hear terrible reports of how drivers hit and kill or seriously injure another person in a car accident and then leave the scene of the crash. Here are just a few examples of recent hit-and-run accidents in Tennessee:
- In August 2017, the driver of a yellow range rover who struck and killed a woman on W. Trinity Lane was identified thanks to a tip from a local citizen. A warrant was issued for the driver’s arrest charging them with leaving the scene of an accident involving death and failure to render aid. The driver later turned themselves in to authorities. (WKRN)
- In September 2017, a driver who struck and killed a 13-month-old child along Chapman Highway fled the scene of the accident. The Tennessee Highway Patrol later identified the driver responsible for the death of the child. (Knox News)
- Earlier that same week, a man and a woman who had stopped their motorcycle in the bike lane on the Gay Street Bridge were struck by an SUV that did not stop. The man died at the scene and the woman suffered an injury. Following a citizen’s tip, police identified the driver and charged her with leaving the scene of a known fatal accident. (Knox News)
How do you seek compensation for a hit-and-run injury?
If you were hit and injured and the driver who caused the crash failed to stop and offer their contact information or render aid for those who were hurt, your first step is to call the police and inform them of the accident. You and any other witnesses to the crash can offer a description of the vehicle and the person driving it. Through the help of witnesses, the hit-and-run driver may be apprehended.
Unfortunately, one of the main reasons some drivers flee the scene of a crash is because they may be driving without the car insurance that is required by Tennessee law. They may also be driving on an expired or suspended license, so they fear the consequences of stopping, but they do not seem to understand that the consequences of leaving the scene of an accident are worse than the penalty for driving without insurance.
If law enforcement is unable to locate the at-fault driver, or if the driver is found but they are uninsured, you may be able to recover compensation from your own uninsured or underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) rider on your car insurance policy. Uninsured motorist coverage is often included in Tennessee car insurance policies unless the policy owner opts out of this coverage in writing.
Pursuing a claim against your UM/UIM coverage can be challenging. Having the services of a skilled Nashville car accident attorney on your side can ensure that your rights are protected.
At the Rocky McElhaney Law Firm, our Nashville, Hendersonville, and Knoxville car accident lawyers understand how to handle complex cases. Our Gladiators in Suits advise victims and families about each phase of the case. Our attorneys are experienced trial litigators. For clear help and strong advocacy, please phone us at 615-246-5549 or make an appointment through our contact form.