If you’ve been in a car accident and the at-fault driver has fled the scene, it’s important not to panic. Here are a few tips on what to do at the scene and how to get your bills paid later.
Call the police and emergency responders.
As with any auto accident, the first priority is to assess injuries and call for emergency medical assistance if needed, then get the police on the scene. Make sure you get a copy of the police report–this will help smooth the insurance claims process later.
At the scene: get as much information as possible.
Write down any details you remember from the other car and driver, as soon as possible, so that you don’t forget anything in the aftermath. (Tip: use the video or audio recording feature on your smartphone to dictate the information.) Try to get the following:
Do not attempt to follow the driver. Not only can it be dangerous, but it also puts you in the same position of “leaving the scene” and makes it even more difficult for police and the insurance company to determine fault later.
Who pays the medical bills? Who’s responsible for vehicle damages?
If the at-fault driver is never located or identified, recovery for medical damages will likely come from your own car or health insurance policies. A lot will depend on your levels of auto insurance coverage and any deductibles. Check your policy to see what you have of the following:
It’s important to note that this coverage will not reimburse your expenses until after treatment has been completed–another reason that your health insurance will usually be the fastest way to receive treatment following an accident. Depending on your situation, you may need to use a combination of the above to cover all of your expenses, depending on your individual policy limits.
Bottom line on medical coverage: Start with MedPay, then your normal health insurance, and then let your health insurance company settle with your UIM.
If medical expenses are very high or the insurance company feels that treatment is not “reasonable or necessary,” they may attempt to withhold payments or request you be examined by a doctor of their choice.
Navigating the available coverage and making sure that you get a fair settlement from your insurance company is where a personal injury attorney can make a big difference.
If you have been injured in an accident, contact us for a free case evaluation.
Fuicelli & Lee, PC Settles Car Accident for $462,500.00
The high settlement was no accident. I watched how hard Keith worked to get us to that point. Because of Keith’s hard work, I am now in a position to concentrate on fixing my pain with continued treatment.
Fuicelli & Lee, PC Negotiates Policy Limit Settlement of $250,000
Mr. Fuicelli is very accessible which is extremely important just in case you have a question or important information to pass along to him. He stays on top of your case with complete dedication and always updates you with information pertinent to your case.