Baltimore Hit-and-Run Accident Lawyer
In addition to leaving you with serious injuries, a hit-and-run accident can be emotionally devastating. During what could be your greatest moment of need, the person who should have taken responsibility for their actions leaves you to fend for yourself. In the days that follow, you may still feel like you must handle the accident’s fallout on your own, hoping that the police will eventually find the hit-and-run driver.
It’s crucial for you to know that you have options, and you don’t have to pursue financial recovery on your own. At Cohen & Dwin, P.A., we help Baltimore hit-and-run accident victims seek the justice and compensation they deserve. For over 40 years, we have aggressively fought for injured victims involved in car accidents. A hit-and-run driver may have abandoned you, but at our firm, we will stand by your side through the entire legal process.
If a hit-and-run accident changed your life, contact our office today to talk to an experienced Baltimore hit-and-run accident attorney.
What Is a Hit-and-Run Accident in Baltimore?
A hit-and-run accident is one where a driver involved in a collision with another vehicle, a pedestrian, a bicyclist, or property leaves the scene without stopping, providing assistance to anyone injured in the crash, or exchanging information.
Data from the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration and reviewed by AAA estimates that a recent year saw 737,100 hit-and-run incidents. That breaks down to roughly one hit-and-run collision every 43 seconds. The same year had close to 2,000 hit-and-run fatalities.
Maryland Hit-and-Run Laws
Fleeing the scene of an accident is illegal in Maryland. The law specifies that all drivers involved in accidents that cause property damage, injury, or death must remain at the scene of the collision. Under the law, drivers are also required to render reasonable aid, exchange information, and seek medical assistance for any injured individuals, such as by calling the police or emergency medical services.
Drivers are additionally obligated to present identification to any responding law enforcement officer. If a person cannot provide identifying information to others involved in the crash, they must immediately report the collision to the authorities.
Maryland law also has stiff penalties for people convicted of fleeing the scene of an accident. If the accident resulted in only property damage, a hit-and-run driver could face up to 60 days in jail and a $500 fine. However, if the accident resulted in serious bodily injuries, the hit-and-run driver could face fines up to $5,000 and up to five years in prison. Consequences are even more severe if the accident causes death. The maximum penalty in Maryland is 10 years in prison and fines up to $10,000.
Criminal penalties are not the only consequences of fleeing the scene of an accident. Drivers caught leaving the scene of an accident can also be penalized with 8 to 12 points against their driver’s license. Most drivers will also see steep increases in their car insurance premiums.
Can I Get Compensation for a Hit-and-Run Accident in Baltimore?
Yes, there are several ways you may be able to recover compensation after a hit-and-run accident. If the hit-and-run driver is not apprehended or identified, you may be able to file an insurance claim with your own insurer.
In Maryland, drivers must carry a minimum of $30,000 in uninsured motorist (UM) bodily injury coverage and $15,000 in UM property damage coverage. You may be able to turn to these policies to cover your medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, property damage, and other losses up to the limits outlined in your policy.
If the hit-and-run driver is identified, the victim may be able to pursue compensation by filing a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurer. A victim may also recover compensation by filing a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver in court.
Why You Need a Lawyer for Your UM Claim
Uninsured motorist claims can become complicated. It is almost always best to consult with an experienced Baltimore hit-and-run accident attorney instead of pursuing a UM claim on your own. A skilled attorney will be able to help you understand your options, gather evidence to support your claim, file the proper paperwork, and negotiate aggressively on your behalf for the money you deserve.
Insurance companies are driven to keep their payouts as low as possible – even when dealing with UM claims from their insureds. However, hit-and-run accident victims deserve meaningful compensation that will help cover all of their losses following a traumatic accident. An attorney can leverage the strength of the case they build on your behalf to pursue a positive outcome.
What to Do After a Hit-and-Run Accident
After a hit-and-run collision, it can be easy to panic. Try to remain calm and remain at the scene in a safe location. Your next steps can impact whether the other driver can be located and may also impact the strength of your claim.
- Call the authorities immediately and, when they arrive, tell them everything you remember about the crash, the hit-and-run driver, and their vehicle.
- Document the crash as best you can by photographing the crash site, damage to your car, skid marks, debris, and any visible injuries. Make detailed notes about the incident. Take special care to try and note the make, model, and license plate of the driver’s car, and whether it had any identifying marks, like stickers or body damage.
- Seek medical attention as soon as possible. If you don’t receive medical care at the accident scene, be sure to follow up immediately with a physician to ensure any possible injuries are identified and documented.
- Stick to your medical treatment plan and attend any follow-up appointments your physician recommends.
- Avoid posting anything about the crash or your injuries on social media since even your own insurer could use information you publish to claim your injuries are not as severe as you claim.
- Contact an experienced hit-and-run attorney as soon as possible after the accident so they can start gathering evidence to support your case for compensation.
Common Injuries from Hit-and-Run Accidents
Hit-and-run accidents can cause significant injuries. Some of the most common injuries seen in these collisions include:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Broken bones
- Soft tissue injuries
- Internal bleeding
- Organ damage
- Wrongful death
Talk to Our Baltimore Hit-and-Run Accident Lawyers Today
If you are the victim of a Baltimore hit-and-run crash, you may have options for pursuing the compensation you need to get your life back on track. The experienced and compassionate hit-and-run attorneys at Cohen & Dwin, P.A., can guide you through every step of the legal process while you focus on your needs and your recovery.
To discuss your case with a skilled Baltimore attorney in a free consultation, contact our office today.