Hit and Run Accidents
Car accidents range in their degree of seriousness from minor injuries to paralysis and death. For people who are hurt in a crash, the frustration and stress are intensified in a hit and run accident, when one or more of the drivers involved leaves the scene of the crash. At Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Johnson, Bareck & Bertuca, our commitment to protecting the rights of car accident victims is demonstrated through our skilled legal advocacy as we pursue compensation from responsible parties. Our experienced Chicago car accident attorneys know how to hold drivers accountable for the harm that they cause in a hit and run by victimizing injured individuals when they flee the scene of a crash.Hold a Hit and Run Driver Accountable for Your Harm
Illinois law requires that drivers involved in an accident that causes injuries stop their vehicles and remain at the scene unless they need immediate medical attention. It is expected and mandated that drivers will provide law enforcement with specific information about the crash and assist other drivers or passengers. By leaving the scene of an accident and not meeting these legal requirements, an individual may face civil and criminal penalties. In civil court, accident victims are entitled to file a legal claim against a hit and run driver, and they may sometimes recover punitive damages in addition to other costs.
Drivers who flee the scene of an accident may do so for a variety of reasons. Some drivers may be intoxicated and fear a DUI, while others may want to avoid being charged with another vehicle crime associated with causing a death or injury. After a minor collision, some individuals may not realize that they have caused an accident and may drive away oblivious of what happened.
A personal injury claim provides a method for car accident victims to seek compensation for costs that they have incurred as a result of the accident. Victims may recover medical costs, lost wages, and property damage. In hit and run accident cases, a victim may also be able to recover punitive damages. These damages are available when a defendant driver has intentionally or recklessly caused harm or has acted in a particularly egregious manner.
Drivers who flee the scene of an accident subject victims to potentially serious harm. People injured in a vehicle collision and left without assistance may face roadside hazards, excessive bleeding, or being stranded. A hit and run driver’s conduct may be deemed particularly egregious when the accident victim is elderly or has a pre-existing disability and needs special attention.
Despite the fact that the driver may have left the scene, accident victims still often may hold a hit and run driver accountable. Vehicles that have been involved in a hit and run accident often leave traces of evidence, such as paint scrapings or car parts, at the scene of the crash. In some situations, eyewitnesses may help to identify the driver or their vehicle. Drivers who have caused an accident may tell their friends of the incident or turn themselves in to law enforcement.
Accident victims pursing a legal claim against a hit and run driver may recover costs associated with the collision. Bicyclists, pedestrians, and other drivers may recover damages ranging from medical bills to lost wages from work. Victims may also seek compensation for any decreased quality of life and emotional distress that they have endured following an accident.
Punitive damages are intended to punish and serve as a warning to others. Drivers who are responsible for a hit and run accident often will be considered to have acted in a morally reprehensible manner, worthy of punitive damages. Even a driver who causes an unintentional accident may nevertheless be subject to punitive damages because the act of fleeing the scene was intentional.Contact an Experienced Chicago Lawyer Regarding Your Hit and Run Accident
At Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Johnson, Bareck & Bertuca, our Chicago attorneys advocate for accident victims in a knowledgeable and ethical manner. Seeking legal advice soon after a hit and run crash protects your rights and allows for important evidence and witness testimony to remain fresh. The experienced motor vehicle collision attorneys at our firm can help seek the recovery to which you may be entitled. We can represent hit and run accident victims in Quincy, Aurora, Champaign, and Springfield, as well as other areas of Winnebago, Sangamon, Cook, Kane, and Adams Counties. To set up your free consultation, call our office at (800) 444-1525 or contact us online.