According to AAA, more than one hit and run accident occurs every minute in America, which averages out to around 682,000 crashes per year. Additionally, hit and run accidents have increased by about 7.2% every year since 2009.
While each state has laws that are meant to help prevent hit and runs from occurring, these types of accidents remain problematic. They can be especially deadly for pedestrians and cyclists.
If you or a loved one are the victim of a hit and run you may be entitled to compensation that can help cover the damages suffered, such as medical expenses, lost wages, and even compensation for emotional distress.
At Poynter & Bucheri Accident Recovery, our team understands how frustrating dealing with a hit and run in Indiana can be. For help filing your claim and recovering compensation, don’t hesitate to reach out to one of our Indianapolis hit and run lawyers today!
Hit and Run Indiana Laws
Indiana has strict laws regarding hit and runs. According to Indiana Code 9-26-1-1.1, if a driver causes an accident in Indiana, they must do the following:
- Immediately stop their car at the scene of the accident or as close to the accident as possible
- Remain at the scene until they have given their name, address, and registration info, and shown their driver’s license to any person involved in the accident.
- If the accident results in the injury of another person, the driver must also call 911 and provide reasonable assistance to the injured person OR they must make sure someone else calls 911.
- If the driver hits an unattended vehicle, they must make a reasonable attempt to locate and notify the owner of the vehicle. If the owner cannot be found, the driver must notify the authorities and give their contact information.
What are the Penalties for a Hit and Run in Indianapolis?
A hit and run is considered a crime in Indiana, and as such, there are penalties that the fleeing driver can face if they are found. The specific charges and penalties can vary depending on what exactly happened:
- Simply leaving the scene of an accident can result in up to a $1,000 fine and up to 180 days in prison.
- If the hit and run resulted in an injury, the penalties are up to one year in jail and up to a $5,000 fine.
- If a driver leaves the scene of an accident that resulted in a death, the penalty is up to six years in jail and up to a $10,000 fine.
- If the driver who fled the scene was intoxicated and someone was injured or killed, it can result in three to sixteen years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine.
What Steps Should I Take After a Hit and Run?
If you are the victim of a hit and run in Indiana, the steps you take following the accident are critical as they can play a vital role in how your case plays out.
- Stay at the scene: Do not leave the scene of the accident. If you were hit, whether as another driver or as a pedestrian or bicyclist, you will need to stay and report the accident.
- Call 911: Reporting the accident to the local authorities is critical as it can help them track down who hit you and a police report will serve as evidence for your accident claim.
- Talk to witnesses: If anyone saw what happened, make sure you talk to them and get their contact info if possible. Witnesses can provide statements that can help when the case is being investigated.
- Take photos: Photographic evidence is also important. Take any photos or videos you can of the accident scene and anything else at the scene that feels relevant to what happened.
- Get medical attention: If you were injured in the accident, have the police send emergency medical responders or go to urgent care or a doctor immediately following the accident to get checked out. Documentation showing that you were injured can also serve as vital evidence.
- File a claim with insurance: You will need to report the accident to your insurance company so they can get a claim started to ensure you get coverage for your injuries and car damage.
- Contact a hit and run lawyer: A lawyer can help investigate the case while ensuring your rights are protected. They can handle communication with the police and with the insurance companies involved to ensure you are fully and fairly compensated for the damages you have suffered.
Consult an Indianapolis Hit and Run Attorney
At Poynter and Bucheri Accident Recovery, we know how frustrating a hit and run accident can be and are dedicated to helping our clients seek justice and get the compensation they need and deserve. We will help you file your claim, gather evidence, and ensure the insurance company awards you the full amount you are owed.
Don’t hesitate — an experienced Indiana hit and run lawyer can assist you right away. Call 1-800-265-9881 for a free case review.