Hit and Run Accidents
The leading Maine hit and run attorneys at Peter Thompson & Associates are dedicated to helping victims injured by the negligence of others. We have successfully handled all types of cases involving hit and run accidents, ensuring that victims are fully compensated for their harm. Our firm provides superior legal representation to clients in Maine and other areas of New England.
Hit and run accidents are a fact of life in Maine. In fact, car accidents are the leading cause of accidental death and injury in the United States. Most states have enacted laws requiring that drivers carry a minimum amount of auto insurance to protect against property damage and bodily injury in the event of a crash. The objective behind these laws is to ensure that drivers with state-registered vehicles bear financial responsibility for the accidents they cause. Unfortunately, these principles are abandoned when at-fault drivers flee the scene of a crash. Common examples of hit and run accidents occur when the driver leaves for any of the following reasons:
- Lack of insurance
- “Fight or flight” reaction
- Driving while intoxicated
- Fear of facing angry motorist
- Confusion in multiple-car collisions
- Shock at striking cyclist or pedestrian
- Causing another vehicle to drive off the road
- Prior convictions, driving while on probation
- Potential to evade liability in absence of cameras or witnesses
- Driving without a license or on a suspended or revoked license
While most cases involve an at-fault driver committing a hit-and-run, some drivers who are not at fault also flee the scene. Innocent drivers often feel guilty because they, too, might be under the influence or have a general fear of police. Others want to avoid the hassle of dealing with a third party and wasting valuable time exchanging information. Sometimes, the streets and highways prevent innocent drivers from stopping right away; they must exit or turn around to return to the scene of the accident. When they return, the at-fault motorist is not always there.
Maine law requires that all drivers stop at the scene, or as close as possible to the scene of an accident, regardless of fault. According to state traffic laws, the operator of a vehicle involved in an accident that results in personal injury or death must “immediately stop at or return to” the scene of the accident. Drivers also have a duty to “provide information” and “render assistance” to the injured person or passenger. Hit and run accidents are an incentive to have an insurance policy covering accidents with unknown, uninsured, or underinsured motorists. This allows injured parties to file a claim with their own insurance company to recover for losses incurred as a result of the accident. In hit and run accidents involving extensive property damage or injury, it is a good idea to be protected. Enlisting the aid of police and an experienced attorney will also improve your chances of recovering full compensation for your harm. As the victim of a hit and run accident, you are entitled to damages for property damage, medical expenses, lost income, and pain and suffering.
If you were involved in a hit and run accident, contact the experienced Maine hit and run accident lawyers at Peter Thompson & Associates immediately. State law limits the amount of time injured parties have to file a claim. Any delay could result in the loss of important evidence or bar your right to relief. At Peter Thompson & Associates, we understand that being injured in a hit and run accident is traumatic. Rest assured that our seasoned attorneys and investigators will thoroughly investigate the accident and identify the liable parties. We can also vastly improve your chances of recovering benefits from your insurance company. Call our office today at 1.800.804.2004 today for a free consultation or contact us online.