VII. What Happens If The Wreck Was a Hit and Run?
Hit and run auto/truck collisions are all too common around the metropolitan Atlanta area and beyond. Often, at the at-fault driver is intoxicated or otherwise distracted by a cell phone, a collision occurs, and the driver flees the scene fearing police action. These at-fault, reckless drivers are usually caught soon after the collision or in the subsequent days, having been tracked down by their car’s license plate number or a description of the vehicle. In Georgia, hit and run collisions give rise to punitive damages. Why? Punitive damages are awarded to punish the wrongdoer and also to deter future similar conduct by others in society.
If the hit and run driver is not caught, your own insurance may be able to step in and provide coverage. You may have noticed the “UM” or “Uninsured Motorist” portion of your automobile insurance policy. This coverage can be put into place in order to provide insurance in situations where the at-fault driver cannot be located, has no insurance, or does not have enough insurance to cover your injuries and medical bills. The good news is that your premium is generally not increased as a result of using your UM coverage because the need for such coverage is not brought on by any negligence or fault on your part. The best practice is to buy as much UM coverage as possible—it is not expensive and can be quite valuable when needed. Many drivers in Georgia have low insurance limits and some drive illegally with no insurance. If a serious collision occurs, substantial medical bills often follow. Consequently, it is best to ensure that you have some source of money from which to cover wreck-related expenses.
Atlanta, GA 30338
Phone: (404) 869-1580