If I was the victim in a hit and run case, can I sue for personal injuries in Oregon? 2 Answers as of February 15, 2011

If I was the victim in a hit and run that is being pursued by the police, can I sue for personal injury damages as well? My car was side-swiped and the driver drover off but witnesses were able to describe the vehicle and the driver was apprehended.

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Harris Law Firm
Harris Law Firm | Paul Vames
You don't say whether you actually were injured in this situation; but let's assume you were.

(1) If, at the time of this incident, you were driving a vehicle in Oregon which was insured in Oregon, your medical bills and at least a portion of your lost earnings (both subject to time and policy limits) will be paid by your own insurer under your Personal Injury Protection coverage. You can open a claim with your agent or with your insurer's claims department.

(2) If the hit-and-run driver was indeed apprehended as you say, then yes, you can sue him or her for your personal injuries - this would include both economic and non-economic damages. If you intend to pursue the hit-and-run driver, make sure you place the hit-and-run driver and his insurer on notice of your claim as soon as you can.

(3) If the hit-and-run driver was uninsured, you can bring a claim under your own insurance policy under your Uninsured Motorist coverage, assuming you or the owner of the vehicle you were driving purchased such coverage. Dealing with insurers in situations like this can be very confusing if one does not have experience and education in these matters. Your time for bringing a lawsuit is also limited. If you believe your injuries are sufficient to warrant compensation, I suggest you contact a qualified personal injury attorney.
Answer Applies to: Oregon
Replied: 2/15/2011
Law Office of Travis Prestwich, PC
Law Office of Travis Prestwich, PC | Travis Prestwich
Yes. You can either pursue the hit-and-run driver (assuming the police locate him) or, your insurance policy likely has coverage to protect you and pay compensation under these circumstances. The insurance company probably has some very specific requirements with which you will need to comply in order to qualify for this coverage if you cannot locate the hit-and-run driver or he has no insurance. For this reason, it is strongly recommended that you contact an attorney right away to protect your interests.
Answer Applies to: Oregon
Replied: 2/15/2011
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