I'm the victim of a hit and run accident, should I get a lawyer? 73 Answers as of June 28, 2013

I'm the victim of a hit and run accident that caused $15k in damages. I was taken to the ER with back pain. Should I obtain a lawyer?

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Law Offices of Ronald A. Steinberg & Associates | Ronald A. Steinberg, BA, MA, JD
Yes!!!
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 8/26/2012
Stephens Gourley & Bywater | David A. Stephens
You should retain an attorney if you can find out who hit and ran, or if you have uninsured motorist coverage on your vehicle.
Answer Applies to: Nevada
Replied: 8/26/2012
The Law Offices of Paul A. Samakow, P.C.
The Law Offices of Paul A. Samakow, P.C. | Paul A. Samakow
Yes, get an attorney. You will end up with more money, even after the attorney's fee is taken out.
Answer Applies to: Virginia
Replied: 8/20/2012
Klisz Law Office, PLLC
Klisz Law Office, PLLC | Timothy J. Klisz
Yes. You will be up against a lawyer, so you need to even the playing field.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 8/20/2012
Slotnick & Schwartz
Slotnick & Schwartz | Leonard T. Schwartz
Yes.
Answer Applies to: New Jersey
Replied: 5/24/2013
    Lombardi Law Firm
    Lombardi Law Firm | Steve Lombardi
    Well, did you have insurance? Is there any possibility of proving who the H&R driver is? Yes, get a lawyer.
    Answer Applies to: Iowa
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Ford, Howard & Cornett, P.C. | Bradley Cornett
    Do you have car insurance with uninsured motorist (UM) coverage? If so, it may be appropriate for you to pursue a claim. Consult with a reputable attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Conway Law Pllc.
    Conway Law Pllc. | B. L. Conway
    Your may have the right to pursue A John Doe Claim.
    Answer Applies to: Virginia
    Replied: 6/26/2013
    Law Office of Pho Ethan Tran PLLC
    Law Office of Pho Ethan Tran PLLC | Pho Ethan Tran
    Yes.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 5/24/2013
    R. D. Kelly Law Firm, P.L.L.C.
    R. D. Kelly Law Firm, P.L.L.C. | Robert Kelly
    The problem with a hit-and-run can be finding somebody to sue. If you had Uninsured Motorist protection (UIM) on your own policy, you can probably get compensation from your own insurance company.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Victor Varga | Victor Varga
    You should if you do not think that the other party/insurance company is making you a fair offer. As you likely do not have experience dealing with this type of situation, you should have an attorney with experience assist.
    Answer Applies to: Maryland
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Law Office of Melvin Franke | Melvin Franke
    Yes.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 5/24/2013
    Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A.
    Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A. | Paul L. Whitfield
    Who do you intend to sue? Do you have uninsured coverage on your own policy? Do you know what this type coverage is? If you do have such coverage (call your agent if you don't know) you have a good claim. If you don't understand the concept but think you should be c overed see a lawyer.
    Answer Applies to: North Carolina
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Kelaher Law Offices, P.A.
    Kelaher Law Offices, P.A. | James P Kelaher
    It never hurts to get a good, competent lawyer. Look for a lawyer who limits his/her practice to personal injury (not a general practitioner) and who is a board certified civil trial lawyer (that means they have had to try a lot of cases). First thing you want to do is look at your declarations sheet of your car insurance policy to see if you have uninsured motorist insurance, since if you do your own insurance company will stand in the shoes of the "phantom motorist" (what a hit & run driver is called).
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Robinette Legal Group, PLLC
    Robinette Legal Group, PLLC | Jeffery Robinette
    You should take advantage of the free consultation that most personal injury lawyers offer and allow the lawyer to look at the facts of your case and evaluate whether or not you have a right to compensation from your own car insurance.
    Answer Applies to: West Virginia
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Ezim Law Firm | Dean Esposito
    Yes, studies conducted by various insurance companies indicate that you will receive 2 to 3 times more with an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Louisiana
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Darrell B. Reynolds, P.C. | Darrell B. Reynolds
    You do need an attorney in this matter. Insurance companies do not treat people fair and if you do not have an attorney they will do the same to you under the circumstances.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Law Office of Ronald G. Draper | Ronald G. Draper
    You should consult a lawyer to determine what your vehicles policy can provide to you for your losses.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Craig Kelley & Faultless
    Craig Kelley & Faultless | David W. Craig
    Yes you should obtain an attorney. I would recommend that you hire an injury attorney. There are all kinds of lawyers. Some handle real estate matters. Some handle criminal matters. Others handle family law issues. You even have general practitoners who handle all types of areas of the law. However I think you would be best served by an attorney who handles only injury cases. I think that there is an advantage to have an attorney who handles these type of cases day in and day out. That lawyer should have more experience and that experience should result in you getting a better result. The fact that you have been a victim once is bad enough but don't be a victim a second time by not getting a good injury attorney to fully investigate your claim.
    Answer Applies to: Indiana
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Gonzalez & Cartwright, P.A.
    Gonzalez & Cartwright, P.A. | Charles Cartwright
    Yes.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 5/24/2013
    Law Office of James J. Rosenberger | James Joseph Rosenberger
    The decision to obtain legal help is dependent upon whether you feel you can handle the situation yourself or whether legal advice is necessary. Chances are, you've never handled a similar serious situation and I would advise contacting an attorney for some help.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Graves Law Firm
    Graves Law Firm | Steve Graves
    Yes, particularly if an injury lawyer will take your case on contingency. If you have or are a named insured on an auto policy that provides Uninsured Motorist coverage, you have a good chance of getting a recovery. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Timiney Law Firm
    Timiney Law Firm | Leigh Anne Timiney
    If you are aware of the identity of the driver who hit you, you would probably be best served by contacting an attorney specializing in personal injury and seeking a consultation. In that situation, you would be able to establish a claim for your personal injuries with the automobile insurance carrier for the driver. Unfortunately, if you are not sure of the identity of who hit you, you likely do not need an attorney because you do not have a party that you can seek compensation against.
    Answer Applies to: Arizona
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Walpole Law | Robert J. Walpole
    If you do not know who the other driver was, unless you have uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage (UM) on your own policy, I do not know who you would be able to sue for damages. If you were in someone else's car, you should determine whehter that car had UM coverage.
    Answer Applies to: Oklahoma
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Koning & Jilek, P.C.
    Koning & Jilek, P.C. | Jonathan Neal Jilek
    Yes.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 5/24/2013
    The Phillips Law Firm
    The Phillips Law Firm | Joseph J Ganz
    YES you should engage a lawyer to assist you.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Law Office of Stuart M. Nachbar, P.C.
    Law Office of Stuart M. Nachbar, P.C. | Stuart M. Nachbar
    Get to a doctor that you trust first, then get the Police Report, then call a personal injury attorney in your area. You may be able to make a claim against your own insurance for your injuries under the UM/UIM part of your policy.
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Steven Harrell, Attorney at Law | Waymon Steven Harrell
    Yes, you will need to employ a lawyer, and maybe serve your Uninsured Motorist carrier with a copy of any lawsuit you would file against the John Doe driver.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    WARM SPRINGS LAW GROUP | Elliott D. Yug
    Yes, get an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 5/28/2013
    Donaldson & Knigge, LLC
    Donaldson & Knigge, LLC | Lisa Donaldson
    Yes. You should definitely seek the assistance of a lawyer. You have a tricky road ahead in terms of medical bills and police reports and dealing with damage to yourself and your vehicle. An attorney can assist you in negotiating your way. In addition, he or she may be able to find a way for you to locate the other party and/or to be compensated for your injuries.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Christensen Corbett & Pankratz
    Christensen Corbett & Pankratz | Craig L. Pankratz
    Your rights are always better protected when you have an attorney, and you should at least consult with one before taking legal action.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Matthew D Kaplan LLC
    Matthew D Kaplan LLC | Matthew D Kaplan
    If you were hurt and need to continue care, you should contact an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Adler Law Group, LLC
    Adler Law Group, LLC | Lawrence Adler
    Yes.
    Answer Applies to: Connecticut
    Replied: 5/24/2013
    Jules D'Alessandro | Jules D'Alessandro
    Yes. Personal injury claims have become far too difficult to pursue without a lawyer. You cannot trust the insurance companies to ever do the right thing or be fair with you.
    Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Garruto & Calabria, LLC
    Garruto & Calabria, LLC | Andrew F. Garruto
    Yes, and soon so that you have representation before your insurance company takes your statement. Your own insurance company is your adversary, not your friend.
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    David F. Stoddard
    David F. Stoddard | David F. Stoddard
    It depends on how severe your injury is. You can file your damages claim on you uninsured motorist coverage. If you injury is minor, you may be able to settle it satisfactorily yourself. If you injuries are permanent, you should probably retain an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: South Carolina
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    The Law Offices of Frederick V. Livingston
    The Law Offices of Frederick V. Livingston | Frederick V. Livingston
    Absolutely, if that much damage was caused to your vehicle, you may have lingering issues in your back, you should definitely go to an attorney and a doctor to see the extent of your damage to your back. Also, if your vehicle was insured you may have a uninsured motorist clause that will cover the damages you've sustained.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Harris Personal Injury Lawyer
    Harris Personal Injury Lawyer | Ryan D. Harris
    Yes. You should definitely contact a qualified and experienced personal injury attorney immediately to ensure your rights are protected.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Law Office of Gregory Crain | Gregory Crain
    Only if you find the culprit.
    Answer Applies to: Arkansas
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Law Office of Peacock & Le Beau | Jeffery O. Le Beau
    The easy answer is that it is almost always better to have a lawyer when dealing with insurance companies. If you can not find the other driver then the only available recovery would be uninsured motorist coverage if you have it on your insurance policy.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Dennis P. Mikko Attorney at Law | Dennis P. Mikko
    If the $15k in damages is to your vehicle, since Michigan is a no-fault state, the claim would be to your insurance company. As for personal injuries, unless the other driver can be identified, it would be difficult to file a claim. You may wish to determine if your policy provides any coverage for instances like this. Having it reviewed by an attorney may be a good thing.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Law Office of Marc June
    Law Office of Marc June | Marc June
    You may have a UIM claim and should consult a lawyer.
    Answer Applies to: Alaska
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Selik Law Offices
    Selik Law Offices | JOEL SELIK
    Yes. Do you have your own auto insurance? Did the find the driver? An attorney can help you with these things and getting compensation.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Magnuson Lowell P.S.
    Magnuson Lowell P.S. | Richard S. Lowell
    Probably yes. You will want your lawyer to help develop a claim on your behalf - that would be brought either against the hit and run driver (if the person is known and they had insurance), or against your own insurance company (assuming you have underinsured motorist coverage).
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Lapin Law Offices
    Lapin Law Offices | Jeffrey Lapin
    It is hard to answer whether you should retain a lawyer for your accident without more information. Some questions I would need answers to include: Do you know who the driver of the vehicle is? Is the driver insured? How much insurance does he or she have? Do you have a policy of motor vehicle insurance? What is your case worth? If you know who the driver is and his or her insurance company is accepting liability, you might not need an attorney. However, if the driver only has minimal limits, which in Nebraska would be $25,000.00, and your case is worth more, you would have an Underinsured Motorist claim as well as the claim against the driver. There are special requirements you have to follow with regard to an underinsured motorist claim. If you do not follow them, you lose your rights to collect money under your underinsured motorist coverage. If you do not know who the driver is, you would have an Uninsured Motorist claim against your company. These claims generally work the same as those against the other driver with a couple of exceptions. I would suggest at least consulting with a personal injury attorney. Most offer a free consultation so it will not cost you anything to learn more about your rights and options.
    Answer Applies to: Nebraska
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    The Lucky Law Firm, PLC
    The Lucky Law Firm, PLC | Robert Morrison Lucky
    Yes, you should contact an attorney. There may be several options left for you to have some type of recovery for your damages.
    Answer Applies to: Louisiana
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Burnett Evans Banks
    Burnett Evans Banks | Paul Evans
    If you sustained $15,000.00 in medical bills related to your person (not including damage to your vehicle), then you would be well-advised to speak with an qualified injury lawyer about your case, your expectations and prospects for recovery.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Joel H. Schwartz, P.C.
    Joel H. Schwartz, P.C. | Steven A. Schwartz
    Hit and run accidents can be tricky, as you no longer have an "at fault" party to go after. However, there are other avenues to pursue to receive compensation for your pain and suffering, as well as other damages. I strongly suggest you contact an experienced personal injury attorney for a free consultation.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Bernard Huff, Attorney/Mediator
    Bernard Huff, Attorney/Mediator | Bernard Huff
    Yes you should at least consult with a plaintiff's personal injury lawyer later for advice and direction. First, effort should be made to locate the hit and run driver so that you can have someone from whom you can seek relief.
    Answer Applies to: Indiana
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Law Office of Ronald Arthur Lowry
    Law Office of Ronald Arthur Lowry | Ronald Arthur Lowry
    Yes, as soon as possible. Even if you do not know the identity of the driver you may be able to make a claim under the Uninsured Motorist coverage of your auto policy, if you have that coverage.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Dressler & Peters, LLC | John Wagener
    If you believe that you insurance company is being unfair in handling your uninsured motorist claim, then you should retain an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 8/20/2012
    Law Office of Christopher F. Earley
    Law Office of Christopher F. Earley | Christopher Earley
    Sounds like an uninsured motorist claim.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 6/28/2013
    Gregory Casale Attorney at Law
    Gregory Casale Attorney at Law | Gregory Casale
    If you have been injured you should seek an attorney to represent you. If the injuries are only sift tissue; no broken bones, scarring cuts, etc. and you were treated and released from the hospital the same day, it is not that great of a case, but you should pursue it nonetheless.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 8/20/2012
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