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Florida Hit and Run Accidents

A hit and run accident occurs when one vehicle collides with another, and one party flees, or leaves the scene of the incident. A hit and run crash can involve minor damage and injury, or it may involve serious complications and losses. If you were hurt in a hit and run car accident, it is critical to know your rights in these cases.

Hit and Run Accidents Occur Often

Most people know to stop after an accident occurs, ensuring all parties receive information and support as needed before moving on. Yet, this does not always occur. The Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles Department notes that nearly 25% of all crashes result in a hit-and-run case. In 2023, the organization reported that 104,273 hit-and-run crashes occurred in the state. Of those, 271 involved fatalities and 871 serious bodily injuries.

Compensation After a Hit and Run Accident in Florida

A victim in a hit and run accident is owed compensation for the losses they have. The at-fault party is responsible for paying for those damages in most situations. However, in a hit and run case, it may not be possible to know who that party is to seek compensation from. In this situation, the victim and their attorney can move through the following steps:

  • A police report will initially start the process of finding the hit-and-run driver. The police will investigate this on all levels. Your car accident attorney can also do so, ensuring the best possible outcome in determining who caused the incident.
  • Your car insurance may cover the losses you have. If you have uninsured motorist coverage, this may cover the losses you incurred up to the amount of compensation listed on your policy.

If the police determine who is responsible, that person may face criminal charges. However, they also are responsible for your financial losses. At that point, you can file a claim against their insurance company or seek out compensation from a lawsuit filed against that person.

Know the Hit and Run Laws in Florida

Hit and run is illegal under Florida laws. Specifically, if there is damage only to the vehicle or another person’s property, a person who leaves the scene may end up paying a fine and spend up to 60 days in jail for doing so. In situations where there are injuries, the party could be charged with a second or third-degree felony and spend as much as 3 years in jail. If a person dies, that could lead to a first-degree felony charge and up to 30 years in prison.

The at-fault party still has to pay restitution for the damages they cause as well. That means they must pay the victim for any losses incurred.

Call a Florida Car Accident Attorney

Individuals who are involved in a Florida hit and run accident should seek the help of an experienced attorney who can guide them in filing a claim and maximizing their compensation. These are challenging incidents because you may have to try to determine who is at fault to recover enough compensation to pay for your losses. Call the Shapiro | Delgado | Hofmann Law Firm today to schedule a free consultation.