Dealing with a Hit-and-Run Crash in Chicago

Chicago’s bustling streets can sometimes be a challenging environment for motorists. Unfortunately, in these busy streets, hit-and-run accidents are not uncommon occurrences.

As reported by NBC Chicago, the number of hit-and-run crashes in Chicago skyrocketed in 2021. During this time, the city saw the highest number of crashes, deaths, and incapacitating injuries since 2017.

If you find yourself a victim of a hit-and-run crash in Chicago, it’s essential to know how to navigate the legal landscape effectively. Beyond the immediate concerns of safety and collecting evidence, understanding the legal steps you must take can significantly impact the outcome of your case.

Today, we will share some crucial things you must do as a hit-and-run crash victim in Chicago.

Immediate Reporting to Law Enforcement

After experiencing a hit-and-run accident in Chicago, a crucial initial action is to swiftly inform the local police about the incident. According to Illinois law, it is a mandatory requirement to report any traffic accident leading to injury, death, or property damage surpassing $1,500.

When reporting to law enforcement, ensure that you provide them with comprehensive information such as the time and location. Also, include a detailed description of the other vehicle implicated in the incident.

Filing a police report creates an official record of the event, a document that holds significant importance for potential legal proceedings.

Seek Medical Attention and Document Injuries

Regardless of the severity of your injuries, it is imperative to seek prompt medical attention. This step is critical not only for your well-being but also for establishing a legal link between the accident and your injuries.

In the eyes of the law, the medical attention you receive creates a connection that is vital for your case. Your medical records become valuable evidence in supporting your personal injury claim, aiding in establishing the full extent of your injuries and medical expenses. It is essential to diligently follow through with all recommended medical treatments and maintain a comprehensive record of your incurred medical expenses.

Sometimes, unfortunately, such accidents can lead to the victim’s death. Just this month, a pedestrian was killed in a hit-and-run crash on Chicago’s South Side, as reported by FOX 32. The victim suffered trauma to the body and died at the scene. Thus, those lucky enough to survive such accidents should not take it for granted and must seek medical attention urgently.

Identify Witnesses and Gather Information

After a hit-and-run incident, locating witnesses may pose a challenge, yet it is a pivotal step in constructing a robust case. If there were any bystanders or drivers who observed the accident, secure their contact details.

Also, obtain a concise statement detailing their eyewitness account. The testimony of these witnesses plays a crucial role in substantiating your narrative of events and serves as invaluable evidence in legal proceedings.

Furthermore, diligently collect comprehensive information about the accident scene, like photographs of your vehicular damage, the crash site’s location, and road conditions.

Contact Your Insurance Company

Don’t delay informing your insurance company about the hit-and-run occurrence. Give them all the gathered details, such as the police report, witness statements, and photographic evidence. Even in cases where the responsible driver remains unidentified, your insurance company might extend coverage under your uninsured motorist or underinsured motorist policy.

Nevertheless, it is essential to bear in mind that insurance companies operate as businesses, prioritizing the minimization of payouts. Therefore, before accepting any settlement offers, consult with an attorney to ensure you receive fair compensation for your situation.

Consult with an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney

Navigating the legal complexities of a car accident like a hit-and-run case can be challenging without the assistance of a knowledgeable attorney. Time is of the essence in hit-and-run cases, so don’t delay in seeking legal representation from a personal injury attorney in Chicago, IL. Personal injury lawyers experienced in handling hit-and-run cases can guide you through the legal process and advocate on your behalf.

Personal injury attorneys can also assist in dealing with insurance companies. According to TorHoerman Law, they can ensure that you receive fair compensation for your injuries, property damage, and other losses. As long as you work with the right lawyers or law firms, your personal injury claims will hopefully work out in your favor.

Cooperate with Law Enforcement Investigations

Law enforcement agencies will conduct their own investigations to identify and apprehend the at-fault driver in a hit-and-run case. Cooperate fully with these investigations, providing any additional information or assistance they may require.

Be vigilant in following up with the police to stay informed about the progress of their efforts. Your cooperation can play a vital role in bringing the responsible party to justice. It also demonstrates your commitment to seeking a resolution within the bounds of the law.

The police will also call for public assistance regarding such investigations. As reported by Block Club Chicago, the police did something similar earlier this year. The police identified a white Nissan Murano involved in a hit-and-run case in Chicago. It then described the car’s details and asked the public for any information on it to be reported to the Major Accident Investigation Unit.

Understand the Statute of Limitations

In Illinois, there exists a statute of limitations determining the period within which you must file a personal injury lawsuit. Generally, you are afforded a two-year window from the date of the accident to commence legal proceedings.

Neglecting to initiate a lawsuit within this stipulated time frame may lead to the forfeiture of your right to pursue compensation for your injuries. You must stay informed about this limitation and seek guidance from your attorney. This will guarantee that all requisite legal actions are undertaken within the prescribed time frame.

In conclusion, being a victim of a hit-and-run crash is undoubtedly a challenging experience. However, understanding and taking the appropriate legal steps can significantly impact the outcome of your case.

From prompt reporting to consulting with an attorney, each step plays a crucial role in ensuring that your rights are protected. Only when all this is ensured can you receive fair compensation for your losses. By navigating the legal landscape with care, you can increase your chances of achieving a favorable resolution to your hit-and-run case.

Leave a Comment