Regardless of the state you live in, a hit-and-run is a serious matter. You might be charged with a crime or felony if a hit-and-run results in injury or death. In states like Georgia, it’s a crime not to stop or return to provide your information, for instance. You might face the following penalties, depending on the severity of your infraction;
- Property damage: Misdemeanor and a $300 to $1,000 fine per violation
- Death: A felony charge including imprisonment of two to five years
- Injury: A $300 to $1,000 fine and possible imprisonment for one year
How a Hit-and-Run Can Affect Your Car Insurance Rate
It’s worth mentioning that car insurers set insurance premiums based on the driving habits of the person. If you’re a safe driver, you’re likely to get lower premiums. However, if you cause a car crash and leave the scene, it can be more dangerous. In such cases, you’re considered more reckless and involved in serious accidents.
These high-risk drivers pay more for their premiums. If you’re involved in a hit-and-run, your insurer may charge premiums that are almost double the amount what standard drivers pay for insurance coverage. Take a look at this comparison of insurance rates highlighting before and after a hit-and-run.
|Before a Hit-and-Run
|After a Hit-and-Run
Stop the Car
It is crucial to stop the car immediately after a hit-and-run to check if you’ve injured anyone or he/she needs help. Remember that the safety of an injured person should be your foremost priority.
Call 911 for help or an ambulance if you have injured a person, even if the damage or injury is minimal. Only a medical professional can determine the seriousness of the injury.
Contact Your Insurance Company
Once you ensure that the injured party is medically attended to or safe, call your insurer and give a summary of the incident. Your insurance company will cover the costs depending on what coverage type you have. Check with your provider if you’re unsure of your coverage.
Does an Insurance Company Cover a Hit-and-Run?
In general, full coverage auto insurance is one of the best types of insurance in hit-and-run cases. Minimum car insurance provides liability coverage to pay for third-party expenses and injuries. Besides this, full coverage includes collision coverage to pay for the damages to your car even if the crash was your fault.
However, if you’re a victim of a hit-and-run accident, uninsured motorist coverage can cover your expenses if you’re unable to find who struck your vehicle.
Overall, your car’s minimum insurance policy doesn’t cover your car repairs and medical expenses after a hit-and-run. Your insurer may increase your insurance rates significantly if you’re involved in a hit-and-run. Thus, you must find the best ways to prevent these situations with the steps above.