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Seattle Hit-and-Run Accident Attorney
After a car accident, we have a responsibility to stop, exchange information with the other people involved, and call law enforcement and emergency medical services to the scene. Failure to do so is a serious crime known as a hit-and-run — and if you are the victim of a hit-and-run accident, you need legal representation to help you identify the at-fault driver and seek the compensation you need to recover.
In these situations, Colburn Law can help. Our firm has significant experience assisting residents of Seattle and the surrounding areas investigate and file their hit-and-run claims, helping our former clients continue on the road to recovery.
- Our firm operates on a contingency fee basis for maximum affordability. You will not pay legal fees unless we collect a settlement on your behalf.
- Crafting a compelling hit-and-run case requires a great deal of resources. Our firm will utilize our wide network of expert witnesses and other resources to launch a full-scale investigation into your claim.
- At Colburn Law, we combine the resources and authority of a large firm with the personalized attention and open communication of a small firm. We will inform you of all the important updates in your case and help you prepare for each step.
What Should You Do If You Are in a Hit-and-Run Accident?
If you are in a hit-and-run accident, the moments immediately after the collision are the most crucial. Take these steps to seek help and preserve as much evidence as possible.
- Call 911 as soon as possible. This will bring law enforcement and medical attention to the scene, and you can make a report to the police. Ask for the officer’s name and badge number so you can contact him or her on a later date.
- If you are able, try to write down as much as you can remember about the accident, the other vehicle, and its driver. Try and recall the physical description of the driver, the make, model, and color of the vehicle, and the exact date and time the accident occurred. If you remember the license plate number, or even a portion of it, write it down before you forget.
- If there are witnesses at the scene, ask for their contact information and if they have any additional information about the accident you may have not witnessed.
- Take pictures of the accident scene, including the surrounding area and any posted traffic signs.
- Seek medical attention as soon as possible and save every document you receive from your doctor.
- Contact a Seattle hit-and-run attorney as soon as possible to discuss your legal options and begin filing your claim.
For more information: Hit & Run Laws in Washington State
When Should You File Your Claim?
Washington imposes a statute of limitations on all lawsuits filed in civil court. A statute of limitations is a law that sets a deadline by which you must file your claim, or the court will refuse to hear your case. Statutes of limitations also ensure that both witnesses and evidence are available to help you fairly present your case to the court.
In Washington, you have three years from the date of your hit-and-run accident to file your lawsuit. If you are filing an insurance claim, the time period you have to file may be much shorter than the state’s deadline. It is important to contact an attorney as soon as possible following your accident to ensure that you meet these deadlines.
What Kind of Compensation Is Available in a Hit-and-Run Claim?
In a hit-and-run accident case, the compensation you collect helps ensure that you recover from the physical, financial, and emotional losses you sustained due to the accident. You can recover two main types of damages through a lawsuit or insurance claim.
- Economic damages refer to the out-of-pocket costs you suffered due to the accident. These can include past and future medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, and disability accommodations.
- Non-economic damages refer to the emotional, intangible damages that are difficult to quantify. These may include pain and suffering, depression and anxiety, emotional distress, and loss of quality of life.
Can You Collect Compensation If the Driver Is Never Caught?
Washington is a fault insurance state, which means that the at-fault driver’s insurance is responsible for paying for your damages after an accident. Unfortunately, you cannot make a claim against a hit-and-run driver if you never identify him or her.
However, you may have uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage under your own insurance policy that can provide compensation for your injuries. Always contact an attorney about your legal options before speaking to an insurance adjuster.
Contact Colburn Law Today
Our firm has years of experience assisting Seattle residents with numerous car accident claims, including cases involving hit-and-runs. We will work closely with you to determine your optimal path toward maximum compensation, allowing you to recover the funds you need to recover.
Contact us today to schedule your free consultation and to plan your next steps.