What to Do After a Hit-and-Run in New Mexico
The law requires everyone involved in a car accident to remain at the scene and determine if anyone needs medical attention. However, at-fault drivers could disregard this requirement for several reasons.
They might have a warrant for their arrest, are intoxicated, or are driving uninsured and cannot cover the victim’s damages. Whatever the case, knowing what to do after a hit-and-run accident could help you get the compensation you need to cover your medical bills and car repairs.
Remain at the Scene Until Help Arrives
After a hit-and-run, you might feel the need to chase after the car that hit you. This is not a good idea for several reasons. First of all, New Mexico Law states that any driver involved in an accident causing injury or death must immediately stop their vehicle and remain at the scene or return to the scene and provide their:
- Registration number of the vehicle they are driving
- Driver’s license
Drivers involved in car accidents are also required to render aid to anyone injured. Leaving the scene could put you in legal trouble and, in turn, hurt your compensation claim. You also shouldn’t follow the at-fault driver because you could put yourself in unnecessary danger.
You don’t know what the other driver is capable of, and you might have severe injuries that require immediate medical attention. It’s best to stay where you are and call 911 to report your accident.
Get Medical Attention Immediately
You might not feel the full effects of your accident until hours after the collision or even the next day. For this reason, you should always get checked out by a doctor to avoid worsening your injuries. Furthermore, going to the hospital ensures that you receive an official medical evaluation, which could prove that your crash resulted in significant injuries.
Note the Physical Description of the Other Driver’s Car
Accidents happen fast, and they range in severity. Write down any details you can recall right after the accident if you can. Record the following information after your crash:
- The car’s make/model
- The car’s color
- The license plate number
- The location the accident occurred, such as the street or highway
- A physical description of the driver
You may not remember all this information; however, no detail is too minor and could help locate the driver. You should also take photos and videos of the accident scene and damage to your vehicle.
If anyone else witnessed the accident, collect their contact information. Their testimony could provide more details about the car’s physical appearance.
Report Your Accident to the Police
If you haven’t done so, contact the police to report the accident. Once the police arrive, they will begin investigating the accident and creating their report, which includes any information you can recall regarding the hit-and-run driver.
Your police report will also include the date the accident occurred, the names of everyone involved in the accident, how the accident happened, and where it took place. An officer’s police report could aid in the insurance claim process to ensure you get the necessary compensation.
How to Recover from a Hit-and-Run Accident?
You have a few options to recover compensation after a hit-and-run accident. If police successfully identify the at-fault driver who hit you, your first option could be to file a personal injury claim against the at-fault party. However, this may not always be the case. If police cannot find the at-fault driver, you might have to file a claim with your own insurance company.
The following types of auto insurance could cover your hit-and-run accident damages:
- Collision Coverage – This type of coverage helps to repair or replace your car, regardless of fault
- Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage – Hit-and-run accidents are treated as if you were in an accident with an uninsured driver. This insurance covers the cost of medical treatment and car repairs.
Let the Law Giant Fight for Your Compensation
You have options when involved in a hit-and-run accident, even if police cannot identify the driver who hit you. Let the Law Giant help you fight for the compensation you need to recover from your injuries.
Call Begum & Cowen Injury & Accident Lawyers to schedule a free consultation. Contact us at 505-900-0000 today.