Hit & Run Accident Attorney in STL
Approximately 1,500 people die every year in hit-and-run accidents. Often, hit-and-run accidents involve multiple forms of negligence, such as drunk driving, driver fatigue, and other dangerous driving practices that can cause or contribute to catastrophic injuries or in severe cases, death.
If you or someone you love has suffered harm or losses in a hit-and-run accident, you could recover partial or total compensation for damages by filing a Missouri hit-and-run accident claim. One of the biggest influences on whether or not a settlement recovers partial or total compensation is if an experienced attorney is negotiating on behalf of a victim’s case.
Often, hit-and-run accident claims in Missouri have higher odds of recovering full compensation when represented by an experienced attorney. Our STL car accident lawyers in St. Louis are aggressive when fighting for clients’ cases and are committed to recovering the maximum settlements from the at-fault driver’s insurance company.
Common Causes of Hit & Run Accidents
Roughly 58% of hit and run fatalities are attributed to pedestrians.
However, there are many different reasons why a reckless driver might flee the scene of an accident, including:
- Driving without a license: If a Missouri driver is caught driving without a valid driver’s license, consequences include a fine between $500-$10,000 depending on the severity of the accident and the individual’s driving record
- Not carrying insurance: Missouri’s requirements for minimum coverage insurance include $25,000/person for bodily injury, $50,000/accident for bodily injury, and $25,000/accident for property damage in an accident; if a driver is caught driving without the required insurance coverage, consequences include up to a $400 fine and suspension or revocation of your license for up to a year in situations involving multiple offenses
- Driving on a suspended or revoked license: Up to a $10,000 fine and 4 years in jail for drivers with multiple violations on their record incurred in the last ten years
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol: Consequences for driving under the influence in Missouri include suspension or revocation of driving privileges, fines, and in severe cases, jail time
In addition to the consequences listed above for violation of Missouri driving laws, if a driver is found at-fault in a hit-and-run accident, penalties for hit-and-runs accidents under Missouri’s Statute of Limitations (§577.060) include a class A misdemeanor, class E felony, or class D felony depending on the circumstances of the accident, and fines equal to the severity of the accident and the other driver’s harm and losses.
To schedule your free case review, call our St. Louis hit and run accident attorneys at (314) 208-2808.
Hitting & Running is a Crime
Missouri Statutes Section 577.060 provides punishment for “leaving the scene of an accident” anytime an operator of a vehicle is “involved in an accident resulting in injury or death.” That means that all drivers need to stay at the scene even if they think that the accident was somebody else’s fault. Minor hit and runs are generally treated as “Class A” misdemeanors under Missouri Statutes Section 558.011. That means a hit-and-run driver is subject to a $2,000 fine or a prison term of up to one year. If the hit-and-run driver causes physical injury or damage in excess of one thousand dollars, then the crime will be a “Class E” felony, which comes with a possible jail sentence of up to four years. It does not take much to cause damages of $1,000, so hitting and running will often be a felony.
Uninsured Motorist Reporting
Missouri has a special uninsured motorist reporting requirement that says that the State must be notified of any uninsured accidents involving injury, death, or more than $500 in damages. The simple reality is that hit-and-run drivers often run because they are uninsured. Missouri uses reports of uninsured drivers to suspend the driver’s license of the uninsured motorist until damages from the crash are paid. So reporting an uninsured driver can take that dangerous person off the road while increasing the chances that he or she will pay damages to anyone he or she injured.
Hit & Run Accident Lawsuits in Missouri
If you suffered physical injuries or property damage in a hit-and-run accident, it’s essential to stay calm, call the police, and gather as much evidence as possible from the scene of the accident. Even if the at-fault driver fled the scene, you could still recover damages for your harm and losses. After providing a detailed account of what happened in the accident, a description of the other driver, vehicle, and other available evidence, a police investigation will be conducted of the accident. Typically, a police investigation can track down the at-fault driver in the accident, or at the very least, offer options on other ways to recover compensation for damages.
Generally, if the at-fault driver isn’t found, most insurance policies include coverage for hit-and-run accidents. Hiring a St. Louis hit and run accident lawyer to represent your case ensures that you have someone on your side that can negotiate a fair settlement for your claim. If your policy doesn’t offer hit-and-run accident coverage, your experienced attorney can assess your case and determine other avenues for getting compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, property damage, and other expenses included in your claim.
Types of Car Accidents
- Autonomous Vehicle Accidents
- Bad Weather Auto Accidents
- Brake Malfunction Accidents
- Chain-Reaction Car Accident
- Distracted Driving Accident
- Elderly Driver Auto Accident
- Failure to Yield Auto Accident
- Fender Bender Accidents
- Head-On Collisions
- Hit & Runs
- Parking Lot Accidents
- Rear-End Accidents
- Rental Car Accidents
- Road Construction Accidents
- Side Impacts
- Texting & Driving
- Tire Blowouts
- Underinsured Motorists
- Uninsured Motorists
- Whiplash Auto Accidents
- Wrong-Way Crashes
Finding the Runner
The police have limited resources, and finding a hit-and-run driver may not always be at the top of their priority list. As a result, tracking down a runner to hold him or her responsible for the damage caused is not always easy. A good lawyer will have connections to top-notch private investigators that can pick up where the police left off on their investigation and carry it forward. An investigator may have more time than the police to ask nearby businesses if they have surveillance cameras that may have recorded the vehicle, or to find witnesses that may be able to offer information that can lead to obtaining a license plate number.
Call Our Firm Today
If you or someone you love has been the victim of a hit-and-run accident and suffered head injuries, internal bleeding, loss of coordination, or other catastrophic injuries as result, The Dixon Injury Firm had STL personal injury lawyers available 24/7 to discuss your rights to compensation.
Christopher Dixon has been nationally recognized as a “Top 100 Trial Lawyer” by the National Trial Lawyers Association, and to date, Chris’ legal counsel has recovered over $35,000,000 in settlements and recoveries for countless injury claims in Missouri and Illinois.
The Dixon Injury Firm
9666 Olive Blvd #202,
St. Louis, MO 63132