Numerous rules apply in a motor vehicle collision scenario in West Virginia. The rule that requires the most immediate application after a crash is the reporting requirements imposed by West Virginia law. Any time a crash leads to someone getting hurt or causes at least $1,000 in property damage, the people involved have a statutory requirement to notify law enforcement and put together an official crash report.
Not everyone follows this rule. Some people speed off from the scene of a crash, often in hopes of avoiding responsibility. The person who caused the wreck might leave the scene, resulting in another party worrying about what they should do next. The following is what generally transpires after a hit-and-run collision in West Virginia.
The police must investigate
Any chance of justice will come from law enforcement efforts after the crash. There could be traffic or security camera footage that could help the officers investigating the collision identify the other motorists involved. There could be witnesses whose statements could help identify the driver who caused the crash and then fled. Even repair shop records could play a role in helping to locate the party at fault for the crash. Those affected by a hit-and-run collision often need the help of someone advocating for them to ensure that the state makes locating the party at fault a priority.
Insurance claims and lawsuits are possible
Provided that the police can track down the motorist who caused the crash and then fled the scene of the collision, it may be possible for those affected by a hit-and-run collision to seek compensation through traditional meetings. An insurance claim or a personal injury lawsuit could be an option after successfully identifying the driver at fault for a crash.
Those who cannot locate the driver who caused the collision may need to use their own uninsured motorist coverage or risk having no help covering the cost generated by the wreck. It can be very challenging for someone already coping with injuries to also communicate with law enforcement professionals, negotiate with insurance companies or prepare for civil court.
Knowing what to expect and seeking legal guidance accordingly can make a big difference for those who have recently been involved in a hit-and-run collision in West Virginia.