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What to Do If You’re Injured in a Hit-and-Run

Vancouver is inarguably one of the most beautiful places on Earth – but it can also be a dangerous one if you’re not careful, particularly in terms of hit-and-run auto accidents. There was an annual average of 6,100 hit-and-run crashes in Vancouver during the five years between 2009 and 2014, resulting in an average of 240 injuries per year over the same time period of time, and four total fatalities.

Unfortunately, these types of situations in an area as desirable as Vancouver are a lot more common than one might think.

If you do happen to become the victim of a hit-and-run auto accident situation in or around the Vancouver region, there are a number of important steps that you should take next.

The Immediate Aftermath

Because you’ve been the victim of a hit-and-run as opposed to a traditional auto accident, ICBC requires you to make a “reasonable effort” to determine the identity of the driver who hit you to protect your right to file an insurance claim. These types of efforts can include but are not limited to things like:

  • Talking to any and all witnesses at the seen, including people who live on the street you were hit on or who operate nearby businesses, in an effort to collect information.
  • Obtaining the contact information of any witnesses who may be able to help.
  • Taking out an advertisement in your local Vancouver newspaper in an effort to get the driver to come forward.
  • Reporting the hit-and-run accident to the police.
  • Providing written notice to ICBC as soon after the hit-and-run occurs as possible.

In terms of a hit-and-run, ICBC will generally always deny your claim involving an unknown driver on the basis that you cannot prove the accident actually occurred. Taking these “reasonable steps” helps you to prove that it DID occur, allowing your claim to proceed.

Consult Legal Services Right Away

Because the process of filing an insurance claim with ICBC after a hit-and-run is a complicated run, it is possible that you still may run into issues. ICBC may further deny your claim on the basis that you had an opportunity to obtain the contact information of the driver but failed to do so – even if you and your witnesses know that this is not the case.

In the event that you find yourself in this type of situation, you’ll likely want to consult the help of legal professionals. Not only will they be able to push the issue further than you could on your own, but they’ll be able to make sure that you’ve taken any and all appropriate steps along the way. A lawyer will also be able to help you obtain money for any physical injuries or other traumas that you may have received.

Becker, Lavin & Wessler

Being injured in a hit-and-run in Vancouver can be a devastating experience for anyone, but it’s important for you to realize that this is one road you don’t have to travel alone. As specialists in cases related to both auto accident injuries and ICBC claims, we’re prepared to leverage the full power of our 50+ years of experience to your advantage. Contact our team at Becker, Lavin & Wessler today to get the help you need when you need it the most.

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