A hit and run accident happens when a motorist hits another vehicle or a pedestrian and then immediately leaves without stopping to provide any aid or give the victim their contact and insurance information. Law enforcement officials take these accidents very seriously, and the state hands out severe penalties when someone is convicted of this crime.
The Eberst Law Firm will fight hard for your rights if you’ve suffered a severe injury or tragically lost a loved one in a hit and run accident. We’ll investigate to determine who was to blame and then pursue them for the compensation you deserve. If you would like to schedule a free review of your case, please don’t hesitate to contact us online or give us a call at 1-888-CALL-JON.
The Aaron Cohen Life Protection Act
In 2014, Florida legislators signed the Aaron Cohen Life Protection Act into law. This law imposes mandatory minimum prison sentences for drivers who cause hit and run accidents that result in serious bodily injury or death. The law is named after Aaron Cohen, a cyclist killed by a hit and run driver while cycling on a bridge in Key Biscayne. The driver who hit Cohen fled the scene and was later caught and charged.
Under the Act, if a driver causes a hit and run accident that results in serious bodily injury, the driver will face a mandatory minimum sentence of three years in prison. If the accident results in death, the mandatory minimum sentence increases to four years in prison. The law also requires that the driver’s license be revoked for at least three years.
How the At-Fault Party Will be Charged if Found
If police locate the hit and run driver, that driver will face charges based on the severity of the accident. In the case that the accident results in property damage only, the at-fault party may face misdemeanor charges. If the accident results in injuries or death, the at-fault party may face felony charges.
Hit and Runs with Property Damage Only
If a hit and run accident results in property damage only, the at-fault party may face misdemeanor charges. They could spend up to 60 days in jail and a fine of up to $500.
Hit-and-Runs with Injuries
If an accident involving a driver who flees the scene results in injuries, the at-fault party may face felony charges. The severity of the charges will depend on the severity of the injuries. For instance, if the injuries are minor, the at-fault party may face third-degree felony charges. This could result in up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000.
If the injuries are severe, the at-fault party may face second-degree felony charges. Someone convicted of this crime could face a sentence of as long as 15 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000. In addition, they’ll lose their driver’s license for at least three years.
Hit and Runs with Fatalities
If a hit and run accident results in a fatality, the at-fault party may face first-degree felony charges. This could result in up to 30 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000. The hit-and-run driver will lose their license for a minimum of three years.
Investigating Hit and Runs
Police officers perform thorough investigations into these kinds of accidents. Investigators will look for witnesses, surveillance camera footage, and physical evidence to identify the at-fault party. In some cases, law enforcement agencies may also issue a BOLO (Be On the Lookout) alert to the public for the suspect vehicle.
Can I Receive Compensation if The Person Who Hit Me Isn’t Found?
If the person who hit you isn’t found, you may still be able to receive compensation for your injuries through your insurance policy. Florida law requires that all drivers carry Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance, which covers medical expenses and lost wages regardless of who was at fault for the accident.
However, PIP insurance only covers up to a certain amount and may not be enough to cover all of your expenses. In addition, if you have uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, you may be able to receive additional compensation for your injuries.
But while you would like to think your insurance company would do the right thing and pay you the money you have coming, the reality is often different. Insurers are notorious for denying claims, no matter how legitimate they may be. If this happens to you, you must hire a skilled attorney as soon as possible.
The Eberst Law Firm has a team of lawyers who can investigate the accident and gather the solid evidence needed to help you obtain rightful compensation. We’ll do everything we can to force your insurer to treat you fairly.
Why Should I Hire The Eberst Law Firm for My Hit and Run Car Accident?
If you’ve been involved in a hit and run accident in Florida, you must hire an experienced attorney. A lawyer can help you navigate the legal process and ensure you receive the compensation you deserve. The Eberst Law Firm has a team of skilled lawyers who have extensive experience in hit and run cases. We can help you with every aspect of your case, from filing a claim with your insurance company to negotiating a settlement with the at-fault party’s insurance company.
We also offer a free consultation to discuss your case and answer any questions. Our firm works on a contingency fee basis. This means we only take a fee if you win your case. This can provide peace of mind for clients who may be concerned about the cost of hiring an attorney.
The Eberst Law Firm has a passionate team of legal experts who will help you every step of the way. If you would like to know more about us, or you’d like to schedule a free evaluation of your case, get in touch with us as soon as possible. You can call 1-888-CALL-JON or use our online contact form.