Regardless of whether you are in a vehicle, on foot, or riding a bicycle, nobody anticipates getting struck by a vehicle coming out of nowhere! Unfortunately, this happens far more often than you think. In some of those cases, the driver of the vehicle fails to stay at the scene to face their responsibility. In 2020 the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recorded over 2500 deaths as a result of hit-and-run accidents. If you have been injured in one of these hit-and-run accidents, you may be wondering how to seek compensation. The good news is, working with a personal injury lawyer in Knoxville can help you to get the justice you deserve.

What to Do After a Hit-and-Run Accident

When you are injured in a car accident, and the at-fault driver has fled the scene, you may be struggling to deal with the aftermath on your own. It is important to try to remain calm and follow these crucial steps.

  1. Call 911

    The first step following any accident is to call 911, but it is especially important if you have suffered a significant injury at the hands of a hit-and-run driver. You are likely to need medical attention, and you also need to inform law enforcement. Even if you think your injuries are minor, it is worth getting examined to document those injuries to pursue a personal injury lawsuit. You are going to need a police report in order for your personal injury lawyer in Knoxville to file an insurance claim or lawsuit. Try to take note of any identifying features, including the vehicle's make and model, the paint's color, and the driver's physical appearance. Anything you can recall may help find the vehicle's driver. However, you should never attempt to chase the driver. This can be dangerous and is best left to the authorities.

  2. Gather Photo and Video Evidence

    If you are feeling up to it, and it is safe to do so, photographing and filming your injuries, property damage, and the accident scene can be very helpful. A personal injury lawyer in Knoxville can use these as evidence to support your compensation claim.

  3. File An Insurance Claim

    When a hit-and-run accident occurs, the victim cannot access the insurance details of the driver who caused the accident. However, you can still file an insurance claim with your own provider. If you have uninsured driver or collision coverage, you can file a claim to help cover things like medical expenses and vehicle repairs while waiting for the police to locate the hit-and-run driver. It is important to note that even your own insurer will be reluctant to pay out on a claim and may try to lowball you! That's why consulting a personal injury lawyer in Knoxville can be a good idea, even before the other driver is traced.

What Happens if The Driver is Traced

In Tennessee, the law protects hit-and-run victims. If they are identified, it is possible to file a civil lawsuit against the driver. In order for your personal injury lawyer in Knoxville to file a negligence lawsuit against them, you must prove that:

  1. The hit-and-run driver owed the plaintiff a duty of care - all drivers in Tennessee owe a duty of care to all other road users!
  2. The hit-and-run driver must have breached the duty of care.
  3. The plaintiff's injuries must directly result from the hit-and-run driver's actions.

Your personal injury lawyer in Knoxville can work to secure damages to cover medical expenses, medical equipment, loss of earnings, and any other expenses relating to the accident. Aside from the civil suit that your personal injury lawyer in Knoxville files against the hit-and-run driver, they may also be facing a criminal lawsuit since failing to remain at the scene of an accident is, at minimum, a Class C Misdemeanor in Tennessee.

What If The Driver Cannot Be Located?

In some cases, police never find the guilty party in hit-and-run accidents. This doesn't mean that you cannot seek damages for your injuries. You can still claim damages to cover the cost of your medical treatment and other expenses via your own insurance provider.

If you have been injured in a hit-and-run or any other type of car accident, you can consult with a personal injury lawyer in Knoxville to get the compensation you deserve to offset some of the expenses incurred due to the accident. Contact us today for a free consultation.


Butler, Vines and Babb is a leading law firm in Knoxville, TN, with extensive litigation experience in Medical Malpractice LawBirth Injury LawTrucking Accident LawPersonal Injury Law, and Business Law. Contact us today at or call 865-637-3531.

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