San Antonio Hit-and-Run Accident Lawyer
Tough representation when drivers don’t stop after they cause an accident in Texas
It’s unconscionable to crash into a car, a pedestrian, or a bicycle rider and drive off without offering to help and without providing crucial information. Drivers who are involved in an accident where someone is injured or killed have a legal and moral duty to stop and provide assistance if necessary, and provide their contact information, insurance information, driver’s license information, and registration information.
At the Law Offices of Pat Maloney, we work with the police and investigators to find drivers who leave the scene of an accident without helping out and without waiting for the police to arrive. We file personal injury claims against hit-and-run drivers when the police find them. If the police don’t find a hit-and-run driver, we file car accident claims with your own uninsured/underinsured (UM/UIM) insurance policy company.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What duties do San Antonio drivers have after an accident?
- Why do drivers fail to stop after a vehicle accident in San Antonio?
- How can a San Antonio hit-and-run lawyer help me?
- Can I file a UM/UIM claim if the driver who caused the accident can’t be found?
- Do you have a hit-and-run accident lawyer near me?
What duties do San Antonio drivers have after an accident?
Texas Transportation Code Ann. § 550.022 requires that a driver who is involved in an accident (on a public highway, parking lot, or other location identified in the statute) that results or is reasonably liable to cause injury or death must immediately:
- Stop their vehicle at the scene of the accident or as close to the scene as possible
- Return to the scene of the accident, if their vehicle doesn’t stop at the scene
- Determine whether anyone involved in the accident requires first aid
- Stay at the accident site “until the operator complies with the requirements of Section 023”
Texas Transportation Code § 550.023 requires:
The operator of a vehicle involved in a collision resulting in the injury or death of a person or damage to a vehicle that is driven or attended by a person shall:
- give the operator's name and address, the registration number of the vehicle the operator was driving, and the name of the operator's motor vehicle liability insurer to any person injured or the operator or occupant of or person attending a vehicle involved in the collision;
- if requested and available, show the operator's driver's license to a person described by Subdivision (1); and
- provide any person injured in the collision reasonable assistance, including transporting or making arrangements for transporting the person to a physician or hospital for medical treatment if it is apparent that treatment is necessary, or if the injured person requests the transportation.
Common types of hit-and-run accidents include rear-end accidents, broadsides, and sideswipes. Any collision where a driver fails to comply with his/her duty to stay is considered a hit-and-run accident.
Why do drivers fail to stop after a vehicle accident in San Antonio?
It’s unconscionable and illegal not to provide help after a San Antonio vehicle accident. Still, some drivers refuse to help – often because they already have some negative on their driving record or personal record. Some of these negatives include:
- Not having car liability insurance
- Not having a valid driver’s license
- Driving on a suspended license
- The driver was intoxicated or under the influence of drugs at the time of the collision
- The driver has a criminal record
How can a San Antonio hit-and-run lawyer help me?
In most cases, if someone is injured in a car, truck, motorcycle, pedestrian, or bicycle accident, anyone who can help should contact the police. The police will conduct their own investigation to determine what happened.
At the Law Offices of Pay Maloney, we also hire investigators to examine the accident site and speak with witnesses. Among other tasks, the police and investigators may ask nearby businesses and residences if anyone has any video or photographs of the accident that may help identify a hit-and-run driver.
The police and our investigators may also speak with local repair shops and hospitals to see if the hit-and-run driver brought his/her car in for repairs due to the accident or sought medical help.
Our primary goal, however, is to help you secure the compensation you deserve. In many cases, that means assisting clients as they file a claim through their own insurance policies. Often, folks believe that their own insurers will be straight with them and pay their claim in good faith. Our experiences, however, tell us that this isn’t always the case. If you are struggling to obtain the compensation you need, hiring a San Antonio hit-and-run lawyer may be the key to your success.
Can I file a UM/UIM claim if the driver who caused the accident can’t be found?
In many hit-and-run cases, the hit-and-run driver cannot be located. In this scenario, there is an option. A victim of a hit-and-run accident can file a claim through his/her own UM/UIM policy. UM/UIM claims include claims where the responsible driver doesn’t have liability insurance or doesn’t have enough liability insurance. UM/UIM claims also include hit-and-run claims where it’s impossible to know if the responsible driver had insurance or enough insurance because the driver has disappeared.
Our San Antonio hit-and-run lawyer will file the UM/UIM claim on your behalf, whether you have your own UM/UIM policy or if you are eligible to file a claim through someone else’s UM/UIM policy. For example, a spouse or child can normally file a UM/UIM claim through the other spouse’s or a parent’s car insurance policy.
The amount of coverage, the amount you can claim, depends on the amount of damages and the UM/UIM policy limits. In Texas, all vehicle owners are required to have a minimum of $30,000 in liability coverage for one injured person, $60,000 for multiple injured people in one accident, and $25,000 for property damage to the owner’s car. The amount of your UM/UIM coverage is generally equal to the amount of your liability coverage.
For most types of serious injuries such as traumatic brain injuries, traumatic amputations, spinal cord damage, paralysis, and burn injuries, the value of your claim is usually much more than the minimum insurance limits. Just one or two nights in a hospital can cost more than the policy limits. Your damage claim includes all your medical bills for as long as you need medical care, your daily physical pain and emotional suffering, any lost wages, and other damages. Some vehicle accident claims are worth six and seven figures.
If a loved one dies, we file a wrongful death claim on behalf of the family through the loved one’s UM/UIM carrier. Wrongful death claims are usually worth more than the minimum state requirements.
Since most vehicle accident claims are worth much more than the minimum state requirements, it is in your best interest to purchase as much liability and UM/UIM insurance as you can reasonably afford.
As a practical matter, if the hit-and-run driver is found, he/she will be charged criminally. Our San Antonio hit-and-run lawyer will then work with the prosecution to coordinate your civil case. Often, if a hit-and-run driver is found liable criminally, the driver’s insurance company will settle with us if the hit-and-run driver had insurance. If the hit-and-run driver did not have insurance, then you should be able to use your UM/UIM claim.
Do you have a hit-and-run accident lawyer near me?
The Law Offices of Pat Maloney is located at 239 E Commerce St. We’re in the center of Downtown San Antonio, TX. Our building is beautiful and historic. It’s easy to park close by. We also arrange phone and video conferences, and in-hospital visits. We’ll fight to find the hit-and-run driver. If we can’t, we’re ready to file your UM/UIM claim.
Contact a San Antonio hit-and-run lawyer today
We understand how upsetting it is to be struck by a hit-and-run driver. It’s hard enough coping with your injuries. It’s maddening to think anyone could just cause a vehicle accident and drive away.
We’ll explain your rights and guide you through the claims process. It’s especially important to contact an experienced San Antonio hit-and-run lawyer as soon as possible because the best time to find a missing driver is soon after the accident. At the Law Offices of Pat Maloney, we are skilled at proving how accidents happen. If we can’t hold the responsible drivers liable through a personal injury claim, we are skilled at seeking compensation through a UM/UIM/ claim. Please call us or use our contact form to schedule a free initial consultation today.