Danville Hit and Run Accident Lawyers
Police investigators solve fewer than 10 percent of the hit-and-run accidents in Vermilion County. Initially, investigators often have very little to go on, other than a vague witness statement. So, these individuals often give up, especially since the burden of proof is so high, so they can focus on other matters. Additionally, there’s an underlying attitude in many law enforcement agencies that car wrecks are civil matters which don’t require police involvement.
In contrast, the Danville hit-and-run accident lawyers at Patel Law are dedicated to helping car crash victims. We turn over every stone to find evidence that police investigators often overlook. Additionally, our professional staff, unlike many police investigators, have the patience to piece these bits of evidence together. So, when the case goes to court, we are well-positioned to obtain maximum compensation for your serious injuries. We don’t settle for anything less, because you shouldn’t have to settle for less.
Tracking Down the Negligent Driver
We mentioned the scant available evidence above. In fact, “scant” is often a best-case scenario. Frequently, there are no leads at all. Instead of giving up, we look elsewhere for evidence. Possible sources include:
Surveillance Camera Footage: If a camera, even one that’s several blocks away from the accident scene, captured part of the suspect vehicle’s license plate number, that crumb of evidence might be enough to locate the vehicle’s driver. That identity might be enough, given the low burden of proof in civil cases.
Additional Witness Statements: For various reasons, people don’t often loiter at accident scenes so they can give official statements to police officers. So, as part of their investigations, attorneys canvas the area to find additional witness statements. Most people are willing to speak with a Danville hit-and-run accident lawyer.
Body Shops: Hit-and-run drivers frequently don’t have insurance or they have outstanding warrants. Since they want to stay under the radar, they don’t take their damaged vehicles to Service King. Instead, they go to underground body shops. Once again, these mechanics won’t talk to police officers, but they will talk to personal injury lawyers.
In criminal court, prosecutors must establish guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. So, unless a credible witness saw the tortfeasor (negligent driver) behind the wheel, or the tortfeasor voluntarily confessed, the case is over before it starts.
The burden of proof in civil court is only a preponderance of the evidence (more likely than not). So, a little proof goes a long way. As mentioned, identifying the vehicle’s owner is often just as good as fingering the driver. It’s more likely than not that the owner was driving the vehicle at the time.
Occasionally, the hit-and-run driver wasn’t legally responsible for the wreck. Driver error causes about 95 percent of car accidents in Illinois. Defective products and defective roadways cause most of the rest.
Defective tires are the most common crash-causing defective products. Generally, manufacturers are strictly liable for the injuries their defective products cause. The individual driver’s financial responsibility is irrelevant. Manufacturers, like employers, usually have deep pockets. So, it’s easier to obtain maximum compensation in these cases.
Claims against manufacturers are quite complex. Large companies have gangs of lawyers who fight these claims tooth and nail. Claims against the county or other government that negligently designed a roadway are equally complex. Frequently, the sovereign immunity doctrine applies in these cases.
Additionally, many victims can file claims with their own insurance companies in these situations. Because the uninsured/underinsured population is so high in Illinois, many Illini have UM/UIM coverage. Underinsured and uninsured motorist policies usually have low premiums and high coverage limits.
UM/UIM claims usually pay the damages the responsible party cannot afford to pay. These matters usually settle quickly and on victim-friendly terms. The company wants to keep its paying customer happy.
Reach Out to an Energetic Vermilion County Lawyer
Injury victims are often entitled to substantial compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced hit-and-run accident attorney in Danville, contact Patel Law, P.C. Virtual, home, and hospital visits are available.