Hit and Run Accidents
In Florida it is the duty of motorists to stop and render aid in automobile accidents involving death or personal injuries. Time is of the essence to people who are injured in a traffic accident. Failure to stop and render aid may delay or prevent the ability of first responders who deliver critical life-saving treatment to other motorists or pedestrians. The victim's condition could deteriorate significantly because of another motorist’s failure to stop and render aid. This failure by the driver may become the basis of liability and may result in criminal consequences for that motorist. If you have been the victim of a hit and run accident and need an attorney, contact a lawyer at Moody Law. The firm's multiple locations serve Central Florida and Polk County, including Lakeland, Bartow, Winter Haven, and Haines City.
The Dangerous Instrumentality Doctrine
In Florida, the owner of the vehicle is also vicariously liable under the “dangerous instrumentality” doctrine for the negligence of the driver that was entrusted with the vehicle. A purpose of this doctrine is to find insurance to protect injured motorists after an accident. Many times, the owner of the vehicle will have his or her own car insurance or an umbrella policy that applies to your case. The owner of the vehicle may or may not know whether he or she has insurance that applies to hit and run car accidents.
Leaving the Scene of the Accident
Section 316.027(1)(a), Florida Statutes, makes it a third degree felony to leave the scene of a crash involving personal injuries. Section 316.027(1)(b), Florida Statutes, makes leaving the scene of a crash involving death a first degree felony. Further, there is a two year mandatory minimum sentence if the crash involving death was the result of driving under the influence (DUI). Drivers who cause hit and run car accidents and have left the scene because they have no insurance, no drivers' license, or a warrant for their arrest are frequently punished in criminal court. Prosecutors from your local State Attorney’s office often bring criminal charges against the hit and run driver. However, the criminal aspect of these cases is separate and apart from what we do at Moody Law. Our lawyers handle only civil aspects of the case. Civil including restitution may be ordered by the criminal judge.
Contact a Hit and Run Accident Attorney - Central Florida, Lakeland, Winter Haven
If you or a loved one is the victim of a hit and run accident, talk with a lawyer at Moody Law. Serving Lakeland, Winter Haven, and other Central Florida areas including Polk County, a hit and run accident attorney at our firm can discuss your options for filing a lawsuit with you.