A hit-and-run accident occurs when a person causes an accident and leaves the scene. In Tennessee, causing, or even being the victim of, a hit-and-run can negatively impact your car insurance. Hit-and-runs are just one reason drivers in most states are required to carry auto insurance, which can pay for your injuries and property damage if the other driver isn’t found. It is important to understand the consequences of a hit and run and how it will affect Tennessee auto insurance costs.
Hit and run in Tennessee
When a person is involved in a collision with another car, someone’s property or a person, and does not stop at the scene to provide their information, they are committing a hit and run. These types of crashes have increased in recent years, with 48 hit-and-runs involving at least one fatality occurring in Tennessee in the last year for which data was available, according to the AAA Foundation.
The Insurance Research Council estimates that in 2019, 23.7% of drivers in Tennessee are uninsured, the third highest rate in the nation. One of the best ways to protect yourself on the roads of Tennessee is to have enough car insurance in place to pay for repairs to your car and your own injuries in case you are hit and run.
This includes uninsured motorist coverage, which covers you if you are involved in an accident and the driver at fault does not have insurance to cover your injuries or if you are the victim of a hit-and-run. Keep in mind that uninsured motorist coverage is broken down into two separate types of coverage, one for injury and lost wages and one for property damage (which is not available in all jurisdictions). States but is available in Tennessee). Collision insurance could also help pay for damage to your car, but you’d be responsible for the deductible before the insurance kicks in.
Tennessee law requires insurers to provide you with uninsured motorist coverage, but you can decline it in writing. If you don’t have this type of coverage, however, you may be required to pay for medical bills or repairs to your vehicle if you are the victim of a hit-and-run.
Tennessee Hit and Run Laws
According to Tennessee hit-and-run law, if you cause an accident that injures or kills another person in a public area – near a mall, apartment buildings, or on highways – you must stop at the scene or as close as possible. possible, provide your information and help us. The information you should be prepared to provide includes your name, address, vehicle registration number, and insurance information. Rendering aid means you must provide reasonable assistance, including calling an ambulance to help the victim. Other important laws include:
- If it is suspected that property damage of $50 or more has occurred, the driver is required to notify the police of the accident.
- Failure to stop could result in a Class A misdemeanor or a Class E felony if you did not stop and you had reasonable grounds to believe the accident resulted in death.
- Class A misdemeanors can include fines of up to $2,500, up to 11 months and 29 days in jail, and driver’s license suspension.
- A Class E felony could result in up to six years in prison and possibly the revocation of your driver’s license.
- In the case of property damage, causing a hit-and-run accident in Tennessee is considered a Class C misdemeanor, punishable by up to 30 days in jail and up to $50 in fines.
If you’re involved in a hit-and-run in Tennessee and get a ticket for leaving the scene, you could face higher insurance rates, a voided policy, or be required to purchase auto insurance at high risk.
Five things to do after a hit-and-run in Tennessee
With a high rate of uninsured drivers in Tennessee, you may be the victim of a hit and run at some point. If you cause an accident, no matter how minor, it’s best to stop as close to the scene as possible to provide your insurance information and provide assistance if needed to avoid being charged with a hit-and-run. If you are the victim of a hit-and-run in Tennessee, you may want to follow these steps.
- Stop the car: If another driver has hit you, stop as close to the scene as possible.
- Assess the scene: If your car is drivable and on the pavement, move to the hard shoulder near the scene of the accident. If the car is not passable, get out of the car if you are not injured and wait nearby to avoid being involved in another accident, especially if you are driving on a busy road.
- To call for help: Make sure you and your passengers are okay and call the police, especially if the offending driver has left the scene, creating a hit-and-run scenario. If anyone is injured, let the police know that an ambulance is also needed at the scene.
- Document what happened: While it’s still cool, detail the weather conditions, where the accident happened, and any other details you remember. Take photos of your car from all angles. If the person who caused the accident remained at the scene, be sure to get their name, address, vehicle and insurance information.
- Contact your car insurance company: If the other person remained at the scene, you should call to file a claim with their insurance company. You can also call your insurance company to file a claim if the offending driver has left the scene.
Will the insurance cover a hit and run?
If you cause an accident in Tennessee, the minimum liability coverage for bodily injury and property damage will only pay for the other party’s injuries and damages. If you are the victim of a hit-and-run in Tennessee, you can consider several coverages that will cover damage and injury to your car up to the limits specified by your insurance company:
- Medical payments: Pays your medical expenses if you are injured in an accident.
- Property damage of uninsured motorists: Pay to fix your car if you’re the victim of a hit-and-run or the other driver doesn’t have insurance.
- Uninsured motorist bodily injury: Pays for your injuries if the other driver leaves the scene or has no insurance.
- Collision coverage: Reimburses damage caused to your car following a collision with another vehicle.
If you have uninsured motorist coverage in Tennessee, you will pay a $200 deductible for a hit-and-run. There is no deductible for bodily injury, property damage or medical expense coverage.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much does car insurance cost?
The average annual cost for comprehensive auto insurance in Tennessee is $1,429. The rate you pay for auto insurance will be determined by several factors, including the insurance company, the coverages you select, and your driving and claims history.
Is Tennessee a no-fault state?
Tennessee is a liable state, which means that a driver convicted of an accident is responsible for the injuries and property damage they cause. Most insurance experts recommend buying more than the minimum state-required liability insurance to better protect your finances, but speak with a licensed agent if you’re not sure what’s right for you.