Your sitting in your car at a red light and suddenly you get hit. Your confused as to what just happened. Was that an earthquake? You soon realize that you were rearended. You notice something strange. The car that hit you is leaving. Now you are a victim of a hit-and-run accident.
I spoke to the victims of this scenario many times. I was a claims adjuster and it was sad to see that people still hit and run. People panic and they call 911 to report that they were just hit and that the other car fled the scene. The operators instruct them to not follow them.
This is where some insurance companies make their money. Many of my insured’s have uninsured motorist property coverage or waivers to protect them from this scenario however in California you need the license plate in order to able to use the coverage you pay for.
How does that make sense? If it’s a hit and run, it’s because they fled the scene so that’s the last thing your thinking of getting. Most likely, they fled because they don’t have insurance. Now, you must use your collision coverage if you have it to help with the repairs; and pay your deductible even though it’s not your fault. If you don’t have collision coverage, then you’re on your own.
In other states like Oregon and Washington, they could use their uninsured motorist property damage coverage or waiver for hit and runs as long as they had a police report filed.
Now, if you did suffer injuries and have uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage then they could apply that coverage even if you don’t have the license plate.
I just wanted to share something that I feel is unfair for people that pay for the premium but sometimes get robbed by insurance companies. I know insurance companies get regulated by the insurance commissioner but people don’t realize the fine print the policy has until an accident occurs.
Read your insurance policy and educate yourself as to what requirements there are if you’re ever involved in an accident like this.