A hit and run occurs when a driver strikes another vehicle, pedestrian, or cyclist and flees the scene to escape liability. In Missouri, a hit and run is a serious crime that can result in severe civil and criminal penalties. If you suffer an injury due to a hit and run driver, you have options to secure compensation for your losses — and hold the negligent driver accountable.
Missouri Is a Fault Insurance State
Like most states, Missouri follows a fault-based insurance system. This means that a driver who is responsible for a car accident must pay for the damages of the other drivers, pedestrians, and passengers who suffer injuries in the accident. As a result, all drivers must hold liability insurance in the following minimum amounts.
- $10,000 for property damage per accident
- $25,000 for bodily injury or death per person per accident
- $50,000 for total bodily injury or death liability per accident
This insurance allows drivers to uphold their financial responsibilities in case of an accident, paying for medical expenses, property damage, vehicle repairs, and other costs. Missouri also requires drivers to hold uninsured motorist coverage in the amount of $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident for bodily injury. You can use your uninsured motorist coverage to pay for your damages following a hit and run.
Missouri’s Hit and Run Laws
A hit and run is a crime under Missouri law. All drivers have a legal responsibility to remain at the scene of an accident if they are involved and exchange their information, such as driver’s license numbers, insurance information, and contact details. According to Missouri Revised Statute 577.060.1, a person is guilty of a hit and run if he or she leaves the scene of an accident that results in injury, death, or property damage affecting another person.
A person guilty of a hit and run will face administrative penalties. The driver will see either 6 or 12 points on his or her driving record, which vary depending on who issued the ticket. This penalty is very serious; receiving 12 points on a driving record within a one-year period will result in a one-year license revocation.
In addition, the at-fault driver could face criminal penalties ranging from a class A misdemeanor to a class D felony.
- A class A misdemeanor occurs when a driver leaves the scene of an accident without exchanging information. Penalties include up to one year in jail and up to $1,000 in fines.
- A driver can face class E felony charges if the accident results in property damage in excess of $1,000, physical injury to the other party, or this is his or her second hit-and-run offense. Penalties include up to four years in jail and up to a $5,000 fine.
- A hit and run can rise to a class D felony if someone dies as a result of the accident. Penalties include up to four years in prison and a fine up to $10,000.
Hiring a Kansas City car accident lawyer is vital in hit and run cases. Your attorney will have the resources necessary to investigate your case to the fullest extent and identify the options available for you to receive the help you need.
Have You or a Loved One Been Injured in a Kansas City, Missouri Car Accident?
If you've been hurt in a Kansas City area car accident you should speak with an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Please feel free to contact us online or call our office directly at 816.832.4688 to schedule your free consultation. We are proud to serve Kansas City, Missouri, and the surrounding area and look forward to speaking with you.