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Hit by a “Phantom Vehicle”

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You are minding your own business as you are driving home from work one day, and suddenly a vehicle comes out from  a side street and turns right in front of you. You slam on your brakes as hard as you can, hoping you don’t hit them, and at the same time, another driver to the left of you comes over into your lane as this “phantom car” cuts over into their lane. The “Phantom vehicle” takes off and there isn’t time to get a license plate. They speed off and the next thing you know, you are getting out of your car talking to the other driver from the car that came over into your lane to avoid hitting this “phantom vehicle.” You notice your back and neck are starting to stiffen up and ultimately you want to make an uninsured motorist claim against your own company. Obviously the person who caused the accident, has taken off and you don’t know who that driver is and there was no contact between the “phantom vehicle” and your car. Before you proceed, you better pull out your automobile insurance policy and read it very carefully, as you will probably come across the following language and requirements for you to be able to proceed with making an uninsured motorist claim, under these circumstances;

If there is no physical contact with the hit and run vehicle;

a. The facts of the accident must be corroborated by competent evidence that is provided by someone other than the insured or any other person who makes a claim against the uninsured motorist coverage as a result of the accident.

b. Within 72 hours after the accident, the insured or someone on behalf of the insured reports the accident to a police, peace or judicial officer or the department of transportation, or if the accident occurs outside of Wisconsin, the equivalent agency in the state where the accident occurs.

c. Within 30 days after the accident occurs, the insured or someone on behalf of the insured files with the insurer a statement under oath that the insured or a legal representative of the insured has a cause of action arising out of the accident for damages against a person whose identity is not ascertainable and setting forth the facts in support of the statement.

Failure to comply with these provisions may make your injury or property damage claim void. Read your policy very carefully on a periodic basis and if you have questions about your insurance policy or how to go about making a claim against your insurance company, call the experienced personal injury lawyers at Karp & Iancu, S.C.  today.

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