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What to do After a Hit-and-Run in Massachusetts – Bankrate.com

  • Attorney Daniel Albert

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We are an independent, advertising-supported comparison service. Our goal is to help you make smarter financial decisions by providing you with interactive tools and financial calculators, publishing original and objective content, by enabling you to conduct research and compare information for free – so that you can make financial decisions with confidence.
Bankrate has partnerships with issuers including, but not limited to, American Express, Bank of America, Capital One, Chase, Citi and Discover.
The offers that appear on this site are from companies that compensate us. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site, including, for example, the order in which they may appear within the listing categories. But this compensation does not influence the information we publish, or the reviews that you see on this site. We do not include the universe of companies or financial offers that may be available to you.
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A hit-and-run is an accident where the driver who is at fault leaves the scene of the accident without giving their insurance information to the other driver involved. It may also occur if a driver hits a pedestrian or a stationary object and leaves immediately without giving aid or telling the authorities.
According to the AAA’s Foundation for Traffic Safety, hit-and-run accidents are on the rise, with one happening in the U.S. every 43 seconds. Even though you might not be at fault in a hit-and-run, it can impact your hit-and-run Massachusetts insurance, so it pays for you to have solid insurance coverage to protect yourself.
Hit-and-run law in Massachusetts says that if a driver is aware that they have hit someone or something, causing injury or damage, and does not stop to give the other driver their information, they are guilty of a hit-and-run. If they initially stopped, but refused to leave the other person involved with their name, address and VIN number, or if they gave false information, it is still considered a hit-and-run.
This also holds true if they hit an object, such as a mailbox or fence. They are required to inform the homeowner of what has happened, and leave their information with the homeowners.
In 2015-2017, the most recent years for which there are records, Massachusetts averaged 8,175 hit-and-run accidents each year. There are serious consequences for drivers who leave the scene of an accident without identifying themselves and giving aid if they are able.
Hit-and-run Massachusetts statutes are clear: if you’re involved in a crash, even if it’s just a fender-bender, you must stop, assess damages and identify yourself, according to the Massachusetts official driver’s manual. If you leave a crash, even if you are not at fault, you could be criminally charged with a violation for leaving the scene of an accident. You would also face the following penalties.
You may also be subject to up to six years of insurance surcharges and your driver’s license could be suspended. Finally, if you hit and injure or kill a cat or dog and fail to notify the animal’s owner or the local police, you can also be fined.
There are more penalties you will face in addition to what is stated in Massachusetts hit-and-run law. If you are involved in a hit-and-run in Massachusetts, you will most likely see an increase in your insurance rates. It’s true that accidents can happen to anyone, and a seemingly tiny miscalculation can leave you the cause of a major accident – but you only compound the error if you leave the scene.
In the table below, note the difference in average premium cost between a standard accident — where you stop your car and remain on site — and a hit-and-run. With the latter, your rate more than doubles. Although the Massachusetts increase is less than the increase on a national level, it is still significant. If you stay at the site of the accident, your increase is less than $800, even if you are found to be at fault.
The table below shows average annual full coverage premiums before and after an at-fault hit-and-run and accident.
Average annual full coverage premiums:
Following a hit-and-run, what to do in Massachusetts? If you are the victim of a hit-and-run, there are several steps you should take immediately, while still on site.
There are several types of Massachusetts hit-and-run insurance. Any of these may come into play if you are the victim of a hit-and-run accident.
Other than PIP, these coverages are all optional. Since they may save you considerable money in the event of a hit and run in Massachusetts, they may be worth considering if you are able to afford them. Each of them gives you additional protection that you would not get with minimum coverage.
That depends on numerous factors, from where you live and what kind of car you drive, to your age and marital status. The average insurance premium in Massachusetts is $1,223 per year for full coverage, which includes collision and comprehensive along with the required liability and PIP insurance.
Any insurer can provide you with insurance that will give you coverage after a hit-and-run. To find the best car insurance in Massachusetts, call several companies to see who offers you the best rate.
You may have to pay a hit-and-run deductible if you use your collision coverage to pay for damage to your car, and if the authorities are unable to locate the other driver. This deductible is an amount you will have chosen when you purchased your policy.
Bankrate utilizes Quadrant Information Services to analyze 2021 rates for all ZIP codes and carriers in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. Quoted rates are based on a 40-year-old male and female driver with a clean driving record, good credit and the following full coverage limits:
To determine minimum coverage limits, Bankrate used minimum coverages that meet each state’s requirements. Our base profile drivers own a 2019 Toyota Camry, commute five days a week and drive 12,000 miles annually.
These are sample rates and should only be used for comparative purposes.
Incident: Rates were calculated by evaluating our base profile with the following incidents applied: clean record (base), at-fault accident, single speeding ticket, single DUI conviction and lapse in coverage.
Bankrate.com is an independent, advertising-supported publisher and comparison service. Bankrate is compensated in exchange for featured placement of sponsored products and services, or your clicking on links posted on this website. This compensation may impact how, where and in what order products appear. Bankrate.com does not include all companies or all available products.
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