If you have been involved in a car accident you must stop and you must exchange names and details with the other driver. You must then report the crash. You can report your car accident by completing the information online at www.crashreport.com.au and clicking on Report a Crash.
But at Lian Hall Injury Law we have seen many clients who have suffered injuries in a car accident in Perth but they could not get the other driver’s details because the other driver failed to stop and drove away. Can you still make a claim? Yes. Section 7 of the Motor Vehicle (Third Party Insurance) Act 1943 says that if you suffer injuries in a car accident in Western Australia, but you cannot identify the driver, then you can sue ICWA and ICWA will be the notional defendant in your case. But:
- You need to show that you tried to get the other driver’s name, but could not get those details. This usually means that you need to explain what efforts you took to get the name. If the other car simply drove off, could you at least get the registration number, the make and colour, or any other details? Were there any witnesses who might have got details of the other car and did you ask them? Was there any CCTV in the area and did you ask for a copy of the film? Did you contact the Police? Basically as long as can show that you pretty much did what you could to get the details and that nothing worked, then that should be enough. It is then up to the Insurance Commission to prove why it is not liable under the law.
- You still need to prove that the accident was caused by the other driver’s negligence. Running away or driving away from an accident is illegal and that is a matter for the Police. To get compensation for your injuries you still need to prove that the accident was caused by the negligent driving of the other car. To help your case you should take photos of your car before you drive away or before the tow truck takes your car away. You should take photos of where the accident took place. If there are any witnesses you should get their names and contact details.
If you are injured in a hit and run car accident in Perth you can still make a claim. It is common for the Insurance Commission to write to you and ask what steps you took to get the name of their insured driver. If you want to chat about what you should do, then Lian Hall Injury Law are always available to chat to you. Just call.