San Luis Obispo Hit-and-Run Accident Attorneys

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San Luis Obispo (commonly referred to as just SLO) is the county seat of San Luis Obispo County, with a population of 47,063, according to the 2020 United States Census. The city is conveniently located in the Central Coast region of California, a midpoint between San Francisco and the Greater Bay area and the Greater Los Angeles metropolitan region.

Downtown San Luis Obispo is very walkable, making pedestrians very common. However, many people can be involved in possible accidents with motor vehicles that cause serious injuries or even death. When a negligent driver leaves the scene of a collision, it is known as a hit-and-run accident. Victims will want to be quick to seek the help of reputable San Luis Obispo hit-and-run accident attorneys.

People who are hurt in hit-and-run crashes can often face profound confusion about what legal options they have when negligent drivers are not known. Victims can be entitled to various kinds of damages in these cases, including awards covering all of their medical bills, lost wages, and property damage when vehicles were involved.

California state law stipulates that all drivers are expected to stop at the scenes of crashes and exchange personal information, as well as ensure victims can receive necessary medical care. Failure to fulfill these obligations is a criminal offense that may result in either a misdemeanor or felony charge, depending on the extent of the damage caused.

Any person who suffers injuries in a hit-and-run accident in the greater San Luis Obispo area will want to be sure they retain legal counsel because it can be complicated for most people to try and resolve the many issues on their own. Arash Law, headed by Arash Khorsandi, Esq., is a dedicated personal injury law firm that knows how to help victims hold negligent parties accountable and recover every last dollar of financial compensation available in a given case.

Hit-and-run victims may have to deal with their own insurance companies in these cases, and you should not think that an insurer is going to be willing to pay you a fair amount just because you are a customer. All insurance companies are only seeking to minimize their losses by paying as little as possible to resolve these claims.

When a hit & run accident kills another person, the family members of the deceased may have grounds to file a wrongful death action. Even in cases of other injuries or just simple property damage, people can often be entitled to damages that cover all of their losses.

Car Accident
$6,000,000.00
Our client was driving with his wife and son on a two-lane highway when a drunk driver crossed the double yellow lines, causing a head-on collision that claimed the life of a loving wife and mother.
–  Arash Khorsandi

Reasons Why Drivers Commit Hit-and-Run Offenses

When another person causes or is otherwise involved in a motor vehicle accident, it is natural to wonder why they will choose to leave the scene without complying with state law. The truth is that people can have multiple reasons why they did not stop.
While many people will consider it normal for all drivers to stop at the scenes of crashes and check on the status of other parties, some of the most common reasons that drivers do not stop include:
  • The driver did not have a license – A driver may have been operating without a valid driver’s license and chose not to stop to avoid possible consequences of driving without a license.
  • The driver did not have insurance – It is often possible that the driver was operating without a valid insurance policy at the time of an accident.
  • The driver had concerns about their immigration status – If a negligent driver did not knowingly have legal status to be in the United States, then they might have left the scene to avoid possible consequences relating to being in the country illegally.
  • The driver had a criminal history – Some drivers who have criminal records avoid stopping to try and prevent themselves from facing new criminal charges that only add to existing criminal records.
  • Simple fear – There is always the possibility that the simplest explanation as to why a driver left the scene was just that they were afraid of what was going to happen if they reported the accident.
  • The driver was intoxicated – A negligent driver might have been under the influence of drugs or alcohol and fearful that stopping would result in driving under the influence (DUI) charges.
  • The driver was unaware that they caused an injury or property damage – A negligent driver can argue that they did not know they struck another person or property.
  • The driver was responding to an emergency – A negligent driver can claim they had a medical emergency they were dealing with that did not allow them to stop.
  • The vehicle owner was not the driver – The actual owner of a vehicle involved in a hit-and-run can claim they were not the person who was driving the vehicle at the time of a hit-and-run collision.
Hit-and-run drivers will remain liable for the damages they cause regardless of their awareness of the accidents. Lack of awareness may reduce some of their criminal penalties but will not allow them to avoid civil liability.
California Hit-and-Run Statistics

The most recent statistics from the California Highway Patrol (CHP) indicate that there were 20,739 hit-and-run injury crashes and 375 fatal hit-and-run crashes in the state. These accidents resulted in 26,821 injury victims and 391 fatalities.

The accidents included 205 fatal automobile-pedestrian accidents and 2,605 injury cases. Other accidents included 7,479 rear-end injury crashes and 39 fatal cases, 3,911 broadside injury crashes and 49 fatal accidents, 3,253 sideswipe injury crashes and 24 fatal accidents, 1,290 hit object injury crashes and 20 fatal accidents, and 1,027 head-on injury crashes and 10 fatal cases.

The insurance research and analysis website ValuePenguin reported that overall fatal hit-and-run accidents increased from 1,342 to 1,939 over the course of the last decade, with deaths resulting from such accidents increasing 44 percent from 1,393 to 2,005. California was the state with the highest number of fatal hit-and-run accidents, having 17 percent of the total in the United States, with 2,948 crashes causing 3,056 deaths.

California had a rate of fatal hit-and-runs per 10 billion miles of 8.8, with 104 deaths per 100 crashes. According to ValuePenguin, 25- to 34-year-olds were the age group most likely to be killed in hit-and-run accidents, with 687 drivers in this age group dying in hit-and-run accidents.

Additional research from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found 2,049 deaths caused by hit-and-run accidents, the highest number on record and a 60 percent increase over the past seven years. AAA also stated that over one hit-and-run crash happens every minute on roads in the United States.

Driver Recklessness caused Los Angeles Car Crash Accident Injuries

How Victims Can Recover Damages After Hit-and-Run Accidents

Victims in hit-and-run accidents often have multiple options for pursuing financial compensation to cover all of their losses stemming from such a crash. The most common claim that people will file is a personal injury claim against the negligent driver.
Because California is an at-fault state, a negligent driver can end up being responsible for paying all damages associated with a hit-and-run crash. A lawsuit can lead to a victim recovering damages for their medical expenses, lost wages, and possibly even pain and suffering.
If the negligent driver cannot be found, then victims can pursue compensation through their own insurance company when they have uninsured or underinsured driver policies. You need to understand that just because you are dealing with your own insurance company does not mean the insurer is going to pay you an extravagant amount.

Even when you file a lawsuit against a negligent driver, you are likely to be negotiating with an insurer for an appropriate settlement to your case. You will want to have a San Luis Obispo hit-and-run lawyer at Arash Law, created by Arash Khorsandi, Esq., handling every single aspect of these negotiations because we have a wealth of experience in such matters.

Arash Law Can Help You Recover Compensation for Injuries or Death
If you do end up filing a lawsuit for your hit-and-run accident, you should know that a case that goes all the way to trial can lead to a jury awarding you multiple kinds of compensatory damages. The phrase compensatory damages usually includes two other kinds of damages: economic damages and non-economic damages.

Economic damages are tangible losses you have suffered that you can prove, such as:

Non-economic damages are much more subjective types of harm that do not have inherent financial values, including:

Common Causes of Hit-and-Run Accidents
Hit-and-run accidents may be the result of any one of multiple kinds of driver negligence. Every single case is different and will involve its own unique elements.
In some cases, a driver may have simply been unaware that there was a pedestrian crossing a street or that they were encountering another motor vehicle. In other cases, a negligent driver might have been distracted if they were preoccupied with using a cell phone to call or text message another person.
There are also cases in which negligent drivers flee the scenes of hit-and-run accidents because they were operating while they were under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and such drivers may take comfort in knowing that even if they are apprehended later by law enforcement, the effects of intoxication will have worn off. Some drivers simply may be unaware that they were even involved in collisions, thinking a sound was them running over an object on the road.
There are always concerns about a driver not having the necessary driver’s license or necessary insurance as well. Some drivers are more reluctant to stop when they have prior criminal records that they fear will enhance their criminal penalties.

All negligent drivers in these cases can be held liable for their actions, and negligent drivers face criminal penalties as well as civil liability for injuries. Victims must be sure to seek the help of an experienced San Luis Obispo hit-and-run accident attorney at Arash Law and the team are led by Arash Khorsandi, Esq., to hold these drivers accountable and recover every last dollar of compensation.

Motorcycle Accident
$1,550,000.00
Largest motorcycle settlement in Tulare County in 2021; client suffered spinal and wrist injuries.
–  Judd Ross Allen

Difference Between Misdemeanor and Felony Charges for Hit-and-Run Accidents in San Luis Obispo

When it comes to criminal charges for a hit-and-run accident in California, a negligent driver can be facing either a misdemeanor or felony charge. In general, a person will be charged with a misdemeanor when the case involves only property damage, but a hit and run accident causing injuries or death often results in felony charges.

All drivers are expected to stop and comply with the requirements established under California Vehicle Code § 20002, whether an accident causes property damage or personal injury. Failure to abide by this law constitutes a criminal offense.

The extent of the property damage in a hit-and-run case involving only property damage will not matter, as a driver still must make an effort to locate the property owner and make arrangements to pay for property damage whether they struck another vehicle, a fence, a mailbox, or any other form of personal property. Negligent drivers should leave a written notice that provides the name and address of the driver and the owner of the vehicle in some conspicuous place, as well as a statement of the circumstances, and also notify a police department in the city where the collision occurred or the local headquarters of the Department of the California Highway Patrol as soon as possible.

Criminal Penalties for Leaving the Scene of an Accident in San Luis Obispo

Hit-and-run accidents causing property damage usually result in misdemeanor charges that may be punishable by:

  • Up to six months in county jail
  • A fine of up to $1,000
  • Restitution to victims for property damage
  • 2 points on a California driving record

Some injury cases can also result in enhanced misdemeanor charges, with penalties that include:

  • Up to one year in county jail
  • A fine of up to $10,000
  • Restitution to victims for property damage
  • 2 points on a California driving record

Most injury or death cases lead to felony charges that may result in:

  • Up to four years in state jail
  • A fine of up to $10,000
  • Restitution to victims for property damage
  • 2 points on a California driving record
A person who leaves the scene of an accident in California can also suffer revocation of their driver’s license, orders to complete community service, and pay restitution to victims. Insurance companies rarely, if ever, cover damages in hit-and-run accidents, so negligent drivers often must pay all civil damages completely out of their own pockets.
What Our Clients Say About Us.
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Arash is a great person and a great lawyer.
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I really appreciate your ability to explain things and help me understand the complex world of Law...
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They really commit to your case and get the best results for you. Always kept you informed every step of the way...
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It was the best decision I could have made to call you guys first.
Thank you to the best lawyers of Arash Law for being so professional, kind, helpful and honest with me...
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Truly the best law practice around!
They are a fully staffed office and the guy handling my case was a former insurance adjustor...
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Arash is a great person and a great lawyer.
He keeps you up to date and takes the time to answer all and any questions you can have for him, no matter how long it takes, which I love...
- King S.
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The best experience I ever had with an attorney.
They are really great! I worked with other attorneys in the past and never received this type of professional representation...
- Lene B.
Google Rating
Thanks for all the help Mr. Khorsandi!
I really appreciate your ability to explain things and help me understand the complex world of Law...
- Walt R
Yelp Rating
This is more than 5 star service.
They really commit to your case and get the best results for you. Always kept you informed every step of the way...
- Melaiza H
Google Rating
It was the best decision I could have made to call you guys first.
Thank you to the best lawyers of Arash Law for being so professional, kind, helpful and honest with me...
- Sergio L.
Google Rating
Truly the best law practice around!
They are a fully staffed office and the guy handling my case was a former insurance adjustor...
- Ballet C.
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When Victims Should File Hit-and-Run Claims

In cases in which negligent drivers are identified, and victims know who caused their hit-and-run crashes, insurance companies for those negligent drivers will aggressively push the victims to settle their claims to keep the cases out of court. When an insurance company contacts you and offers you a lump-sum settlement, you need to know that you have no obligation to accept it, and you should not fear that you are giving up your only opportunity by declining such an offer.
When you hire a San Luis Obispo hit-and-run lawyer at Arash Law, managed and operated by Arash Khorsandi, Esq., you will have somebody on your side who can negotiate a much fairer and fuller settlement to your case. If an insurer proves unwilling to provide adequate compensation for your case, then your attorney can file a lawsuit to take the case to court.
Most insurance companies do not want to pay the high costs of taking cases to trial, so they often become more willing to settle at higher amounts than they originally proposed. It is important for victims to retina legal counsel in all settlement negotiations because multiple studies have confirmed that people who represent themselves often end up settling for much less than that to which they were entitled.
Create A Solid Case With The Help of San Luis Obispo Hit-and-Run Accident Attorneys
When a person is facing hit-and-run charges in California, they might claim defenses with the hope that these may allow them to avoid criminal penalties. Some of the different defenses can include:
  • The negligent driver was unaware of the accident – A driver can have a good faith belief that they had struck an animal or some other object and did not realize they caused property damage or injury.
  • The owner was not the negligent driver – There can be cases in which a vehicle owner was not the driver at the time of an accident. In certain cases, a vehicle owner can also argue that witnesses incorrectly identified their vehicle, and mistaken identity errors by witnesses can lead to criminal charges being dismissed
  • Personal safety concerns – A negligent driver may have had issues about the neighborhood they were in or can have been dealing with a medical emergency that prevented them from stopping.
  • Involuntary intoxication – One challenging defense to prove in these cases can involve a driver arguing that they were unknowingly intoxicated by drugs or alcohol and should not be liable for their actions during this state.

It is important to remember that even when a negligent driver can overcome their criminal charges, they can still be held civilly liable. This is why victims should not hesitate to seek the help of a trusted and experienced hit-and-run attorney in San Luis Obispo. The lawyers at Arash Law, under the direction of Arash Khorsandi, Esq., are capable of securing important evidence.

What Victims Should Do at the Scene of a Hit-and-Run

It can be a very frantic and chaotic scene following a hit-and-run accident. People need to try and remain calm before taking certain steps. The first thing to remember is that you should never try to follow a negligent driver. Not only should you not put your own safety in danger by attempting to chase down a negligent driver, but you are also leaving the scene of the accident at which you need to stay.
Instead, begin recording as many details as you can about the motor vehicle that caused your hit-and-run collision. License plates are always the most helpful description elements, but if you did not see that, try to write down the make and model of the vehicle instead.
When you see what the actual driver looked like, also write down what you remember about their physical description. See if anybody else witnessed your accident and get their contact information.
Always contact the police as soon as possible and report the accident to authorities because they will begin their own investigation to locate the negligent driver and hold them accountable. You should also make sure to seek medical attention, even when you do not think you suffered an injury, as creating a medical record as soon as possible after an accident will be very beneficial in any subsequent injury claim.

Reasons You Need a San Luis Obispo Hit-and-Run Accident Attorney

Several people may believe that they do not need to hire legal representation for a hit-and-run accident because who is at fault is so clear in these cases. You do not want to make this mistake because hit-and-run cases often involve a number of significant legal hurdles that are incredibly difficult for the average person to navigate.

By hiring a skilled San Luis Obispo hit-and-run accident lawyer at Arash Law, managed by Arash Khorsandi, Esq., you will be giving yourself the strongest possible chance of locating a negligent driver and recovering as much compensation as possible. Even when the driver cannot be found, our firm will know how to work with your insurance company to make sure you are taken care of.

You should generally avoid trying to deal with an insurance company on your own because most insurers will engage in a number of trucks designed to limit the compensation that will be available to you. Avoid providing any recorded statement, which is usually an attempt to get you to unknowingly admit to some kind of fault, or signing any paperwork you do not fully understand.
Franchot M.
$610,000
Personal Injury Settlement
Our client was the victim of a rear-end accident who was left injured and severely in pain. Arash Law was able to outshine other injury law firms when he searched online, and thankfully we were able to handle everything for our client from A to Z — All that he had to do was ask and focus on his recovery. Our client’s life has changed forever, and the compensation received for the pain and suffering has opened paths for new lifelong opportunities.
Personal Injury Settlement
Our client was the victim of a rear-end accident who was left injured and severely in pain. Arash Law was able to outshine other injury law firms when he searched online, and thankfully we were able to handle everything for our client from A to Z — All that he had to do was ask and focus on his recovery. Our client’s life has changed forever, and the compensation received for the pain and suffering has opened paths for new lifelong opportunities.

Call Us Today to Speak with a San Luis Obispo Hit-and-Run Attorney

A hit-and-run crash in the San Luis Obispo area can cause a lifetime of challenges for an accident victim, and people need to be sure that they have a skilled legal professional handling their case. You deserve to recover money for every single financial loss you are now facing because of your accident that was the fault of another party.
As soon as you begin working with Arash Law, founded by Arash Khorsandi, Esq., we will promptly begin our own independent investigation into your accident so we can secure key evidence and also identify the negligent driver. Our firm knows how to handle every single aspect of a personal injury case and make sure that people can recover as much compensation as possible.

Arash Law, led by Arash Khorsandi, Esq., has a proven record of success that includes more than $500 Million recovered on behalf of your clients. Call (888) 488-1391 or contact us online today to receive a free consultation that will allow you to fully discuss your case with our San Luis Obispo hit-and-run attorney.

In addition to San Luis Obispo, our firm also handles cases in Avenal, Pismo Beach, Coalinga, Grover Beach, Wasco, Arroyo Grande, Greenfield, Morro Bay, Isla Vista, Atascadero, King City, Santa Maria, Goleta, Taft, and Lompoc.