I was asked recently by a Physiotherapist as to whether someone who had been injured in a hit and run car accident, could bring a claim, even when the motor vehicle that caused the accident could not be identified. My answer was a resounding “yes”.
Normally, the vehicle that caused the accident is able to be easily identified and the injured party’s personal injury lawyer is able to identify the CTP insurer of the vehicle by conducting a registration search electronically.
When all road users register their vehicles, CTP insurance is included under the registration so that if anyone is injured, the person who caused the accident is covered by that insurance and the injured person is able to obtain compensation for the pain and suffering and other loss and damage that they have suffered as a result of the accident.
When the vehicle cannot be identified, the injured person is unable to find out who the CTP insurer of that vehicle that caused the accident was. In those circumstances, a government entity called The Nominal Defendant acts as the insurer of the unidentified vehicle so that the person who has been injured through the fault of somebody else is still covered and is entitled to be compensated for their loss and damage.
Just be careful, however, as there are very strict time limits with respect to unidentified and unregistered vehicles. If anyone you know has been involved in a hit and run accident or any other accident where there is an unidentified vehicle, make sure that they seek legal advice urgently so that they do not lose their right to seek compensation from The Nominal Defendant.
- Sean Delpopolo