Irvine Incident

Sneaky Girk

I’m trying to help my roommate’s sister understand her options. Earlier this week, she decided to visit a former high school friend at UC Irvine for a few days. She had been planning the trip for several months and was extremely excited about it. Things were going well until last night, when she called my roommate from a hospital. Apparently, my roommate’s sister has been involved in a hit and run accident around the college campus. She was thankfully and miraculously uninjured. However, my roommate’s parents were unaware that her sister had even traveled across the country and hasn’t told them yet. This has my roommate trying to figure out what to do to help. What are you supposed to do in these scenarios, and is it necessary to inform her parents about the accident?

This sounds an awful lot like one sibling covering for another. It’s safe to say that these rare and unfortunate scenarios are precisely why parents want their children to keep them informed. It’s also safe to say that many otherwise responsible children neglect those wishes much to parental chagrin. The first order of business should be reflecting on whether or not secrecy is the best strategy.

There are pros and cons to consider either way. Given the fact that your roommate’s sister was only visiting temporarily, it’s reasonable to assume that she was hit as a pedestrian rather than a motorist, especially if the incident occurred near the college campus. It’s too late to change the course of events now, but suffice it to say there are crucial steps one can and should take when hit by a car. People take leisurely strolls for granted.

Researchers at NPR reported only a few years ago that hit-and-run deaths are increasing yet holding the culprits accountable remains exceedingly difficult. Those lucky enough to survive an accident can still have to recover from delayed onset injuries that could emerge days, weeks, months, possibly years later. That’s strong motivation to contemplate these eleven situations where you need a lawyer. Chief among the items on the list is an injury resulting from a car accident.

Unfortunately, enlisting the aid of an expert accident lawyer for your roommate’s sister isn’t necessarily inexpensive. However, you can’t deny or underestimate the value of consulting with a personal injury attorney. The reality is that she should likely submit a formal claim to the California DMV. Unless she has experience doing that or plans to incur legal fees alone, then it’s one more reason to reconsider secrecy.

Having an accurate police report would definitely be helpful in this case, too, as any legal advisor is sure to convey. This doesn’t imply having to press criminal charges or anything of the sort. The police report is instead used to support any related insurance claims and filings, which brings us to the concluding point. There will inevitably be some kind of bill or receipt associated with the hospital visit. One can only assume that your roommate’s sister has her own insurance plan or shares a sponsored family plan. If the latter is true, then it’s only a matter of time before the parents would unearth the incident.

Ponder this guidance carefully with your roommate.

“Believe you can and you’re halfway there.” -- Theodore Roosevelt

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