South Carolina Hit and Run Drivers Face Criminal Charges

In South Carolina, a driver who leaves the scene of a car crash can lose driving privileges and be charged with a misdemeanor or a felony as follows:

Property Damage Only (Unattended Vehicle)

Misdemeanor with at least 30 days of jail time or $100 fine.

Property Damage Only (Attended Vehicle)

Misdemeanor with up to one year of jail time or $100 to $5,000 fine.

Minor Personal Injury

Misdemeanor with 30 days to one year of jail time or $100 to $5,000 fine.

Great Bodily Injury

Felony with 30 days to 10 years of jail time and $5,000 to $10,000 fine.


Felony with one to 25 years of jail time and $10,000 to $25,000 fine.

Compensation for Damages Following a South Carolina Hit and Run Car Accident

Even if the at-fault driver is caught, prosecuted, and convicted, the conviction will not compensate you for your car accident injuries and damages.

Instead, you have the right to pursue fair compensation from the hit and run driver or your own insurance company if the hit and run driver is never identified or doesn't have insurance. Fair compensation in hit and run cases may include but are not limited to past and future:

  • Medical bills
  • Lost income
  • Out-of-pocket costs
  • Physical pain
  • Emotional suffering

An experienced car accident lawyer will fight for your fair recovery.

What Happens if the Hit and Run Driver Is Never Found

If the driver who hit you is never caught or is uninsured, you still might be able to get compensation through your own car insurance company. If you have uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, you can file a claim with your own insurance company. However, they might try to dispute, deny, or devalue your claim in order to offer you a low settlement. 

You may have a right to compensation in hit and run car accident cases if three things occur:

  1. You, or someone on your behalf, reported the accident to the police within a reasonable amount of time after the accident occurred.
  2. You, or your vehicle, had physical contact with the unknown vehicle, or you have an eyewitness who will sign an affidavit about what happened.
  3.  You did everything reasonably possible to determine the other driver's identity and vehicle at the time of the accident.

If you are able to satisfy these three conditions, you have a viable Uninsured Motorist Claim.  The claim is against the at-fault party, but your insurance company pays the damages from your uninsured motorist coverage. In South Carolina, you must carry uninsured motorist coverage in the amount of $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident.  However, $25,000 can disappear in one helicopter flight, one night in the hospital, or one surgery.  Our South Carolina car accident attorneys suggest you have at least $250,000 per person in uninsured motorist coverage.  The increased insurance cost is usually only a few dollars a month and is essential if you're hurt in an unsolved hit and run accident.

Dirk J. Derrick
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South Carolina Lawyer Dirk Derrick helps victims recover from car accidents, personal injury & wrongful death.