Hit-and-Run Cases: How They Are Set­tled

Consumer Voice - - Car Insurance - Claims Pro­ce­dure

The Mo­tor Ve­hi­cles Act, 1988, is a piece of so­cial leg­is­la­tion and its pro­vi­sions are de­signed to pro­tect the rights of road-ac­ci­dent vic­tims where the iden­tity of the mo­tor ve­hi­cle caus­ing the ac­ci­dent can­not be es­tab­lished. The rel­e­vant legal pro­vi­sion is en­shrined in Sec­tion 161 of the Act where a ‘hit-and-run mo­tor ac­ci­dent’ is de­fined as an ac­ci­dent aris­ing out of the use of a mo­tor ve­hi­cle or mo­tor ve­hi­cles the iden­tity whereof can­not be as­cer­tained in spite of rea­son­able ef­forts for the pur­pose.

This Sec­tion pro­vides for com­pen­sa­tion (so­latium) as fol­lows: In re­spect of the death of any per­son re­sult­ing from a hit-and-run mo­tor ac­ci­dent, now a fixed sum of Rs 25,000 In re­spect of griev­ous hurt to any per­son re­sult­ing from a hit-and-run mo­tor ac­ci­dent, now a fixed sum of Rs 12,500



The vic­tim of the ‘hit-and-run’ ve­hi­cle or his legal rep­re­sen­ta­tive shall make an ap­pli­ca­tion to the claims en­quiry of­fi­cer in the rel­e­vant taluka. Af­ter due en­quiries, the claims en­quiry of­fi­cer will sub­mit a re­port to­gether with the cer­tifi­cate of post-mortem or the in­jury cer­tifi­cate to the claims set­tle­ment com­mis­sioner, who is ei­ther the dis­trict col­lec­tor or the deputy com­mis­sioner at the dis­trict level. He will process the claims and sanc­tion the pay­ment within 15 days from the re­ceipt of re­port from the claims en­quiry of­fi­cer and com­mu­ni­cate the sanc­tion or­der to the nom­i­nated of­fice of the in­sur­ance com­pany.

Com­pen­sa­tions un­der hit-and-run ac­ci­dent cases are made from a So­latium Fund which is man­aged by the In­sur­ance Reg­u­la­tory and Devel­op­ment Author­ity or any other agency spec­i­fied by the Cen­tral Gov­ern­ment. In­sur­ance com­pa­nies make such con­tri­bu­tion to the fund as the Cen­tral Gov­ern­ment may, from time to time, by or­der spec­ify. The ad­min­is­tra­tion of claims is done by New In­dia As­sur­ance Co. Ltd, which has nom­i­nated one di­vi­sional manager in each dis­trict at dis­trict-level com­mit­tee, which is headed by the dis­trict col­lec­tor.

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