Hey all.

Recently, a car ran into my legally parked car early in the morning.

When I found my car hit, strangely, the other car was still there with their lights on and keys in the ignition. It appeared whomever was driving fled.

Fortunately, when the police was called, one of the officers found insurance information for the car that hit mine. We took the make, model, year, and licence plate numbers down on the report.

The officers left, however I'm not sure if they are going to attempt to search out the registered owner or not. Guess I could call to see if they are or not.

Anyway, I then had the other car towed away and mine towed to a nearby auto body shop. They gave me a preliminary estimate for repairs.

I then used the car insurance that was found in the other car, called and filed a claim.

The same day the insurance I called had an insurance adjuster/appraiser come look at my car. They considered the damages to notably exceed the first estimate, and considered it 'totaled'.

Now, the other car's insurance is attempting to contact the registered owner. They mentioned that if there is difficulty in reaching the owner, the insurance to blame may deny making a reimbursement/compensation payment for my damages.

I then later called my own insurance and notified them of what happened in its entirety.

Now...if my claim is denied by the at fault person and their insurance, is their any consolation for me? Shall I hire a lawyer and sue in small claims or civil court (for damages/rental car/lawyer fees) since the damages estimated are borderline ~$5,000 +/- 1,000?

Could this be a successful alternative if their insurance refuses to help me out? Or should I bite the bullet and go through my own insurance...risking an increased premium for something that was not my fault?

Thank you for any advice.

=o)