When a major car accident happens, many people’s first instinct is to leave the scene so that they can recover mentally and physically. However, abandoning the scene of an accident before it can be handled properly can get you into a lot of trouble with the law.
What happens if you leave the scene of an accident, and what should you do afterward?
It’s important that you understand the process involved if you leave the scene of a car accident so you know what to expect. Here is a brief but complete summary of the process involved as well as what steps you should take after the accident.
How the Process Begins
If the offending party involved in the car accident leaves the scene, police will still be called and an investigation will commence. They will record any notes from the scene of the accident, speak with any witnesses involved, and scope out the damage to the other vehicle.
The officers involved have a variety of ways to detect evidence, from any surveillance footage around the area to the paint left behind on the other vehicle. If they are able to find sufficient evidence, they will go to the address of the suspect for further interviews.
How Can You Be Charged?
Fleeing the scene of an accident is a major offense, and you can be charged. The various charges that you can be given if the other party is unharmed include but are not limited to:
- Failure to stop at the scene
- Failure to give assistance
- Failure to exchange information
- Failure to report the accident to local authorities
If the other party is injured, however, your charges can be far worse. You are capable of being fined heavily and can face up to ten years in jail for the offense. In this instance, you can easily lose your license as well as face charges on your criminal record.
What Measures You Should Take
After fleeing the scene of an accident, you will likely look more guilty to any court of law you are sent to after the incident. You should contact a lawyer immediately for assistance and advice on your next steps.
If you want to mitigate the consequences of fleeing the scene, it’s advisable that you turn yourself into the local authorities and explain your actions. If you have any questions or concerns about your options, there is more info here for you to access.
What Happens If You Leave the Scene of an Accident
Knowing what happens if you leave the scene of an accident is crucial to protecting yourself from serious legal trouble. When in doubt, it’s important for you to contact a lawyer for advice on your next steps.
Have you been involved in an accident where the offender fled the scene? How did you solve the issue?
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