A hit and run is a serious crime, one that can be punishable by fines and even jail time. These penalties vary from state to state, but in most cases, a hit-and-run will be considered a misdemeanor.
(Looking for a Car Accident Lawyer? Contact us Today! Click here: car and truck accident lawyers)
The law requires you to stop the moment an accident occurs, exchange information, and offer assistance to any injured people at the crash scene. If you do not, the other driver may file criminal charges against you.
You also have a duty to report your accident, whether you were at fault or not. This is a simple and important part of your responsibility as a driver. The laws for this differ in different states, but in general, you are required to give your name and address, make contact with anyone who was in the vehicle, and provide assistance if someone needs it.
In some states, a hit and run will be classified as a Class C misdemeanor. This means that you can face up to 60 days in jail and a $500 fine for the accident. If the accident results in property damage, you can get up to 8 points added to your license.
Many people think that they do not need to report an accident because it is unlikely that anyone will know about it. This is a misconception.
Some people who have been involved in an accident will try to avoid reporting it, believing that they do not have to. Others do not want to face the potential consequences of a conviction.
The statute of limitations for most misdemeanor offenses is one year from the date of the incident, but this can be extended up to three years if the incident involves death or serious bodily injury.
Regardless of how long it takes to file criminal charges, a prosecutor will be able to use evidence that is gathered during the investigation into the case as they pursue their legal options. For example, police may administer a breathalyzer test to determine if the defendant was under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of the accident.
If the prosecutor is able to find the defendant and prove that they were intoxicated at the time of the crash, then the hit and run may be charged as a DWI. The penalty for this type of case will depend on the severity of the incident and the defendant’s previous criminal record.
For this reason, it is very important to speak with a lawyer as soon as possible after an accident. This will help you understand your legal options and find out what the best course of action is for your case.
A hit-and-run can be a very serious situation, so don’t make any decisions until you have spoken with a lawyer who knows the law and your rights as a victim. This will allow you to make the right choices and protect your rights during this difficult time in your life.