Is Leaving the Scene a Crime?
What's Going to Happen to Me?
Will this Show on a Background Check?
Will I go to Jail?
Will I Lose my Job?
Can't I just plea to a traffic infraction?
Your leaving the scene questions
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In Florida, it is a 2nd degree misdemeanor punishable by 60 days jail and a $500 fine to leave the scene of an accident with property damage. Florida link to the statute, click here.
Requirements Under the Law
In order to comply with the statute, once involved in an accident involving damage, you must take the following actions:
(1) The driver of any vehicle involved in a crash resulting in injury to or death of any person or damage to any vehicle or other property which is driven or attended by any person shall give his or her name, address, and the registration number of the vehicle he or she is driving, and shall upon request and if available exhibit his or her license or permit to drive, to any person injured in such crash or to the driver or occupant of or person attending any vehicle or other property damaged in the crash and shall give such information and, upon request, exhibit such license or permit to any police officer at the scene of the crash or who is investigating the crash and shall render to any person injured in the crash reasonable assistance, including the carrying, or the making of arrangements for the carrying, of such person to a physician, surgeon, or hospital for medical or surgical treatment if it is apparent that treatment is necessary, or if such carrying is requested by the injured person.
(2) In the event none of the persons specified are in condition to receive the information to which they otherwise would be entitled under subsection (1), and no police officer is present, the driver of any vehicle involved in such crash, after fulfilling all other requirements of s. 316.027 and subsection (1), insofar as possible on his or her part to be performed, shall forthwith report the crash to the nearest office of a duly authorized police authority and submit thereto the information specified in subsection (1).
(3) The statutory duty of a person to make a report or give information to a law enforcement officer making a written report relating to a crash shall not be construed as extending to information which would violate the privilege of such person against self-incrimination.
(4) A violation of this section is a noncriminal traffic infraction, punishable as a nonmoving violation as provided in chapter 318.
If you leave the scene of a crash that involves and injury, you could be charged with a third degree felony, punishable by 5 years prison and/or a $5000 fine. To read the statute, click here.
There are defenses to these charges. Often times, people charges with this crime were unaware that there was any contact with another vehicle or that there was any damage. Sometimes people who are charged with this crime did go back to the scene but can not find the other vehicle involved. As with most crimes, knowledge is an element of the crime the state must prove. We have been successful having these case reduced to a non-criminal non-moving civil infraction of failure to leave information pursuant to 316.062.
If you or a loved one has been charged with Leaving the Scene of an Accident with Property Damage or Leaving the Scene of an Accident with Injuries, call The Adams Law Firm for a free Consultation.
Call toll free: (321) 314-2828