Leaving the Scene of an Accident: The Worst Thing You Can do After a Car Crash
It can be tempting to want to drive away from a car crash. Maybe even though you weren’t at fault and the damage is minor, you have somewhere important to be and don’t feel you have time to deal with a car accident that day. Or there doesn’t appear to be any damage and you figure there’s no point in calling the police. Perhaps you think no one saw you hit the other vehicle and you can just drive away without any consequences. Regardless of your reasoning, leaving the scene of an accident, and not contacting the police, is a huge mistake with possible lasting consequences.
Leaving the Scene of an Accident Can Lead to Serious Legal Problems
The most important reason to stay at the scene of an accident is of course that it’s the law. Leaving the scene of an accident involving property damage can result in the conviction of a misdemeanor. And if you leave the scene of a more serious accident where someone was seriously hurt or even killed, it’s a felony under Miss. Code Annotated § 63-3-401. You can even face a fine of up to $10,000.
Leaving the scene of an accident can also result in a court suspending or revoking your driver’s license, preventing you from driving anywhere legally for a few months. In some cases, the police also may impound a vehicle involved in a hit and run.
From a civil perspective, leaving the scene of an accident will not help your case. Again, no matter your reasons, a judge or jury will wonder why you fled, and it will likely help the other party’s case. It’s also extremely likely that, one way or another, you will be found. Given the rampant spread of technology, it is very likely that a nearby camera, either adjacent to a building or in a pedestrian’s hands, will record the accident as it occurs and assist the police in tracking you down.
That’s why if you’re involved in an accident, the best thing you can do is collect yourself, contact the police, and wait for them to arrive to take a report.
Contact Us For Help With Your Case
If you’ve been involved in a car accident, it’s important to stay calm and have an attorney on your side who can protect your legal rights. If you or a loved one has recently been involved in a car accident in Mississippi, an experienced Mississippi personal injury attorney at the Law Offices of Judy Guice can help. Contact our office today for an initial consultation.