What Happens If Both Drivers Leave the Scene of an Accident?

what happens if both drivers leave the scene of an accident

Car accidents are never pleasant experiences. They can be chaotic, stressful, and sometimes even traumatic. In the aftermath of a collision, emotions run high, and people may react impulsively, sometimes making decisions they later regret. One such decision that can have serious legal ramifications is leaving the scene of an accident. But what happens if both drivers involved in a crash flee the scene? In this article, we’ll explore the legal implications of such actions, what steps should be taken, and how to navigate the complexities of the situation.

Understanding Hit and Run Accidents

When both drivers leave the scene of an accident without exchanging information or providing assistance, it’s commonly referred to as a hit and run accident. This scenario poses numerous challenges, both legally and ethically. Regardless of who is at fault, all parties involved in a motor vehicle accident are legally obligated to stop, exchange information, and render aid if necessary. Failure to do so can result in serious consequences.

Understanding Hit and Run Laws in Nevada

In Nevada, leaving the scene of an accident without fulfilling certain legal obligations is considered a hit and run, which is a serious offense. According to Nevada Revised Statutes (NRS) §484E.010, drivers involved in an accident resulting in property damage, injury, or death are required to stop immediately at the scene or as close to it as possible. They must then provide their name, address, vehicle registration number, and driver’s license information to the other parties involved, as well as to law enforcement if requested.

Failure to stop and fulfill these obligations can result in criminal charges, including misdemeanor or felony hit and run, depending on the severity of the accident and any resulting injuries or fatalities. Additionally, leaving the scene of an accident can have significant legal and financial consequences, including civil penalties, license suspension, and increased insurance premiums.

Leaving the scene of an accident can have significant legal consequences, including:

Criminal Charges

In Nevada, hit-and-run offenses can result in criminal charges, ranging from misdemeanors to felonies, depending on the severity of the accident and whether there are injuries or fatalities involved. Penalties may include fines, license suspension, and even imprisonment.

Civil Penalties

In addition to criminal charges, individuals who leave the scene of an accident may face civil penalties, such as being held liable for damages and injuries sustained by other parties. This can result in costly settlements or judgments against them.

Insurance Implications

Insurance companies take hit-and-run accidents seriously and may view them as evidence of negligence or recklessness. This could lead to higher premiums, policy cancellations, or difficulty obtaining coverage in the future.

Victims of hit-and-run accidents have the right to pursue legal action against the at-fault driver. This may include filing a personal injury lawsuit to seek compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.

Left the Accident Scene in Panic: What Should I Do Next?

If you left the accident scene in a panic, the most important next step is to remain calm and take action to rectify the situation. Here’s what you should do:

  1. Stop Safely: If you haven’t already, pull over to a safe location as soon as possible.

  2. Assess the Situation: Check for any injuries or damage to vehicles or property. If anyone requires medical attention, call 911 immediately.

  3. Return to the Scene: If it’s safe to do so, return to the accident scene. Leaving the scene of an accident is illegal and can have serious consequences.

  4. Report the Accident: Notify the authorities and report the accident. Provide them with all the necessary information, including your contact details, insurance details to file a police report and a description of what happened.

  5. Cooperate with Authorities: Answer any questions from the police honestly and accurately. It’s essential to cooperate with their investigation.

  6. Document the Incident: Take photos of the accident scene, including any damage to vehicles or property. Gather contact information from any witnesses.

  7. Contact Your Insurance Company: Inform your insurance provider about the accident and provide them with the details. They can advise you on the next steps and help you navigate the claims process.

  8. Seek Legal Counsel: Consider consulting with a car accident lawyer to understand your rights and legal options. They can guide you through the process and help protect your interests.

If you have been injured in a hit and run accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries, medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Even if the other driver cannot be identified or located, you may still have options for pursuing compensation through your own insurance policy.

Uninsured motorist coverage is designed to protect you in the event that you are injured by a responsible driver who does not have insurance or flees the scene of an accident. This coverage can help cover your medical expenses and other losses if you are involved in a hit and run or a collision with hit and run driver.

Additionally, if you have suffered serious injuries or significant damages as a result of a hit and run accident, you may want to consider consulting with an experienced personal injury attorney. A knowledgeable car accident attorney can help you understand your legal rights, navigate the insurance claims process, and pursue fair compensation for your injuries and losses.

How an Attorney Can Help You in a Hit-and-Run Accident

In the aftermath of leaving the scene of an accident, especially if you did so in a panic, seeking the assistance of an attorney can be immensely beneficial. Here’s how an attorney can help you in this car accident case:

  • Legal Guidance and Advice: An attorney offers tailored legal advice, explaining your rights and potential consequences after leaving the scene of an accident.

  • Representation: Your attorney serves as your advocate, managing communications with authorities, insurers, and other involved parties on your behalf.

  • Investigation: They conduct a thorough investigation, gathering evidence and interviewing witnesses to build a strong defense strategy.

  • Negotiation with Insurance Companies: Your attorney negotiates with insurers to secure fair compensation for property damage, medical expenses, and other losses.

  • Defense Against Criminal Charges: They mount a robust defense, challenging evidence and advocating for reduced charges or penalties if you face criminal allegations.

  • Protection of Rights: Throughout the legal process, your attorney safeguards your rights, ensuring fair treatment at every stage.

what happens if both drivers leave the scene of an accident

Leaving the scene of an accident is a serious offense with far-reaching consequences. Not only is it illegal, but it also jeopardizes the safety and well-being of those involved. If you find yourself in a hit and run situation, it’s essential to stay calm, assess the situation, and take appropriate action. By following the steps outlined above and seeking the guidance of legal counsel, you can protect your rights and pursue fair compensation for your damages. Remember, safety should always be the top priority, so never hesitate to seek medical help if needed.

If you’ve been involved in a hit and run accident or any other car collision, don’t navigate the legal complexities alone. Our experienced team at BLG is here to provide you with expert legal guidance and support every step of the way. Whether you’re seeking compensation for damages, dealing with insurance companies, or facing criminal charges, our experienced attorneys are ready to fight for your rights.

Contact us today for a free consultation.


Why you should never leave the scene of an accident?

Leaving the scene of an accident can result in further harm to any injured parties, obstruction of justice, and legal consequences. Staying allows for proper assessment of injuries, exchange of insurance information, and cooperation with authorities.

Is leaving the scene of an accident a felony?

Yes, leaving the scene of an accident can be classified as a felony, particularly if it involves injury or death. Penalties vary by jurisdiction but can include hefty fines, license suspension or revocation, and even imprisonment.

When one flees from a car accident scene?

When a driver flees from the scene of a car accident, it can be due to various reasons such as fear of consequences, panic, intoxication, or lack of insurance. However, leaving the scene is illegal and can exacerbate the situation.

What evidence is needed to convict a hit and run?

Evidence required to convict a hit and run typically includes eyewitness testimonies, surveillance footage, vehicle debris at the scene, damage assessment, and sometimes forensic analysis. Additionally, if the fleeing driver is caught, their confession or incriminating statements can also serve as evidence.

Related Posts

Free Case Evaluation

The evaluation is FREE! You do not have to pay anything to have an attorney evaluate your case.