If you are ever involved in a road traffic accident, you must adhere to various legal requirements following a collision to ensure everyone’s safety and your financial security. If you don’t, you may face serious consequences as a result of your failure to follow the law.
If you want to ensure you adhere to the law following a collision, you should read about the six legal implications of a road traffic accident.
- Never Drive Away from the Scene
If you collide with another vehicle or passenger, you have a legal requirement to stop. If you don’t, this will be classed as a hit-and-run, which is a crime in most US states. The penalties will also vary from state to state.
For instance, a hit-and-run is classed as a third-degree felony in Texas if it involves a serious or fatal injury, and even less severe injuries are punishable by up to five years in prison. While leaving the scene without reporting it is classed as a traffic infraction in New York.
- Stop After a Road Traffic Accident Even If You’re Innocent
It is a legal requirement for drivers to stop after a road traffic accident, even if there was no other vehicle involved in a collision. You must adhere to this law if another person or an animal is injured as a result of the collision, or if your vehicle or property is damaged. You must also pull over if you collide with a road sign, bollard, or street lamp. You should then ring the appropriate emergency services to attend to the scene, such as the police or ambulance service.
- A Fault or No-Fault System
It is crucial to learn more about state law following a road traffic accident. For example, South Carolina follows a fault system when two or more vehicles collide and will determine who is liable for the damage following an accident.
However, many other US states follow a no-fault system, which require a driver who experienced a car accident to turn to their own insurance to pay for any damage, even if an accident wasn’t their fault.
- Seek Compensation
If you were involved in a car accident that wasn’t your fault, you have a legal right to seek compensation. A personal injury claim could help to restore your finances, as it could cover the cost of your medical bills, vehicle damage, and loss of income. If you think you deserve compensation following a car accident, visit the-compensation-experts.co.uk today.
- File an Accident Report with the DMV
Various states have specific laws regarding filing an accident report with either the DMV or the police. It’s crucial to understand your legal requirements after a collision, so you will follow the necessary steps.
- Call Your Insurer
Various insurance providers will state within a policy how long you have to report an accident. If you fail to contact them within this time period, they do not legally need to pay for the collision. For this reason, you must review your policy and ensure you contact them as soon as possible to notify them about an accident or to make an auto insurance claim.