Drivers leaving the scene of an injury accident are breaking the law. This is certainly true where they were to blame for the accident. It is an offence not to report an accident within 24 hours of it happening.
The same of course is true of those who drive off after a road crash involving other vehicles. UK traffic laws state that if you are involved in a road traffic accident which causes injury to another person, his property or an animal and don’t give your contact details to ‘anyone who has reasonable grounds for requiring it’ you can be taken to court and punished. Penalties can vary from a fine, penalty points on the licence, a driving disqualification (and fine) and even imprisonment.
If you’ve been the victim of a road accident you didn’t cause and the offender has fled, then under accident law you have every right to sue for compensation. In such a situation, that person being found by the police and prosecuted in a criminal court, then such a conviction would add gravitas to your claim for compensation.
When you call Accident Advice Helpline we can put into play a claim action against the injuring party on your behalf. You case will be referred to one of our personal injury solicitors who will enter into a no-win, no-fee agreement with you to handle your claim under accident law, in the most efficient and effective way possible. One of our phone advisers will run through a 30-second test to confirm that the accident was not your fault, that it happened within the last three years and that you received medical attention following the injury accident.
It is against the law for someone to leave a car crash for which they were responsible. They would have little defence in accident law other than that they would have to prove that they didn’t know they had caused the accident or that they were afraid for their safety if it might result in a heated confrontation with others at the accident scene.
However, ignorance of the law is really no defence and the offending party would have to have exceptional reasons for leaving the accident scene and then not reporting their involvement in it to the police within 24 hours. In recent years, the Accident Advice Helpline legal experts have noted that – particularly in the case of serious road accidents – police prosecutors have taken a dim view of offenders leaving it as long as a whole day after the accident before contacting the authorities.
Sadly, it is a common practice and one of the main reasons drivers make a swift exit and not give their details is that they are uninsured. In such cases, by absenting themselves, they would be subject to even greater penalties in the criminal court. It could even result in a jail sentence for the uninsured driver who had caused serious injury to another and then escaped the scene, never intending to make himself known to the police.
The injury solicitors who comprise the Accident Advice Helpline in-house legal team are professionals in accident law. Road accident compensation claims occupy a large part of their workload. In effect, you would be in good hands for winning your case. Simply call Accident Advice Helpline on our numbers 0800 689 0500 or 0333 500 0993 from a mobile.
Date Published: 26th January 2013
Author: David Brown