Failing to Remain at the Scene of an Accident

It can be an offence to leave the scene of an accident in certain circumstances.  If you are driving a car, a boat or even flying an airplane and get into an accident with another person or vehicle you have a responsibility to remain at the scene and provide certain information.  You must give your name and address and, where any person has been injured or appears to require assistance, offer assistance.  If you do not provide this information there is an automatic presumption that you were trying to avoid civil or criminal liability, which is what is required for the prosecutor to prove the case.

The conseuqneces of conviction can be severe.  In cases where a person is serioulsy injured or has died, a substantial jail sentence may be imposed. Nevertheless, a lawyer can assist in defending against these charges, even in situations where you have not provided the appropriate information.  For instance, one possible defence is that the driver was unaware that he or she was in an accident or may have believed that he or she had simply struck an animal wandering onto the road.  The viability of such defences will depend on the particular circumstances.


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