When drivers hit another vehicle and flee the scene, they are breaking the law. Drivers who leave the scene of an accident may be monetarily liable for their victims’ damages. They may also face fines, jail time, and other penalties in criminal court.
With the help of a Las Vegas hit and run accident lawyer with Ben Crump Law, PLLC, you can attempt to make the hit and run driver who harmed you, your family member, or your property pay for their negligent, reckless, and illegal decision to leave the scene. To learn more, call our office at (800) 598-7557.
Nevada Hit and Run Laws
Nevada has laws in place governing what drivers should do after an accident. According to Nevada Revised Statutes § 485E.010, drivers are legally obligated to stop after a crash. For all accidents involving death, bodily injury, or property damages, drivers must remain at the scene until they have:
- Provided their name, address, phone number, vehicle registration number, and proof of driver’s license to the driver or occupant of the other vehicles involved
- Provided the same information to any law enforcement officer called to the scene
- Manually surrender their driver’s license to the officer if requested
- Provide reasonable aide to anyone injured in the crash, including transporting or arranging transportation for any injured individuals to a doctor or hospital
- Drivers who hit and damage unattended vehicles are required to stop and attempt to locate the vehicle’s owner. If this cannot be done, they are required to leave their contact information.
Under the law, drivers who leave the scene of an accident involving injuries or death are guilty of a category B felony. This offense is punishable by a minimum of up to two years in jail and a maximum sentence of 20 years. Fines between $2,000 and $5,000 will be imposed. The law also states that anyone who purposefully fails or refuses to report a crash may have their driving privileges suspended.
If you were the victim of a hit and run, you can make a crash report by filling out a Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) Report of Traffic Accident. This should be done within 10 days of your accident.
For a free legal consultation with a hit and run accidents lawyer serving Las Vegas, call (800) 598-7557
Why Drivers Leave the Scene
For many of us, it is unthinkable that we could hit and injure another driver, pedestrian, or bicyclist and not stop to help. Drivers flee the scene more often than you may expect. According to the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, in 2015, there were more than 730,000 hit-and-run crashes in the United States. That amounts to one hit and run accident every 43 seconds.
AAA found that drivers are more likely to leave the scene:
- At night
- On less trafficked roads or areas where there are fewer potential witnesses
- When they have been drinking
- When they have been driving without a license or insurance
- When they have past offenses on their driving record
No matter what the reasons, failing to stop and get help after an accident is wrong. Fleeing the scene can mean a delay in medical treatment for the victims. If the victim’s injuries are severe, getting help immediately could be the difference between life and death. Even if the accident involved an unattended vehicle, it is unethical to drive away and leave the owner stuck with the cost of repairs.
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What to Do After a Hit and Run
The more information you can provide to law enforcement after your crash, the more likely it is they may find the driver who hit you. Try to record everything you can remember about where and when the crash happened, including the time of day and weather conditions. You should also write down anything you can remember about the vehicle that hit you, such as its color, make, model, license plate number, any distinguishing features, and the direction it was headed.
Damages caused by a hit and run may be covered by your own automobile insurance policy if you have purchased additional protection against uninsured motorists. Some states require this coverage, but Nevada is not one of them. If you do have protection, a Las Vegas hit and run accident lawyer may be able to help you negotiate an insurance claim.
If you do not have uninsured motorist coverage, your only option for compensation may be through the hit and run driver. If the driver is caught, you may be able to file a claim with their insurance provider. You also have the option of seeking damages in a civil lawsuit.
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In a car accident lawsuit, you can use your medical records and bills to prove you have suffered damages. Your attorney can use these costs, as well as your past and future lost wages, the cost of your vehicle damages, and the cost of prospective medical needs to calculate the economic damages you may be owed. Your lawyer can also help you seek non-economic damages for your physical suffering and emotional and mental anguish.
In a hit and run, your lawyer may also argue that the defendant should be punished with punitive damages in car accident cases involving a driver under the influence of alcohol or drugs. This is to punish the defendant for acting recklessly and deterring others from acting in the same way.
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Dedicated to Serving Victims
At Ben Crump Law, PLLC, we believe that no one is above the law. Hit and run drivers should be punished financially for the harm they have caused in addition to criminal penalties they may face.
To help you in your pursuit of justice, a Las Vegas hit and run accident lawyer can take your case on contingency. You will pay nothing for our services unless we win your case. To learn more, call our offices at (800) 598-7557.
Call or text (800) 598-7557 or complete a Free Case Evaluation form