Between 2012 and 2021, Florida had over 710,000 hit-and-run crashes. These can range from small bumps to serious crashes where people get hurt or even die. If you’re in a crash, you must stay at the scene, especially if there’s damage, someone gets hurt, or there’s a death.

Leaving the scene can get you into big trouble, including having to pay fines. The more serious the crash, the bigger the trouble you could face. Keep reading to learn about the rules and what you should do instead.

Florida Laws

In Florida, you need to call the police if there’s an accident that hurts someone, leads to a death, or causes damage that looks like it might cost $500 or more to fix. Since it’s hard to tell how much damage there is just by looking, it’s best to call the police if you see any damage.

It’s better to call the police and not need them than to not call and end up in trouble. Not calling the police can lead to fines. If someone gets seriously hurt or dies, you could be facing even bigger fines and might lose your driving license if it’s considered a felony.

If you run away from an accident, you’ll likely face more serious charges and penalties than if you had stayed and called the police.

They will find you if you run. Defending yourself becomes much harder if you flee.

Crashes Involving Vehicle or Property Damage

If you leave the scene of an accident that causes damage, you could be charged with a second-degree misdemeanor. In Florida, this can mean:

  • Up to 60 days in jail
  • Up to six months of probation
  • A fine of $500 plus $5 for the Emergency Medical Services Trust Fund

If someone gets hurt, the penalties go up.

Crashes Involving Injuries

Leaving a crash site when someone’s hurt, but no one died, is a third-degree felony in Florida. 

The law must prove you knew about the crash and that someone was hurt, and that you didn’t stay to help.

The penalties can include:

  • Up to five years in prison
  • Fines up to $5,000
  • Up to five years of probation

Crashes Involving Death

If you leave a crash site where someone died, it’s a first-degree felony. You could face:

  • Up to 30 years in prison
  • Fines up to $10,000
  • Up to 30 years of probation

Administrative Penalties

Besides criminal charges, you can also lose your license for leaving a crash site with injuries or deaths.

Your Duties After a Crash

If you’re in a crash, you need to:

  • Stay at the scene
  • Give your contact info, like your name and address
  • Provide your vehicle’s registration number
  • Show your driver’s license
  • Call an ambulance if needed

If you hit a parked car, try to find the owner if you can’t, leave your info and details about the crash. You don’t have to stay until the owner comes back.

Don’t Leave the Scene of the Incident

People run from crash scenes for many reasons, usually trying to avoid trouble. Maybe they’re driving under the influence, have a suspended license, or there’s a warrant for their arrest. But running almost guarantees the police will find you, which will lead to more trouble.

Leaving makes things worse. It’s best to stay, deal with what happens, and if you’re taken to the police station, call a lawyer right away.

This post was written by a professional at Ticket Shield. Ticket Shield understands that life can sometimes throw unexpected challenges your way. That’s why Ticket Shield is here to help you navigate through legal roadblocks when you need it most. Their team of experienced lawyers specializes in a range of traffic-related legal matters, ensuring you have the best defense possible. Types of teams available:

  • Traffic Ticket Lawyer
  • DUI Lawyer 
  • Speeding Ticket Lawyer
  • Reckless Driving Lawyer
  • Suspended License Lawyer
  • Red Light Ticket Lawyer
  • Stop Sign Ticket Lawyer
  • Seat Belt Ticket Lawyer

Don’t let traffic tickets or driving-related charges weigh you down. Contact our Speeding Ticket Lawyer in Broward County today for a free consultation, and let Ticket Shield be your shield in the legal arena. Your peace of mind is their priority!