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How to Defend against a Hit and Run Charge

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What Are Hit and Run Charges?

Hit and run charges may result when a person is involved in an automobile accident, but then leaves the scene before they can leave their information with the other parties involved. State laws require all persons who are involved in an accident to exchange important information such as:

  • Names Contact info
  • Driver’s license and plate numbers
  • Insurance information
  • Information regarding injuries
  • Other important details of the accident

Failure to exchange or provide information can result in legal charges, and possibly even criminal consequences. These may result in misdemeanor consequences such as a fine or short jail time, or even felony consequences depending on the circumstances.

Defenses for a Hit & Run

As in any criminal case, there may be some defenses available depending on the facts of the case. Some of these may include:

  • Response to an emergency: It may be a defense if a driver was in an accident en route to a hospital or in the middle of an emergency situation
  • Intoxication (involuntary): Intoxication can be a defense, but usually only if the person was involuntary intoxicated (for instance, if they were drugged without their knowledge)
  • Unaware of an injury: It can sometimes be a defense if the person did not actually know that they struck another driver or pedestrian. This can sometimes be difficult to prove, and different jurisdictions may have different rules for such situations

When proving a hit and run defense, it often helps to have additional sources, such as witness testimony, police reports, or video/photo evidence. These can help verify the claims of the defendant as they raise their defense.

Do I Need a Lawyer for Help with Hit and Run Defenses?

Hit and run can sometimes be difficult to prove, and it can also be difficult to defend against. This is because these types of incidents often happen very quickly and with little documentation or evidence. You may wish to contact a criminal defense lawyer if you need help with a hit and run case. Your attorney can provide you with legal representation during the process and can also keep you informed of your rights and options.

Photo of page author Jose Rivera

, LegalMatch Legal Writer

Last Modified: 11-08-2016 04:14 PM PST

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