Leaving the Scene of an Accident Involving Injury

If you were involving in a traffic crash or accident involving personal injury or serious bodily injury to another person, then remain at the scene and call for help. If you leave the scene then you can be charged with a criminal offense, either a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on whether another person was injured, and whether the injury is considered "serious bodily injury."

If you have already left the scene then a criminal investigation has begun. In many of these cases, a law enforcement officer might be looking for you, especially if a witness at the scene got the license plate number of the vehicle that you were driving.

Within a few hours, days or weeks after the crash, an investigating officer might come knocking on your door to interrogate you about the crash. If you retain an attorney, the attorney can help you assert your right to remain silent and your right to have an attorney representing you at every stage of the case. An attorney can contact the investigating officer on your behalf.

Attorneys for Leaving the Scene with Injury in Salt Lake County, Utah

The attorneys at Brown, Bradshaw & Moffat, LLP represent men and women involving in leaving the scene of an accident with property damage, personal injury, or serious bodily injury. If you are under investigation for violating Utah Code § 41-6a-401.3(2)(a), then call us to discuss your case.

We are experienced in representing clients after a misdemeanor or felony accusation that they were involved in a "hit and run" crash with injury in Salt Lake City or the surrounding areas in Utah. Call (801) 532-5297 today.

Overview of Leaving the Scene of an Accident Involving Injury in Utah

  • Utah Code § 41-6a-401.3 for Leaving the Scene of an Accident
  • Penalties for Leaving the Scene of an Accident with Injury
  • Utah Code § 41-6a-401.5. Accident involving death
  • Additional Resources

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Utah Code § 41-6a-401.3 for Leaving the Scene of an Accident

Under § 41-6a-401.3(2)(a), if the driver of a vehicle who has reason to believe that the operator may have been involved in an accident resulting in injury to a person, then the driver is required to do all of the following:

  1. immediately stop the vehicle at the scene of the accident or as close to it as possible without obstructing traffic more than is necessary; and
  2. remain at the scene of the accident until the operator has fulfilled the requirements of Section 41-6a-401.7.

The term “reason to believe” is defined to mean “information from which a reasonable person would believe that the person may have been involved in an accident.”

The term “serious bodily injury” is defined to mean “bodily injury which involves a substantial risk of death, unconsciousness, extreme physical pain, protracted and obvious disfigurement, or protracted loss or impairment of the function of a bodily member, organ, or mental faculty.”

If the driver has reason to believe that the operator may have been involved in an accident only after leaving the scene of the accident, the operator shall immediately comply as nearly as possible with the requirements of Section 41-6a-401.7.

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Penalties for Leaving the Scene of an Accident with Injury

The crime of leaving the scene of a crash involving injury to a person is punishable as a class A misdemeanor if the accident resulted in injury to any person. A minimum fine of $750 is required. The crime can be charged as a third degree felony if the accident resulted in serious bodily injury to a person and the fine can not be less than $750.

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Utah Code § 41-6a-401.5. Accident involving death

If a driver of a vehicle who has reason to believe that he or she may have been involved in an accident resulting in the death, the person is required to do all of the following:

  1. immediately stop the vehicle at the scene of the accident or as close to it as possible without obstructing traffic more than is necessary; and
  2. remain at the scene of the accident until the operator has fulfilled the requirements of Section 41-6a-401.7.

If the operator has reason to believe that the operator may have been involved in an accident only after leaving the scene of the accident, the operator shall immediately comply as nearly as possible with the requirements of Section 41-6a-401.7.

Any person who violates the provisions of § 41-6a-401.5, for an accident involving death can be charged with a third degree felony. The penalty includes a fine of not less than $750.

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Additional Resources

Utah Code § 41-6a-401.3. Hit and Run Accident involving Injury - Visit the website of the Utah State Legislature to read the complete statutory language under Utah Criminal Code Section 41-6a-401 for hit and run accidents involving injury under Title 41 of Chapter 6a in Part 4 for accident responsibilities. Find the statutory definition of “reason to believe” and “serious bodily injury.” Also, find out more about the penalties if the crime is charged as a class A misdemeanor or a third degree felony.

Utah Code § 41-6a-401.5. Hit and Run Accident involving Death - The website for the State Legislature in Utah provides the statutory language for Utah Criminal Code Section 41-6a-401.5 which describes the penalties for a hit and run accident involving death.

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Finding an Attorney for Hit and Run Involving Property Damage

If you were involving in a crash involving either property damage, personal injury or serious bodily injury, then contact an experienced criminal defense attorney in Salt Lake City, Utah, at Brown, Bradshaw & Moffat, LLP. We can help you at every stage of the case.

We also represent people charged under Utah Code § 41-6a-404(5) with giving information in an accident report when knowing or having reason to believe that the information is false. Providing false information in an accident report can be charged as a class A misdemeanor. Many of these cases also involve an accusation of reckless driving or driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Call (801) 532-5297 today to discuss your case and possible defenses to a felony or misdemeanor charge. Don’t speak to any law enforcement officer until after you have retained a traffic crimes attorney to help you with the criminal investigation.

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