Failure to Stop or Report an Accident
You may think that to be guilty of failing to stop or report an accident you must have collided with another vehicle and driven off without exchanging details. Whilst that would be a more serious example of failing to stop/report an accident, you would still be brought before the Courts for doing something as minor as lightly scraping another vehicle in a car park, clipping a wing mirror or backing into a fence post. Even when the damage seems relatively minimal, the sentences handed down can be severe. This is particularly unfair when, like many, you may have been the victim of a similar car park scrape where the culprit has walked away scott-free!
Failure to stop/report an accident is a an offence which is treated very seriously by the Courts, and could result in up to ten points on your licence (possibly resulting in totting up), community service or even a prison sentence.
Unfortunately, if you’ve been summonsed to Court for this offence, it is highly likely that the police have obtained some form of evidence that damage was caused by your vehicle.
The Law on failure to Stop/Report an accident
You must stop, and either provide your details or report any accident which:
- Causes injury to another person
- Causes damage to another vehicle or its trailer
- Causes injury to an animal
- Causes damage to property
If you failed to meet the above requirements then you face a fine, between 5-10 penalty points on your licence, an instant ban from driving for up to 12 months, community service, or up to 26 weeks in custody.
The sentencing options available to the Court can be found here:
In many cases, the police also tag on an additional offence of careless driving where the accident occurred because the standard of driving fell below what is expected of a reasonably competent driver. Again, the simple fact of the accident is usually enough to satisfy the elements of the offence.
How our Specialist Failure to Stop/Report an Accident Solicitors can Help You
It may be that you are being wrongly prosecuted for failing to stop and report an accident. Sometimes, the police get things wrong. If you are the victim of mistaken identity and never even had an accident then you should plead not guilty.
At Ashworth Motoring Law we strongly believe that no motorist should be convicted of a crime which they did not commit and passionately fight to prove your innocence.
What if the Prosecution evidence says otherwise? If you genuinely had no idea that any accident occurred then it may still be possible for you to plead not guilty to this offence, however the likelihood of this defence succeeding in Court is likely to depend on the severity of the damage which was caused and the extent of the Prosecution evidence.
As part of the defence case, our expert motoring lawyers will take extremely detailed evidence from you, pursue any evidence of damage, and may seek additional evidence from the area where the alleged accident took place. We truly take a “no stone unturned” approach to all of our cases and that’s why we achieve the phenomenal results that we do.
Pleading Guilty to a Failure to Stop or Report an Accident Offence? Damage limitation
If you accept that you failed to stop/report an accident and are considering pleading guilty, then no matter how insignificant you feel the damage was, it’s crucial to obtain advice from a motoring law specialist with significant experience of failure to stop and report accident cases. Our specialist involvement could make the difference between you walking away from Court with points on your licence, or you receiving an instant ban or even a term in jail.
Because the range of sentencing options available to the Court is so wide, you need expert representation who will fight your corner, put across your perception of the accident, and explain to the Court why you should receive the most lenient outcome possible for your case. Our technical knowledge of motoring laws and Court procedure will also ensure that you only receive one sentence (such as points) for the whole incident if you are also being prosecuted for an additional offence such as careless driving.
Our expert motoring lawyers continue to secure truly outstanding results in failure to top and report accident cases when putting forward guilty pleas and mitigation.
If you’re considering pleading guilty to failing to stop and report an accident and would like to know more about how our guilty plea and mitigation service could give you peace of mind along with an amazing result at Court, then visit our dedicated guilty plea page or call one of specialist solicitors on 0330 33 22 770. Lines are open round the clock, seven days a week, so get in touch whenever’s best for you.
Caution for new drivers who are accused of failing to stop/report an accident!
A conviction for failing to stop and/or report an accident will almost certainly lead to the revocation of your driving licence by the DVLA unless you act now. Please take a look our special section for new drivers who have passed their test within the last two years to see how this offence could affect you or call one of our specialist solicitors today on 0330 33 22 770 to find out how we can help.
Magistrates’ Sentencing Guidelines for the offence of Failure to stop/report an accident
The Magistrates’ sentencing guidelines on failure to stop or report and accident can be found here:
Call our Motoring Law Helpline for Free Legal Advice on your Failure to Stop and/or Report an Accident Offence from one of our Expert Motoring Law Solicitors
Our failing to stop/report an accident experts are always happy to talk through your options and provide expert advice and guidance which could secure a phenomenal result in your case.