Car accidents happen every single day; they are extremely common events. But if you were to be involved in an injury accident, would you know what your duties under the law are? If you’re like a lot of drivers, you may not even realize that you have certain duties under the Texas Transportation Code, but you do.
Section 550.021 of the Texas Transportation Code goes over a driver’s duties after they have been involved in an accident involving personal injury or death. Under this section, if you’re ever in an accident likely involving injury or death of a person, you must immediately stop your vehicle at the accident scene or close to the accident scene, or immediately return to the accident scene if you did not stop your vehicle at the accident scene and:
- Determine if anyone involved in the accident requires medical attention;
- Remain at the accident scene and exchange your name and address, vehicle registration, and insurance information with the other driver(s), and
- If anyone was injured in the accident, provide them with reasonable assistance, including making arrangements to get them transported to a doctor or hospital for medical treatment if it’s needed, or if the injured person requests transportation, to arrange it for them.
What if I Don’t Stop at the Scene?
“What if the accident wasn’t my fault and I drive on?” Whether or not the accident was your fault, you still have a legal obligation to stop at the accident scene and follow the above steps. If you drive on without stopping after being involved in a traffic crash, you break the law and can face serious criminal charges.
If you do not obey the requirements listed above, you could face a second or third-degree felony charge depending on the level of injuries involved. For example, if someone was seriously injured in the crash and you didn’t stop to render aid and exchange information, you could be charged with a third-degree felony. If the other person died, it would be a second-degree felony.
If someone suffered minor injuries and you fled the accident scene, you could still face up to five years behind bars or a maximum $5,000 fine, or a fine and imprisonment.
If you need to file a car accident claim, contact The Zendeh Del Law Firm, PLLC today.