Car accidents are jarring experiences for everyone involved. After one occurs, the drivers usually exit their vehicles, exchange information, report the incident to the police if they have to, and then move on from there. But what happens when the person who caused the accident flees the scene? These situations, called hit-and-run accidents, are serious criminal offenses.
It’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with Vancouver’s hit-and-run accident laws so you’re aware of what you’re supposed to do after a car accident and what the other person failed to do.
Hit-and-Run Accident Laws
According to the Criminal Code of Canada, the driver who fails to remain at the scene of the accident is committing a crime because they owe the other driver a duty of care. This means they’re supposed to stop and see if they need assistance, which can include calling emergency services if they’re needed. When they don’t stop and the other person is injured, they are responsible for the injuries that person incurred. These situations can escalate when the injuries or severe, or the driver passes away from their injuries.
The hit-and-run driver can face significant jail time. While many people may be scared after an accident and flee the scene, that is much worse than staying, helping the other person, and owning up to their actions.
Hit-and-Run Accidents: What Do You Do?
Hit-and-runs can be shocking and sudden. You may even feel like you don’t know what to do because the other party is no longer there. The important thing is to remain calm. While you may not be able to give the identity of the other driver, there are matters that you can control.
- Inform the Police. Your first step is to report what happened to the police. The other party committed a crime by leaving the scene and the police will know how to properly document this incident. They’ll also try and find whoever did this to you. You could remember details about the make and model of the car or the license plate. However, it’s okay if it happened too fast for you to see. The police may also look to see if the accident was caught on video. They can see if there were any eyewitnesses to the accident, who can provide more details and a third-party point of view for the report.
- Check with Your Insurance Company. Your insurance company should know that there was an accident and that you were a victim of a crime. There’s a chance that you can still be compensated for the accident by the ICBC even if the guilty driver isn’t found, but the process to do so is complex without the help of legal experts.
- Call a Hit-and-Run Lawyer. Your interests should be your first priority. When you hire a Vancouver car accident lawyer, you can rest assured that you’re protecting your rights. We can help you receive compensation from the ICBC. Also, if the driver is caught, we can help you bring a civil suit against the negligent driver.
You always have options even if the driver flees the scene of the crime. We’re here to provide the legal support you need.
Get Help from Trusted Legal Representatives
When a hit-and-run accident occurs, you can sustain severe injuries. This means on top of trying to discover who injured you, you could be dealing with hospital stays, missing work, and looking at a long road to recovery. In these situations, you may also be facing significant bills, including possible damages to your vehicle.
To get started on your case, all you have to do is give us a call and schedule a free consultation. We’ll go over what happened, what to do if the police find the guilty party or they don’t, what your options to receive compensation are, and the best way for you to proceed.