If you flee the scene of an accident in Las Vegas, you could be charged with Nevada's "Hit and Run" laws...regardless of whether the collision was your fault. It is not uncommon for innocent people to get charged with this offense. Our criminal defense lawyers may be able to keep it off your record, and keep you out of jail.
Nevada law imposes legal obligations after a car accident. Everyone involved in a collision in Nevada has a duty to exchange information, render aid and maybe file an accident report. If you flee the scene of an accident that caused only property damage, you may face misdemeanor charges. But if you flee from an accident after hitting a pedestrian who suffered an injury or death, you can be charged with a felony.
Duty to Render Aid and Give Information (NRS 484E.030)
If anyone is injured in a Nevada car accident, the other drivers in the collision have a legal duty to render reasonable assistance such as carrying the injured person to a hospital. And in any car accident that results in death, injury or just property damage, all involved drivers are required by law to stop and exchange the following information:
- vehicle registration numbers, and
- to show their drivers licenses (if someone so requests).
Nevada drivers are also required to give this information to any Las Vegas police officer investigating the accident and to surrender their licenses to the officer upon request. Neglecting the duty to exchange information and render aid can lead to misdemeanor or felony charges depending on whether the accident resulted in just property damage or also injury or death:
Misdemeanor Hit & Run -- Involving property damage (NRS 484E.020)
Fleeing after having a car accident that results in only property damage is a misdemeanor. The abridged legal definition of misdemeanor "hit and run" in Nevada states that, "The driver in an accident resulting only in damage shall stop and move the vehicle to a location that does not obstruct traffic and remain at the scene until the driver has exchanged information."
If you ever hit an unattended vehicle or other property with your car in Nevada, then you have a duty to stop and try to find the owner or else leave a written note with your name and address if you cannot. You also have a duty to inform the police department about the accident, but if you cannot because you are incapacitated, then the responsibility to contact the authorities shifts to any other able-bodied occupant in the car. (NRS 484E.040; NRS 484E.050)
Penalties for leaving the scene of a car accident in Las Vegas that caused only property damage include:
- up to six months in jail, and/or
- a fine of up to $1,000, and
- six (6) demerit points to your license.
Felony Hit & Run -- Involving death or bodily injury (NRS 484E.010)
Fleeing after a car accident that results in bodily injury or death is a category B felony. The abridged legal definition of felony "hit and run" in Nevada states that, "The driver of any vehicle involved in an accident resulting in bodily injury to or the death of a person shall immediately stop his or her vehicle at the scene of the accident and exchange information and render aid."
Penalties for leaving the scene of a car accident in Las Vegas that caused death or injury to a third party include:
- two to twenty years in prison, and
- a fine of $2,000 to $5,000, and
- possible license suspension or revocation.
This crime is not probationable.
Duty to File an Accident Report (NRS 484E.030; NRS 484E.070; NRS 484E.080)
Nevada police need to be notified about any car accident that results in either:
- bodily injury, or
- property damage of $750 or more.
If a policeman arrives at the scene of your car accident to investigate and then files a valid accident report with the authorities in Nevada, then you do not have to file a report as well. Otherwise, you have ten (10) days from the date of the accident to inform law enforcement of the following information:
- an estimate of repairs or statement of loss (from an insurance adjuster, licensed appraiser or established repair garage)
- name and address of the insurance company providing coverage to each person in the accident
- the number of each insurance policy
- the dates when the insurance coverage begins and ends
If a car accident in Nevada leaves the driver physically incapable of making a report, he/she does not have to file one until he/she regains capacity. And if the driver is different from the car's owner and the driver is incapacitated, then the owner is required to file the report within ten (10) days after becoming aware of the accident.
Failing to file or false reports
Anyone who willfully refuses or neglects to file an accident report faces license suspension for a year in Las Vegas. However, the Nevada DMV will reinstate the license upon receipt of either:
- the accident report, or
- evidence that the failure to file was not willful.
But if you are charged with filing a false accident report in Nevada, you face gross misdemeanor charges carrying a sentence of up to 364 days in jail and/or up to $2,000 in fines.
Call us for help . . .
Have you been arrested or charged with violating "hit and run" laws in Nevada? Then contact our Las Vegas DUI defense attorneys at 702-DEFENSE (702-333-3673) for a free meeting to discuss your case and how we can fight the charges.
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For information about California felony hit & run laws, go to our article on California felony hit & run laws. And for information about California misdemeanor hit & run laws, go to our article on California misdemeanor hit & run laws.