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How to Deal With a Traffic Accident from a Legal Standpoint

Being involved in a traffic accident is something all road users avoid, irrespective of being on 2 or 4 wheels. And most of us might have heard stories concerning road users involved in a traffic accident and lay complaints that the other road user involved didn’t provide all the necessary information along with insurance details, irrespective of no one being injured. 

In most cases, some demands have been heard that whoever refuses to provide their insurance details right at the scene of a traffic accident should be prosecuted. But in clear terms, most road users have little to no knowledge concerning what the law needs them to provide if involved in a traffic accident. 

However, for most of us who fall under the category of not knowing what to provide at an accident scene, you might appreciate a good clarification on how to handle a traffic accident from a legal view. How does it affect the involved road users, and how severe the implications can turn out to be? 

The Law Concerning Traffic Accidents

In a situation whereby injury or damage is caused by a third party or animal such as a horse, goat, or dog, the involved drivers are required to: 

  • Stop, exchange each other’s names and addresses, and the owners exchange each other’s registration details. 
  • If there is a notable injury, provide valid insurance details to anybody in charge to require these details. 
  • If not complied, the involved drivers are required to report this case at a police station or, rather, to a police officer, and this should be done within the space of twenty-four hours of the accident. 

You can deal with traffic accidents via the following steps. 

  1. Identify The Involved Vehicles

The registration of a vehicle makes it easy to be identified, and it’s crucial to accurately record this information to avoid further problems, especially in terms of making claims. In these recent times, with the high rate of cloning registration numbers, you should just write down the registration number and take pictures of it. This is necessary to ensure accuracy. 

  1. Provision Of Insurance Details

Here we are at the phase where road users encounter a slight problem with providing valid insurance details. If you are in Pennsylvania, you should know that insurance details will be required by your truck accident lawyer in Pennsylvania to build a strong case. The law is specified as it states that valid and current insurance details should only be provided if there was an injury, and the involved road users are aware that there was an injury. 

For instance, a collision might occur and be tagged as a damage-only incident, but you begin to see the effects of the accident after some days. At the collision occurrence, there was no seen injury; therefore, there was nothing to trigger the requirement of insurance details. 

However, it is fair if a road user was injured, and the legislation requires that insurance details be provided to a person who is approved to ask for those details. 

  1. Involve The Police

Most people think a traffic accident should only be reported at a police station around the crash scene. This is quite untrue. For instance, if the crash occurred while on your way to a certain destination, it may not be practical to go about searching for a local police station. So, it is recommended to continue your journey to your destination and then report the situation to a local police station despite being miles away from the crash scene. 

The details should be recorded and submitted to the police station in the area of the crash scene. However, if you come across police stations on your path to your destination and overlook them, then you have failed to meet up with the terms. 

You are required to stop by at a local police station in person to provide your valid driving documents. Hence, this case cannot be reported over the phone. 

  1. Road Traffic Offenses

There are questions about the penalties a person will face if convicted for not stopping after a traffic accident or failing to report the situation within 24 hours.  To be clear, the penalties can be a bit harsh. The court approaches this case seriously and can issue a jail time of 6 months, an unlimited fine, and a discretionary disqualification between 5-10 points above any other driving offense such as reckless driving. 

So while we never wish for this to happen to anyone out there, if you, unfortunately, find yourself involved in a traffic accident, ensure you stop, exchange each other’s necessary details. However, if you can’t, protect yourself by reporting this situation to the police authority as soon as possible.