If you are involved in a car crash, it is important that you report the accident to the police. In fact, Georgia car accident report basics require that you report any car accident that results in injury, death or property damage in excess of $500.
While most car crashes are civil matters, there are instances when some can lead to criminal charges. Even if you are not convicted, the existence of a criminal charge can bolster the plaintiff’s personal injury claim.
So when does a car accident lead to a criminal charge?
A car accident can leave you with devastating injuries. That said, here are instances when you may face criminal charges if you are involved in a car accident:
If you flee the accident scene
Hit-and-run is a big deal. If you flee the accident scene, you may be charged. And if someone died as a result of the accident, your legal woes will only worsen. The best thing you can do is call the police and remain at the scene until the police allow you to leave.
If you were intoxicated at the time of the accident
Drunk driving is a criminal offense in Georgia. Unfortunately, drunk driving is one of the leading causes of accident-related deaths. If you cause an accident while under the influence of alcohol or other drugs, you will likely face criminal charges.
If you were reckless
Causing an accident due to reckless driving, speeding or distraction from a cell phone will certainly lead to criminal charges. This is especially true if someone is hurt or property is damaged in the process.
Protecting your rights
A car accident can leave you shocked, hurt and with significant property damage. If you are charged with a criminal offense following a car crash, it is important to know that there is help out there. Learning more about Georgia car accident laws can help you defend yourself when charged with a criminal offense following a car accident.