Maine hit and run laws: What happens if someone does a hit and run?
- Maine hit and run laws: What happens if someone does a hit and run?
- Maryland hit and run laws explained
- Maryland hit and run laws: Misdemeanor offenses
- Maryland hit and run laws: Felony offenses
- Maryland hit and run laws: Parked car
- What is the penalty for hit-and-run/leaving the scene of an accident in Maryland?
- How is fault determined in Maryland?
- What is the statute of limitations on hit and runs in Maryland?
- Maryland hit and run laws defenses
Under Maryland hit and run laws code section 20-104, leaving the scene of an accident is a felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison. If the accident results in property damage alone, a hit and run is a misdemeanor.
Quick take: Maryland hit and run laws
- A hit-and-run that results in property damage in Maryland is a misdemeanor.
- You have fifteen days to file a report after an accident in Maryland.
- Victims have three years to take civil action.
- Maryland is a “contributory negligence state.”
Maryland hit and run laws explained
Under Maryland hit and run laws code section 27-102 to 20-104, it is unlawful to leave the scene of an accident without fulfilling the following legal obligations:
- You must stop at the scene or -as close to it as possible without interfering with traffic more than is necessary.
- Render reasonable assistance to anyone who may have suffered an injury, including making arrangements to transport the individual/s to a care facility.
- You must give your name, address, contact information, and ID to the person struck, a passenger in the vehicle, or a law enforcement officer present at the scene.
- Immediately report the accident to the police if an officer is not at the scene or if the struck person is unable to collect your information.
Note: That if the vehicle involved was transporting hazardous materials or if the accident results in death or serious injury, you should not move the vehicle until investigators or emergency workers tell you to.
Maryland hit and run laws: Misdemeanor offenses
Under state law, leaving the scene of an accident that results in property damage alone is a misdemeanor punishable by up to 60 days in jail and a maximum fine of $500. The court may also suspend your driving privileges upon conviction.
Note: That if the accident only results in property damage, you may move the vehicle to avoid obstructing traffic. After you move the vehicle, you must return to the scene and remain there until law enforcement officers arrive or until you fulfill the requirements above.
Is it necessary to call the police after a minor accident in Maryland?
Under Maryland hit and run laws, you must notify the police if the accident results in property damage, the other driver flees the scene, there is a dispute over the at-fault party, if one of the drivers is under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or if the damage caused surpasses $500.
Note: That if the accident results in property damage amounting to less than $500, the police are unlikely to investigate the incident. However, if unsure of what steps to take, you should call the police.
How long do you have to report an accident in Maryland?
Section 20-107 states that if an accident results in death or injury, you have 15 days to report the accident. Under the statute, when filing your report, you will need, quote:
“(1) The name and address of the insurance carrier or other provider of security for the person making the report; (2) The policy or other identifying number of the liability insurance or other security; and (3) The name and address of the local insurance producer for the insurance carrier or other provider of security.”
Maryland hit and run laws: Felony offenses
Under Maryland hit and run laws section 27-113, if the accident results in serious bodily injury and the driver knowingly leaves the scene, that driver is guilty of a felony punishable by up to five years in prison plus a $5000 fine. If the victim dies, the penalty escalates to up to ten years in prison and a $10000 fine.
Remember that an accident in Maryland becomes a crime if you do not immediately stop and render reasonable assistance to the person struck. However, even if you remain at the scene and fulfill what the law requires of you, the injured person may still take civil action against you.
Also, if there was a motive behind the incident, say you intentionally hit a person for one reason or the other, the charges may escalate into other felonies, including vehicular homicide or manslaughter.
Maryland hit and run laws: Parked car
If you hit an unattended parked vehicle in Maryland, you have a legal obligation to make a reasonable effort to locate the vehicle owner. If the accident results in serious damage, you must notify law enforcement.
What if you cannot locate the vehicle owner?
If the damage is minimal, you may leave a note on a conspicuous section of the struck vehicle containing your name, address, and contact information.
What is the penalty for hit-and-run/leaving the scene of an accident in Maryland?
- Property damage/parked vehicle hit and run misdemeanor, punishable by up to 60 days in jail and a maximum $500 fine for a first offense. The court may suspend your driving privileges.
- Hit and run, serious bodily injury: felony, punishable by up to five years in prison and a maximum fine of $5000 and license suspension.
- Hit and run, death: felony, punishable by up to ten years in prison and a maximum fine of $10000 plus license suspension.
- DUI hit and run: misdemeanor for a first offense that does not result in injury or death. If the accident results in death, you may face vehicular manslaughter charges.
Maryland hit and run laws: Civil and administrative penalties
To avoid criminal penalties after hitting someone or something, you should remain at the scene, call emergency services, and exchange contact information.
That said. As mentioned, the victim has the right to take civil action against you. That means the victim may sue you for negligence or to recover compensation for medical bills, lost wages, reduced earning capability, emotional distress, and so on.
How is fault determined in Maryland?
Maryland is a “contributory negligence state” meaning that the amount of compensation you may recover diminishes your share of responsibility for the accident. That means if you can prove that the other party involved is responsible for the accident, then you can recover compensation. Who determines the at-fault party?
At the scene of an accident, you mustn’t admit fault. Remember, in Maryland; it is up to the judge, insurance claims adjusters, and investigators to designate fault. Consequently, if you admit fault and it goes on record, you may deny yourself compensation.
What is the statute of limitations on hit and runs in Maryland?
In Maryland, you have three years to file a claim after an accident beginning from the time of the accident. If the victim dies, you have three years starting from the date of death to file a lawsuit. If you fail to file a lawsuit within the set period, the accused may petition the court to drop all charges.
Therefore, we recommend consulting with a claims attorney immediately to find out what suit to file.
What to do immediately after an accident in Maryland
- If the accident results in expensive property damage, death, or injury. Contact your attorney before you contact your insurer or file your report.
- Document everything and take pictures of the scene.
- Never admit fault or use words that the other party or your insurer may use against you.
- Remain at the scene and fulfill the requirements above.
- File a report and seek medical help if needed.
- Do not admit fault
- Gather evidence and anything that may help investigators find the fleeing driver, including the vehicle make, color, driver descriptions, and so on.
- Seek medical assistance.
- Request the driver to give you his name, address, contact information, and license or proof of insurance.
- Do not take the law into your own hands or threaten the other driver.
Maryland hit and run laws defenses
After an accident in Maryland, the first thing you should do, if capable, is gather evidence. The evidence you gather will make it easier for law enforcement to hunt down the fleeing driver. On the other hand, if you flee the scene, you should start building your defense immediately, for example, if you fear that remaining at the scene may result in injury or if you have a valid reason to fear for your safety (or in such instances where you are a victim of road rage). You should file a report at the nearest police station.
Are there legal grounds to leave the scene of an accident?
If you comply with the requirements above and are certain that no one suffered injury after an accident, you may leave the scene. Also, if you have a reason to fear for your safety, say a hostile crowd forms, you may leave the scene and report the incident.
Other possible defenses include:
- You reported the vehicle stolen or were not behind the wheel at the time of the accident.
- The victim refused to exchange information or claimed that he was fine.
- You were unaware of your involvement in an accident
- Leaving the scene was involuntary.
- The other driver became aggressive, and you feared for your safety.
Other Maryland Laws