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Key aspects of hit-and-run claims in North Carolina

Auto accidents occur every day. If parties are not prepared, it can leave them with serious financial burdens. For this reason, laws exist to protect and assist citizens.

Particularly in the case of a hit-and-run accident, drivers must follow the right protocol. There are a few key aspects parties should be aware of.

The process

There is a set process for a hit-and-run case conviction. The state must build and present the case and support several assertions. As with other injury claims, the state must prove negligence. To accomplish this, the state must show:

  • The accused party was in an accident that resulted in injury or at least $1,000 worth of property damage.
  • The accused did not stop or provide assistance after the accident.
  • The accused did not properly report the accident.

If the state can support these statements beyond the shadow of a doubt, the charges will likely stand. On the other hand, if the defendant cannot create any doubt, the charges may be dropped. Therefore, having solid evidence is critical.

Possible charges

Depending upon the extent of the damages resulting from the accident, and whether it is bodily injury or property damage, the types of penalties for a hit-and-run charge may vary. In addition, the aspects of the accident process also play a role in determining the set penalty. By law, after an accident, drivers must complete several actions, including:

  • Staying at the accident scene
  • Moving to a safe area, if necessary and possible
  • Offering to assistance the other driver
  • Exchanging identification information with the other driver
  • Contacting law enforcement
  • Collecting contact information of witnesses, when applicable

If a driver does not follow any aspect of the protocol, charges may apply. These charges may range from a misdemeanor to felony charges.

As with any claim process, it is important to understand the set protocol and abide by it. It may also be beneficial to consult with a knowledgeable professional to determine the best course of action.

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