Under New Jersey law, you can commit a serious traffic violation in a lot of different ways. Driving recklessly, driving above the posted speed limit, tailgating, driving while under the influence of a controlled substance, and improper passing are offenses that result in a motor vehicle traffic conviction, fines and points on your New Jersey driving record.
One violation that is often overlooked, but will always result in a serious traffic violation, is leaving the scene of a motor vehicle accident. NJSA 39:4-129 delineates that if you are involved in a car accident that results in property damage, injuries or death, you are legally obligated to remain at the scene of the accident until you have exchanged your identifying information with all parties involved in the accident. If the police have attended the scene of the accident, you are also required by law to remain at the scene until the police have cleared for you to leave.
If the accident involves more than $500 in property damage, injury or death, you are required to file an official police report – even if the police did not come to the scene of the accident.
What Are My Responsibilities After a New Jersey Car Accident?
When you are involved in a motor vehicle accident, there are certain steps you need to take immediately after the collision to make sure that you do not violate any traffic laws:
- Come to a complete stop as close to the scene of the collision as possible.
- Identify yourself to all parties involved in the accident and the police, if they have arrived at the scene of the accident.
- Report the accident to the nearest police department. If the accident involved more than $500 in property damage, injury or death, it is presumed that you were aware of the accident and had a duty to report it.
Consequences of Leaving the Scene of the Accident
If you leave the scene of a car accident, you could face certain penalties under New Jersey law. The penalties include fines, the suspension of your driver’s license, and possibly jail time.
If the accident involved injury or death, you can face fines ranging from $2,500 to $5,000. In addition, you can also face up to 180 days of jail time if the injury or death occurred to a party other than the guilty motorist. You may also have your driving privileges suspended for up to one year for a first time offense and a lifetime suspension for a second or subsequent offense.
Call a Traffic Ticket Attorney in New Jersey
If you or someone you know is facing a traffic violation in New Jersey and the possibility of the suspension of their driving privileges, an experienced attorney can help with the restoration process. For more information or to schedule a free consultation with New Jersey traffic ticket attorney Dan T. Matrafajlo, please call Beninato & Matrafajlo Law at (908) 248-4404.