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Hit and Run

When you are in an auto accident or damage property with your vehicle, you are legally required to stop and provide your information to the other driver or property owner. Sometimes, though, when you get in a motor accident, your body is overflowed with anxiety and your first response is to flee the scene.

Even if no one was seriously injured, failing to stop after an accident can land you in jail. You could also face increased insurance cost, and your auto insurance carrier may even decide to drop you altogether. With the potential of such penalties, you should speak with a defense attorney right away.

Columbus, OH Hit and Run Defense Lawyer

The sooner you contact a defense attorney, the better your chances of a more favorable outcome in court. It can be the difference between going to jail and going home. Call (614) 300 - 3025 to schedule a confidential consultation.

We represent clients in counties across central Ohio such as Franklin County, Delaware County, Union County, Madison County and numerous others.


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Failing to Stop Following an Accident

Ohio law requires a driver to stop when they are involved in an accident. This is laid out in section 4549.02 of the Ohio Revised Code. Once you stop, you are required to stay at the scene of the crash until certain information is provided to the other driver. The information you are required to give includes:

  • Your name
  • Your address
  • The vehicle’s registration number
  • If the vehicle is not yours, the name and address of the owner.

It is also wise you receive the mentioned information from the other driver. In the event the other driver is unable to comprehend and provide their information, you should notify the police. Unless you are removed from the scene of the accident by an ambulance, you are required to remain stopped until police arrive.

If you are ever in a collision with an unoccupied vehicle, you must provide your information in writing and leave it in a visible spot on the vehicle. Failing to stop, or leaving the scene too soon, will result in charges for hit and run.


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What are the Penalties for Hit and Run in Ohio?

A hit and run may not seem like a serious crime, especially if the accident was minor, but you could end up being a convicted felon. The seriousness of the auto accident and whether or not alcohol or drugs were present will dictate how you are charged.

Listed below are the penalties for hit and run crimes in Ohio.

Failing to stop: This is charged as a first-degree misdemeanor punishable by the following:

  • Up to 180 days in jail
  • No more than $1,000 in fines
  • License suspension for six months to three-years

Failing to stop after an accident involving serious physical harm: This is charged as a fifth-degree felony punishable by the following:

  • Six months to a year in jail
  • No more than $2,500 in fines
  • License suspension for six months to three-years

Knowing the accident resulted in serious physical harm: This is charged as a fourth-degree felony punishable by the following:

  • Six to 18 months in jail
  • No more than $5,000 in fines
  • License suspension for six months to three-years

Failing to stop after an accident involving death: This is charged as a third-degree felony punishable by the following:

  • One to five years in prison
  • No more than $10,000 in fines
  • License suspension for six months to three-years

If you caused serious bodily injury or death to another person and are found with a BAC of 0.08 or higher, or were under the influence of a controlled substance, you could be charged with vehicular assault or homicide. Depending on your case, this can be charged as a first, second or third-degree felony.


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Hit and Run Involving Property Damage

There is more than one way you could be charged with a hit and run. If you were in an auto accident with realty or personal property and fled the scene, you could be charged under section 4549.03 of the Ohio Revised Code.

Realty or personal property can include a house, business or any personal property attached to the property such as a mailbox or fence. When you are involved in an accident with such property, the law states you are required to stop locate the owner and provide them with your name, address and vehicle registration.

If you are unable to locate the owner of the property within 24 hours, then you must notify your local police department of the accident. If you violate this section of the revised code, you could be charged with a first-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to six months in jail and a fine up to $1,000.

If you fail to have insurance or your insurance will not cover the cost of the property damage, the court could order you to pay up to $5,000 in restitution to the property owner.


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Additional Resources for Hit and Run 

Stopping After Accident on Public Roads or Highways | Ohio Revised Code– Follow this link to the Ohio Laws and Rules website to read the full statute governing hit and run in the state. You can read the precise legal text of what you are required to do following an accident, how the crime can be charged and possible additional penalties.

Stopping After Accident Involving Property Damage | Ohio Revised Code– Read the section of the ORC governing hit and runs involving property damage. You can gain a more in-depth explanation of the charge and how it’s penalized. The statute can be read on the Ohio Laws and Rules website.


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Columbus Hit and Run Defense Attorney

Hit and run allegations may stem from a situation of miscommunication. If you are being accused of hit and run in Columbus, OH, you should contact Joslyn Law Firm as soon as possible. Call (614) 300 - 3025 to schedule a confidential consultation.

We represent clients in central Ohio counties such as Pickaway County, Fairfield County and Licking County.


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Joslyn Law Firm