In the event of any hit and run incident, police are mandated to investigate. Even in the case of a minor hit and run where there may only be slight damage to property, no physical injuries, or if there is the involvement of alcohol.
So, it is unwise to think that police will not be involved, because they will.
A hit and run are defined as a traffic accident in which a driver has left the scene of the incident without fulfilling any legal duties as they should being a participant in the collision.
Minor Hit and Runs
The severity of a minor hit and run will vary by state, as do the criminal penalties.
Many US states classify the criminal penalties for a hit and run as either felonies or misdemeanors, depending on the circumstances, regardless of the severity as it is still viewed as fleeing the scene of the incident.
It should also be noted that in most stares it does not matter whether or not you cause the accident, the act of a hit and run (minor or otherwise) is committed by leaving the scene of the incident.
If you must leave the scene of an accident to access emergency assistance- for example, to achieve a phone signal to call for help, then this is not considered so, so long as you return to the scene immediately afterward.
However, if you leave the scene and do not return then this is classed as a hit and run and is therefore viewed as an offense.
How long a case may take
If you have been involved in a hit-and-run case then you will likely want to know the amount of time it takes to settle a case. Unfortunately, there is no set time that a hit-and-run case of any severity takes to be resolved.
It depends on the evidence from the accident, whether there is any injury, damage, or other defining factors, as well as those involved.
In many minor hit-and-run cases, due to the smaller level of impact, cases resolving these incidents tend to be shorter. However, there can be some factors that will draw it out longer.
Similarly, it depends on the state as well, different states have different laws and in some cases different proceeds when it comes to handling a minor hit and run. You should check your state’s laws on this matter, to get more defined information.
There is another factor that plays into the time taken to deal with a minor hit-and-run, it can depend very heavily on the business of the police.
If they are exceptionally busy, or if they have some more severe cases open, it may take longer to resolve. It may also take more time for them to find the driver who fled the scene of the incident.
What happens in your case depends entirely on your state.
For example, in cases in a minor hit and run where damage is done to a vehicle being driven or attended by a person then this differs by state, i.e in Arizona depending on the severity you can look at a hefty fine of around £500, possible short-term imprisonment (if serious) and in some cases a revoked license.
Whereas in the same situation in Florida you would get a 2nd-degree misdemeanor and a small fine. Always check the laws of your state, some states are not very stringent on minor hit and run laws, whereas other states take it much more seriously.
What will Police do?
What the police will do in the event of a hit and run, again, depends on your state and its laws on minor hit-and-runs. For an example, let us look at Kentucky laws.
In Kentucky, if there is damage of any kind, the driver must assume that damage has been cause no matter what, even if the damage is very minor.
Whether you were in your vehicle or not at the time of the incident then the police will investigate, depending on injuries or damage.
However, if the driver did not stop then there is a chance that they will proceed to gather evidence and file a report, including damages caused by the hit and run, if there is damage enough then you can expect them to proceed to check surveillance cameras and get more information on what occurred.
If it is believed necessary and severe enough they will then catch the perpetrator and you can finally make your claim.
This all depends on the severity of the incident, and which state you are in. You should also be wary of your insurance in these cases as this is one of the reasons to have full coverage with your insurance.
However, minor though be assured that the police will be involved in any hit and run case, from minor to severe, in most states.
What you should do in the event your car is damaged as a result
If your car has been damaged, if it is a minor incident, then the likelyhood is that you are not looking at something too bad.
However, making an insurance claim will hinge on evidence from the second you notice that you were in the collision, you should pay attention to every detail.
Speaking to the police can help to find the person who fled the scene of the accident. You should also take pictures of the scene, damages, injuries, and if you can the perpetrator’s license plate.
It is also useful to take notes of all you can remember from the incident, the more specific you are about the events of the collision the better your claim will be either in legal terms when dealing with the police and any legal proceedings, or in the event on needing to use an insurance claim to deal with damages to your property.
In the event of a minor hit and run, police will investigate in most states, although the involvement of police and the severity will depend on many factors, including, the seriousness of the accident and the state in which the incident happened.
In most places, there will be consequences, of varying severity for fleeing the scene of a collision, regardless of how much damage is caused and the police will be involved to determine this.