Legally reviewed by: Kevin Waddingham Updated:

Failing To Stop After An Accident

Failure to stop after an accident

Leaving the scene of an accident involving injury or damage is an offence which carries a maximum penalty of 6 months imprisonment. If you are charged with failing to stop after an accident you should seek legal advice as soon as possible. Benefit from the experience of our Motoring Law team to help build the strongest possible case for your defence. Cartwright King has a proven track record of preventing conviction for failing to stop and report a traffic accident.

Get in touch with our dedicated Driving Offence Solicitors today for reliable advice.

How Cartwright King can defend you if you’re accused of Failing to Stop After an Accident

Cartwright King takes a non-judgemental and pro-active approach to your case. We listen, we understand and we genuinely care about defending you against accusations of failing to stop at the scene of an accident. We offer reliable legal advice to ensure that the best possible action is taken to help prevent prosecution.

We can advise you on all manner of failure to stop issues, including:

  • Stopping at the scene, but not remaining long enough to provide personal or vehicle details
  • Failing to provide details to those at the scene of an accident
  • Failing to stop at the time of the accident, but returning later
  • Failing to report an accident within 24 hours
  • Failure to report an accident in person

Benefit from a free, initial telephone conversation

If you have been charged with failure to stop at the scene of an accident or report an incident, you can benefit from a free, initial telephone call with a specialist Cartwright King Motoring Offence Lawyer to assess your options.

There’s no substitute for speaking to one of our specialist solicitors to get the right advice, and start preparing your defence. 

For immediate action, call us or email us for your free* initial discussion. 

The discussion is completely informal and confidential, and is an opportunity for us to:

  • Get to know you 
  • Understand your situation
  • Agree how you want to proceed

*Please be aware that this is a ‘get to know you’ call and no advice will be given.

Why choose Cartwright King for your defence?

Having an experienced Motoring Offence Lawyer representing you is often the difference when it comes to avoiding conviction for failing to stop at the scene of a traffic accident.

We listen, we understand and we genuinely care about protecting you from punishment. That’s why we offer sound, honest, reliable legal advice to ensure that you understand your rights when facing charges for failing to provide your driving details.

Working with a specialist Cartwright King solicitor gives you the assurance of having access to legal counsel who will advise you at every stage of your case. We know that charges for driving offences can affect your day-to-day life and potentially your job.

That’s why we will do everything we can to clear you of wrongdoing or minimise any action against you.

We’re committed to defending your legal rights and protecting your driving future, ensuring that you’re treated fairly throughout your case. When you need us most, we’ll be there to offer sound, sensible legal advice and sure guidance.  

We’re a trusted, resourceful Legal 500 top tier law firm with specialist solicitors that are calm under pressure, giving you defence counsel that you can count on.

We're here for you.

Frequently asked questions.

Why do I need to stop if I'm in an accident?

According to the Road Traffic Act 1988 s 170 (2), it is an offence for a driver of a vehicle to fail to stop and give their details when involved in an accident that has caused either damage or injury to someone other than the driver or the driver’s vehicle. 

You must stop in order to provide personal and vehicle details to enable prompt communication. If you do not, or you give false details, you are breaking the law.  

It does not matter whose fault the accident is, the requirement is to stop “at the scene”, so leaving the scene of the accident even for a short period of time is illegal. If you revisit the scene after initially driving away for a short time, you may still have committed an offence. 

If for some reason you fail to stop after being involved in an accident, or fail to exchange details, you must report the incident to the police as soon as reasonably practicable, and in any event, within 24 hours of the time of the accident. 

The report must be made at a Police Station or to a Police Constable; a phone call will not necessarily be acceptable. If you fail to do this “as soon as practicable”, and within the 24-hour period, then it could result in a conviction. The Court will decide what is “reasonably practicable”.

What are the penalties for failing to stop after an accident or reporting an incident?

Penalties for failing to stop at the scene of accident or reporting an incident within 24 hours are determined by the Magistrates’ Court and can include:

  • A prison sentence of up to six months and/or an unlimited fine
  • Driving endorsements and a potential ban 
  • 5 – 10 driving licence points
  • Extended driving disqualification if custody is imposed

What can I use in my defence?

If you have been charged with failing to stop and report an accident, Cartwright King can help you defend your interests. For example, you may have been unaware of an accident occurring, which means that we could defend you on the grounds that you didn’t see or hear anything to suggest you’d been involved in an accident.

Perhaps you did stop at the scene, but no other persons were present to exchange details with, and you only left the scene after a reasonable amount of time. This can also be used as a defence.

If you failed to stop because another driver was being aggressive, and it was unsafe for you to remain at the scene, this could be used as defence.

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