Failing to stop at the scene of an accident in New South Wales (NSW) and provide personal information to other parties involved in the crash, including injured individuals and property owners affected by the accident, is considered a criminal offence. The maximum penalty for this offence is a fine of 20 penalty units.
The offence of failing to stop and provide particulars is governed by Regulation 287 of the Road Rules 2014 in NSW. The law defining this offence states the following:
The driver must come to a stop at the accident site and provide the driver’s necessary information, within the specified timeframe and if feasible, at the scene of the accident, to the following parties:
Furthermore, the driver must provide the required particulars to a police officer within the specified timeframe if:
The term “Required Particulars” pertaining to a driver involved in a crash refers to:
Furthermore, if obligated to provide details to a police officer, the driver must also provide an explanation of the accident’s circumstances.
Fail to Stop and Give Particulars offence is categorised as a criminal offence, the prosecution bears the responsibility of proving the accused’s guilt. The prosecution is required to establish the accused’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
This standard of proof is set at a high level, which the prosecution must meet before convicting someone of the Fail to Stop and Give Particulars offence. To successfully establish the offence of Fail to Stop and Give Particulars, the prosecution must prove each of the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:
Typically, this offence is resolved through a traffic infringement notice, which entails a fine of $349 and a deduction of 3 demerit points. However, you have the option to choose a hearing in the Local Court of NSW, presided over by a magistrate if you wish to seek leniency from the court or if you maintain your innocence and believe you are not guilty.
There are potential defences that can be raised against a charge of failing to stop and give particulars. These defences may include:
The availability and success of these defences will depend on the specific details of the case and the applicable laws in the jurisdiction
If you hit a parked car in Australia, it’s important to take appropriate actions to address the situation responsibly. Here’s a guide on what to do if you find yourself in such a situation:
Stop and assess the situation
As soon as you realise you have hit a parked car, come to a stop and remain at the scene. Take a moment to assess the damage caused and gather your thoughts.
Locate the owner
Make an effort to find the owner of the parked car. Look for any contact information, such as a phone number or address that may be displayed on the vehicle. If you can’t locate the owner immediately, consider leaving a note with your contact details securely attached to the car. Include information about the incident and express your willingness to cooperate and take responsibility for the damage caused.
Notify the Police
Depending on the severity of the damage or if the owner cannot be located, it is advisable to notify the police. They can provide guidance and document the incident, which may be necessary for insurance purposes or if a legal issue arises later.
Take photos and gather information
Capture clear photographs of the damage caused to both your vehicle and the parked car. Note down relevant details such as the license plate number, make, and model of the parked car. This information will be valuable for insurance claims and any future discussions.
Report the incident to your insurance provider
Contact your insurance company as soon as possible to report the accident and provide them with all the necessary information. They will guide you through the claims process and advise you on the next steps.
Cooperate and exchange information
If the owner of the parked car arrives at the scene, cooperate fully with them and provide your contact information, driver’s license details, and insurance information. Obtain their contact details as well. Be polite and understanding throughout the interaction.
Follow legal requirements
Different states in Australia may have specific requirements regarding accidents involving property damage. Familiarise yourself with the regulations in your state to ensure compliance. Generally, it is essential to report the incident to the police if the damage exceeds a certain threshold or if the owner cannot be located.
Remember, leaving the scene without taking appropriate actions is considered a hit-and-run offence, which is a serious offence in Australia. Taking responsibility for your actions and following the necessary steps will help resolve the situation in a lawful and responsible manner.
If you have been charged with a Fail to Stop and Give Particulars offence, you should speak to our traffic lawyers in Sydney immediately.