January 5, 2022 | Criminal Defense
Are you wondering about your legal options if you hit a bike rider with your car in Lexington, Kentucky? In this blog, criminal defense lawyers at Suhre & Associates go over some important legal duties and options you have.
Being involved in a pedestrian or bicycle accident can be a terrifying experience for a driver. When you hit a bike rider, important legal duties are triggered. Failing to follow them can lead to criminal liability. There are also important steps to take to protect your best interests. Keep reading to learn the three key legal duties and your options.
#1 Stay on Scene and Render Aid
Under Kentucky law, you have a legal duty to stay on the scene and render reasonable aid after an accident. Often, reasonable aid means you need to call 911 if someone is injured or even drive them to the hospital. In any case, it is legally required to stop and check on the injured party and try to help.
You are also required to exchange information with the person who was hit. Information you should exchange includes:
- Contact information (name, address, phone)
- Driver’s license #
- License plate tag
- Insurance information
Failing to stop, render aid, and exchange information will lead to criminal charges for a hit and run. If the accident resulted in only minor injuries, you could be charged with a misdemeanor hit and run, punishable by up to one year in jail and a $2,000 fine. If the accident resulted in death or serious injuries, you could be charged with a felony hit and run. A Class D Felony punishable by up to five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
It is crucial to follow these legal duties if you have hit a pedestrian or bicyclist with your car in Lexington to avoid criminal liability.
#2 File an Accident Report if Police Don’t Respond
Another key legal duty if you hit a bike rider with your car is making a police report. Under Kentucky law, if you are involved in an accident that results in injuries or death, you are required to report the accident to law enforcement. Calling 911 is the best way to do this.
When you call 911 after an accident, the police should respond and make their own accident reports. However, law enforcement may not respond to the scene if no one is injured.
If you don’t call 911 because nobody has any injuries, you are still required to file a formal accident report for any accident that causes more than $500 in damage. You can submit a Kentucky Civilian Accident Report with the State Police online.
#3 Don’t Admit Fault – Call Your Lawyer
Once you have fulfilled your legal obligations to render aid, exchange information, and notify the police, the next step is to start thinking about your civil and criminal liability.
Many insurance companies require prompt notification of accidents. We recommend talking to your lawyer prior to reporting the accident to make sure you don’t say the wrong thing and hurt your case or incriminate yourself.
Call a criminal defense lawyer as soon as you have fulfilled your legal duties. Your lawyer will discuss your rights and potential legal risks on the criminal and civil side and help advise you on how best to proceed. We will look out for your best interest when nobody else will.
To learn more, call our law firm at 859-569-4014 or visit our contact us page to send us an email.