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Accident Guide

NY Accident Guide

Traffic accidents are bound to happen, no matter how safe you try to drive. Whether your fault, or the fault of another, there are steps you must take to ensure that you handle the situation appropriately, all which 4dmv.com can help you understand better. Knowing what to do as you are involved and after the accident is over can prevent you from taking on more liability than you should, or losing out on the actions you could have taken to remove yourself from liability. There are legal and insurance-related implications as well, all which you should understand in order to fully comply with New York state guidelines for traffic accidents.

Where to Start?

If, due to any reason or cause, you find yourself involved in a traffic accident, regardless if another vehicle was or wasn't involved, you are required by New York state traffic law to stop and assess the situation. There is definitely different severity to an accident that may warrant different actions to be taken by you and others that are involved.

If you are involved in a traffic accident in New York, and there is only damage to the vehicles involved, with no injuries or deaths, you will have to swap the appropriate information with all those involved, even if there was only property damage and no other vehicle involved.

  • Phone Number
  • License Numbers
  • Exchange of Personal Names of All Involved
  • Insurance Coverage Information
  • If the damage involved is valued over $1,001, which could be assessed by the insurance companies of the drivers involved, there will need to be a New York State accident report filed within 10 days of the incident, which can be found at Report of Motor Vehicle Accident directly from the New York Department of Motor Vehicles to be downloaded, printed, and completed by all parties involved. If the report is not filed within 10 days, there can be penalties to the driver, including but not limited to suspension of your license.
  • If during the traffic accident there were any injuries or deaths, either to drivers or pedestrians, there must be emergency contact immediately. Remember to never move an injured person or any person you believe to be deceased unless there is danger to them in their current situation, such as pertinent dangers like explosion or burn. If you depart the scene of the accident before law enforcement arrives, you will result with a warrant issued for arrest. A police report filed is required and only when police officers inform you that it is OK to leave may you depart the scene.
  • Police offers at the scene will draft a police report, of which you can obtain a copy for your own records and use with insurance companies by either contacting the local police department that attended to the traffic incident or you could simply complete the Form (MV-198C) Police Report Request.
No One Else Present?

  • There may be a time when you hit a parked vehicle, someone's pet, or other personal property while the owners are not around. The first thing to do is see if you can find them in the proximity of the incident. If you can't locate the owners, however, just call the New York State Police to ensure that all bases are covered on your end. Even hitting a pet and leaving the scene is a hit-and-run and could result in penalties if identified by witnesses.
Traffic Court and Traffic Attorneys

  • Depending on the situation and the nature of the traffic incident, there may be a need for New York legal representation, in the form of traffic attorneys. If you are convicted of a DUI/DWI based on the accident at hand, or if there were personal injuries or death, it is essential that you properly defend yourself with a DUI/DWI attorney or a traffic court attorney – depending on the situation and the nature of your violations.
  • If you find that you are in need of proper legal assistance, the best thing to do is consider your budget and research the resources in New York to ensure you are able to find the right attorney for the case, which could be DWI attorneys or even personal injury attorneys – something 4dmv.com will help you do with great tips and resources.