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Is it Crime Not to Report an Accident In Canada?

You can be charged for a criminal offence for failing to report an accident.

You can be charged for a criminal offence for failing to report an accident.

 

  • It is a crime not to report an accident in Canada in certain circumstances.
  • Incidents where drivers  fail to remain at the scene of the accident are typically referred to as  “hit and run” accidents.
  • There are two different categories of “hit and run” accidents under Canadian Law.
  • Depending upon the situation, the police can either charge the driver under the Criminal Code of Canada for the offence of Fail to Stop at the Scene of an Accident, or under the Highway Traffic Act of Ontario for “Fail to Remain at the scene of the accident”.
  • Fail to Remain at the scene of an accident under the Highway Traffic Act results in the issuing of a traffic ticket.
  • It is a Provincial Statue offence as it is  an offence under the provincial laws of Ontario.
  • Fail to Stop at the Scene of an Accident is a Federal Criminal Code offence, under the Criminal Code of Canada.
  • It is significantly more serious to be charged with fail to stop at the scene of an accident, under the Criminal Code of Canada as if you are convicted it is punishable by more serious consequences as well you will end up with a criminal record.

Highway Traffic Act of Ontario: Legal Requirements If you are involved in an accident

Drivers who are involved in a motor vehicle accident in Ontario are required by the Highway Traffic Act of Ontario to do four things:

  1. Remain at or immediately return to the scene of the accident.
  2. Render all possible assistance.
  3. Upon request, give in writing to anyone sustaining loss or injury or to any police officer or to any witness their name, address, driver’s licence, insurance and name and address of the registered owner of the vehicle.
  4. If there is more than one thousand dollars damage, personal injury, or damage to the highway the accident must be reported to the police forthwith.

Section 252 of the Criminal Code of Canada : Failure to Stop at the Scene of accident

252. (1) Every person commits an offence who has the care, charge or control of a vehicle, vessel or aircraft that is involved in an accident with

(a) another person,

(b) a vehicle, vessel or aircraft, or

(c) in the case of a vehicle, cattle in the charge of another person,

and with intent to escape civil or criminal liability fails to stop the vehicle, vessel or, if possible, the aircraft, give his or her name and address and, where any person has been injured or appears to require assistance, offer assistance.
Punishment
(1.1) Every person who commits an offence under subsection (1) in a case not referred to in subsection (1.2) or (1.3) is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years or is guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction.
Offence involving bodily harm
(1.2) Every person who commits an offence under subsection (1) knowing that bodily harm has been caused to another person involved in the accident is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding ten years.
Offence involving bodily harm or death
(1.3) Every person who commits an offence under subsection (1) is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for life if

(a) the person knows that another person involved in the accident is dead; or

(b) the person knows that bodily harm has been caused to another person involved in the accident and is reckless as to whether the death of the other person results from that bodily harm, and the death of that other person so results.

Evidence
(2) In proceedings under subsection (1), evidence that an accused failed to stop his vehicle, vessel or, where possible, his aircraft, as the case may be, offer assistance where any person has been injured or appears to require assistance and give his name and address is, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, proof of an intent to escape civil or criminal liability.

  • If you are charged under the  Canadian Criminal Code with failure to stop at the scene of an accident it is a serious criminal offence. Please Contact Toronto Criminal Defence Lawyers, Kostman and Pyzer for further advice.

 

14 Jun 2016

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