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NJ Leaving the Scene of an Accident Resulting in Death Lawyers

March 21, 2024 Uncategorized

NJ Leaving the Scene of an Accident Resulting in Death Lawyers

Leaving the scene of an accident is a big deal in New Jersey, especially when someone is hurt or killed. The penalties can be severe – we’re talking thousands in fines, years in jail, and a criminal record that sticks with you for life. Yikes! Who wants that?

But sometimes accidents happen, and people panic. I get it – the scene of a bad wreck can be scary and overwhelming. You might’ve been distracted or made a mistake, and facing the consequences is the last thing you want to do. So you drive away, hoping no one got a look at your plates.

Here’s the thing though – leaving almost always makes the situation worse. I don’t say that to judge! Just want you to know that working with an experienced lawyer from the start gives you the best chance of avoiding harsh punishments. Let’s break it down…

The Charges for Leaving the Scene in NJ

There are two main laws that apply here:

  • N.J.S.A. 39:4-129 – a traffic violation for leaving the scene of an accident
  • N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1.1 – a criminal charge for leaving the scene of an accident resulting in serious injury or death

So if you take off after a fender bender with no injuries, you’re looking at fines, fees, and license points under the traffic law. Not fun, but not the end of the world.

But when someone gets hurt or dies? That’s when they hit you with criminal charges on top of the traffic violation. Now you’re facing years behind bars, massive fines, and a permanent criminal record. Your life could be changed forever.

Penalties for Leaving the Scene with Injuries or Death

The specific penalties for leaving the scene of an accident with injuries or death in NJ are:

  • Up to 180 days in jail and $2,500 to $5,000 in fines for the traffic violation (39:4-129)
  • Up to 5 years in prison and $15,000 in fines for the criminal charge (2C:12-1.1)
  • 8 points on your driver’s license under 39:4-129, which can lead to suspension or revocation
  • Permanent criminal record that affects jobs, housing, loans, etc.

As you can see, we’re talking serious, life-altering consequences here. Even a short time in jail can derail your education, career, and family life. And good luck passing a background check with a criminal conviction!

Defenses for Leaving the Scene Charges

Now here’s a silver lining – you may have strong defenses in your leaving the scene case. An experienced criminal defense lawyer will thoroughly investigate the incident and build arguments like:

  • You didn’t realize an accident occurred or that anyone was hurt
  • You left the scene for safety reasons after a minor collision
  • There is insufficient evidence to prove you were the driver who left
  • The injuries or death were not directly caused by the accident itself

A skilled attorney can also negotiate with prosecutors for reduced charges or pre-trial intervention. This gets the criminal charge dismissed after a probation-like period.

Finding the Right Lawyer for Your Case

So if you’re charged with leaving the scene, especially where someone was injured or died, talk to a criminal defense lawyer right away. Look for someone experienced with New Jersey courts and laws. Understand your options. A good lawyer will handle negotiations with prosecutors and build the strongest defense to avoid harsh penalties.

I hope this gives you a better idea of what you’re facing with leaving the scene charges in NJ. Accidents and mistakes happen. The important thing is taking responsibility and protecting your rights. So don’t go it alone – connect with an attorney you trust. You’ve got this!


Here are the sources I used for this article:

NJ Leaving the Scene of an Accident Resulting in Death Defense Attorneys

Leaving the Scene of an Accident in New Jersey (39:4-129 & 2C:12-1.1)

Manual on NJ Sentencing Law

NJ Leaving the Scene of an Accident Lawyers | N.J.S.A. 39:4-129

Leaving Scene of an Accident Causing Serious Injury or Death

NJ Leaving the Scene of an Accident Charges | NJSA 2C:12-1.1 Penalties


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