20001 (a) The driver of a vehicle involved in an accident resulting in injury to a person, other than himself or herself, or in the death of a person shall immediately stop the vehicle at the scene of the accident and shall fulfill the requirements of Sections 20003 and 20004.
VC 20001 (a) is California’s toughest law against hit and run. It is used when the accident involved any injuries, or someone’s death. Minor injuries count, and so do injuries you didn’t even know about when you drove away.
Understanding Felony Hit and Run
California has several hit and run laws. Unlike VC 20002, which involves hit and runs with no injuries, VC 20001 is a felony. That means the penalties are much steeper and can affect you for the rest of your life.
The text of this law also refers to two other provisions in the Vehicle Code, VC 20003 and 20004. Together, the laws state that after an accident you must:
- Pull over at the nearest safe place
- Give the other driver your personal information including your name and address, and show them your driver’s license
- Contact law enforcement and report the accident, if they aren’t already on the scene.
You have to do all of this immediately—even if you are not the one who caused the accident. You’re also required to give reasonable aid or assistance to any injured parties at the scene. Failure to fulfill any of these points could count as Hit and Run.
Consequences for Felony Hit and Run Causing Injury
The penalties for VC 20001 depend on the kind of injuries caused.
- For accidents involving injuries: Up to a year in state prison or county jail, and/or fines between $1,000 and $10,000.
- For accidents involving permanent serious injuries or death: 2 to 4 years in state prison, or county jail for 90 days to a year, and/or fines between $1,000 and $10,000.
However, if your hit and run is tied to a charge of vehicular manslaughter or vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, you will face an additional 5 years in prison on top of the other penalties.
Have you been charged with felony hit and run? We can connect you with an experienced Los Angeles DUI lawyer and get you a FREE consultation. Fill out the form to the right or call (310) 896-2724 and get your free consultation today.