Failure to stop and give information (FSGI), alternatively called “hit and run laws”, typically charge that the accused was involved in some form of accident but either:
- Did not stop
- Did not provide legal identification
- Failed to provide assistance
The idea underlying failure to stop and give information laws is that persons involved in accidents receive adequate medical attention when needed as well as compensation for damaged property. It is very important to note that even if a person is not the one responsible for an accident he or she may still be charged with failure to stop and give information if they fail to stop, etc. For example, if you are parked in a parking lot and someone backs into your car – but instead of staying and providing adequate identification you leave the scene, you may be charged with failure to stop and give information even though the collision was of no fault to you.
Also it is important to be aware that passengers may also be charged with failure to provide information in certain situations – such as if the passenger encourages a driver to flee the scene or a passenger him or herself takes the wheel and flees an accident scene.
Even if there is not a physical injury resulting from the collision one should always stop and give information.
If one provides false information to authorities they may be charged with failure to provide information in addition to additional charges. As well, fleeing an accident scene can result in civil liability in addition to criminal charges. These can be quite severe as it can be argued that additional injury resulted from not providing assistance than otherwise might have been.
Penalty for Failure to Stop and Give Information
Failure to stop and provide identification and assistance can result in very serious legal consequences. Misdemeanor offenses can carry up to a year in jail and lengthy prison sentences may result if the offense involves death or serious injury. In addition to jail, hefty fines may be levied with misdemeanor offenses up to $1000 and felony offenses can be greater than $10,000. As well, one may lose one’s license, insurance, and receive probation for years.
If you are charged with failure to stop and provide information in Houston, TX, Harris County, or surrounding areas you need an experienced criminal defense attorney that is prepared to fight for you. Carl Haggard has been defending the accused in Houston for over 30 years and as an Ex-Chief District Prosecutor he knows how to provide a strong legal defense. Carl has an extensive verifiable winning record against failure to stop and give information charges. Call (832) 328-0600 or email today for a free confidential consultation regarding your charges.