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Did You Receive a Ticket for Failing to Remain at the Scene of a Collision?

“Failure to remain” is considered a serious offence under the Ontario Highway Traffic Act (HTA) . This type of charge carries seven demerit points, which will immediately suspend a graduated license upon a conviction, and it carries significant fines. A conviction can also triple your insurance rate. If you are facing charges for this violation, contact OTD Legal Services for a free consultation.

Typically, a violation of leaving an accident scene involves a driver in a crash who, often driven by fear, leaves the accident location. Sometimes this fear may stem from the consequences of alcohol or marijuana consumption. In other instances, individuals involved in a motor vehicle accident may initially flee but return shortly after. There are also cases where someone involved in a solo accident leaves and then reports the incident the next day after going home to sleep. While this is a less severe form of failing to remain at the scene, police still have sufficient grounds to charge the individual.

Regardless of the form of failing to remain you are accused of, it is always best to seek legal support, as it gives you the best chance at protecting your rights and mitigating the consequences you are facing.

*Note that failing to remain at the scene of an accident is also a criminal offence under federal Criminal Code.

What Is Failing To Remain?

Failing to remain at the scene of a collision falls under Section 200 of Ontario’s Highway Traffic Act:

Duty of person in charge of vehicle in case of accident

200 (1) Where an accident occurs on a highway, every person in charge of a vehicle or street car that is directly or indirectly involved in the accident shall:

  1. Remain at or immediately return to the scene of the accident;
  2. Render all possible assistance; and
  3. Upon request, give in writing to anyone sustaining loss or injury or to any police officer or to any witness his or her name, address, driver’s license number and jurisdiction of issuance, motor vehicle liability insurance policy insurer and policy number, name and address of the registered owner of the vehicle and the vehicle permit number. R.S.O. 1990, c. H.8, s. 200 (1); 1997, c. 12, s. 16.

HTA section 200(1)(a) is the section that police will generally charge a driver under for failing to remain at the scene of a collision. Alternatively, the police may sometimes charge under HTA s.199(1) for Fail to Report Accident. The three subsections here are generally worded as follows:

  • 200(1)(a) – Fail to Remain
  • 200(1)(b) – Fail to Render Assistance
  • 200(1)(c) – Fail to Give Required Information

What Are the Penalties For Failing To Remain at an Accident Scene?

Generally, there are three areas of penalty if a defendant is convicted of a Highway Traffic Act offence:

  • Court penalties
  • Licensing penalties
  • Insurance cost increase

HTA section 200(2) defines the range of penalties that can be assigned by the court if you are convicted:

(2) Every person who contravenes this section is guilty of an offence and on conviction is liable to a fine of not less than $400 and not more than $2,000 or to imprisonment for a term of not more than six months, or to both, and in addition, the person’s license or permit may be suspended for a period of not more than two years. 2009, c. 5, s. 54.

It is important to note that the range of court fines described is also subject to the victim fine surcharge. The total-payable fine, in this case, would range from a minimum fine of $490.00 and a maximum fine of $2,500.00. Generally, imprisonment or court-ordered license suspensions are reserved either for defendants with a very poor driving history or for an accident involving bodily harm (or death), or other aggravating factors such as alcohol and marijuana.

If convicted at court, that record of conviction will be sent to the Ministry of Transportation (MTO). The MTO will then register a record of conviction against your driving history along with the appropriate number of demerit points (penalties range between 0 and 7 demerit points, depending upon which HTA section you have been convicted under). All subsections under HTA section 200 are the maximum seven demerit point penalty.

Insurance cost increases for many HTA offences can quickly surpass the fines issued by the court. Your insurer will look at multiple factors when doing your risk assessment and the cost to provide you with insurance. A conviction for Failing to Remain may result in you being removed from standard insurance and placed onto ‘high risk’ insurance.

*Court-ordered suspension. A conviction may result in other suspensions of your license by the MTO.

CVOR Points And Fail To Remain [1] 

Commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers, such as transport truck drivers, are in additional jeopardy if charged by the police. CMV drivers face the regular court, licensing, and insurance consequences of a conviction, but they also face CVOR points and an impact on their current and future employment. A conviction will result in an additional record of conviction and CVOR points for the driver’s employer (or the driver if they are under their own CVOR). The CVOR points for the various Sections of HTA s.200 are as follows:

A conviction for a 5-CVOR point offence may result in termination of employment and difficulty obtaining new employment.

What Happens If I’m A Novice Driver?

Novice drivers (i.e. G1, G2, M1, M2 licenses) are especially at risk of driver’s licence suspension and increases to insurance. Compared to a full driver’s license, novice drivers are subject to many limitations and restrictions. One such limitation is the triggering of escalated penalties for a conviction of any single offence that carries four or more demerit points. The severity of the penalty applied by the MTO depends on whether this is a first, second, or third occurrence:

  • 30-day license suspension for the first occurrence
  • 90-day license suspension for the second occurrence
  • License cancellation and a requirement to re-apply for a G1/M1 after the third occurrence. Any fees paid, credit received for time spent in the program or BDE credit would be forfeited when the license is cancelled. Please note that in the case of a hybrid driver, only the novice-class license is cancelled on the third occasion; their full-class license is maintained.

What Should I Do If Charged With Failure To Remain?

If you are charged by the police with Failing to Remain, seek legal advice so you can make informed decisions on how to proceed. A legal misstep can result in your conviction and consequences that will impact your life for years to come. Our team at OTD Legal will guide you through the process from beginning to end, keeping you informed every step of the way!

FAQs For Failing To Remain At The Scene Of The Collision

Why Is It Important to Fight a Ticket for Failing to Remain at the Scene of a Collision in Ontario?

Fighting a ticket for failing to remain at the scene of a collision is crucial due to the serious nature of the offense. It carries seven demerit points, significant fines, and can triple your insurance rates. A conviction might also lead to a suspension of your license.

What Are the Demerit Points for Failing to Remain at an Accident Scene in Ontario?

The offense of failing to remain at the scene of a collision in Ontario carries a penalty of seven demerit points. This is the maximum demerit point penalty under the Highway Traffic Act.

How Long Will a Ticket for Failing to Remain Impact My Driving Record in Ontario?

A conviction for failing to remain at the scene of a collision will impact your driving record for a minimum of three years in Ontario. This can significantly affect your insurance premiums and driving privileges.

What Steps Should I Take if Charged with Failing to Remain After a Collision in Ontario?

It’s essential to seek legal advice immediately. A legal misstep can lead to serious long-term consequences. The experienced team at OTD Legal can guide you through the legal process, helping you make informed decisions.

What Are the Consequences for Novice Drivers Charged with Failing to Remain in Ontario?

Novice drivers, including those with G1, G2, M1, and M2 licenses, face severe penalties for failing to remain at the scene of a collision. This can include a 30-day license suspension for the first offense, a 90-day suspension for the second, and license cancellation after the third occurrence.

Are There Additional Penalties for Commercial Drivers Convicted of Failing to Remain in Ontario?

Commercial motor vehicle drivers face not only the regular court, licensing, and insurance consequences but also CVOR points and potential impacts on their employment. A conviction can result in termination of employment and difficulties in obtaining a new job.

What Happens During the Legal Process for a Charge of Failing to Remain in Ontario?

Upon being charged with failing to remain, OTD Legal will guide you through every step of the legal process. This includes understanding the charges, exploring defense strategies, and representing you in court. The aim is to ensure the best possible outcome while keeping you informed throughout the process.


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Have You Been Charged With Failure To Remain Or Report A Car Accident In Ontario?

If you are charged with fail to remain at the scene of an accident in Ontario, you should contact OTD Legal Services as soon as possible. We have skill and experience in helping drivers just like you defend charges of failing to report a car accident or failing to remain at the scene of a collision and provide a free, confidential consultation. We help drivers throughout Ontario including Kitchener,  GeorgetownLondonWindsor and from our home office in CambridgeContact us online, call us directly at 1-844-647-6869, or text a copy of your ticket to 226-240-2480.

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