Fail to Remain

About

Fail to Remain AccidentWhen involved in a traffic accident the driver is required to do 3 things:

  • stop at the scene of the accident
  • help any one who needs assistance
  • give their name and information

When an accident happens drivers are expected to act reasonably whether they are at fault or not.


Driver Must Stop

The law expects the driver to stop at the accident or shortly their after, help anyone who is hurt or needs assistance and then exchange information.

Where this does not happen the police can charge that driver with either:

  • fail to provide assistance
  • fail to give name and address
  • fail to remain at the scene of an accident

Where the driver is physically unable to do any of these, and there is another person in charge of the vehicle, that person whether it is the owner or not shall assist.


Must Exchange Information

Where an accident occurs the drivers must exchange information with the other driver and/or any person who suffers a loss or personal injury including:

  • name, phone number and address
  • information as to the owner of the motor vehicle
  • insurance information

Where a fail to remain accident occurs the police may charge the owner of the vehicle.

Accidents that involve personal injury or property damage in excess of $2,000 dollars must be reported to the police forthwith (as soon as possible).

Related traffic tickets: Fail to Report Accident, Careless Driving


Insurance Implications

Drivers convicted of fail to remain will see insurance rates increase dramatically.

A conviction for fail to remain is considered a “major insurance” violation, increasing the insurance thousands of dollars per year.


Accidents

Usually the conviction comes with an insurance claim for damages to another vehicle.

Most insurance companies will not repair damages to the insured’s vehicle if they are convicted of fail to remain.  As the driver will have violated a condition of the insurance policy.


Driver Records

Once the driver is convicted of a traffic ticket, the court sends a notice to the Ministry of Transportation.

Upon receiving the record of conviction from the court the Ministry of Transportation then adds the conviction to the driving record.

Driving abstracts are available to anyone who has the drivers licence number for a fee payable to the Ministry of Transportation.

Therefore the way the insurance company will finds out about the charge is;

  • the other driver fills a claim
  • the insurance contact you about the claim, and
    • learns of the incident
  • upon conviction of fail to remain
  • the driver calls and
    • tells the insurance company that they received a ticket

Each insurance company is a private company with their own set of rules and standards.

Drivers need to keep their driving records clear.


Fines

Summons to Appear

Where the police charge a driver with fail to remain, they will usually issue them a summons to appear in court, there is no out of court fine for this charge.

The summons commands the driver or their agent (paralegal or lawyer) to appear in court before a Justice of the Peace (JP) on a date specified on the summons.

Where the driver or their legal representative does not appear the judge may issue a warrant (bench summons) for their arrest.


The judge decides the amount of the fine.

The fine for failing to remain at the scene of an accident is:

  • fine of not less than $400.00
    • not more than $2,000.00
  • jail up to 6 months
    • or both
  • licence suspension up to 2 years

What is the Victim Fine Surcharge?

  • The provincial government adds a victim fine surcharge (VFS) to every fine imposed under the Provincial Offences Act.
    • It is deposited into a special fund to help victims of crime.
  • The amount of the VFS is usually 20 per cent of the imposed fine.
    • For example, a $100 fine would result in a $20 surcharge.
    • Fines over $1,000 carry a surcharge of 25 per cent.

Penalties

Fail to remain has the following penalties:


Demerit Points

Fail to remain tickets have 6 demerit points.

Demerit Point Interviews

If you have to attend an interview, you will get a letter (Notice of Interview) to notify you of the time, date and location of the meeting. If you do not attend, your licence could be suspended.

The fee for a demerit point interview is $50 and must be paid in person at any ServiceOntario Centre.

You can pay the fee when you receive the Notice of Interview or within 10 business days of attending the interview.

Failure to pay the interview fee will result in the cancellation of your driver’s licence.


Suspensions

Fail to Remain Suspensions

Where convicted and the driver is a:

  • Novice driver,
  • Class G1 or
  • Class G2 driver

There is a mandatory licence suspension for exceeding the demerit points limitations (fail to remain has 6 demerits).

The accumulation of demerit points can also result in a licence suspension.


Court Ordered Suspensions

For all drivers once a conviction for fail to remain is registered by a Justice of the Peace, the prosecution can ask that the judge impose a licence suspension up to 2 years.


Unpaid Fine Suspensions

Where a fine has been imposed and the driver does not pay that fine, the licence will be suspended.  Where the licence is suspended for an unpaid fine, the licence will be suspended until the payment is made to the court.

 


Legal Definition

Duty of person in charge of vehicle in case of accident

Highway Traffic Act section 200

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,
(a) remain at or immediately return to the scene of the accident;

(b) render all possible assistance; and

(c) 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 licence 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.

Penalty

(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 licence or permit may be suspended for a period of not more than two years.

Notification of damage to trees, fences, etc.

201 Every person who, as a result of an accident or otherwise, operates or drives a vehicle or leads, rides or drives an animal upon a highway and thereby damages any shrub, tree, pole, light, sign, sod or other property on the highway or a fence bordering the highway shall forthwith report the damage to a police officer.


Case Law

R. v. O’Dowd, 2015 ONCJ 716 (CanLII)
2015-11-10 | 29 pages | cited by 1 document
motor vehicle — careless driving — scene of the accident — actus reus — beyond a reasonable doubt
[…] 2. that he on or about the 24th day of November, 2013 at the City of Burlington, in the Region of Halton, being in charge of a motor vehicle and directly or indirectly involved in an accident did fail to remain at the scene of the accident, contrary to section 200(1) (a) of the Highway Traffic Act . […] [4] The defendant is charged with the offence of “careless driving”, contrary to section 130 of the Highway Traffic Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. H.8 , as amended, hereinafter referred to as “the H.T.A.” and the with the offence of “fail to remain at the scene of the accident”, contrary to paragraph 200(1)(a) of the H.T.A. […] Div.), the accused was charged with the offence of “fail to remain”, contrary to paragraph 174(1) (a) of the Highway Traffic Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. H.8 , (the predecessor to paragraph 200(1)(a) of the H.T.A.), and the related offence of “fail to stop at the scene of the accident, with intent to escape criminal or civil […]


Toronto (City) v. Ennis, 2019 ONCJ 758 (CanLII)
2019-10-02 | 21 pages
motor vehicle — driver — parking lot — ibid — damage
[…] change lane not in safety, contrary to s.142(1) of the Highway Traffic Act, R.S.O. 1990, c.H.8 (“HTA “); fail to remain, contrary to s.200(1) (a) of the HTA ; fail to report, contrary to s.199(1) of the HTA ; fail to provide required information, contrary to s.200(1) (c) of the HTA ; and fail to disclose particulars of […] [31] On June 7, 2017, he was assigned to investigate a Toronto police report of failing to remain at a collision, which had been reported by Mr. Inacio (Exhibit 1: “Self-Reporting Collision Report” and “Fail to Remain Collision Form”). […] -Fail to Remain: [116] Based on the evidence I have heard, I am persuaded beyond a reasonable doubt that Mr. Ennis failed to remain at the scene of an accident. […]


R. v. DeAmorim, 2009 ONCJ 274 (CanLII)
2009-02-27 | 25 pages
vehicle — boyfriend — license — paper — accident
[…] commit the offenses of Careless Driving contrary to section 130 of the Highway Traffic Act , as well as the offenses of Failing to Remain at the scene of an accident contrary to section 200 (1) (a) of the Highway Traffic Act , as well as Failing to Report an Accident contrary to section 199 (1) of the Highway Traffic Act . […] Officer Higginss simply told him that it was an investigation for a Fail to Remain accident which occurred the day before, and that they had received information which said it was probably the defendant driving. […] The issue on the charge of ‘fail to remain’ is whether the defendant being a person in charge of a vehicle on a highway he was directly or indirectly involved in an accident and did remain at or immediately returned to the scene of the accident, and upon request give in writing to the owner of the other vehicle upon request […]