How to Deal With a Hit and Run in Texas

If you’re involved in a hit-and-run in Texas, stay calm, collect details of the accident, and file an insurance claim within 24 hours of the incident.
Written by Andrea Barrett
Edited by Jessica Barrett
Depending on the circumstances and severity of the incident, a hit-and-run in Texas can be tried as a misdemeanor or felony. If you’re involved in one, stay calm, collect details of the accident, and file an insurance claim within 24 hours of the incident. 
  • If you’re involved in a hit-and-run car accident, document as many details about the scenario as possible, contact law enforcement, and file a
    car insurance
    claim within 24 hours.
  • A hit-and-run can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the extent of damage and injuries.
  • If you have additional coverage—such as collision insurance or MedPay—hit-and-run damage or injuries may be covered.
  • If you commit a hit-and-run, you could face fines from $500 to $10,000 and potential jail time—plus the hit-and-run charge will stay on your
    Texas driving record
    for five years.

What to do after a hit and run in Texas

Leaving the scene of an accident is a felony in Texas if anyone is injured or killed.
The Texas Transportation Code 550.022 states that any driver involved in a damage-causing incident must stop and share proper information. This includes:
  • Name
  • Address
  • Proof of insurance
  • Vehicle registration number (VIN)
  • Proof of driver’s license
This information will help sort out the impending insurance claim. And failing to follow these steps could land you a hit-and-run charge.
Here's what you should do if you’re involved in a hit-and-run in Texas.

At the scene of a hit-and-run

Stay calm. Remaining composed in a hectic situation can help you identify your surroundings and accurately recall what happened.
As tempting as it may be, do not follow the vehicle! The best thing you can do is to note as many details about the vehicle as possible. Here are some things to write down:
  • License plate number, make, model, color, and body style
  • The appearance of the driver
  • The direction the vehicle is heading
  • Custom details like stickers or modifications
If your motor vehicle obstructs traffic, move it to a safe location without leaving the scene of the accident. 
You’ll also want to look for any other people involved. You can be charged with a hit-and-run if you leave the scene without rendering appropriate aid while waiting for medical responders.
Make sure to discuss the accident with any witnesses. This is a great way to confirm your memory of the accident and get new details from other perspectives.
Don’t forget to take pictures: They can serve as important evidence for insurance purposes. The authorities will also take some, but the more the merrier.

After you leave the scene

Contact your insurance company immediately and file a claim within 24 hours of the incident. Get a copy of the police report so you can provide it to your insurance provider.
MORE: Hit and run insurance claims: Everything you need to know


The criminal classification of a hit-and-run in Texas is subject to circumstance. 
  • If only property is involved, you will be tried for a misdemeanor
  • If victims of the incident suffered injuries or death, you will be tried for a felony
You could be charged if you leave the scene of an accident in Texas without exchanging your contact and insurance information with the other driver, offering reasonable assistance, or leaving a note with the same information. If the accident led to serious bodily injury or death, it is considered a felony offense. If the accident caused only property damage, it is considered a misdemeanor offense.

Consequences of a Texas hit and run

Along with the criminal charge, you will be subject to fines and even jail time. Let’s break down the different hit-and-run scenarios in Texas and their
penalties per the Transportation Code
Crash circumstances
Property damage of $200 or less
Class C misdemeanor
Maximum fine of $500
Property damage of more than $200
Class B misdemeanor
Maximum fine of $2,000 and/or six months in jail
Non-serious injuries 
One year in county jail or up to five years in state prison, a maximum fine of $5,000
Serious injuries or death 
Third-degree felony
Up to 20 years in state prison, a maximum fine of $10,000

Your car insurance may cover a hit-and-run accident

Texas drivers have several
types of car insurance
available, but not every type of auto insurance will cover a hit-and-run. And state law doesn't require insurance coverage that protects you from a hit-and-run, so they’ll only apply if you have add-on coverage to your policy. 
Ideally, you want to identify the person responsible for the accident and make a claim against their liability coverage. Your
Texas car insurance
policy can pick up the slack if they flee the scene.
Here’s a breakdown of the types of mandatory insurance in Texas and if they’ll cover a hit-and-run:
Insurance types
Will it cover a hit-and-run?
Covers collisions in many unique circumstances—but ensure you report it to a police officer
Check with your insurance company to see if your policy covers hit-and-run accidents
Covers what health insurance doesn’t—but you may need to pay a deductible
Covers lost wages and other expenses related to time lost from an accident


Yes—a hit-and-run in Texas is considered a criminal act. If a driver causes an accident and fails to stop and provide their insurance and contact information, Texas hit-and-run laws state that the hit-and-run driver can be charged with a misdemeanor or felony, depending on the extent of damage and injuries.
A hit-and-run will stay on your Texas driving record for five years. Having a hit-and-run on your driving record can also flag you as a
high-risk driver
, which likely increases your insurance premium and potentially the need for
SR-22 insurance

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