Accident Guide in New Hampshire

If you have the misfortune of being involved in a car accident there are certain procedures to follow, provided, of course, you're free of injury.

Steps to Follow

If you're involved in an accident keep the following in mind:

  • "Do not flee" is the most important rule to follow in any accident. Leaving the scene of an accident, even if you are innocent, could kaboom into an ugly explosion of legal ramifications including fines, loss of license, and even arrest.
  • Exchange information with all involved drivers. Be sure to get names, addresses, phone numbers, license numbers, and insurance information.
  • Try to get names and numbers of witnesses. This could help regarding insurance claims.
  • Do not attempt to move the injured. Removing a person from a burning vehicle is the lone exception.
  • If you hit an unoccupied vehicle try to locate the owner. If unsuccessful, leave a note. But write more than "sorry." Include your name and number.
  • If law enforcement is slow to arrive try to alert approaching traffic to the accident scene ahead.

Filing Reports

If damages exceed $1,000 or if someone was injured or killed you must file a New Hampshire Motor Vehicle Accident Report (Form DSMV 400) with the Division of Motor Vehicles in Concord within 15 days of the accident. Don't test this mandate. Failure to report when a death or injury is involved is considered a felony.

If another person is involved in an accident while driving your vehicle that person is responsible, not you, for filing an accident report.

If you were injured in an accident, consider contacting a personal injury attorney before you sign any insurance agreements.

Give Room To Others Involved in Traffic Emergencies

In many states, including New Hampshire, state law requires vehicles to give attention and space to a wide range of traffic emergencies. On May 5, 2008, the "Mover Over" law was expanded to include highway workers and tow truck drivers. Specifically, the law requires motorists to slow down and give clearance to stationary vehicles displaying blue, red, or amber emergency lights at the scene of any roadside incident.


DSMV 400
Motor Vehicle Accident Report
You must submit this form to the New Hampshire DMV if you're involved in a car accident that resulted in death, injury, or excessive property damage.
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