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Last updated: September 6, 2023

What to Do After a Hit-and-Run in Nebraska

When it comes to hit-and-runs, it’s best to face the consequences head-on.

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The Nebraska Revised Statutes spell out exactly what to do after you hit someone’s car, whether or not they’re in the vehicle. For example, you must stop at the scene of the accident, exchange information, and, in some cases, report the incident to the Department of Transportation. Failing to do so could result in imprisonment, fines, or both — not to mention a more expensive car insurance premium. Let’s dive into the rules surrounding hit-and-runs in Nebraska and the consequences for not following the laws.

What to Do After a Hit-and-Run in Nebraska

Failing to stop at the scene of an accident you caused and neglecting to report it to the state’s Department of Transportation can result in legal punishments, according to Nebraska Revised Statutes. Here’s what you’re required to do after you’re involved in a car accident, regardless of whether anyone was injured or killed in the crash.

Duty to Stop

State law requires you to stop at the scene of the accident immediately and exchange the following information with the other driver, occupants, or owner of the vehicle: your name, address, telephone number, and operator’s driver’s license number (or learner’s permit number).

If the accident resulted in injuries, you’re required to render “reasonable assistance” to any injured parties, which means transporting them to medical aid if you think treatment is needed or if the injured person requests it.

If you hit an unattended vehicle, you must stop and leave a note in a conspicuous place for the other driver, communicating the above information. Then, “without unnecessary delay,” you must report the accident to authorities either over the phone or to an “appropriate peace officer.”

Duty to Report the Collision

For accidents that occurred before Aug. 28, 2021, you were required to report them to the Department of Transportation within 10 days if they involved injury, death, or property damage of $1,000 or more. Since then, that property damage threshold has increased to $1,500. If you are physically incapable of reporting the accident immediately, you still must do so within 10 days.

You can complete a motor vehicle crash report in one of two ways:

  • Online: Submit the electronic form at
  • Mail: Send the paper form accessible at to:
    • Highway Safety, Nebraska Department of Transportation
    • P.O. Box 94759
    • Lincoln, NE 68509-4759

A police report will help with your car insurance claim, acting as evidence for your case, so make sure to request a copy of the report from law enforcement.

Along with filing a police report, be sure to take pictures of the damage and get the contact information of any witnesses who may have seen the collision. Also note the circumstances surrounding the collision, including the time of day, location, weather, and other pertinent information for your claim.

Recovering Damages

What if you weren’t the at-fault party in a hit-and-run? Let’s say someone hits your parked car and flees the scene without leaving you a note. If you can’t identify the offender, you’ll need to submit a first-party claim with your insurance provider to pay for any property damage and/or bodily injuries suffered by you or your passengers. You can file a claim under the following types of coverage.

  • Collision: Collision coverage pays for your car’s repair or replacement costs due to collisions.
  • Uninsured motorist: Uninsured motorist coverage reimburses you for medical or property damage costs if someone without insurance hits your vehicle; it applies to hit-and-runs, as well.
  • Medical payments: MedPay will cover your and your passengers’ medical costs, regardless of who caused them.

However, if somehow you’re able to identify the at-fault driver, file a third-party claim with their insurance company so you can get covered by their liability coverage. The benefit of filing a third-party claim instead of a first-party claim is that your car insurance premium won’t rise and you can avoid paying your collision deductible.

But even if you file a third-party claim, the other party’s insurance policy may not be enough to cover your losses. If that’s the case, you can sue the driver who hit your car for economic (monetary) and non-economic (non-monetary) losses as long as you were less than 50 percent at fault in the accident. However, if you were any percent at fault, your compensation will be reduced by your percentage of negligence.

Economic damages include:

  • Cost of obtaining substitute domestic services
  • Costs of vehicle repair/replacement
  • Funeral costs
  • Loss of earnings, earning capacity, employment, employment opportunities, business, or use of property
  • Medical expenses

Non-economic damages, which are more subjective, include:

  • Emotional distress
  • Humiliation
  • Inconvenience
  • Injury to reputation
  • Loss of consortium, society, and/or companionship
  • Mental suffering
  • Pain
  • Suffering

If you never find the driver’s identity and you lack collision, uninsured motorist, and/or medical payments coverage, you’ll have to pay for your losses out of pocket.

How Hit-and-Runs Affect Car Insurance

Your car insurance in Nebraska after a hit-and-run, assuming you caused the accident and were convicted of leaving the scene, will increase by an average of 88 percent. Hitting a car and fleeing the accident site makes you a high-risk driver in the eyes of insurers, so car insurance companies will raise their rates in order to account for the higher likelihood you’ll have future claims.

Statistics About Nebraska Hit-and-Runs

From 2011 to 2021 in Nebraska, there were 58 fatal hit-and-runs, representing 3 percent of the state’s deadly car crashes. During this decade, the number of fatal hit-and-runs decreased by 67 percent, with only two in the entire year of 2021, according to data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Year Number of accidents involving a hit-and-run Number of accidents not involving a hit-and-run Total number of fatal crashes in Nebraska Percentage of all fatal crashes involving a hit-and-run
2011 6 158 164 4%
2012 4 186 190 2%
2013 4 186 190 2%
2014 5 198 203 2%
2015 9 209 218 4%
2016 5 189 194 3%
2017 9 201 210 4%
2018 6 195 201 3%
2019 3 209 212 1%
2020 5 212 217 2%
2021 2 190 192 1%
Total 58 2,133 2,191 3%

The plurality of drivers involved in fatal hit-and-runs were driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI), with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent or higher. Speeding was involved 21 percent of the time, while drowsy and distracted drivers were involved only 5 percent of the time.

Driver involvement Number of drivers involved in fatal hit-and-runs in Nebraska, 2011-2021 Percentage of total
Alcohol-impaired driver (BAC of 0.08% or higher) 39 45%
Drowsy driver 2 2%
Distracted driver 3 3%
Speeding driver 18 21%
Total 86 N/A

The age group most likely to be driving during fatal hit-and-runs were drivers ages 25 to 34 (in crashes where the age of the involved drivers was known).

Age group Number of drivers involved in fatal hit-and-runs in Nebraska, 2011-2021 Percentage of total known drivers
16-20 4 6%
21-24 11 17%
25-34 16 25%
35-44 14 22%
45-54 12 19%
55-64 4 6%
65-74 3 5%
Unknown 22 N/A
Total known 64 N/A

Men made up 72 percent of drivers involved in fatal hit-and-runs where the sex of the driver was known. That may be part of the reason why, in Nebraska, men pay more for car insurance: Insurance companies in the state can legally consider sex when determining rates, and men are statistically more likely to be involved in accidents in general, not just hit-and-runs.1

Sex Number of drivers involved in fatal hit-and-runs in Nebraska, 2011-2021 Percentage of total known drivers
Male 46 72%
Female 18 28%
Reported as unknown 22 N/A
Total known 64 N/A


To make accidents less likely, drive at or under the speed limit and avoid drinking and driving.

Hit-and-Run Penalties in Nebraska

In Nebraska, being at fault in a hit-and-run means that after being involved in an accident, you left the scene and failed to report the accident to the police. Each action comes with separate penalties, according to the Nebraska Revised Statutes.2


Penalties can include a fine, imprisonment, or both. In more extreme cases, the state could also choose to revoke your license for up to 15 years.

Penalties by charge Class II misdemeanor Class I misdemeanor Class IIIA felony Class III felony Class V misdemeanor
Action Failure to stop at scene of the accident; no injury or death Failure to stop at scene of the accident; no injury or death Failure to stop at the scene of an accident involving injury (not serious) Failure to stop at the scene of an accident involving serious injury or death Failure to report accident involving injury, death, or property damage of at least $1,500
Conviction First Second within 12 years of first conviction Any Any Any
Minimum length of imprisonment None None None None None
Maximum length of imprisonment 6 months 1 year 3 years 4 years None
Minimum post-release supervision (if imprisonment is imposed) None None 8 months 9 months None
Maximum post-release supervision None None 18 months 2 years None
Minimum fine None None None None None
Maximum fine $1,000 $1,000 $10,000 $25,000 $100
Minimum length of license revocation None None 1 year 1 year None
Maximum length of license revocation 1 year 1 year 15 years 15 years None


Nebraska defines “serious injury” as a bodily injury with a substantial risk of death, serious permanent disfigurement, or temporary or protracted loss/impairment of the function of any part or organ of the body.

Additionally, depending on the specifics of the hit-and-run, the state could impose points on your driving record.

  • Causing a death with a motor vehicle: 12 points
  • Failure to render aid in an accident you were involved in: Six points
  • Leaving the scene of an accident: Six points
  • All other violations: One point3


Although someone hitting your car is always stressful, it’s even more stressful if you lack full coverage car insurance, which would apply to hit-and-runs. While the state of Nebraska requires only liability and uninsured motorist coverage, adding collision insurance and MedPay makes it more likely you’ll be made whole after a hit-and-run, avoiding a costly, stressful, and time-consuming civil suit.

Meanwhile, avoiding the penalties of a hit-and-run conviction is simple: Drive defensively and never leave the scene of an accident. Learn more in the frequently asked questions below.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Nebraska a no-fault accident state?

No. Nebraska is an at-fault accident state, which means the at-fault driver is responsible for the other party’s injuries and property damages. As long as the victim is less than 50 percent at fault, they can recover economic and non-economic damages in a civil suit, although their compensation would be reduced by their level of negligence.

How long does an at-fault accident stay on your record in Nebraska?

An at-fault accident will stay on your record for five years in Nebraska, according to the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles. However, you can get two points removed from your record if you voluntarily enroll in a DMV-approved driver improvement course once every five years.

Is Nebraska a no-pay, no-play state?

No, Nebraska is not a no-pay, no-play state. That means even if someone lacks insurance, an accident victim can still recover damages from the defendant as long as they were less than 50 percent at fault.

What happens if the person at fault in an accident has no insurance in Nebraska?

If the person at fault in an accident has no insurance in Nebraska, they’ll be forced to pay for the other party’s property damage and bodily injuries out of pocket. The victim could also sue them in a civil suit for economic and non-economic damages, provided the victim is less than 50 percent at fault.


  1. A Rate Comparison Guide: Auto Insurance. Nebraska Department of Insurance. (2016).

  2. Nebraska Revised Statute 60-6,198. Nebraska Legislature. (2023).,198

  3. Nebraska Point System. Nebraska Department of Motor Vehicles. (2023).