If an accident leads to the death or permanent disability of anyone from the other party of the accident in Saudi Arabia, the situation is very critical. You will have to adopt a certain procedure in this case which I am going to describe for you. I always suggest people to drive carefully as a small mistake can take your or someone else’s life. If somebody dies by an accident and you are at driving seat, you will have to go through the following procedure. Please keep in mind, never ever even think to run away from the location of accident, if you are caught, the case will be against you. You will not only be jailed but there are many chances of execution. So keep your calm and follow the procedure mentioned below.
Procedure in case of death or permanent disability by Accident
- First of all, try to save the life of other person if he is injured. Immediately call ambulance and traffic police. If you have insurance, you also need to call Najm. The emergency numbers of ambulance, Najm and traffic police should always be saved in your mobile phone. I have detailed all the emergency numbers in this link. “Emergency Numbers in Saudi Arabia”
- Immediately call the government relations officer of the company you are working in. I will tell you later on the reason of calling him.
- Keep in mind, if you have insurance, Najm will be taking care of your case. I have pointed out several times the need to have at least third party insurance while driving a vehicle in Saudi Arabia. If you still don’t have insurance, please visit this link to know how important it could be. Death or permanent disability in an accident without insurance may lead to execution. “Need for Vehicle Insurance in Saudi Arabia”
- The process in case of normal road accident is explained in detail in this link. You should read it to know about the complication and tricks to call the Najm or traffic police. “Process in case of road accident”
- The Najm or traffic police will decide the degree of mistake between you and deceased person. There can be three possible scenarios in this regard. I have explained about each scenario in below paragraphs.
Your Mistake (fully or partially) with Insurance
- If Najm decides that it is your mistake (fully or partially) and you have valid insurance, you should not be worried. They will take you to the police station and ask you to sign some papers. Government relations officer of your company should be with you now. Let him or someone else whom you trust read the papers for you before signing. (If you don’t know Arabic)
- They will take the copy of your insurance and may cross check it with the insurance company to validate the insurance policy. Your insurance policy is actually a bail bond. Mere presentation of the insurance policy even in case of your 100% mistake will get you bail from the police.
relations officer of your company will have to provide a letter of guarantee properly
attested by the chamber of commerce. We have listed down some important
points for attestation of documents from Chamber of Commerce. I would
recommend you to read them
before personally visiting chamber of commerce.
- After this, case in the court may take from months to years to establish the amount of blood money which your insurance company will have to pay to the victim. We have published an article about the blood money (Diyya) and one should read it to have full insight about this terminology.
- There is an exception to this rule. If you were driving recklessly like drifting or crossing the red light when accident took place, insurance company will not cover you. In that case you will be treated as you don’t have any insurance. We have covered this in the below paragraph.
Your Mistake (fully or partially) without Insurance
- If you don’t have insurance and you meet with an accident having your mistake (even partially) causing death or permanent disability of a person, you are in deep trouble. Police will arrest you and take you to the police station where you will have to sign some documents. Keep in view the instructions given above and don’t sign any document unless someone from your trusted contacts has read it for you. (If you don’t know Arabic)
- Call government relations officer of your company but believe me he will not be able to do anything in this regard. But at least you will be having a sense of security.
- You will have to live behind the bars unless the court decides the amount of blood money for you. It is important to mention here that blood money (Diyya) in case of permanent disability can be in millions. I have seen one case where court decided to grant blood money of SR 5 million to a paralyzed victim.
- After decision of the court about the blood money you have to pay, you will be required to pay it. You will remain behind the bars until you don’t pay the blood money. Keep in mind; you will remain behind the bars till your last breath if you don’t pay the blood money.
Other Party’s Mistake (With or Without Insurance)
- If Najm or Traffic Police establishes that this is the mistake of deceased party and you are not responsible for it even partially, you don’t have to worry a lot. It can be the case when other party was crossing the road from a place where they are not allowed to cross as trespasser, drifting on the road or crossing the red signal etc.
- The process is same; police will arrest you and take you to the police station where you will have to sign some documents. Again, don’t sign them unless you completely understand what they are. In this regard, government relations officer of your company will help you out.
- The paper from the traffic police or Najm mentioning, it is not your mistake will be enough for your bail. You will be released by the police after some necessary documentation.
Fasting of 60 days per Killing
I am not an Islamic Scholar but I have heard that you have to fast for 60 days consecutively if someone is killed by you intentionally or unintentionally. I would recommend asking from some Mufti before acting upon it.