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According to California law, any accident which results in damages over $750, (which is a hell of a small amount) must be reported to the DMV. Technically, it's illegal not to report. However, some of what the government won't know won't hurt them (not legal advice). If both parties decided to settle privately then there really is no way for anyone else to find out.

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16y ago
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Q: Is it illegal in California to not report an auto accident if both parties decided to settle matters privately?
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