One of the most common questions we get about car accidents is whether or not it is essential to file police report. The answer is not a simple yes or no. However, if there were any injuries, or there was property damage of at least $950, then you are required by law to file a police report. It may be wise to file a police report even in certain situations in which neither of those conditions are met.
The Importance of a Police Report
There are a number of important aspects of a police report. First, it will provide an accurate and unbiased third party account of the accident. As such, it is often a very important part of a personal injury claim. Remember that the police report is an account of the police officer’s view of what happened, which means it is taken much more seriously than a statement from a party who was involved in the accident.
Note as well that in some cases, you will not be able to recover damages from the accident if a police report is not filed. For example, if the other driver is not insured and you must file a claim on your own uninsured / underinsured motorist policy, you will need a police report.
What a Police Report Will Show
A police report is meant to be an objective report of where the accident occurred, when it occurred, a record of all property damage, a record of all injuries, and a summary of statements from the drivers involved. It should also have contact information for all interviewed witnesses. If weather, road conditions, or other factors contributed to the accident, it should be included in the report as well.
How to File the Police Report
The simplest way is to call the police right after the accident. When they get to the scene, you will discuss the accident and they will talk to others at the scene. The officer will create a traffic collision report, which you should request a copy of. If the accident is minor and / or there are no injuries, then the police may not show up at the scene. In this case, you will need to go to the police station within 24 hours of the accident to file your report.
Call Us Now for a Free Legal Consultation
If you have been involved in and injured in a car accident, truck accident, motorcycle accident, or other similar accident, then you may need the assistance of a personal injury attorney. At The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker we can begin the process by offering a free legal consultation. We can go over what happened, discuss the evidence, and advise you on any legal avenues that may be open to you. Contact us now at 800-333-0000 to begin the process.