A police report is one of the most important documents you may need when filing an insurance claim after a car accident. A report will include detailed information of the crash and preliminary findings about who was at fault for any resulting damages. This information can be invaluable when trying to negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance company.
If you have been injured in a collision and have questions about the claims process, reach out to our Windsor car accident lawyers for legal help. We offer free consultations at no risk to you.
How an Officer’s Presence Can Be a Source of Help
After a car accident, the presence of a police officer on the scene can help ease the stress of the situation, especially if the other driver involved is being aggressive. An officer can also help with any of the following:
- Request the fire department or medical squad to assist with treating injuries
- Protect the scene of the accident, including any evidence that could help a claim
- Investigate the cause of the accident and document the evidence with pictures
If the crash caused significant property damage or severe injuries, the officer will create a report that can be submitted to your insurance company. If the accident does not reach this threshold, you can still request that the officer create a report. Write down the name and badge number of the officer before you are cleared to leave the scene.
What If My Car Accident Was Minor?
Even minor car accidents should involve the police. Although you may not be injured and there may not be a lot of damage to your vehicle, an officer can still help you sort things out and at least document what happened just in case for future reference.
Things can get a little tricky in larger cities, as most police departments will not send an officer to a minor crash. Instead, you may be instructed to exchange information with the other driver and move your vehicles off the road. In this case, you will not be able to obtain a police report.
Valuable Information in a Police Report
Police officers are recipients of accident investigation training so any officer on the force can respond and create a police report, which may contain valuable information that could help strengthen your car accident claim, such as:
- The location, date, and time of the crash
- Statements or admissions from all drivers
- Contact information from everyone and those who witnessed the crash
- Thorough descriptions of all injuries
- The year, make, model and color of all vehicles
- The road conditions and weather when the crash happened
- The type of damage and the extent of damage to all vehicles
- Any contributing factors to the crash (broken headlights or taillights, broken turn signals, speeding, blown tire, distracted driving, etc.)
The responding officer will typically take pictures of the crash scene, damage to the vehicles, injuries suffered, the road conditions and anything else deemed relevant to the investigation.
Ways a Police Report May Impact Your Case
If you have a case, a police report can be helpful because it provides a reliable account of what occurred. It could persuade the insurance company to settle your claim because the officer examined the crash scene, saw your injuries immediately after the crash, and documented evidence showing who was responsible for the crash.
It may be possible that the insurance adjuster could disagree with the report and the case goes to trial. More often than not a jury may side in your favor after hearing testimony from the investigating officer. Police reports, however, are generally not admissible in court as evidence.
Contact Us Today to Learn More
Being involved in a car accident can be overwhelming no matter the severity of damage or injuries suffered. Our experienced team of lawyers at Greg Monforton and Partners are prepared to review your situation and inform you of the legal options available to you. We have helped many clients over the years recover maximum compensation.
Request a free consultation to get started. There are no upfront fees involved for our services. You only pay us if we recover compensation for you.