When Do I Need a Police Report After a Car Accident?

When Do I Need a Police ReportOn average, 6 million car accidents occur in the United States each year. Such frequency makes it probable that every driver will be involved in at least one accident in their lifetime. From injuries to property damage, accidents can cause big problems for drivers and insurance companies almost always become involved. Therefore, it’s important for every driver on the road to know what to do if they’re involved in an accident.

One of the most common questions pertaining to car accidents is whether or not filing a police report is required. To help answer that question, it’s important to know the factors that help determine when you need to file a police report after an accident.

What is a police report?

A police report is an official document that records the details of an incident or crime. Any persons involved in the incident, including witnesses, can file a police report. Once filed, a police report initiates an investigation if necessary. In the case of car accidents, police reports are useful for determining fault and filing claims with insurance companies.

Did the car accident involve two or more parties?

When trying to decide whether you need to file a police report, the first question you should ask is “How many parties were involved?” If the accident was a single-car accident and you were the only party involved, there’s no need to file a police report. However, if two or more parties were involved in the accident, you should always contact the authorities and file a police report.

Did any property damage or injuries occur?

The second question you need to ask yourself when deciding whether to file a police report is “Did any property damage occur?” If there was damage to more than just your vehicle or anyone else besides yourself sustained injuries, you need to file a police report. 

In Florida, you’re required by law to file a police report if an accident caused more than $500 in property damage. Filing a police report in this situation will prove beneficial when it comes time to determine who will pay for damages. Likewise, if you’re being sued for an accident, a police report can help prove your innocence if you were not at fault.

Do you need to file an insurance claim?

Last, ask yourself if you need to file an insurance claim. If you plan on informing your insurance company about your car accident (and you should), they will ask if you have any documentation of the accident. Many times, involved parties will seek damages from the other party’s insurance company. When this happens, having official documentation like a police report can help make a fair case.

Experienced and Trustworthy Car Accident Attorneys Near You

If you’ve been involved in a car accident and are not sure where you can turn for help, look no further than The Umansky Law Firm. With more than 35 years of experience defending the residents of Central Florida, we are the attorneys you can trust. Whether your car accident caused major damage or was a minor incident, we will work to build a case that helps mitigate your financial responsibility. 

Call our offices today at 407-228-3838 or use our online contact form to talk with an attorney and schedule your consultation.