What Is a Police Report?
A Police Report is a document that law enforcement officers fill out at the scene of auto accidents. This report contains relevant information on the details of the accident and acts as a formal record of the accident.
Some of the important information that is included in the police report is:
- The Date and Time of the accident
- The Weather conditions and Location of the accident
- The Parties who were involved in the crash
- Contact Information of those involved as well as Witnesses
- Statements made by those involved in the crash and witnesses
- A detailed statement of what the officer believes happened or caused the crash
Having a detailed police report is one of the best tools that a personal injury attorney can have at their disposal if you end up in a personal injury lawsuit.
How Will a Police Report Effect My Car Accident Lawsuit?
A police report is a vital piece of evidence that is used in car accident injury lawsuits by personal injury attorneys. Although many people would prefer not to involve the police after being in a car accident, it is usually the best way to make sure that their legal rights are protected.
As we have discussed, the police report provides a legal document that outlines the important details of the car accident. Without one, your case will have to be built around other evidence that may be difficult to find or prove in a court of law. Most personal injury cases are settled out of court. One of the reasons for this is police reports.
"Police reports provide attorneys with written statements from the parties involved, witnesses, and the responding officers." A personal injury attorney can refer to these reports to show that the defendant was indeed at fault for the accident. In states like Georgia, where comparative fault is used in personal injury cases, the police report can help determine what percentage of fault rests with each party.
Lawyers can prove how responsible each party was for the accident which can help the victim get a fair settlement offer from the defendant's insurance company.
Combining the police report with medical records and property damage reports gives you the best chance of settling your lawsuit quickly and fairly and without the need for stepping foot in a courtroom.
How Do I Access My Police Report?
Police reports are filed and kept with the police department that responded to the scene of the accident. The way you are able to get a copy of your accident's police report depends on the department that responded to your accident and what their policies are, however you will always be able to get a copy one way or another. To obtain yours, you may either request a copy of the form online or go to the police station in person and request a copy.
Keep in mind that when trying to obtain your police report, you may need to provide identification or sometimes even pay a small fee. If you have been in a car accident, the first course of action you should take is to contact the authorities. Having an officer respond to the scene is important to gathering evidence for a potential lawsuit. When the responding officer fills out a police report, they are providing documented proof of the events that took place, who was involved, witness testimony, and their own individual analysis of the events. After contacting the police, the next step you should take if you have been in a car accident is to contact a personal injury attorney.
Once You Have the Police Report What Should You Do Next?
A personal injury attorney is highly experienced and knows how to leverage a police report along with other evidence to get a fair financial settlement for you.
If you have been in a car accident and would like to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney, call The Roth Firm, LLC at (404) 777-4899 or fill out our online contact form and schedule a free consultation.