When you are hurt in a personal injury situation, your first priority is to get the medical attention you need as quickly as possible. But that injury you sustained could change your life. It might take away your livelihood, affect your relationship with your spouse, and cause you to have medical bills for the rest of your life. That is why you need to hire an attorney and seek the kind of compensation you deserve. Along the way, you will also want to make sure you get a police report as that kind of document can be critical to the success of your case.
Insurance companies are not compelled to use police reports, but police reports are hard to ignore. If you are involved in a personal injury accident and someone tries to turn the tables on you and hit you with a lawsuit, then the police report can help to defend your side. This is especially helpful if there is no video or photographic evidence to back up either side of the story.
Filing A Claim
A police report is considered just one person’s perspective of an event, but it is difficult for anyone to deny the opinion of a police officer. After your personal injury accident, you and your attorney will want to file a claim for compensation. That is how personal injury lawsuits begin, and you will have a stronger claim to make if you have a police report to corroborate your side of the events.
In many states, a police report is required for you to get any compensation if you are struck by an uninsured driver. Most states have funds set up to help insured drivers who are injured by uninsured drivers, but you need a police report to be able to access those funds.
Filing A Complete Insurance Report
Every witness to a personal injury accident is important to an insurance company, and that includes a police report. When your attorney prepares to file your claim, they will insist on getting a police report to make the filing more complete. Without a police report, the situation hinges on the opinion of a judge who was not present when the accident occurred.
Getting A Police Report
In most cases, a police officer who arrives on the scene of an accident will automatically file a police report. Some states have technology that allows the officer to print out a report on the scene and give it to you. If that is not the case in your state, then you have to ask which precinct will have your report. It is important to remember that the police do not automatically show up to every accident.
If you want a police report, you need to call the police on your own. If there is another party involved in your accident, then inform them that you are contacting the police for a report. If they refuse to stay for a report, get their license plate number or contact information and let the police officer know what happened.
Since the police usually arrive after an accident has occurred, a police report is not considered an eyewitness account. Instead, a police report is considered an official document summarizing the evidence collected and both sides of the story for an incident. It can be a powerful weapon if you decide to file a personal injury claim, and an even more powerful weapon if you decide to file a lawsuit.