Should I File a Police Report After an Accident?
Written by Greg on April 16, 2020
A traffic accident can happen in an instant. When it does, it can be one of the scariest and most traumatizing experiences in your life. According to the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), a reportable crash occurs about every minute in the state, based on 2018 statistics. Just under 250,000 people were injured in traffic accidents the same year. While most accidents are minor, some can be severe and may cause serious injuries or fatalities. If you were hurt in an accident, you might have compensation for your injuries.
Should I File a Police Report?
You should file a police report following a traffic accident, regardless of who was at fault for the crash. There are several reasons to make an accident report. A police report is the official documentation of the accident. You can use this report to prove the date, time, location, and other details of the event. The report provides a space where you can detail how the accident occurred and draw a depiction of the crash. These details can be vital later when you need to prove how the crash happened. The police will arrive on the scene and take information, gather witness statements, direct traffic, summon medical assistance, and help get your vehicle to safety.
When to File a Police Report
The best time to file a police report is during the accident. Call the police immediately and do not exit your car or move your vehicle. The police only respond to serious accidents. Otherwise, they may instruct you on how to file a report later. The sooner you make a report, the better because if you wait, it will become more challenging to prove that your injuries resulted from the crash. Remember that the other driver could deny responsibility or even try to claim that the accident did not occur. It is in your best interest to call the police and file a report soon. Click here to learn how to get a Houston accident report.
Texas Law Requires Crash Reporting
Texas law requires you to report an accident under certain conditions. You must report any accident that caused damage of more than $1,000 or where anyone was injured or killed. You must file a report within 10 days after the accident. The penalty for not filing a report could include penalties of up to $5,000 and jail time. The best thing to do is to call the police to the scene of the accident. There are a few other things to remember following a crash. Inform the other driver and the police, including your driver’s license, insurance, and registration documents. Take photos of the accident scene and damage. Seek medical treatment when possible and keep copies of all your medical reports and bills.
Contact an experienced Houston accident attorney. Your lawyer will assist and guide you through the process and help ensure that you get the compensation you are owed for your injuries. Call Baumgartner Law Firm to discuss the details of your accident in a free case consultation.