How to Get a Police Report for a Car Accident in Ft. Lauderdale
Police reports are official documents that the police file after a crash. They’re used for a few different purposes, such as collecting traffic statistics on accidents and injuries, which are often compiled into national databases. Another purpose is to make sure that any accidents are investigated and that a record is made of the crash to help people prove to their insurance or to the courts that the accident happened. Getting a report after a crash is very important in most cases.
To get a police report for your Ft. Lauderdale car accident, you can contact the Records Unit of the Ft. Lauderdale Police Department (FLPD), the Broward County Sheriff’s Office or the Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles Department (FLHSMV). Getting a police report can be confusing, so you can also contact our attorneys for help, and we can go over the report with you as part of a free case review.
For your free case review, call The Carrion Law Firm’s Florida car accident attorneys today at (954) 951-4828.
Getting a Crash Report from the Ft. Lauderdale Police
The FLPD website for the Records Unit gives a few different ways of obtaining a police report. Records are also kept by the Broward County Sheriff’s Office and the FLHSMV and can be retrieved online:
In Person from the FLPD
You can obtain a police report for your crash in person at the Ft. Lauderdale Police’s Records Unit. It is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday. On Saturdays, the Records Unit is open from 8 a.m. to noon, but it is closed on Wednesday and Sunday.
To get this report in person, you will have to bring payment for the records search and fill out paperwork.
Over the Phone from the FLPD
The Records Unit can also be reached via phone 24/7. The same paperwork and payment requirements are in place for records requests whether they are made over the phone or in person, so you will likely still need to turn in paperwork and payment to get the report.
Online from the Broward County Sheriff’s Office
The Sheriff’s Office keeps its own records of accidents, though they are usually the same records that the FLPD keeps. Ultimately, the Broward County Sheriff’s Office makes these reports a little easier to obtain through their online portal. To use this service, you will have to create an account and log in.
Online from the FLHSMV
The Motor Vehicles Department also collects records from local police departments and stores them on a statewide portal called the Florida Crash Portal. This allows you to buy your report online, but keep in mind that this could be more expensive. Instead, consider taking your case to our Florida personal injury lawyers where we can review your case for free.
Requirements for Getting a Police Report for a Ft. Lauderdale Car Accident
To get a police report, you have to at least pay for the copies. Getting a report from the FLPD is one of the cheapest options, as they only charge less than a quarter per copy or $1 per page for a “certified” copy. Other services might be more expensive, so you should always speak with your Broward County car accident lawyers about the best route to getting your police report.
You also need to fill out some paperwork to get the report in Florida. The first requirement will be a Crash Report Affidavit – at least for the FLPD. This document requires you to say who you are and what relationship you have to the crash. Only certain people are able to get a report for a car crash, namely the involved parties, their lawyers, their insurance companies, other agents that have been approved to receive a report, and certain government agents. This affidavit needs to be notarized, adding some hassle and expense to the process. Our Boca Raton car accident attorneys can use this affidavit to get a report on your behalf.
Do I Really Need a Car Accident Report for a Ft. Lauderdale Car Accident Case?
Getting a police report is often optional, but it is quite important to your potential case. First, Florida uses no-fault insurance rules, which means that you will likely need to file a claim with your insurance company for at least some of the damages in your case. If your insurance company or the other driver’s insurance company requires a police report, you will need to get a copy to get the insurance company to pay you what they owe you.
In cases where you can take your case directly to a lawsuit, your Boca Raton personal injury lawyer might still be able to get some very important information from the report and might request a copy.
What’s in a Car Crash Report in Ft. Lauderdale?
A police report for a car crash contains a lot of information about the crash that can be very helpful when it comes to proving fault, proving damages, and proving what happened. Typically, police reports are not admissible as evidence in court. However, they can still be used to refresh a witness’ recollection of the events and to help your Ft. Lauderdale car accident lawyers build your case.
Police reports typically contain information about all of the following:
- Who was involved in the accident
- Who witnessed the accident
- Where and when the crash happened
- What damage each car suffered
- What injuries each person involved suffered
- The make, model, year, color, and license plate numbers of each vehicle involved
- The weather and lighting conditions
- A diagram of the crash
All of this info is especially helpful if you were injured in the crash and had to go to the hospital for treatment. If you were unable to stay at the scene of the accident to collect this info yourself, your Ft. Lauderdale car accident lawyers might need the police report to know whom to sue and what witnesses might be available to testify in your case, among other details.
For a Free Case Review, Call Our Ft. Lauderdale Car Accident Lawyers Today
If you were hurt in a car accident in Ft. Lauderdale, call The Carrion Law Firm today. Our Ft. Lauderdale car accident lawyers can help you understand how to get a police report for your crash and fight your case for you. For your free case review, call us at (954) 951-4828 today.