Should You Get a Police Report After an Accident in New York?
After most car accidents, the police write and file a report on the incident. These reports often contain important information about the accident, such as who was involved, the damage caused, the injuries sustained, and whether any arrests were made. Police reports can be very useful in some ways, but they can be very limited in other ways.
You should always get a police report, but its usefulness may vary. Sometimes plaintiffs remain at the scene with the police while they collect information for their report. In these cases, the plaintiff likely knows everything that is already in the report. However, if the plaintiff was taken to the hospital while the police investigated the scene, the police report might contain new information. Discuss your case with your attorney to figure out if you need a police report.
After a New York car accident, you are probably hurt, confused, and in need of financial help. Our New York City car accident attorneys can help you get the compensation you need to cover your various expenses related to the accident. Call The Carrion Law Firm at (718) 841-0083 to arrange a free, confidential legal consultation.
How a Police Report Can Help You After a Car Accident in New York
Police reports can come in handy after a car accident and should probably be obtained in many cases. Even if you do not take your car accident to civil court, you might have to prove damages to insurance companies. New York is a no-fault state when it comes to insurance for car accidents, so you do not need a police report to help you prove fault to your insurance provider. However, you may need to prove the extent of your damages and injuries to get adequate coverage from your insurance.
If you do decide to pursue a legal claim against the other driver involved in your accident, a police report can help you in several ways. Police reports often contain important identifying information about who was involved in the accident. At the very least, it can help you track down your defendant so you can properly serve them and provide them notice of the lawsuit.
Police reports can also provide you leads on possible witnesses. The police may have spoken to people near the accident scene, and their names and information might be in the police report. We can use the report to find these people and convince them to act as witnesses in court.
Keep in mind that certified police reports are admissible in civil court as evidence, but only if the officer who wrote the report testifies about its contents and proper foundation is laid for admissibility. The report must have been made according to the officer’s personal observations while carrying out police duties. If the officer is unavailable or will not make a good witness, or if the report is not certified, the report cannot be admitted at your trial. Call our Queens car accident attorneys for additional information.
Is a Police Report Required for My Car Accident Case in New York?
Police reports are often required to be filed, but they are not necessarily required to move forward with a civil action. In many circumstances, drivers are required by law to contact the police immediately after an accident so help can be provided and a report can be created. If anyone is injured in an accident or property is damaged, drivers are usually required to call the police.
While you are not required to use the police report of your accident in your civil lawsuit, it may be a good idea. Even if it is not entirely necessary, having the police report can lend legitimacy to your lawsuit. The court might find it odd if you believe the accident is serious enough to sue over, but not serious enough to call the police over. The report also establishes proof that your accident did, in fact, occur and that the defendant was involved.
Using the police report might not be necessary in some cases. If your defendant is keen to settle out of court, the report might not come up at all. However, if your defendant is adamant about fighting your claims, the report might become important. To determine if your report is necessary, call our Bronx car accident lawyers right away.
How Do I Get a Police Report for My Car Accident in New York?
Getting a police report is a relatively simple process today. You do not even have to set foot in a police department to get the report most of the time. Requests for reports can be submitted online, and reports are often mailed out. However, if you want to use the police report from your accident, it is a good idea to submit the request sooner rather than later. There is no guarantee your request will be processed very quickly, and you will want to get the report before proceedings on your case start.
It is important to find out which police department specifically filed a report on your accident. In a large city like New York, numerous precincts are in charge of different areas. You need to get the report from the precinct in charge of your case. You can do this in person at the police precinct, or online through the NYPD’s online portal. However, only people in New York, Connecticut, or Massachusetts can use the online portal. Visitors from other states will have to find another way.
On the other hand, if you were outside the city, a different local police department or the New York State Police might have handled your case. A record search through New York’s DMV website might also turn up a police report for your accident. When requesting a copy of the report, there may be a small fee, usually around $20. Call our Brooklyn car accident lawyers for help getting your report.
Call Our New York Car Accident Attorneys
If you were in a car accident in New York, a police report was probably filed regarding the incident. Our Long Island car accident attorneys can help you use the report to further your case. Call The Carrion Law Firm at (718) 841-0083 to arrange a free, confidential legal consultation.