Do I Need a Police Report After a Car Accident?

Yes, a police report can help your personal injury lawyer to obtain for you the compensation you deserve. It can also protect you from false allegations by the other driver.

The right documentation is everything

TV shows would have you believe that most legal matters are decided solely on eyewitness testimony. However, this is rarely the case. Here’s why:

  • Witnesses have faulty memories: This has been proven time and again by scientific studies. Even a single mistake in a witness’s account can throw doubt on its reliability.
  • Biased testimony carries little weight: Judges and juries know that each side in a case has its own interests to protect. This makes them naturally skeptical of unsupported testimony.
  • Auto accidents can distort your perceptions: Think about what happens when the human body is stressed. The heart rate quickens, adrenaline pours into the bloodstream, and the mind is overwhelmed with emotion. All of these factors can impair your ability to recall what occurred during the wreck.

One way to give weight to your side of the story is to have the input of an unbiased third party– like a police officer. Law enforcement agents are trained to look at accidents objectively. They also know the right questions to ask and the key pieces of evidence to look for.

For all these reasons, a police report is a good thing to have on hand after an auto collision.

What may happen if you fail to file a report

Let’s say it’s right after the accident, and you and the other party are standing outside your vehicles. Both of you feel fine and the cars look undamaged. So you decide to shake hands and let it go at that.

Are you out of the woods at this point? Not necessarily. Here’s why:

  • Injuries aren’t always obvious at first: To see why let’s go back to what we said above about what happens to the human body after a crash. The adrenaline and endorphins that enter your bloodstream can fool you into feeling fine when you’re not. It may take hours or even days for them to wear off, revealing the true extent of your injuries.
  • Car problems can take time to reveal themselves: For example, you may notice a slight squeaking sound after you drive away from the accident. When you take your vehicle to the shop, the technician tells you that the frame is bent and will cost thousands of dollars to repair. At this point, you’re stuck with the bill.
  • The other party may decide to cash in on the crash: Another common scenario is that of the greedy or cash-strapped driver who claims that you injured them in the accident. Without a police report, you have no way to dispute their version of the events. Even if you escape legal problems, your reputation or peace of mind may suffer.

The best way to prevent these problems is to obtain a police report, exchange insurance information with the other party, and contact our New York City personal injury lawyers right away. That way, you’re prepared for whatever ultimately happens.

How a New York car accident attorney can help to make things right

Having the right person in your corner can make all the difference in the world to how a stressful situation turns out. Here’s what we can do for you:

  • Explain your legal options: You’ll know right away if you have the opportunity to seek compensation for your injuries and lost property.
  • Take your side against pushy insurance companies: No accident victim should be coerced into accepting a token settlement.A lawyer can protect you from these kinds of lowball tactics.
  • Offer emotional encouragement: Just knowing that someone cares enough to listen can make you feel better.

Contact us today

Contact the New York City car accident lawyers today at Douglas and London to arrange your free consultation. We’ve secured millions for our injured clients, and we are here to help you every step of the way. We’re available 24/7 for your convenience.