It is not only important to call the police and report an accident, but in some jurisdictions it can be legally required. While drivers might not feel compelled to report minor fender-benders, serious crashes involving extensive damage or injuries must be reported. Even when damage is minor and you don’t believe you are injured, reporting the accident is advisable. We often hear from people who were in accidents they did not report because they did not believe they were hurt, only to begin experiencing headaches, pain, and sometimes serious complications days later. At that time, it is usually too late to have an official record of the crash.
Contacting police following a car accident is important because the police will respond, document the incident, and draft a report. This report is important for numerous reasons.
In the past, accident reports came directly from law enforcement. While the police still write these reports, they are often accessible online nowadays. In fact, websites like BuyCrash.LexisNexisRisk.com allow law enforcement agencies to upload reports so drivers can download them for a fee. However, using BuyCrash.LexisNexisRisk.com is not the only way to get an accident report in some jurisdictions.
After a car accident, you need the accident report to file an insurance claim or pursue legal actions against negligent drivers. Our Indianapolis car accident attorneys can help you figure out how to obtain your report or can obtain it free of charge as part of a free case evaluation.. Call our team at Wruck Paupore Injury Lawyers at (219) 322-1166 to obtain and receive a full review of your report at no cost.
Accident reports are written by the law enforcement officers who responded to the accident scene. These reports often take time to write. The more complicated your accident is, and the more serious the injuries and damages are, often the longer it will take the police to complete the full report. However, once the report is ready, you can obtain a copy for your own use. Sometimes you may also be able to receive a preliminary report, which is then supplemented by additional information if police do a full accident reconstruction or more complicated reporting involving a serious accident.
Traditionally, accident reports were retrieved directly from the police station. However, not just any agency or department will have your report. You must go to the department that handled your accident. For example, if your local city police department handled your accident, you would not be able to obtain a report from the state police as they are different agencies.
Currently, accident reports are often available online. Depending on where you live and the law enforcement agency writing your report, you can access your crash report through an online portal. Depending on what online portal is used, you might be required to pay a fee to obtain the report.
As mentioned previously, one commonly used online portal for accident reports is BuyCrash.LexisNexisRisk.com. This website is not affiliated with any government or law enforcement organization. However, the website works with law enforcement agencies and departments across the country to provide people with accident reports.
When searching for an accident report from BuyCrash.LexisNexisRisk.com, you need specific information about your accident. You will need to first create an account with the website before obtaining your crash report. Once this is done, you can enter key information about your crash to find your report. This includes entering information about the state and jurisdiction of your crash. Our Indiana car accident attorneys can help you find it if you do not have this info or can obtain the report for you as part of a free case evaluation.
If looking for your report yourself, you can further narrow down your search results by entering the location and date of your collision. If the police have already provided you with a report number, you can also use that to find your report online.
While BuyCrash.LexisNexisRisk.com is a popular choice for law enforcement departments who wish to upload reports online, it is not the only option available. Not all drivers have internet access to download their accident reports. In such cases, you can contact law enforcement directly to obtain a copy of the accident report.
Frequently, when the internet is law enforcement’s preferred method of disseminating accident reports, getting them any other way is often difficult and we have heard numerous reports of local police agencies who refuse to provide reports directly. This is especially difficult if you need a physical copy of the report because you do not have internet access or a printer to print the report once it is received.
If this sounds similar to your situation, our South Bend car accident attorneys can help you obtain the accident report immediately when you contact us.
Keep in mind that different police departments may have different protocols for accident reports. While some departments might keep archived reports on hand, others do not. You might end up bouncing from department to department looking for your report. Additionally, some departments use websites other than BuyCrash.LexisNexisRisk.com to upload reports. Talk to the officers involved in your case to figure out the steps you need to take to get a report.
After reading the above information, you might think that getting an accident report is far more trouble than it is worth. On the contrary, your accident report is crucial to your car accident case. Whether you want to pursue an insurance claim or legal action against another driver, the accident report is critical.
Some states adhere to no-fault insurance laws where drivers are covered by their own insurance after a crash. Other states follow fault-based systems in which a driver must file a claim with another driver’s insurance to get any compensation. In either scenario, the insurance company will likely demand to see an accident report.
Insurance companies like to see accident reports because they are official documentation that an accident did indeed occur. Some people attempt to collect insurance money by faking accident cases. If an insurance company can see an official accident report, they can confirm the accident is real and your claim is not fraudulent.
If you decide to pursue a personal injury lawsuit after your accident, you need the accident report to help identify possible witnesses and evidence. The report itself is not admissible evidence in most states because it is written based on hearsay from other people. However, accident reports often provide information about eyewitnesses and physical evidence that can be used to track them down.
If you recently experienced a car accident, you are probably waiting on your accident report right now. It might be unclear how to obtain the report. Our Fort Wayne car accident attorneys can help you get your report so you can get compensation for your crash. Call Wruck Paupore at (219) 322-1166 for a free case review.
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Don is a founding partner and one of the nation’s top-ranked personal injury litigators. He is a member of the Multi-million Dollar Advocates Forum, which includes less than 1% of the nation’s trial lawyers, and awarded the highest ranking given by Martindale Hubbel and AVVO.
More importantly, Don understands representing personal injury victims is about more than recovering the best settlement: it’s about helping clients get back on their feet and supporting them in every aspect of their recovery.
In nearly all cases, our clients seek compensation from the wrongdoer’s insurance company. Before forming Wruck Paupore, Jason worked for a prominent law firm representing some of the world’s largest insurers. This experience gives Jason a deep understanding of the insurance industry and the strategies it uses to pay injury victims as little as possible.
Jason -- and our entire team -- put this inside knowledge to work to force insurance companies to pay what is actually owed. Often, we use the insurance company’s own tactics against them as we fight for the full compensation our client deserves.
For more than four decades, Keith has been fighting for injury victims. During that time, he’s watched the insurance industry change, with insurers now more interested in protecting their stock price than treating injury victims fairly.
Since the beginning, Keith has put people first. From his childhood in Gary, Indiana during the 1960’s and working his way through law school, Keith has risen to become one of the Midwest’s most respected trial lawyers. He has never forgotten that being a lawyer is about helping people -- and seeing injury victims through struggles in a way that could change their lives forever.
Over the decades, Keith, Don and Jason have fought relentlessly for clients, even when other lawyers have said the case was impossible to win.