How Police Reports May Play a Role in a Car Accident Case

obtaining a copy of policy report for your claimWhether you are involved in a serious accident or not, one of the most important things to do is calling the authorities to investigate what happened and filing a police report. A copy of the police report is needed if you decide to make a claim to pursue compensation for any injuries or damages caused by the negligent party. The insurance adjuster would need to review this report before an offer is determined.

If you have been hurt in a crash, we recommend reaching out to Sigman Janssen for legal help. A free consultation with our firm will allow you the opportunity to learn about the possible legal options available to you and allow us to answer questions you may have about the claims process.

Beneficial Information in a Police Report

A police report can contain vital information and lead to evidence that may establish the cause of the crash and your resulting injuries as well as how the two are connected. Proving this link is essential to pursue maximum compensation in a car accident case.

Useful information often found in police reports may include:

  • Basic details of the crash – The police report at the very least will contain the date, time and the exact location of the car accident.  
  • The other driver’s statement – The responding police officer will talk to you and the other driver involved to uncover what happened and who may potentially be at fault for the crash. 
  • Contact details from all parties –  The report will have contact information from the other driver, his or her insurer, and anyone else who may have witnessed the car accident.
  • Narrative of events – The police report will contain the police officer’s narrative of the events that lead up to and caused the crash as well as his or her own conclusions on the incident. 
  • Injuries and property damage – The report should contain a written description of the injuries you and the other driver suffered and any damage to vehicles or other property at the scene.
  • Traffic tickets or citations – The officer will report if a traffic ticket or citation was issued. This could be used to help show the other driver was negligent or careless in his or her actions.
  • Pictures and diagrams – The police report may include a diagram of the accident scene or pictures of the accident, injuries and vehicle damage depending on the severity of the crash.
  • Weather and road conditions – The report may also contain details about the weather or road conditions to help show that the other driver was not exercising reasonable care while driving.

If you are in need of quality legal representation, our Appleton car accident attorneys are ready to help determine whether you have a viable case. You may be eligible to seek compensation to help cover medical bills, vehicle repairs, or replacement of your vehicle, as long as you are not found to be more at fault than the party you are making a claim against.

Ways a Police Report Could Impact Your Case

There are numerous ways that a police report could impact your potential car accident case:

Settlement Negotiations

Insurance adjusters look closely at police reports and officers’ observations when evaluating claims. You and your attorney could use the report to help show that the other driver was clearly at fault, which may make it more likely to obtain a fair settlement offer.

Lead to Other Evidence

Although your attorney would conduct a separate investigation, the police report could provide him or her with other evidence, like an additional witness to the crash or another possible at fault party. The report may even help a hired accident reconstruction expert to reenact how the incident unfolded.

Can Police Reports Be Admitted as Evidence?

In a court of law, a police report is generally considered hearsay and therefore cannot be admitted as evidence in most cases. A police report is often inadmissible since the responding police officer did not personally witness the car accident. Notes written in these reports are taken from statements of those involved in the crash.

Although police reports typically cannot be used in a courtroom since they contain the officer’s opinion of what happened, anyone who may have witnessed the crash may be able to testify on your behalf. Statements could potentially be admissible as evidence if the witness testifies about the events he or she observed. 

Our Lawyers Are Ready to Help You

If you have been involved in a serious car accident, our lawyers at Sigman Janssen are here to help. We have assisted many accident victims pursue fair and full compensation for their injuries and damages.

An initial consultation is complimentary with zero obligations to take legal action. Should we represent you, there are no upfront fees. You only pay our firm if we help you recover compensation.

Have Questions? We Have Answers. Ph: (877) 888-5201