Have you recently been involved in a car accident in which a police report was never issued or filed? If you live in Texas, you may have some important questions about what this means for your car accident claim.
Although missing police reports can affect your case, it does not always mean that your claim will be affected. While your insurance company can help settle claims filed under your policy, it is recommended that you speak with an experienced car accident attorney before making any decisions. This article addresses the critical issue of a missing police report and tells you what to consider when dealing with a serious automobile collision.
Am I Required to Report My Texas Car Accident to the Police?
After being involved in a car accident, drivers are often left feeling worried and overwhelmed. It can be easy to forget certain necessary procedures like filing a police report, but doing so can provide beneficial evidence of your collision.
The State of Texas does not require a person to file a police report after an accident occurs. The exception to this rule comes into play when property damage, death, or bodily harm is involved. Any automobile accident that results in serious damage exceeding $1,000 must be reported to law enforcement. Failure to report a crash to the police when there is severe property damage or harm can result in a suspended license.
If you want to file a claim in court after an accident, you do not necessarily need a police report to do so, but your insurance company may require it if you want to seek compensation through them. Some insurance companies will prohibit you from filing a claim with them if you do not have an official report. While it isn’t necessarily a way to assign fault after an accident, your report can provide details about the incident that provides proof of negligence or misconduct against the other driver, which could strengthen your case.
What Is a Texas Police Report?
Police reports are documents created by law enforcement officers to keep track of relevant details that might pertain to an accident. These reports act as a summary of events and can include vital information about the drivers, the scene of the incident, and other important details that may need to be referenced.
After an accident, the police officer who arrives at the scene will begin investigating to determine the cause of the crash and who is at fault. Officers may include other details in their reports, including:
- Identifying information of all drivers and passengers involved in the accident
- Witness testimony from bystanders
- Photos, videos, or drawn diagrams of the scene
- Detailed descriptions of injuries or damage
- Notable weather and road conditions
- Citations issued to any of the drivers
The police report serves as a detailed and official record of the accident, but more than that, it can help you build a strong defense when taking your car accident suit to court.
Why Is a Police Report Important to My Car Accident Suit?
Police reports are not necessarily required for a successful car accident suit, especially for minor collisions that do not result in injury or damage. They can, however, provide proof that might turn the case around entirely.
Establishing who was at fault after a crash can be significantly easier if there is a police report. Since the police officer arriving on the scene will be monitoring the situation closely, they may be able to identify other aspects of the accident that you missed. Additionally, police have records of previous offenses, and if the other driver in the accident was involved in any similar traffic-related problems, this information might be something that can help you win your case.
Trust the Expert Car Accident Attorneys at Sutliff & Stout
Dealing with the criminal justice system can be frustrating, especially when you are working on filing a car accident case. There is a great deal of information regarding your trial that may be confusing, which is why you must hire an attorney who can help you move forward with confidence.
The Board-Certified car accident lawyers at Sutliff & Stout are available to help our clients seven days a week. If you were recently involved in an automobile accident, there’s no reason to wait. File your claim today with an attorney who can help you win.
When you’re ready, contact us online or call 713-987-7111 for a free consultation.