The information on a police report varies depending on the accident, where your accident occurred, who was at fault, and who witnessed your accident. The one constant which holds no matter what is that Georgia motorists must call the police and file a police report after an accident with injuries, death, or significant property damage. Failing to report an accident to the police could result in criminal charges filed against you.
Standard Information Contained in Police Reports
While the specifics of a police report vary, there are a few common things contained within them. If you ever request a copy of a police report, you can expect to find a list of the following items on your police report:
- Drivers and vehicles involved in the accident
- Names of passengers and witnesses
- Date, time, and location of the accident
- Accident report
- Statements from witnesses
Drivers and Vehicles Involved in the Accident
The name, address, and driver’s license number of the parties involved in the accident are among the most important bits of information on a police report. The driver’s name and address, as well as date of birth, will be visible on the driver’s license. In addition to their vital information, driver’s licenses commonly contain information regarding any physical impairments (vision for example). This could be helpful in a personal injury claim if one of the drivers was not wearing corrective eyewear.
In addition, your police report should list the make, model, and license plate number of both vehicles. Again, this information could prove to be helpful if you file a personal injury claim.
Names of Passengers and Witnesses
A police report should include the names and contact information for passengers and witnesses as well. This is particularly important because passengers and witnesses often provide better accounts of the situation and circumstances of the accidents than the drivers.
Date, Time, and Location of the Accident
Knowing the setting of the accident provides context into some of the circumstances of the accident. For example, did the accident occur late in the evening at a busy intersection? Was it a rainy day at rush hour? All these details may not seem wholly important but can influence the outcome.
Summary of the Accident
Once the police officer has spoken to the drivers involved in an accident, he will gather all the information and write a summary of the accident. The more detailed the report is, the better. Whether the accident is something as simple as a fender bender or a more severe one, every detail counts.
In some cases, you may have to give testimony. In this case, it is not only important to remember what happened leading up to the accident, but also be able to explain what happened clearly.
Statements From Witnesses
As we mentioned above, testimonies from witnesses and passengers are sometimes more reliable than from the drivers. That makes collecting statements from anyone who was in the car or who witnessed the accident very important. A witness statement which conflicts with the other driver but lines up with your account is a very powerful testimony and would be very beneficial to a personal injury claim.
Police Reports Can Help Your Personal Injury Case
While the specific details in a police report vary from case to case, there are some basic details which appear on every standard police report. That information often proves to be very helpful if you decide to file a personal injury claim. Police reports help prove that someone violated traffic laws in your accident.
If you are considering filing a personal injury claim, we encourage you to call S. Burke Law. Our compassionate team has spent the last 20 years serving personal injury victims in Atlanta. In many of those cases, the details listed on police reports provided vital information which helped us collect a settlement.
Call an Atlanta Personal Injury Attorney
Many people do not realize how important police reports are to their personal injury claims. A detailed police report can make collecting damages after an accident relatively easy. But a thin report could make it quite difficult. That makes reviewing police reports very important for Atlanta car accident victims.If you were involved in a car accident recently and would like help looking over your accident report, or anything else, feel free to call S. Burke Law. Our consultations come at no cost, so we encourage you to gather the information you need. And if you do decide to file a personal injury claim, you can rest assured we will do everything within our power to effectively represent you. Call us at 404-842-7838.