When you suffer injuries in a collision, filing an accident report with the local police department will likely not be the first thing on your mind. Nonetheless, if you are going to sue the negligent party– to recover compensation for your losses and injuries, that report can provide crucial evidence.
The New York and New Jersey car accident lawyers at Kantrowitz, Goldhamer & Graifman P.C. encourage all drivers to file reports and verify that they accurately reflect what happened. Even if the accident did not cause serious injuries, a report can resolve liability questions and protect an injured driver from claims that their negligence contributed to it.
What are the top reasons to file an accident report?
There are at least three significant reasons to file a car accident report:
- By law, drivers involved in car crashes are required to file an accident report within ten days. This applies in New Jersey if the accident resulted in injuries or fatalities or caused more than $500 in property damage. New York has a similar requirement, but with a higher property damage threshold of $1,000.
- Auto insurance companies generally require drivers to file accident reports if any claims for liability coverage will also be filed.
- Auto insurance in New York and New Jersey is provided on a “no-fault” basis, and a driver’s insurance will cover basic medical bills. Depending on the severity, however, an injured driver might have an opportunity to sue a negligent party for greater damages. A report can be a key factor in the success of that lawsuit and the recovery of full compensation for all losses and injuries, including lost wages and damages for pain and suffering.
If you have any questions, be sure to speak with a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible.
What information is included in an accident report?
An accident will include all of the information that a car accident attorney will need to prepare to file a lawsuit to recover damages for an innocent party’s property losses and injuries, including:
- the names and contact information of all drivers and passengers involved in the accident
- details of each driver’s auto insurance coverage
- a thorough description of the accident scene
- a summary of each party’s injuries in the immediate aftermath
- details of traffic citations that might have been issued to the driver who caused it
- names and contact information for any witnesses.
Any lawsuit that you file against a negligent party will have a better chance of succeeding when you can provide thorough details of how the accident happened. The accident report is an objective summary of those details.
Contact us for a free consultation
Please see our website or call the offices of Kantrowitz, Goldhamer & Graifman P. C. for more information on filing car accident reports and for representation in a lawsuit. We have recovered millions of dollars in damages for clients in Rockland and Bergen Counties, and elsewhere in New York and New Jersey.