After a car accident, many drivers feel reluctant to get the police involved. They may have heard people say they should never speak to police without an attorney present. These people may be surprised to learn that most attorneys actually recommend filing a police report after an accident. Here’s why.
A Legal Duty
Some accidents require a police report. In Georgia, drivers must call for law enforcement if:
· Damage from the crash exceeds $500.
· Anyone was injured.
· Anyone was killed
When any of these criteria apply, drivers have a legal duty to call for emergency services and file a police report. Failure to do so could result in severe penalties.
Creating a Record
Most attorneys recommend a police report for any accident, even a minor collision. The reason is simple. A police report creates an impartial record of the accident. It is proof that the accident occurred, and that the other driver’s information is genuine.
Some at-fault drivers involved in an accident will ask that the police are not involved. Ignore these requests. Without a police report, there is no way to verify the other driver caused the accident. That means the insurance claim becomes a case of pointing fingers without any definitive proof. In a comparative negligence state, like Georgia, that could mean taking on a greater degree of fault and receiving a smaller settlement.
A police report documents all of the evidence examines the damages and includes notes from the responding officer. These elements, combined with pictures taken at the scene, can provide the evidence drivers need to prove their claim and get the settlement they deserve.
If you were involved in a serious car accident, we are here for you. If you’d like an experienced Atlanta auto injury attorney from The Mabrey Firm to evaluate your case, please send us an email or call (404) 814-5098.