What if the police report is incorrect?
If you are involved in a traffic accident it is important to keep in mind that the verdict of your case will depend largely on the information contained in the police report, which will be reviewed by the insurance company and the court, in addition to the evidence collected, the official report is the most weighty document and it is crucial that the data is as accurate as possible.
If you are the affected party and are trying to defend your rights to receive compensation, the details contained in the police report need to be persuasive, as the information reflected in the police report is considered to be the exact version of events.
Most car accidents typically result in two types of accident reports: one details the accident scene. The other type of report is written if the police go to the scene of the accident, this usually happens when personal injury cases occur, after verifying if injuries have occurred an official report is created, and of course the parties involved can also create their own report in order to collect evidence.
Police officers arrive at the scene of the accident when:
The accident is obstructing traffic
Accident victims are injured
Drivers appear to be intoxicated with alcohol or drugs.
The parties involved show aggressive behavior
The police report is incorrect
What if you think the police report is incorrect?
Can you do anything to change or correct the information in the report?
We will answer this and more questions shortly.
How do police reports work?
Although police reports are generally not admissible in court, all parties involved in the car accident review it and all the data recorded in the report have an almost fundamental weight being this version more approximate to the real facts.
Both the insurance company’s adjuster and a court can base their decision on what the police report says when it comes time to negotiate a settlement.
In other words, if the report turns out to be pretty specific about who was at fault, that person will likely have a pretty tricky challenge trying to convince the insurance company otherwise. But don’t be discouraged, this does not mean that the police report cannot be challenged, as long as you have strong evidence that certifies what you are trying to prove.
Defying a Police Report
It is well known that police reports can contain errors or omissions. When this occurs, the party involved in the incident has the right to request that the police report be corrected or completed.
Discussing a police report is not that complicated, but what you should be aware of is the fact that a police officer will only make changes to the report if strong evidence is provided showing that the information contained in the report is incorrect.
If the error that appears in the police report consists of a drafting fault because they misplaced a detail, then the police officer can easily fix that error. For example, if your vehicle is red and the report says it is blue, the police officer will fix the error immediately.
However, if a party requests that a change be made to a detail of the report that may generate a different interpretation than the event originally stated in the report, it is likely to be more complicated to get the officer to agree to create any modification of the report. For example, if the report indicates that a person is guilty, but there is evidence to the contrary, the police officer may not be willing to make the changes.
In some cases, one of the parties may disagree with the statement made by one of the witnesses. The police officer may not be willing to make any changes, simply because there are conflicting statements from witnesses.
When the police officer refuses to correct the police report, the party who disagrees with the report may create a personal report with strong evidence of what happened and ask the police officer to attach the file to the official report. It is ultimately up to the officer to decide whether or not to grant such a request.
While a police officer may or may not decide to amend the report, depending on the nature or details of the accident, the parties involved in the accident will need to make an effort to ensure that they agree with what appears on the report.
Then all the evidence will be evaluated by the author of the facts or the person responsible for establishing the records of the case, the police report has a lot of relevance because it can determine whether or not someone will be subject to comply with a burden of criminal or civil liability in the future, it can affect the amount of money from a settlement or a trial.
Are police officers allowed to include findings indicating guilt within a police report?
Police Assessment During the Car Accident Scene
The basic information a police report may contain includes:
Date, time, and place of the accident.
Description of injuries sustained by both passengers and drivers.
Personal information and verbal statements made by drivers, witnesses and passengers.
The weather and road conditions at the time of the accident.
Details and characteristics of the vehicles involved such as year, make, model, etc. Diagram made by the police officer about the scene of the accident Details of the causes of the accident
recorded by the police.
The types of material damage that are caused to vehicles
Generally, after an accident, victims cannot think clearly due to anguish and stress, they do not have as a priority to estimate the level of damage received or caused to a vehicle. After an accident the only thing that the injured always want to know “what to do after a car accident” to know more and solve all the doubts you may have do not stop reading our news blog.
Steps to take to collect evidence at the scene of the accident:
It is common for police to take photographs of the accident scene and any damage to the cars and the passengers and drivers involved. Rule out whether alcohol or drugs influenced drivers to cause the accident. For this reason, the police will usually carry out field sobriety tests on those involved and make DUI arrests if necessary.
Depending on the condition in which the vehicles have been left, the police will decide if it is convenient to call the towing company to have the vehicles removed from the road. Once the accident scene is secured, police officers can head to the hospital to follow up on drivers or passengers who suffered serious injuries. Once the police have gathered all the information they deem necessary to write the police report, the officers begin to create the official report that will contain all the details about the accident. This process usually takes 3-5 business days after the accident so that the official police report can be available.