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Do I Need a Police Report to Sue Someone After a Car Accident?

Posted on: June 7, 2021
Car Accident Attorney in Chico, CA

Do you need to have a police report in order to win a car accident lawsuit? Not necessarily. Here’s what you should know and how to get legal help after a collision. 

Police Reports Are Considered Hearsay

A police report is not formally regarded as “evidence,” and it is not admissible in court, despite the common misconception that it is. Police reports are legally considered hearsay, since officers are also people and their perception isn’t fallible. Officer accounts are not admissible evidence in any court, not just civil. 

They Function Only As Third-Party Testimony

Despite the fact that police reports aren’t recognized as formal evidence, they are treated as third-party witness testimony. However, reports from law enforcement officials are typically given greater weight in court than, say, a civilian witness to a car accident. Police reports record  important details about the accident, including the accident scene, time of day, road and weather conditions, etc. 

Your information, as well as the details of any other drivers involved in the accident, will be recorded in the police statement, which you can obtain a copy of when it’s completed by the officer who arrived at the scene. It’s not uncommon for a police report to be available several weeks following the collision.

You Can File a Police Report On Your Own 

You have the option of filing a report with the police on your own if the responding officer neglects to do so in a timely fashion or at all. A report can be filed by  visiting your nearby police station and informing them that you want to submit a report. 

You’ll be asked multiple questions regarding the circumstances of the incident, which may become harder to remember the more time that passes after the incident. If you have medical records, photos of the accident, or other evidence, make sure to bring that with you too. Although valuable, a police report isn’t required to pursue compensation for damages caused by a car accident. 

Why Call a Car Accident Lawyer For Help 

A car accident attorney can help you secure the evidence needed to make a compelling case for compensation following a collision. 

At the Law Offices of Zink & Lenzi, we have the experience and skills needed to aggressively represent you or a loved one following a devastating car crash. Call for your initial legal consultation now by dialing 530-895-1234. No fees until your case is won.

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