What to Do if Your Car or Truck Accident Police Report is Incorrect
Personal injury blog
The importance of an accurate police report after your car or truck accident
Whenever there’s a car or truck accident, a police report has to be filed. This report will be used as the official description of the scene. Although it may be official, that doesn’t mean that it’s representative of what really happens.
If you notice that there’s an error in how the report is filed, you have the right to address that error right away. In this article, you’ll learn more about police reports, how they work, and what you should do if the report doesn’t represent the reality of the accident.
If you have any doubts or uncertainties, contact a local personal injury attorney to discuss all of your available options. Many times, a car accident attorney will have a team that can quickly get to the scene to document the accident before evidence has been cleared away.
Police reports for car and trucking accidents usually include:
- The names and contact information of the parties involved, including the drivers and passengers of both vehicles as well as any witnesses that may have been in the area
- Vehicle model, year of manufacture, license plate, and other car identification information
- Car insurance coverage, plan, and the agent’s contact information
- Details of the scene such as the weather, road conditions, traffic signals, time of the accident, and other descriptions of the scene
- A rough illustration of how the accident occurred
- Testimonials of the individuals involved
What should I do notice an error in the police report after an accident?
To ensure that you have the best chance to claim full compensation, you have to make sure that all the information in the police report is as truthful as possible.
This is done to prevent the other party from making up scenarios and attacking you from an angle that doesn’t exist.
There are many types of errors that can occur, some of them are listed down below:
Factual Errors in the Police Report
Factual errors refer to the incorrect objective information, making them quite easy to change and fix.
There’s simple evidence such as the driver’s license to prove that it is, indeed, incorrect, and there’s very little reason why the law enforcement would want to get the objective information wrong intentionally.
Once the errors have been reported to the law enforcement officer with proper evidence, they may then write an addendum explaining the changes and attach it with the original report before filing both of the documents together.
Transcription Errors in the Police Report
Transcription errors are when the actual details of the case are incorrect, and they can happen in two forms: non-inclusion and inconsistent statements.
A non-inclusion is when a significant piece of information about the case is not mentioned in the report.
For example, if the other driver appeared to be swerving left and right as if they were under the influence of a substance, it has to be included in the report.
If the officer fails to do this, it can sway the case in a different direction. An inconsistent statement is when what you tell the officer and what is written in the report are not the same.
Before you sign your name on the report, please make sure that all the descriptions written about the incident are correct, as it can be difficult to change it later on, especially when the report has already been submitted to the court.
Disputed Facts between You and the Other Person Involved in the Car Accident
Disputed facts are among the trickiest types of factual errors, as they may require you to resolve the disputes first before the report can be changed.
For example, if the report states that you were speeding in a residential area, but you claim that you didn’t, it will be up to you to provide the evidence against what’s written in the report.
In most cases, chances are that it’s not likely to change, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t take action if you truly believe that the police report is incorrect.
You can write your own report and bring light to the differences between the two reports, pointing out why the accident couldn’t have gone down as it was stated in the original report.
How do I request a change in a Police Report after a car or Truck Accident?
The most important thing you need to keep in mind is that you must always remain respectful of the officer, as you wouldn’t want them to add a “contempt of cop” charge to your case.
People make mistakes, and the best course of action when you’re looking to address these mistakes is to be logical and reasonable.
If you want to let the officer know that the information is incorrect, you have to provide an explanation or evidence that will sway them in your direction.
If you can’t settle the police report in a way that you believe is correct, then it may be time to call your car or truck accident attorney and have them negotiate the report for you.
Police reports are crucial to your car accident case, as it will be used as a reference to how the accident went down, and if it works against you, you’re going to have a hard time in court.
That’s why it’s better to make the report represent reality as accurately as possible.
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