Most people in Carrollton, Georgia know that you’re supposed to contact the police after an auto accident. You typically do this by calling 911 to report the incident, get police and/or an ambulance to respond, and ensure that you have a police report as evidence that the accident occurred along with the specific details of the accident. In fact, if the damage is greater than $500 or if anyone has sustained any kind of injuries, you must contact the police, by law.
Yet, there are times when the damages are not that great, or at least don’t seem to be, and where all injuries seem minor enough to not think it’s necessary to call the police. This leads to questions about whether or not you can still file an insurance claim and how you can prove that the accident occurred and that it caused your damages without a police report.
Why It Is So Important to Contact the Police After a Carrollton, Georgia Auto Accident
It is possible to file an auto insurance claim and get coverage for your injuries without a police report. However, it
can be much more difficult to prove your position without out. Further, there are many important reasons to contact the police after any auto accident in Carrollton, Georgia. Beyond being required to do so by law for accidents that involve greater than $500 in property damage or any injuries or deaths, the police report goes a long way towards documenting exactly what happened, whether anyone broke the law, and whether or not you’ll have a responding officer as a witness when you file your claim. Even if you think that all injuries are minor and that the damage to your vehicle is less than $500, it still doesn’t hurt to notify the police, file a police report, and ensure that you have that in case you need it.
Some things that the police report can do include ensuring that there is a proper police investigation into what caused the accident, accounting for any discrepancies between your account of the accident and the potentially false account that the other driver may provide, and avoiding any challenging situations where you are questioned about why you wouldn’t call the police. This is because many people choose not to call the police for the wrong reasons. For example, you may be accused of not doing so because you knew the accident was your fault, because you didn’t have adequate insurance, because you have previous traffic violations. It could be argued that you knew you weren’t injured, and that’s why you didn’t call the police. Therefore, any injuries that you claim to have later could be easily argued against.
Yet, it is common to think you’re not injured at the time, particularly with the adrenaline associated with an auto accident that can mask symptoms of pain, and to only discover your injuries at a later date. How are you going to prove how the accident occurred, that the accident occurred at all, and that your injuries are a direct result of that accident? It’s not that you can’t do this without a police report, particularly if you can present other evidence, but failing to notify the police after a Carrollton, Georgia auto accident is suspicious and can weaken your claim for coverage of your injuries and damages from the other driver’s insurance.
An Auto Insurance Company May Refuse to Cover Your Damages Without a Police Report
Legally, the auto insurance company of the other driver can refuse to cover your damages based solely on the fact that you did not contact the police. Even your own insurance policy may refuse to do so. If there is a case of hit and run where the other driver flees the scene, then you may need your own insurance company to cover you, assuming you have the appropriate coverage. Yet, they are allowed to refuse coverage based on the fact that the police were not notified and there is no police report as record that the accident occurred at all.
If you are not in a position to call the police, because you are too severely injured to do anything except get to the hospital for immediate treatment, then you can do so as soon as you are able to or ask someone else to do so. In some cases, the person is too traumatized to think clearly, such as in cases where a loved one has been killed or a substantial amount of pain and trauma has occurred in the accident. This is understandable, but you still need to make sure that the police are contacted to report the accident as soon as you can or, again, get someone else to make that call on your behalf. Failing to report the accident at all is a major mistake.
Having a Police Report Is the Best Way to Ensure that Your Damages Are Covered
If you did not contact the police, then you are likely wondering if you have a valid claim at all. This is debatable, and it all depends on the situation and your legal position. Ultimately, contacting the police after any Carrollton, Georgia auto accident is going to be the best thing you can do, regardless of how minor the injuries and damages seem in the moment. You could be very wrong about your injuries or your impression of the severity of your property damage.
If you make a personal rule of always contacting the police after an accident, then you are far less likely to make the mistake of failing to do so. No matter how minor or severe the accident is, having a police report is the best way to ensure that the accident is adequately documented and investigated. Thus, it is the best way to ensure that your damages will be covered, that the other party is less able to argue against the damages or their fault, and that you are not left in the unenviable position of someone who has to face all of their damages without any coverage.
Contact the Law Offices of John B. Jackson & Associates to Learn More
Anyone who has been harmed in a Carrollton, Georgia auto accident will benefit from the legal advice and experience of the auto accident attorneys at the Law Offices of John B. Jackson & Associates. We will provide a free consultation and help you to get the compensation that is owed to you. We will answer your questions, investigate your claim, and help you to explore your legal options for seeking compensation from the appropriate insurance company.