Texas law requires drivers to contact the police immediately after a car accident that results in injury or death or causes disabling damage to a vehicle. Many insurers also include terms in auto policies requiring policyholders to file crash reports with the police. Police accident reports contain information about what happened in the accident, the drivers involved, descriptions of vehicle damage, notes of any citations, and a determination of fault.
However, some motorists choose not to contact the police if nobody was hurt in a collision and vehicles had only minor damage. Drivers who choose not to report a car accident to the police may find it more challenging to pursue insurance compensation without a police report. If you were in a car accident and don’t have a police report, contact a San Antonio car accident lawyer to discuss your legal options. Personal injury attorney Troy A. Brookover is available to assist you.
What If I Don’t File a Police Report?
If you fail to notify the police after a car accident in San Antonio, TX, you may find obtaining compensation for your injuries and losses more challenging. Many insurance companies rely on police accident reports as an impartial account to help determine fault for a car accident. Insurers prefer to use police reports because police officers have training in investigating motor vehicle accidents.
When a police officer obtains enough information to determine who caused a car accident, the police report may contain the officer’s determination of fault. Although not binding in a car accident claim, the officer’s determination of fault may persuade the insurance company to come to the same conclusion because the officer has an independent view of the facts and evidence. By contrast, the drivers involved in the crash may offer an account skewed to shift blame onto the other driver.
Is It Possible to Make an Insurance Claim Without a Police Report?
Even if you don’t have a police accident report for a car accident, you can still file an insurance claim. However, having a police report usually speeds up the claims process. Without the police report, the insurance company must investigate the crash, which can take time. The insurance company may not have important information, such as a description of the accident scene or weather, lighting, or road conditions at the time of the crash.
Without a police report, an insurer may not find information that corroborates your narrative of the accident. An insurer may deny your claim if it cannot determine who is liable for the accident, or it might offer you less money than you’ve requested in your insurance claim. Furthermore, you may have difficulty securing compensation for injuries you suffered in the car accident if you did not seek medical attention after the crash or didn’t tell your doctor that you were seeking treatment because of a car accident. The insurance company may question the seriousness of your injuries if you did not seek medical treatment after the accident or may question how your injuries occurred if there is no official report of the accident.
If you need to file an insurance claim without a police report, an experienced San Antonio car accident attorney can help you gather other evidence and information to submit to the insurance company. A lawyer can help you prove liability for the accident and your injuries in the crash.
How To Prove Your Case Without a Police Report
You will need other sources of evidence to support your car accident claim if you don’t have a police accident report. Some of the types of evidence that experienced car accident attorney Troy A. Brookover may seek to prove your case include:
- Witness statements – Eyewitnesses to the accident can provide testimony or a written narrative documenting their recollection of the crash. Bystanders who were not in the vehicles involved in the collision may have had a better view of how the accident occurred. They can offer an impartial description of the crash, potentially resolving disputes between the drivers involved.
- Vehicle damage – A post-accident inspection of the vehicles involved in a car accident can also provide critical evidence for your claim. For example, mechanics can download data from the cars’ computers that may include information about the cars’ operation, such as their speed or braking, acceleration, and steering inputs in the moments leading up to the accident. The location and extent of damage from a collision may also provide information that can help reconstruct what happened in the accident. An experienced personal injury attorney can act quickly to preserve this type of evidence before it is lost.
- Accident reconstruction reports – Accident reconstruction specialists can provide reports and testimony that describe what happened in a car accident and identify who was at fault. A knowledgeable attorney may rely on post-accident vehicle inspections, car computer data, eyewitness testimony, accident scene photos/videos, and footage of the crash to piece together what happened in the accident to build a persuasive case
- Camera footage – Surveillance or traffic camera footage may offer an indisputable record of a car accident, confirming or disproving the drivers’ recollections of the crash.
Get Legal Help from Our Experienced San Antonio Car Accident Attorneys
If you were injured in a car accident, turn to a San Antonio car accident lawyer to help you pursue the compensation you need for medical bills, lost wages, and other crash-related expenses. Contact The Law Offices of Troy A. Brookover today at (210) 226-2000 or fill out our online form for a free, no-obligation consultation to learn how we can help. With over 30 years of legal experience, attorney Troy Brookover has helped many accident victims seek just compensation. Our track record of results includes multiple six- and seven-figure awards that provided our clients with the money they needed for medical bills, lost income, and pain and suffering.