How Long After a Car Accident Can You File a Police Report in Tampa, FL?
August 15, 2023 | Winters & Yonker Personal Injury Lawyers | Car Accident
If you are involved in a car accident in Tampa, Florida, there are certain steps you should take to protect your rights and future claim. Among these, reporting your accident is one of the most important.
After you’ve reported your collision to the police, you can rely on a Tampa car accident lawyer to use your crash report to build your case.
What Is a Police Report?
A police report is a comprehensive document detailing important information regarding a car accident.
Police reports usually include the following information:
- The date, time, and location of the collision
- A description of the road conditions at the time of the crash
- The damage resulting from the accident
- The names and information of the parties involved in the collision
- Whether any citations were issued or arrests were made
- A diagram of the incident
- The opinion of the responding officer regarding fault
- The name, agency, and badge number of the responding officer(s)
Car accident police reports differ depending on the specifics of your collision and the agency involved. These reports aim to provide as much information as possible.
What Is the Importance of a Crash Report?
Police reports can play a vital role in a collision claim.
If you sustain injuries and/or property damage in your accident, you likely want to file a claim for compensation. Among the many tasks involved in a claim, you’ll need to prove the other party’s fault to establish financial liability.
A police report can help substantiate and strengthen your claim. Not only can failing to report a car accident in Florida result in penalties, but it can also harm the outcome of a claim. Therefore, there are multiple reasons to report your collision and secure a police report.
Filing a Police Report After a Car Accident in Tampa
The simplest way to file a police report after a collision is to call 911 after your accident. Once you call emergency services and request police assistance, law enforcement officers are dispatched to the scene of the accident.
Under Florida law, certain accidents must be reported to law enforcement, including those involving:
- Injury or death to an individual
- A hit-and-run driver
- A driver operating a vehicle under the influence
- Severe enough damage that removal of the vehicle by a tow truck is necessary
- Commercial vehicles
Can you file a police report after an accident? The answer is yes. Report the collision directly to local law enforcement. But keep in mind that your time to do so is limited.
How Long Do You Have To File a Police Report After a Collision in Tampa?
You may be unsure of when to file a police report for car damage and injuries.
It’s best to call the police immediately after a car accident so you don’t have to worry about taking any additional steps to report it. However, if you don’t contact the police on the scene, you have only ten days to formally report your accident.
Penalties for failing to report an accident depend on the situation. Typically, fines are involved. Additionally, if the person who causes a car accident not only fails to report but also flees the scene, they could face legal trouble, as leaving the scene of an accident is against Florida law.
Didn’t Get a Police Report After a Crash? A Tampa Car Accident Lawyer Can Help
If you’re wondering, “Why is my police report taking so long?” or “Where is my copy?” a lawyer can help.
Usually, you don’t get a copy of your police report unless you request one. Requesting a police report on your behalf is one of the many tasks a car accident attorney handles for your case.
After a collision, do not hesitate to consult an experienced Tampa car accident attorney for assistance and guidance.
Contact a Tampa Car Accident Lawyer from Winters & Yonker Personal Injury Lawyers for Help Today
For more information, please contact Winters & Yonker Personal Injury Lawyers to schedule a free consultation with a personal injury lawyer in Tampa today. We have five convenient locations in Florida, including Tampa, Clearwater, St. Petersburg, New Port Richey, and Lakeland.
Winters & Yonker Personal Injury Lawyers – Tampa Office
601 W Swann Ave, Tampa, FL 33606
Winters & Yonker Personal Injury Lawyers – Clearwater Office
600 Bypass Dr Suite 224-D, Clearwater, FL 33764
Winters & Yonker Personal Injury Lawyers – St. Petersburg Office
111 2nd Ave NE Suite 350, St. Petersburg, FL 33701
Winters & Yonker Personal Injury Lawyers – New Port Richey Office
5006 Trouble Creek Rd Unit #200, Port Richey, FL 34652
Winters & Yonker Personal Injury Lawyers – Lakeland Office
1543 Lakeland Hills Blvd Suite 18, Lakeland, FL 33805