You have two options to get a police crash report in Texas, online or by mail. Once the report is ready, you may retrieve it through the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) for a small fee. However, some municipalities might require you to request the report in person or by mail.
A police crash report should be ready for you to retrieve within a few days or three weeks at most. However, it might take longer to get a crash report if the accident led to a death or serious injury because a comprehensive investigation is required in such a situation.
Who Can Request the Report?
Just remember that only someone directly involved with the accident can request a report. Texas Transportation Code §550.065 allows only people with a direct interest in the accident to request a report, generally meaning:
- The drivers involved
- Their insurance companies
- Their attorneys
How to Get a Police Report Filed After a Car Accident
To get a police crash report, you will have needed to file one in the first place. When you get into a car accident, you must pull over and exchange information with the other driver. If the accident led to an injury, fatality, or excessive property damage, you must call the police to the scene under Texas law.
Once the police arrive, they can fill out an accident report. This report is key if you plan to pursue damages in a personal injury lawsuit, so it is important to know how to get a police crash report.
Why You Need a Police Crash Report
The police crash report is needed because insurance companies rely on it to learn the details of your accident. It can help insurers decide who is liable for the accident and what potential damages the accident caused.
If the other party’s insurer determines their client was at fault, they may cover the property damage or injuries they caused you to suffer in the collision. If you try to pursue damages in a personal injury case, the police crash report is also an important piece of evidence.
This document serves as a written account of the events that took place, based on the police officer’s observation. Personal injury cases can take a long time to complete. In addition, memories can fade or become less reliable, so it is better to have an unchanging, accurate account of the events to refer to during a case.
The Crash Report Contains Valuable Information Necessary to Your Claim
The police crash report may contain important details about your car accident, including:
- When and where the accident occurred
- Contact information of each driver
- Statements from drivers and witnesses
- Contact information of witnesses, if applicable
- Known injuries
- Damages to vehicles
- Road and weather conditions at the accident scene
- Any violated laws or codes
- Officer notes about cause or fault
- A visual diagram of the accident
Essentially, a police crash report might contain the information you need to make your case if you decide to pursue damages. It might also include a statement from the police. This statement can show why someone else should be to blame for an accident. For example, such a piece of evidence might display that another driver violated laws or received a ticket.
This report may serve as evidence that the other driver was at fault for the accident. It might bolster your case and help you recover the compensation you need.
Other Ways You Can Prepare for Your Case
You can make pursuing damages easier on yourself and any legal representative you retain to handle your case. Some things you can do include:
- Gathering any evidence you or your passengers captured at the scene (photos, videos, etc.)
- Putting all your documents in one place, including medical care receipts, letters from the insurance company
- Writing down all the details you can remember from before, during, and after the accident
- Keeping a journal of your injury symptoms and how you are healing
These tasks make it easier to put together your testimony and claim.
A Lawyer with Our Firm Can Help You with Your Report
One of our lawyers can make this process simpler. For example, if you decide to pursue damages after suffering an injury in a car accident, your lawyer may request a copy of the police crash report early on.
They can also help you amend the police crash report if needed. Your crash report might also contain mistakes, but your lawyer can review the report so that:
- It is accurate.
- Any inaccuracy is fixed.
- Supplemental reports are filed if needed.
Your Lawyer Can Take on Your Entire Case
Putting your case in the hands of a legal professional enables you to heal and spend time with family and friends. Your representative can also:
- Negotiate with the insurance company
- Stand with you in court, if necessary
- Help you stay within the statute of limitations
- Assign value to your accident-related damages
- Create a demand letter to send to the insurer
- Investigate your accident to determine fault and liability
- Gather evidence to support your case
- Interview eyewitnesses
Here are some reviews from our past clients:
- “They were highly detail-oriented throughout the process…” – Martin B.
- “Friendly & prompt. Always available for any special needs that occurred.” – Tonya P.
- “I had a great experience with Underwood. They were kind, compassionate, and provided me with fantastic advice. They should be your first choice when choosing an attorney to represent you.” – Mark M.
Call the Attorneys at Underwood Law Office About Your Personal Injury Case Today
If you suffered an injury in a car accident and plan to pursue damages, you do not have to take on your case on your own. Instead, you can call Underwood Law Office and learn more about your legal options and how to pursue compensation.
Call for a free consultation in Texas.
Call or text (972) 535-6377 or complete a Free Case Evaluation form