Should You ALWAYS Call The Police After A Car Accident?
If you’ve recently been in a car accident, you’re likely dealing with a lot of stress and uncertainty. In the midst of all this, you might be wondering whether it’s really necessary to contact the police.
After all, if no one suffered serious injuries and the damage to your vehicle is minimal, calling the police might seem like an added hassle in an already difficult situation.
Should you always call the police after a car accident? At Schuler, Weisser, Zoeller, Overbeck & Baxter P.A., we can tell you that calling the police after a car accident is always important. Not only is it required by law in many cases, but it can also protect your rights and help you secure the compensation you deserve for your crash-related losses.
When you call the police after an accident, they can create an official report of the incident, documenting important details like the date, time, and location of the crash, as well as the names and contact information of everyone involved. This information can be extremely useful if you need to file an insurance claim or take legal action later on.
So if you’ve been in a car accident, don’t hesitate to call the police. It may feel inconvenient at the moment, but it could significantly impact the outcome of your case. And if you need legal assistance, don’t hesitate to contact Schuler, Weisser, Zoeller, Overbeck & Baxter P.A. for a free initial consultation. Our experienced personal injury attorneys are here to help.
What the Law Says About Contacting the Police After an Accident
Whether you are in a minor or major car accident, Florida law dictates that you have to report the accident to the police if it meets one of the following criteria:
- Anyone suffers an injury in the crash
- Anyone dies as a result of the crash
- The crash results in $500 or more in property damage
At least one of the above criteria applies in almost all car accident cases. If unsure about reporting an accident, err on the side of caution and call the police to be safe.
How the Police Can Help When They Respond to the Scene of an Accident
When the police respond to the scene of an accident, their primary objectives are to ensure the safety of everyone involved and to document the details of the crash. To that end, responding police officers might do the following:
- Secure the scene: The police will first make sure that the area around the accident is safe for all parties involved. This might involve redirecting traffic, setting up cones or flares, or cordoning off the area.
- Provide medical assistance: If anyone is injured in the accident, the police can call for medical assistance and might provide basic first aid until paramedics arrive.
- Gather information: The police will collect information from all parties involved, including names, contact information, and insurance details. They might also ask witnesses to provide statements.
- Create an official report: The police will create an official report of the accident, which will include important details like the date, time, and location of the crash, as well as a description of the damage to the vehicles and any injuries sustained.
- Determine fault: Based on the information gathered at the scene, police officers will document their own opinions regarding who was at fault for the accident. This can be important for insurance purposes or legal cases later on.
- Issue citations: If any traffic violations were committed, the police might issue citations to the drivers involved.
What Should You Do After You Call The Police?
After calling the police post-accident, follow these steps to protect your well-being and legal rights:
- Stay at the scene: It’s important to stay at the scene of the accident until the police arrive and give you the go-ahead to leave.
- Exchange information: Exchange contact and insurance information with the other drivers involved in the accident, as well as any witnesses.
- Document the scene: Take photos of the damage to all vehicles involved, as well as the surrounding area, and make notes of any relevant details.
- Seek medical attention: Seek medical attention immediately, even if you feel unharmed, allowing a professional to diagnose and treat any condition as necessary.
- Consult an attorney: Contact a personal injury lawyer promptly to learn about your legal rights and options for recovering compensation.
Call Schuler, Weisser, Zoeller, Overbeck & Baxter P.A. for Help With Your Accident Case
If you got hurt in a Florida car accident, call our Florida car accident lawyers at 561.689.8180 right away. Our team can help you hold the at-fault driver accountable and demand the money you need for your recovery.