Sean Lopez | January 17, 2023 | Car Accident
How Long After a Car Accident Can You File a Police Report in Florida?
After a car accident, certain steps must be completed. Under Florida law, one of the most vital steps is reporting your collision.
Whether you contact the police for assistance after your accident or you decide to file your report yourself, it’s essential to get it done within a certain timeframe to avoid the chance of any future penalties.
What Is a Car Accident Report?
When you’re involved in a collision in Florida, there is a high likelihood you need to report it.
Under Florida law, if your car accident involves any of the following, you’re obligated to file an accident report:
- Injury or death
- Property damage totaling $500 or more
- A hit-and-run collision
- An intoxicated driver
- A commercial vehicle
- Removal of an inoperable vehicle by a wrecker
When you report your accident, you’re providing law enforcement with critical information regarding your collision.
These reports typically include the following information:
- The date, time, and location of the accident
- Names and information of the parties involved, including passengers
- A description of the vehicles, including license plate information
- A diagram of the accident
- Insurance information for the drivers involved
- The law enforcement agency, names, and badge numbers of the officers dispatched to the scene
Police reports after a car accident are critical and often significantly help with both insurance and legal claims.
How To File a Police Report After a Collision in Florida
There are two ways to file a car accident report in Florida.
If you call the police immediately after your accident, law enforcement officers will take care of completing your police report. They can investigate the scene and speak to individuals involved and any witnesses, collecting relevant information to include in their report.
Should you not involve the police at the scene of your accident, you’ll have to fill out and submit a crash report. You can file your report online or by mail. Reports are submitted to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles in Tallahassee, Florida.
Time Limit for Filing a Car Accident Report in Florida
It is important to note that there is a strict time limit for filing a police report, should you be self-reporting. You must submit your accident report within ten days of your collision.
Failing to file a police report on time in Florida can result in fines. However, the consequences can be much more severe depending on the details of the crash. For example, if it was a hit-and-run accident, the liable party faces serious legal trouble for leaving the scene of the collision.
To avoid any potential consequences, it’s best to report your Florida car accident as quickly as possible.
The Importance of Filing a Police Report After a Collision
Police reports created after a car accident can substantially help your future insurance or personal injury claim. This is because accident reports contain plenty of vital information that could aid in answering some of the most pressing questions after a crash, including what caused the accident and who is at fault.
Whether you need evidence for a car insurance claim or you must file a personal injury lawsuit in pursuit of fair compensation, police reports can strengthen your claim.
When in Doubt, a St. Petersburg Car Accident Lawyer Can Help
Should you encounter any doubts after your car accident or need assistance with your claim, do not hesitate to seek assistance from a skilled St. Petersburg car accident attorney.
Lawyers that are experienced in handling collision cases are best equipped to give you advice and guidance concerning your particular situation. Additionally, your attorney can help obtain pertinent evidence, like a copy of your crash report, in pursuit of justice and financial recovery on your behalf.
Contact Our Car Accident Law Firm – Lopez Law Group Accident Injury Attorneys
Contact a St. Petersburg car accident lawyer at Lopez Law Group Accident Injury Attorneys and schedule a free case review today.
Lopez Law Group Accident Injury Attorneys
700 7th Ave N Suite B
St. Petersburg, FL 33701