How to Report a Car Accident in California?

best car accident lawyer near me

If you’re in a car accident and are uncertain of the next steps, we have all the information needed to help understand when you must legally file an accident report here in California. No need to look any further than best car accident lawyer near me, as one of the best car accident attorneys in California, our team knows that making this important notification can be incredibly beneficial for your recovery process. After all, it could make or break your case should you ultimately file a lawsuit.

When it comes to figuring out the if, when, and how to report a car accident in California, things can easily become a bit confusing—especially in the middle of the stressful and emotional aftermath.  Do you need to submit a police report even though there may not appear to be sufficient car damage? Are people injured so severely that medical help is required? What if those involved decline submitting an accident report? These are just some questions any driver might consider when deciding whether they should file a crash-related police report.

When do the best car accident lawyers in Los Angeles recommend reporting a car accident?

Navigating the rules for reporting car accidents to local law enforcement and regulatory authorities can be scary. In California, there are several complicated regulations that must be followed when it comes to filing an accident report. To simplify the understanding these laws, let’s break them down into clear terms.

According to the best car accident lawyers in California, any car accident that meets any of the following conditions must be reported to the police immediately.

  • The car crash results in someone’s death—even a pedestrian.
  • Someone involved (driver, passenger, or bystander) experiences an injury as a result of the car crash—even minor cuts, scrapes, and bruises.

The resulting property damage surpasses $1,000 dollars—including any destruction caused to personal belongings or other people’s property not pertaining to automobiles.

  • One of the drivers does not have a valid license.
  • Someone involved appears to be under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Knowing whether you are obligated to report a vehicle collision is important, but it’s equally significant to understand the exact procedure of reporting a car accident in California. Rather than merely dialing 911, filing reports with various agencies may be necessary depending on your unique circumstances. Generally speaking, these entities could include:

  • The police
  • Your car insurance provider
  • The California DMV

Should you be required to inform these organizations about an accident, the best car accident attorneys in California recommend that you do it right away.  In California specifically, if a crash isn’t reported within 10-days of the incident, your driver’s license may be revoked by the state…even if you are not at fault.  So, keep this in mind—while it is up to you whether to report any sort of automobile collision here in California, rely on yourself and nobody else.

How do the best car crash attorneys recommend reporting a car collision?

In California, the criteria for reporting a car accident to the police hinges on the specifics of the incident. For instance, if anyone is hurt—even slightly injured—in an automobile crash, then you are obligated to contact 911 immediately so that trained professionals can accurately assess how much aid the victim requires (ambulance service or just a squad car).

If intoxication is noticed amongst the drivers or passengers involved in a collision, then it is vital to contact 911 according to the most reputable and experienced car crash attorneys. Doing so will reach local law enforcement and allow them to assess if criminal charges are necessary.

If there is ever an accident involving a motor vehicle and nobody has been injured, but the other driver does not have a valid driver’s license or decides to flee the scene, you should immediately reach out for help by calling your local law enforcement agency via their non-emergency line. For example, in Los Angeles County, ask for police assistance by calling 1-877-ASK-LAPD.

In California, operating a motor vehicle without a valid license and fleeing the scene of an accident are punishable offenses according to law. Whether the individual is ultimately found responsible for the collision doesn’t matter. They will still likely incur fines—or even criminal charges.

Even if officers arrive on the scene of your accident, police reports are not a sure thing. The filing of such a report is contingent upon several factors that include the location, damage amount, and potential criminal activity present (if any). Still, when such documentation is available to you, it’s critical to secure a copy as soon as possible.  This information could prove invaluable in aiding your car crash attorney in obtaining the proper financial settlement you deserve.

When do you NOT need to report a collision?

When the amount of property damage caused by your crash is under a thousand dollars and there have been no injuries, you can skip notifying the police. All that’s necessary to do is exchange details with the other party involved in the accident and then reach out to your insurer afterwards.

Be aware, however. If you are not an expert auto mechanic, it may be difficult to come up with a precise cost analysis for the damage incurred to your vehicle. As a general guideline, if there is any physical destruction (bumper cover broken or side panel dented), hiring professional repair services would usually cost more than $1,000.

To ensure you have all the necessary information for following up after an accident, it’s imperative to jot down each individual present at the scene (even witnesses).  Document their names, contact info, license plate numbers, and insurance policies straight away. If you don’t document their information, those involved might disappear into thin air, forcing you to rely solely on your own insurance company who will likely raise your monthly premiums due to this incident. Always take precautionary measures by capturing crucial details right away.

Best Car Accident Lawyer Near Me

If you have been hurt in a car accident that was not your fault, it is essential to enlist the services of a reputable and experienced auto accident lawyer who has the skill and resources to litigate any legal claims. When searching for attorneys in Los Angeles, select one with confidence knowing that they will give their all when fighting for your rights and seeking fair compensation. Your legal counsel can ultimately make or break your case—so choose wisely!

If you have been the victim of a car accident in the Los Angeles area, never try to go it alone. The judicial system can be overwhelming and difficult for those unfamiliar with its procedures. You deserve an attorney who is experienced in navigating this complex maze, one that will ensure your maximum financial compensation as quickly as possible so that you can move on from this unfortunate event. For more information on hiring the best car accident attorney in California, contact The Point Law Group today. 

Categories: Blog, Car Accidents
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