How To Read A Sarasota Police Accident Report

When you are in an auto accident, a lot happens in a short amount of time. After an accident, you have a lot of things you will have to do. You will have to get medical care, contact your insurance provider, and file a police report. This all causes a lot of confusing paperwork that you will need to understand in order to pursue a claim. This can be extremely difficult when you are trying to recover from your injuries. In order to help, we’re going to help you understand how to read a Sarasota police accident report.

Why You Should Always File A Police Report

After an accident, you will see the true nature of insurance companies. They will do everything they can to get out of paying for a full and fair settlement for your damages. So you will need to have as much evidence as possible to help ensure that their dirty tricks do not work. One of the best pieces of evidence is a Sarasota police accident report. The police are considered both an objective party and an expert by the courts. So the accident reports they file are taken very seriously. Thus, if you are ever in an accident, you should contact the police and file a report as soon as you are able to do so.

What Is An Accident Report?

An accident report is an official report filed with the state by the police department about an accident. It outlines the details of the accident. It also offers the details of what led to the accident. If one of the drivers was breaking the law which caused the accident, that information will be noted on the report as well. Once the police have filed the accident report, you can request copies here on the Florida Highway Safety And Motor Vehicles website. It can take up to ten days for the reports to be logged into the system Also, if you were unable to file a police report at the scene because you were in the hospital, you can also report a crash.

Understanding Your Crash Report

Once you have a copy of your accident report, you can start to read the officer’s findings. Here is a guide to the different sections of the report:

Header: The header contains things like the date and time of the crash and the reporting agency and crash number.

Crash Identifiers: The crash identifiers offer details about the location, type of crash, and details on the time and date.

Roadway: Roadway offers the exact details of the location of the accident and details on the type of road (county, highway, shoulder, etc).

Crash Information: Details some of the conditions that may have lead to the accident like the visibility, weather, and if it was in a work zone.

Vehicle: The vehicle section provides the details about the vehicle, registration, and the damage on the vehicle including a diagram of where the damage occurred on each of the videos.

Person Record: The person record section lists all the individuals involved in the accident including drivers and passengers.

Non-Vehicle Damage: If the accident caused property damage to other things like a stop sign, fence, or building, it will be noted in this section.

Narrative: The narrative section is the story of what happened at the accident and includes information if there were any laws broken or victims.

Reporting Officer: This section contains the identification of the officer that arrived at the scene of the accident.

Diagram Of The Crash: The final section of the crash report includes a diagram of the accident.

As you can see, it can be a bit intimidating because of the terminology they use, but the reports are pretty simple to read.

How An Attorney Can Help

Although anyone can learn to read an accident report, not everyone knows the Florida laws that apply to the details reported on the accident. An accident attorney has this knowledge. They will not only help you read this report but they can use it to prove your case. The team at Justice Pays in Southwest Florida, Goldman, Babboni, Fernandez, and Walsh will provide a free case review and help you understand all your legal options after an auto accident.

Video FAQ:

How Long To File A Claim After A Crash?


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I dealt most with Mr. Fernandez. I didn’t know a lot about this process. He took the time to speak with me individually, in person, to explain everything. It was very helpful to actually know and understand the process and what to expect. He closed my case quickly, which was nice that it was not prolonged! I appreciated his hard work and getting me what I felt I deserved after my car accident. I highly recommend him to anyone who needs an honest and reliable lawyer to assist you with your case!

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