15 Jan How Do You Obtain A Crash Report After An Accident In Florida?
Too often in Florida, car accidents happen. I have always recommended making sure to get a report at the scene from a law enforcement officer if possible. I understand that it may take time to get an officer to come out. But, I cannot tell you how many liability decisions have been delayed due to a crash report not being available. A liability decision is a determination of who caused the accident. Although they are not admissible in court, insurance companies often rely on these crash reports. Therefore, it is important that you do what you can to obtain one.
Do I Get A Crash Report At The Scene?
Typically no. You will get what is called a “short form” report also known as an information exchange. This report usually only provides the basic information about the parties involved in the accident and their insurance information. It is does not provide a description of what happened, the witness information, or illustrations of how the accident occurred. The short form reports are very helpful, but as I mentioned above, it is important to get the long form crash report. I would absolutely recommend taking a picture of the short form of the report just in case it is lost or misplaced.
How Long Does It Take For A Crash Report To Be Ready?
It typically takes about 10 days for the long version of the crash report to be ready after an accident. As I said above, you will have the short form at the scene which should be plenty to start investigation about your claim. Although the long form can take longer to be prepared, in my experience, it is typically ready in a few days after the accident.
How Do I Obtain A Crash Report After An Accident?
The State of Florida has made it quite easy to request a crash report. You can simply go onto to the FLHSMV website and purchase the crash report. Click the link HERE. The fee for the crash report is $12.00, $10.00 per report, per section 321.23, Florida Statutes and a convenience fee of $2.00 for going through the Florida Crash Portal. You then download the report from the FLHSMV website. If you hire counsel, they can also request it for you.
Can You Request A Florida Crash Report In Person or By Mail?
You may request a crash record within the 60-day period after the date of the crash. But, you must also complete a Sworn Statement to Obtain Crash Report to receive a crash report mail or in person. You may also request a crash report at the FHP Troop Station nearest to where the crash occurred. If you are requesting more than 10 records, your request must include a request letter detailing the crash report you are requesting, a signed statement, for each crash report requested, if within the 60 period after the date of the crash, payment and be mailed to:
Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles
2900 Apalachee Parkway, MS 28
Tallahassee, FL 32399
Payment must be included with the request. Check or money order should be made out to “FLHSMV.” Processing time to receive the record is 4-6 weeks. If you have additional questions, be sure to go on the Florida Highway Safety And Motor Vehicles website.
What Happens If You Do Not Have A Crash Report?
If you do not have a crash report, it does not mean the end of the world by any means. The liability decision and accident claim will still be based on the party statements, witness statements, photos, and accident investigation just as it would be if there is a crash report. Regardless of a report or not, always be sure to get all party information, witness information, and take photos and videos at the scene. Evidence is still important in any accident claim regardless of a report.
EXPERIENCED CAR ACCIDENT ATTORNEY
You need someone that is going to stand up for you when it comes to your car accident claim. I understand that the process after getting into an accident can be difficult and stressful. You likely have questions and few answers as to the next steps to take. Allow me to be there for you from the beginning. I offer a FREE no-obligation consultation where we can discuss your claim. I will review your accident claim with you personally at one of the office locations in Zephyrhills, Saint Petersburg, Brandon, Clearwater, Plant City Port Richey, Wesley Chapel or Sun City Center. Cannot make it to me? I will come to wherever is convenient to you at NO charge. You deserve to be compensated and I want to get justice for you!
Contact Car Accident Attorney Kevin L. Sullivan II TODAY at (813) 598-4868 for a FREE no-obligation consultation. I look forward to assisting you with your claim!