What To Know About Car Accident Reports in Bedford, TX
After a car accident in Bedford, Texas, you have several legal duties. You must stop at the accident scene and assist anyone injured. You must exchange information with the other driver. And, you must contact the police if the crash caused injury, death, or extensive property damage.
The officers who respond to your collision will conduct an investigation and produce an accident report. This report could provide valuable information for your Bedford personal injury attorney if you need to file a claim. And since the at-fault driver’s insurer will have access to the crash report, you want one that favors your side of the story.
What Is a Car Accident Report?
A car accident report performs a few functions. First, it summarizes the responding officer’s investigation. The officer will talk to the drivers and passengers involved in the crash. If the accident was a pedestrian accident or bicycle accident, the officer also interviews the pedestrians and cyclists involved.
The police will talk to eyewitnesses and take pictures of the accident scene. The officer will probably take measurements, like the length of any skid marks produced by the vehicles.
Using this information, the police officer will piece together what happened. The accident report will include a narrative explanation of what happened and a diagram.
The accident report will also include information such as:
- Names and addresses of each driver
- Names and addresses of each vehicle owner
- Insurance information for each vehicle
- Injuries suffered by vehicle occupants and other road users
- Names of witnesses
Texas law requires that the police officer complete the report within ten days of the accident. Many officers will complete the report at the accident scene.
How To Get a Car Accident Report in Bedford, Texas
You may have several options for obtaining a copy of your accident report depending on the police agency that investigated your crash.
Texas Highway Patrol
The Texas Highway Patrol investigates accidents on interstate and state highways. It also investigates accidents that happen outside any other police agency’s jurisdiction.
To get a copy of an accident report prepared by the Texas Highway Patrol, you must buy it using the state’s Crash Records Information System (CRIS). A crash report costs $6 for an uncertified copy and $8 for a certified copy. If your report is in the system, you can download it immediately after purchasing it.
Tarrant County Sheriff’s Department
If your accident happened outside of the Bedford city limits but inside Tarrant County, the Tarrant County Sheriff’s Department might respond to it. The sheriff’s department gives you two options for buying a copy of your crash report.
First, you can find your crash report on the CRIS online portal. Texas collects all crash reports in the state regardless of the police agency that produced them.
Second, you can request a copy of the accident report directly from the sheriff’s office via mail, email, or fax. You can also visit the sheriff’s department in person to pick up a copy of the crash report. The sheriff’s office provides copies of accident reports for no charge.
Bedford Police Department
The Bedford Police Department gives you three options for getting a copy of your police report. You can purchase your crash report through the CRIS portal. You can also buy the crash report online using the BuyCrash website maintained by LexisNexis.
Finally, you can get a copy of your crash report in person from the police department. If you choose this option, the police department will charge you $6 for the report.
The Uses of a Bedford Car Accident Report
An accident report is typically not admissible in court. But it can help your Bedford car accident lawyer uncover admissible evidence, such as photos from the accident scene and the names of witnesses who can testify for you. So make sure you obtain a report and provide it to your attorney for the best chance of recovering fair compensation.
Contact the Car Accident Law Firm of Parker Law Firm Injury Lawyers in Bedford for Help Today
For more information, please contact an experienced car accident lawyer at Parker Law Firm Injury Lawyers to schedule a free initial consultation today. We have convenient locations in Fort Worth and Bedford, Texas.