Should I Wait for the Police After a Car Accident?
If a person is involved in a motor vehicle collision, Texas Transportation Code Section 550.023 requires the driver of the vehicle to exchange information and render aid. Texas Law requires the driver to give: (1) his name and address; (2) registration number of the vehicle; and (3) name of the operator’s motor vehicle liability insurance to any person injured or the operator or occupant of the other vehicle involved in the collision. In addition, if it is requested, the operator is required to show his driver’s license. The driver is also required to provide reasonable assistance to any person injured in the accident. It is not uncommon for people to exchange information and then leave without calling the police.
While it is tempting to not call the police given the fact it may take an officer a long time to arrive at the scene, it is better to call and wait for a police officer for several reasons. First, it is not uncommon for the driver at fault to deny liability when later speaking to an insurance adjustor even after admitting fault to the other driver at the scene of the collision. The police officer will take statements from both drivers and witnesses (if any stay to offer a statement), and the at fault driver is less likely to change his or her story in front of the other driver. Unless it is unclear, the police officer will usually assign fault in the report.
Second, a police report creates a record of property damage and physical injury. Tell the police officer if you have pain as a result of the collision. The police officer will also notate what areas of the vehicles were damaged, so it will be harder for the other driver or insurance company to deny damage was not related to the collision.
If you have been injured in a car accident, contact The O’Hara Law Firm for a free consultation. The O’Hara Law Firm represents clients on a contingency fee basis. Call us at 832-956-1138.