Police Reports and Personal Injury: What are they and what aren't they?

A good personal injury attorney and every attorney at McGowan & Cecil, LLC knows that the most important work in personal injury cases must be done in the first 30 days. Time is of the essence to obtain as much information as possible after an accident. Of the 80 or more initial tasks our firm performs, the police report is usually the best place to start our initial investigation.

Police reports are a good source of information that helps describe the mechanism of injury and identifies the parties involved including witnesses. The account of events from an independent witness can make or break your case by providing an unbiased account of facts.

Keep in mind that not every person involved in an accident will be interviewed by the police. Sometimes the officers do not have the time to take statements from every party. As a result, the accident description or citations issued are occasionally presented with only one side of the story.

Police reports are NOT a final adjudication on the merits of negligence or fault. If a police report states that you are at fault it does not necessarily prevent you from making a recovery.

What are police reports?

  • Official government reports
  • Good information gathering tools
    • Parties
    • Witnesses
    • Weather conditions
    • Insurance
  • 1 of 80+ immediate tasks the attorney and paralegal at McGowan & Cecil, LLC will address on your case

What they are not:

  • A final or even binding determination of fault
  • Accurate
  • Admissible at trial (with exception)
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