Can I File a Claim Without a Police Report?
Car crashes happen every day in Clark County. Even the most careful of drivers could still end up in a serious accident. A report cited by Forbes Magazine found that the average motorist is involved in approximately four crashes over the course of their lifetime. A traffic collision in Las Vegas should be reported to law enforcement. Failure to do so could undermine your ability to recover financial compensation for vehicle repairs, medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.
You may be wondering: Can I file a car accident claim without a police report in Nevada? The answer is technically ‘yes’—but while you have the right to file a claim without an accident report, it is far more difficult to do so. You should always report a collision to the police and request an official copy of the investigative report. In this article, our Las Vegas auto accident lawyers provide an overview of the most important things to know about police reports and car crash claims in Nevada.
Know Your Responsibilities Nevada Law: When to Report an Accident to the Police
Many people have questions after a car accident. You may not be sure exactly what you need to do to protect your health, safety, and your ability to recover compensation through a car accident claim. At Naqvi Injury Law, we want to make sure that you understand your legal responsibilities. Here are three things you should know:
- You Must Stop Your Vehicle and Exchange Information: In Nevada, all drivers involved in a collision have a legal duty to stop their vehicle, render aid, and exchange information. There is an exception for medical emergencies. If immediate medical attention is needed, then those emergency needs always come first. Otherwise, make sure that you exchange information with all other parties involved in the crash.
- Most Car Accidents Must Be Reported: Under Nevada law (NRS § 484E.030), the driver of a vehicle involved in a crash that resulted in injuries or property damage must give information as requested to “any police officer at the scene of the crash or who is investigating the crash” or, if no officer is at the scene “shall forthwith report such crash to the nearest office of a police authority or of the Nevada Highway Patrol.” In other words, any significant crash in Nevada should be reported to the police. The responding officer will write a crash report.
- Your Own Insurer Should Be Notified: To protect your legal rights, you should also notify your own insurance company that you were involved in an accident in a prompt manner. You do not need all of the information at this time. Simply notify the insurance company that a crash happened. A car accident attorney will help you provide additional details to insurers at the appropriate time.
You Can File a Claim Without a Police Report—But it Will Be Far More Difficult
As noted above, Nevada law requires that most car accidents must be reported to the police. Failure to report an accident could result in a driver facing legal penalties, potentially even including the suspension of their driver’s license. You can avoid problems like this by reporting your accident as soon as possible. That being said, there is no law in Nevada that prevents you from filing an insurance claim if there is no police report. You are not legally prohibited from bringing a claim.
Still, it will be far more challenging to get the full and fair financial compensation that you deserve if you never reported the accident to law enforcement. It is not something that you want to deal with after a car wreck. A police report is a key piece of evidence. If there is no police report, you can be sure that the insurance company is going to heavily scrutinize the claim. Protect your rights by reporting your accident to the police.
Car Accident Claims Tip: Report the Accident and Request a Copy of the Police Report
While the police report is important, it is not necessarily conclusive. The report is part of the overall investigation. The details included within the report help to set the table for what happens next. For this reason, it is essential that you make your voice heard when the police come. When possible, your story should be in the police report. The report will be reviewed closely by insurance adjusters—so it is crucial that you ensure that the officer is writing down the accurate version of events. The report will also include basic information about the crash, including:
- The time and date;
- The precise location;
- The names of the drivers involved;
- Vehicle information of the cars involved;
- Names of eyewitnesses;
- The weather conditions and/or road conditions;
- A preliminary assessment of vehicle damage;
- A basic description of what happened;
- Whether or not any driver was cited for a violation; and
- Any other information deemed relevant to the case.
If you are preparing to file a car accident claim, you should get your hands on a copy of the police report. Review it yourself to see what the responding officer wrote down. There might be inaccurate information. Your Las Vegas, NV car accident lawyer will help you take immediate action to address any issues with the report. To get a copy of the police report, you should generally go through the law enforcement agency that responded to or handled the accident. For example, if you were involved in a collision in Downtown Vegas, you can likely obtain the report through the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD). The LVMPD allows people to request accident reports online and in-person.
How the Las Vegas Auto Accident Lawyers at Naqvi Injury Law Can Help
The aftermath of a traffic collision can be confusing, stressful, and all around chaotic. If you are not sure exactly what you need to protect your rights, you are certainly not the only one. The big insurance companies try to take advantage of the fact that most people are unfamiliar with the car accident claims process and Nevada’s rules and regulations. You need a strong advocate on your team. At Naqvi Injury Law, our Las Vegas car accident attorneys will:
- Answer all of your questions during a free consultation;
- Investigate your crash—gathering evidence, including the police report;
- Handle paperwork and correspondence with the insurance company; and
- Do whatever is necessary to get you and your family the best results.
Voted the best personal injury attorney and best personal injury law firm in Las Vegas, our legal team has the experience and skill that you and your loved ones can trust. No matter your specific circumstances, we are prepared to help you navigate the legal process. Our reputation was earned. As we represent victims on contingency, you will pay nothing until we win your case.
Call Our Nevada Car Accident Attorney for a Free Consultation
At Naqvi Injury Law, our Las Vegas car accident attorneys fight hard for the rights of clients. You need the maximum compensation to pay your bills. If you were involved in a crash in Clark County and you have any questions about the police report, we are more than ready to guide you through the claims process. Call us or contact us via email for your no cost, no obligation case evaluation. From our Las Vegas office location, we fight aggressively to protect the rights of injured victims throughout the region, including in North Las Vegas, Henderson, Mesquite, Summerlin, and beyond.