Police Reports for Motor Vehicle Collisions in GA

Contact the Balams Law Group, LLC today at (404) 445-2005 for help obtaining your Georgia vehicle accident report.

The Georgia Motor Vehicle Code requires that law enforcement agencies prepare and submit a motor vehicle report after every accident. Preparing these reports is important for the State of GA because it preserves the scene of the accident and provides valuable information about accident statistics and fatalities.

Accident reports are important to drivers and passengers because they are often used as the initial source for an insurance claim investigation, determination of criminal charges, or both. Police reports provide valuable information to police officers and expert witnesses who may be called to testify.  With such heavy reliance on accident reports, it is imperative that they are accurate, and also that you understand how they may impact your right to compensation.

Information Contained in a Report of an Accident

Georgia accident reports often contain information about the details of an accident and those involved, including:

  • name of the driver listed “at-fault”
  • whether a breathalyzer test (BAC) was administered
  • at-fault driver’s insurance information such as policy number
  • any contributing factors like failing to signal
  • weather conditions and physical evidence such as skid marks
  • if a citation was issued
  • the officer’s overview

Understanding Your Georgia Accident Report

If you were involved in an accident and have obtained your accident report, you may still need help understanding the report. Accident reports are written in code and shorthand used by law enforcement officers for speed and ease of writing. Even police must be trained on how to write and interpret accident reports.

Moreover, when you receive a copy of your accident report, you usually have to download the overlay separately. An overlay is a guide for the codes that a law enforcement officer uses when preparing a vehicle accident report. Even then, these reports are difficult to interpret without an attorney.

An experienced lawyer will have handled many auto accident cases over the course of his or her career and will know exactly what the codes mean. Additionally, since the attorneys at the Balams Law Group are well versed in Georgia law, they are better equipped to understand these reports, including what information is supposed to be in the report and whether mistakes have been made.

Common Mistakes in Georgia Car Accident Reports

Law enforcement officers are human, and they make mistakes. They sometimes enter information incorrectly related to the at-fault driver, date, location, or other important factors that contributed to the crash.  Moreover, some information contained in the report must only be provided by a person with first-hand knowledge, and police officers are rarely eyewitnesses to wrecks.

Problems in a police report could include any of the following:

  • misspelled names
  • after-accident witnesses
  • misplaced codes
  • inaccurate physical information
  • failure to note weather conditions or other aggravating factors

Errors in a police report can negatively affect an auto insurance claim. If you believe that there is a mistake in your accident report, contact the law enforcement agency as soon as possible. Even if the police do not make the changes, reporting the error will establish the individual’s belief that the report is not factually correct before any trial or insurance fight.

Georgia Police Accident Reports are Important

According to the Georgia Governor’s Office of Highway Safety, in 2016 there were 112,526 injuries caused by motor vehicle accidents. Georgia Motor Vehicle Code §40-9-31 states that each law enforcement agency shall submit an original document of any accident report to the Department of Transportation (GDOT).

After being in a motor vehicle accident, there are important steps that each individual should take to ensure that he or she preserves their chances of recovering compensation from insurance companies or a negligent individual.

Personal Injury Attorney for Auto Accidents in Atlanta, GA

Our attorneys will obtain and review your car accident report at no cost to you and help you determine your legal rights. Some restrictions apply.

If you or someone you know has been involved in an auto accident, then call The Balams Firm for more information on how an attorney can help you obtain this video. The Balams Law Group takes cases in Atlanta, GA.

Additional Resources

Atlanta Central Records Unit –The Atlanta Police Department is the main repository for all reports created by the Atlanta police officers. Reports can be picked up from the Central Records Office.

Georgia Dept. of Public Safety – The Georgia Department of Public Safety is the primary source of information on obtaining traffic crash reports, who many obtain the report, and other information.

This Page Was Last Updated on Wednesday, February 22, 2017


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