How To Obtain an Accident Report After a Car Accident in Georgia

To get full compensation for you or a loved one’s injuries after an auto accident, you’ll need sufficient evidence. One key piece of information is the accident report.

If you’re not sure about how to obtain a police report for a car accident, you don’t need to fret. Our experienced Athens car accident lawyers at the Larrison Law Firm helps residents of Athens and surrounding areas in Georgia handle all aspects of accident claims.

Why Is Obtaining a Police Report for a Car Accident Beneficial for Your Claim?

The police report can present an unbiased perspective of exactly what happened. Officers have training to look at the incident from various angles and give a detailed account of the evidence and witness statements.

Of course, a key part of the officer’s duty is to issue citations to anyone who may have committed an infraction. This can be useful in proving the liability of the at-fault party.

As a result, insurance companies often rely on these documents in their settlements. It’s a good idea to obtain the police report for your car accident as soon as possible to build your case.

Can Anyone Access Car Accident Reports in Georgia, or Just Lawyers and Insurers?

For transparency, police reports are usually a matter of public record. Therefore, citizens typically have the right to obtain a police report for a car accident.

Be aware that specific cases might require the department to redact certain information. This could be to protect the privacy of someone in a vulnerable position, such as a child.

Another situation that could restrict access to a car accident report in Georgia is if it is part of another ongoing investigation. However, these restrictions are usually temporary.

Remember that, even though you don’t need an attorney to get Georgia car accident reports, it can be advantageous.

We handle this step for our clients to save them time and energy, which allows them to focus on recuperating after the accident.

How Do You Obtain a Police Report for a Car Accident?

You have three options for obtaining Georgia car accident reports.

Downloading your report online

Requesting a digital copy is often the easiest way to get your report. Follow these steps:

  1. Click the BuyCrash link on the Crash Reporting page of the Georgia Department of Transportation website, or go directly to the BuyCrash site.
  2. Select “Georgia” and pick the jurisdiction where the accident occurred.
  3. Enter your last name and the date of the incident in the corresponding fields.
  4. Provide either the report number, the vehicle identification number of one of the cars or your driver’s license number.
  5. Select the appropriate report and pay for it electronically.

Unfortunately, sometimes the officer might make a mistake on one of the details, which means you might have a hard time locating your report. You’ll have to call the responsible agency to clear up this error and get your report.

Requesting Georgia car accident reports in person

You can go to the specific department that handled your crash and speak to the clerk about obtaining the police report for your car accident. The exact process will vary, so you should call ahead to find out what you need to bring to get the report.

If the Georgia State Patrol handled your accident, you can request the report through the Open Records Act. This allows you to get all records that relate to your crash, including photos, but you’ll have to fill out a form with your name, contact information and details about the incident.

Asking your attorney

You can bypass the preceding steps by having us obtain a police report for a car accident for you. Remember that when you work with us as your personal injury lawyers, we’ll handle the bulk of the paperwork and filing for you.

Does It Cost Money To Obtain Copies of Georgia Car Accident Reports?

Expect to pay a small fee to get your report. Different agencies could have different prices, but you shouldn’t have to spend more than $20. As of July 1, 2023, accessing Georgia car accident reports online through Buycrash costs $13.

Does Every Automobile Collision Get a Car Accident Report in Georgia?

Police have a lot of work to do, so they don’t usually show up for minor collisions that result in minimal damage.

Georgia’s guidelines are that you must call the authorities if an accident causes property damage over $500 or if anyone got injured or killed in the crash. Otherwise, you don’t have to call the local police.

However, these rules can vary by the particular city or county where the crash occurs. Also, your insurance might require you to make the call regardless. You can always call 911 and let the operator advise you about whether the police must show up. If they do, they’ll document the stop, and you’ll be able to obtain a police report for the car accident later.

How Do Georgia Car Accident Reports Demonstrate Cause and Effect?

The officer will fill in the contributing factors for the vehicles and operators. Fields such as “Most Harmful Event” and “Vehicle Maneuver” also provide a look into what caused the accident, which can make a significant impact on your claim. Other details on the form show the effects of the collision, including injuries, fatalities, the vehicles’ conditions and where injured parties went for medical treatment.

How Long Does It Take To Get a Car Accident Report in Georgia?

Police officers will not finish the report on the scene. They will have to verify certain aspects and review the document. According to the Georgia Department of Public Safety, you can often obtain a police report for a car accident three to five days after the incident. However, that is not a guarantee, and more complex incidents can take longer.

Our Georgia Car Accident Attorneys Can Help You Obtain a Police Report for a Car Accident

Obtaining a police report for a car accident is just one step in handling your personal injury claim. If you live in or near Loganville and need to address any part of the process, contact us at the Larrison Law Firm. We’ll support you in fighting for justice in your accident case.

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