One of the most important things you can do after a car accident is to call the police. It may sound insignificant, especially if the crash resulted in minor injuries or minimal property damage, but it’s better safe than sorry. Here is why.
First, it is a legal requirement under New Jersey law to inform the police of a crash resulting in injury, death or property damage worth $500 and above. Besides this legal requirement, informing law enforcement of the accident could help you recover compensation for your injuries and losses.
The police report can be useful to your car accident claim
As first responders, the police report will record first-hand information about the accident scene. Their accident report can provide an official record of events related to the crash. It includes things like the physical state of the drivers, eyewitness statements and, possibly, the circumstances that led to the crash. Such information can be used when assessing each driver’s level of fault or establishing other facts about the accident, which is crucial to the claims process.
But you need to be careful with your words
When recording statements with law enforcement after a crash, do not say more than is necessary. For instance, do not make statements that would suggest you contributed to the accident since that could potentially affect your right to compensation. Instead, answer the questions asked to the point and remember you always have the right to remain silent.
Reporting the accident to law enforcement is a step in the right direction. However, you will still need to go through the claims process to get compensation for your damages. It explains the importance of having legal guidance as soon as possible to help you understand your rights and protect your interests.