An accident victim documenting damage to her black car on her smartphone in the afternoon.A car accident can cause new challenges, from medical bills to lost income to property damage. If you want to seek reimbursement from an insurance company, you’ll need a copy of your accident report.

Although the insurance company will review the report and make a decision, it’s helpful to discuss the report with a personal injury lawyer.

Why do you need a lawyer to make a car insurance claim? The insurance company’s adjuster will pick apart the report, searching for any sign you were even partially at fault, so they can reduce or eliminate your final settlement.

They could also undervalue your damages, leaving you with less than you need to recover. Your personal injury lawyer will correctly value your claim and ensure the insurance company estimates fault correctly.

If you or a loved one have been hurt in a car accident, please contact Singh Ahluwalia Attorneys at Law for a free consultation about your claim. We’ll walk you through the police report, answer your questions, and detail your options for seeking damages.

If we take your case, you won’t owe us anything until we win or settle it.

You Can Request Your Sanger Car Accident Report in Person or Online

The Sanger Police Department Records Unit is open Monday—Friday from 8 AM to 5 PM at:

1700 7th St.

Sanger, CA 93657

You can call them at (559) 875-8522.

If you visit in person, you’ll need to fill out a request form, which is available here if you want to complete it ahead of time. The Records officer will also need to know the case number or incident number, the date and location of the accident, and the names of the parties involved in order to find your report.

There is a charge of $5 for the first page of the report and $1 for each additional page; car accident reports are usually around four pages. You can expect to wait 7-10 days for your request to be processed.

The Sanger PD also now offers an online option to purchase traffic collision reports here.

What Should I Look for on My Car Accident Report?

The insurance adjuster will be primarily concerned with the second page, where the responding officer will note causative factors, from bad weather to distracted driving. While the adjuster frequently uses this information to estimate each party’s degree of fault, the police report doesn’t always tell the whole story.

The responding officer reaches a conclusion based on statements from the drivers, passengers, and other witnesses, as well as evidence like vehicle damage and tire marks. In many cases, they may receive conflicting statements from different parties, and other evidence at the scene could be compromised or inconclusive.

For this reason, it’s a good idea to review the second page and let your Fresno car accident attorney know if you believe anything is incorrect. We can conduct our own investigation and search for additional evidence, and in some cases, we may be able to challenge the police report.

Determining Fault Can Be Complicated

It’s also crucial to understand that both drivers can be partly at fault under California law, and each driver is expected to be responsible for their own share of the damages. Your police report may indicate that both drivers contributed to the collision in some way.

When this occurs, the insurance adjuster will estimate how many faults each driver has. If they inflate your portion of responsibility, your settlement could be reduced based on this incorrect assumption.

However, your attorney will fight for a fair evaluation of your contributions, if any.

How Are Injuries Described on Your Report?

The third page of the report usually details injuries, deaths, and property damage from the accident. The officer will note the type of injury if a trip to the hospital was necessary, and if so, where the injured person was taken.

Please read this page and ensure any references to your injuries are correct.

Another potential issue is an injury that doesn’t produce symptoms right away. Sometimes, an accident triggers an adrenaline rush that suppresses pain, and the injured person may not notice symptoms right away.

Other injuries simply hurt more after they begin to swell. For these reasons, you might tell the officer at the scene that you’re unhurt because you believe that’s true, but within a few days or weeks, you experience worsening pain or symptoms.

When this happens, the injured person might see a doctor a few days or weeks later.

The insurance adjuster could look at the police report and notice no mention of the claimant suffering an injury. At this point, they might reject the claim, believing the injury is either fake or unrelated to the accident.

We always recommend seeking medical treatment for any injuries after a car accident, even if they seem mild or you don’t want to bother. Should you start to have symptoms later, see a healthcare professional as soon as possible.

If the insurance adjuster rejects your claim because you didn’t see a doctor right away, your attorney will work to gather evidence and show how the collision caused your injuries.

How Can You Get Help With Your Police Report or Car Accident Claim?

The experienced legal team at Singh Ahluwalia Attorneys At Law is always available for a free car accident case review. We can answer your questions about your police report, help you properly value your claim, and fight for the best settlement possible.

There is no obligation, but if you decide to move forward with our help, you never have to worry about dealing with the insurance company. We’ll handle negotiations and work to recover the settlement you deserve while you focus on getting better.

Founder and managing partner Deepak Ahluwalia was recently selected for the American Bar Association’s Top 40 Under 40 Lawyers. He has been featured in national media outlets, including NPR, The Wall Street Journal, The Guardian, Los Angeles Times, BBC, and CNN.

Dedicated to helping his clients achieve their legal goals, he founded Singh Ahluwalia Attorneys at Law in 2016 to ensure excellent legal help for those who need it most. Work with him today when you call (559) 878-4958.