If you are involved in a car accident in Miami, you should always call 911, especially if you believe that the other party was at fault for causing the collision. The police officer will gather information that they will compile and file in an official accident report.
To get a copy of a police report for an accident in Miami, you will have to engage in a process that depends on the division that was responsible for filing your report. You can locate your case by searching based on the case number, location of the accident, or names of the drivers involved. Police reports are typically available around 10 days after the accident and will become public record after 60 days. Once you obtain your police report, go over it with your lawyer to determine if there are any mistakes that you may need to get fixed.
No matter how serious your injuries may be, South Florida Law, PLLC believes that you deserve competent legal representation. Our Ft. Lauderdale car accident lawyers can help answer any questions you may have about your accident or police report for free. To hear more from us, call our offices at (954) 932-7877
How to Request a Copy of a Police Report for an Accident in Miami
Your first step for getting a copy of the police report for your accident is determining which division was responsible for collecting the information and filing the report. The rules differ depending on the specific county in which the report was filed. For instance, if the law enforcement officer who filed your police report was a member of the Broward County Sheriff’s Department, you will not be able to obtain it through a request made to Miami-Dade.
Accident reports typically take 10 days from the date of the accident to become available online. Once they are, you can typically find them on the statewide portal. More than 150 police divisions across the State of Florida make use of the portal. If 10 days have passed and you are unable to locate your accident report, contact the specific division that was responsible for filing your report for more information.
To locate your specific report, you will want to have the following information handy:
- Case number
- Location of the accident
- Date and time of the accident
- Names of drivers involved
You do not need all of this information to locate and request your accident report. However, there are so many accident reports filed every day that this process can be time-consuming if you cannot narrow your search down enough.
Are Police Reports Public Records in Miami?
All accident reports in the State of Florida will end up on the public record and are accessible by anyone, not just those involved in the accident or their insurers. However, the report will not enter the public record until 60 days after the date of the accident itself. Therefore, you must submit an affidavit to obtain a copy of the accident report before the 60-day mark is reached. In the affidavit, you must attest to the fact that you were directly involved in the crash. If time is at issue (and it usually is), your Miami car accident lawyer can help you compose and submit your affidavit.
When Are Police Reports Required for Accidents in Miami?
In almost every accident situation in Florida, a police officer who is called to the scene is required to file an accident report. Florida law requires accident reports to be compiled and submitted where there are any injuries, where a driver fled the scene, or where the accident involved a commercial vehicle that became disabled and required a tow.
Even if you believe that you escaped the accident uninjured or that the damage was minor, you should always call 911 and ask the dispatcher to send a unit to the scene. If you left the scene of the accident without a police report, you can still file your own police report under Florida law. The procedure for filing your own accident report depends on the jurisdiction and roadway where the accident occurred.
What Information Is in a Police Report for an Accident in Miami?
Police reports are a valuable source of information for victims left reeling after an accident and looking to file an insurance claim or a lawsuit. These details can also be helpful for your Miami car accident lawyer when establishing the facts surrounding your accident and determining how to proceed with your case.
The following information will likely be included in a Miami accident police report:
- Date, time, and location of the accident
- Identity and contact information of all parties involved in the accident
- Driver’s license information and license plate numbers
- Description of damage caused by the accident
- Witness names and contact information, where available
- Citations or violations
- Statements from drivers and witnesses
- Visual depiction of the accident
- Description of conditions (weather, visibility, etc.) at the scene
What Should You Do Once You Get Your Police Report for an Accident in Miami?
Once you get a copy of the police report, you should go through every one of the above details for completeness and accuracy. Police officers file a number of accident reports every week, and it is entirely possible that some information was lost or misinterpreted in the shuffle. If your report contains mistakes, you have the ability to amend them, but you must act quickly to do so. Our Ft. Lauderdale personal injury lawyers can help you through this process so that your case is handled fairly.
Get Your Police Report for a Miami Car Accident Today
Having issues trying to obtain or amend your police report? Leave the details to the experienced Aventura car accident lawyers at South Florida Law, PLLC. Call us for a free case review today at (954) 932-7877.