Do You Have to File Alabama Car Accident Reports?

When you are in a crash, you may have to report the incident to your insurance company and the police. If you were driving someone else’s car at the time, you — or the car’s owner — may need to file a claim with the insurer who covered the vehicle you were in at the time of the collision. Notifying the police may not be necessary if no one is injured or killed; however, making a call to local law enforcement may still be a good idea to be on the safe side.

Our team has extensive experience helping people file Alabama car accident reports with the police and their insurance company. We appreciate the vulnerability of casualties of collisions caused by drunk, distracted, and reckless driving. Steve Morris Law is a proud defender of the injured throughout Alabama.

Alabama’s Specific Reporting Laws

Alabama law requires people to take specific steps after they get into a crash. Drivers involved in a collision that causes property damage or personal injuries should stop the vehicle and move it out of the way of traffic. Likewise, if anyone sustains injuries or dies because of the incident, the driver or drivers should notify the police. In those situations, Alabama law makes it illegal for people to leave the accident scene unless law enforcement tells them to.

Additionally, drivers should exchange information with each other. Details they should give to each other include their name, address, and car registration information. The law also asks them to show their license to casualties who request to look at it. Lastly, the driver should offer to get help for those who are hurt or who are without a driveable vehicle because of the crash.

When Are You Required To Report a Car Accident in Alabama?

When you are in a collision, you may need to notify the police as well as your insurance company. Alabama law has different rules for if and when law enforcement needs to know about the collision. Your insurance contract will outline the rules for providing due notice to your insurer.

When do you need to report an accident to the police?

Alabama law requires you to immediately call the police if you are in an accident where someone was hurt or killed. If you are truly unable to contact the authorities right away — e.g., because of life-threatening injuries — you may be able to have someone else make this call on your behalf. It is imperitive to file a  alabama car accident report in this case.

If you were in a crash that only caused property damage, you still need to exchange information with others — such as the owner of the injured property. That said, calling the police may not be necessary.

When do you need to report an accident to the insurance?

Your insurance contract dictates how long you have to give them notice of a collision. The best practice is to send in this notice right away. That way, the insurance company cannot accuse you of trying to hide anything or of taking too long to tell them what happened.

How To Report a Car Accident in Alabama

You can first report an auto wreck by calling local law enforcement. Explain to them what happened in your own words. Try not to admit fault or say things that sound like you are taking the blame. Instead, just communicate the bare facts without any commentary. After you have this conversation with the police, you may also have to send in a form to the Alabama Department of Public Safety.

Notifying Your Insurance Company About a Collision

Make sure to tell your insurer about the incident as soon as possible to try to avoid challenges with them accepting your claim due to late notices. When talking to your insurer about what occurred, stick to a bare discussion of the facts. They are listening to what you tell them and will use your words to accept or reject the claim. Be honest and straightforward when communicating with them, and try to leave out commentary such as, “ I was driving too fast and sending a text message when the crash happened.”

What Are the Consequences of Failing To Report an Accident?

Typically, drivers are responsible for telling the authorities about wrecks. If someone does not report a crash involving property damage only, they may be charged with a Class A misdemeanor. If the unreported crash hurt or killed someone, one or both drivers may be charged with a Class C felony.

What Are the Steps To Take Immediately After an Accident?

When you get into a wreck, the first step you should take is to call the police so they can investigate the accident. After you have this discussion with them, seek medical attention to identify and treat any wounds you may have. This initial visit also helps to create a documentary connection between the collision and your losses. Then, you should contact your insurance company to file a claim and reach out to an attorney to understand your rights and legal options going forward.

How an Attorney Can Help With Your Reporting Obligations

When you are in a crash, it can completely rattle your sense of stability and safety. During this process, you may have to make many phone calls — to a repair shop, your insurance company, or your doctor — and juggle multiple stressors at once. A lawyer can step in and handle the legal matters for you,  filing alabama car accident reports, freeing up your valuable energy and time so you can focus on what matters most to you. Your advocate can identify and take steps to meet the filing deadlines and communicate with others — like the insurance company — on your behalf.

Contact Steve Morris Law for Legal Assistance After a Crash

After a motor vehicle accident, you may find it challenging to know what you are supposed to report, to whom, and when. Many people have trusted us to help them file Alabama car accident reports. With over two decades in service to casualties of auto wrecks, we have a wealth of knowledge at our disposal.

We welcome the opportunity to serve as your guide and support as you navigate the legal process of filing a claim and lawsuit. Contact Steve Morris Law today by calling 256-357-9211 to schedule a no-obligation consultation.

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