How to Report a Car Accident to the Police

Those in an accident are required to report the car accident to the police. The report that is eventually filed could be helpful later in establishing fault. An Arvada, Colorado car accident lawyer can assist accident victims with the car accident claims process, such as collecting evidence and building a claim.

Reporting a Car Accident to the Police Under Colorado Law

No matter how minor an accident, those involved must report the car accident to the police in the state of Colorado. Whenever there is damage or injury, information pertaining to the crash must be provided.

Minor accidents may be reported online through the state’s Online Accident Report system. Reporting the accident online won’t allow for anyone to be ticketed, though, which could be a detriment to future claims.

The following criteria must be met in order to file an accident report online:


  • not a hit and run;
  • there were no fatalities;
  • medical attention wasn’t required for injuries;
  • no damage to public property; and
  • no suspicions of DUI or violations pertaining to driver license or insurance.
  • Otherwise, it is necessary to report the car accident to the police so they can respond to the accident. This will allow for a police report to then be filed, which an Arvada, Colorado car accident lawyer may use when building a case to recover compensation in a car accident claim.


Filing a Police Report

The information provided could be very important in helping to establish fault in a car accident claim. In order to file a claim, it will need to be proven that the other party was negligent and, therefore, responsible for the damages suffered.

The initial statement given in a police report is likely to be reviewed by the insurance company. Providing accurate, detailed information could make the claims process go much easier and quicker.

Along the same lines, it’s imperative that the statement given to police is honest. Sometimes there are concerns that telling the truth, such as going over the speed limit, could be damaging. But exaggerating or lying about the circumstances could backfire and ruin an injured person’s ability to be compensated.

Remember that others will be providing statements to the responding officer as well. If there were witnesses, they will share what they saw.

Although an accident can be stressful and overwhelming, it’s critical that when talking to the officer, all parties remain calm. Expressing anger or other negative emotions could make a bad situation worse. Accusations tend to make skeptical third parties (police, insurance company) suspect that the accuser may be covering up fault with anger.

Despite what may be believed as the cause of the accident, it’s just as important to state only the facts. Don’t make judgments or toss out accusations when reporting the car accident to the police. And never take blame or even hint at being at fault for the crash.

Using a Police Report in a Car Accident Claim – an Arvada, Colorado Car Accident Lawyer Can Help

Once a report has been filed, a copy of it can be obtained by contacting the appropriate agency, the requestor will have to supply the:


  • name of the driver;
  • date and location of the accident; and
  • case number.


An Arvada, Colorado car accident lawyer can help accident victims obtain reports for use in a car accident claim. But before that, it’s important that those in an accident properly report the car accident to the police.

D.J. Banovitz’ career has always concentrated on trial practice and he has litigated hundreds of cases. His passion and sole career focus has been to seek justice for people suffering from personal injuries as the result of someone else’s negligence. The hallmark of the Law Office of D.J. Banovitz, is the total commitment to professionalism, quality, and personalized care of your injury case. D.J. has dedicated his professional life to helping those most in need and is a proud and active member of the Colorado Trial Lawyers Association. His experience includes volunteering for Colorado Rural Legal Services in Montrose, the Colorado Aids Project, consumer law, family law, criminal defense, and Alternative Defense Counsel for juveniles in Denver.