One of the most important steps you can take after a car accident is reporting it to the police. Not only is it the law in California, but the report also acts as important evidence when you go to file a claim with the other driver’s insurance. Police reports hold a lot of weight during insurance negotiations and jury trials, but it is not always clear how you can receive one after a crash. Reports can go missing or may not be sent to accident victims in a timely manner, which is why our team at HN Injury Lawyers has broken down how to get a copy on your own.
If you were in a car accident in Santa Ana, then there are a handful of different departments that could have your report. Santa Ana accidents are investigated by the Santa Ana Police Department, Orange County Sheriff’s Department, or the California Highway Patrol, depending on where the accident occurred and which department investigated it.
If you do not know which department has your report, you should contact one of the following departments to ask if they have a copy of your report:
The Santa Ana Police Department (SADP) currently does not offer reports online, and you will need to contact the department to request a copy. The SADP charges a $20.00 filing fee for a copy of a report, and you will need to contact the Traffic Division’s Collision Investigative Unit at (714) 245-8200.
It takes between seven to 10 days for a report to become available with the Orange County Sheriff’s Department (OCSD). After this point, victims can request accident reports online, via email, fax, or snail mail.
To request an OCSD traffic report, you must fill out a Request Authorization Form and submit it to:
In some cases, the OCSD will need 10 days to confirm the details of your report and determine if it can submit a report to you. This is common in cases that involve a drunk driver, juvenile, serious injury, or death.
You will need to visit the OCSD in-person to pick up a copy of your report and pay the filing fee, which is $0.15 per page.
California Highway Patrol (CHP) investigates traffic collisions on highways, including the I-22, I-5, and I-57. To request a CHP traffic report, you must fill out a Collision Request Form and include a photocopy of your ID or driver’s license when you submit it to the agency. You can submit a request:
The CHP charges a filing fee to request a report, which starts at $10.00 for 1-25 pages and increases based on the size of the report.
Even after you have received a copy of your accident report, you will still need to deal with the other driver’s insurance company in order to receive compensation for your injuries, which is not an easy process. Insurance companies prefer to pay as little as possible and may try to deny liability after a crash. Your best chance of receiving full compensation for your injuries is to let a skilled Santa Ana accident lawyer handle your case.
At HN Injury Lawyers, our trial attorneys have more than 50 years of combined experience representing accident victims throughout Orange County. We know how to work with local and state police to investigate a collision and can handle all the legal burdens of filing your claim. If necessary, we are fully prepared to take your case to trial to get you the money you need to heal comfortably. To discuss your case in a free consultation, call us at (657) 333-5726.
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