After you or a family member has been seriously hurt in an accident with a commercial truck or 18-wheeler, you probably expect to give a statement to the police about what happened, either at the scene or while you’re in the hospital. When you later attempt to hold the trucking company legally responsible for your physical, financial, and emotional losses, you probably know that the police report will become an important document in your case. That’s when easy-to-make mistakes become all too apparent.
There are three things you should keep in mind when filling out a police report for a truck accident in which you were hurt.
The police report will be a key document for your injury claim later.
The police report establishes when the accident happened, the first reports of what actually happened, and often who may be at fault for the wreck. Any inconsistencies in this initial report can cause a load of complications later, so it’s important to make sure everything is accurate.
The trucking company will have access to your statements in the police report.
The trucking company and its insurance company will have access to the police report because it is a public document. Unfortunately, this gives them a chance to twist your words on the report and minimize your claim based on those statements—even if it’s clear that you weren’t sure what happened and may have been in shock.
It is the police officer’s job to get the facts, not to help you win a later injury claim.
While police and law enforcement officers are there to assist you at the scene and make sure those who were injured get transported for medical care, it is not the officer’s job to help you win your injury claim. You will be asked to give facts and sometimes estimations, but you should be careful to note when you don’t know the answer or aren’t sure what to say.
For more information about taking action after an accident, as well as great tips for protecting your rights, request a free copy of our book
If you want more information about what you should do after an accident and learn more about common missteps (and how to avoid them) order your copy of our free book before you speak with another lawyer or anyone from the other drivers’ insurance company.
Clearly, situations where a victim would benefit from legal representation in an accident claim far outnumber situations in which having an attorney is unnecessary. Fortunately, we are here to provide you with the assistance you need after a truck accident in Arkansas. When you are ready to take the next steps, contact us at (870) 741-8100 for a free, no-obligation consultation from a truck accident lawyer in Harrison Arkansas.