November 13, 2018
The Role of The Police Officer in an Auto Accident Case
|After an auto accident, one of the first responses is to call for the police. When they respond to the call, they will get to the scene of the accident and ensure that everyone around is safe and help in managing traffic movement, ensure automobiles that need removal are towed away and document the accident. These are the main roles of the police at the accident scene. However, they can still be instrumental later on in your auto accident case. A Car accident lawyer in Michigan at our firm can help you if you or a loved one was injured in an auto accident. Here are some of the ways that the police lend a hand in an auto accident case:|
As mentioned above, the policeman on duty at the scene of the accident is tasked with coming up with an accident report. To do this, the police officer has to interview the concerned parties, that is the drivers or pedestrians, and any witnesses who saw the happenings. They ask them questions which help come up with an error-free account of what took place. In some cases, the police report may have a statement on who was behind the accident according to the officer’s professional deduction. Nevertheless, many police reports do not include the report of who was at fault.
It is crucial to note that in spite of the police report indicating who was at fault over the accident, this does not imply that the driver will be liable for all the damages in the event of a lawsuit later on.
In Michigan, when the plaintiff goes to court in a bid to recover third-party benefits, one has to prove comparative fault. In this case, a police report will help in building a solid case. Our auto accident lawyers at Elia & Ponto will help you in using a police report to help secure a fair settlement after an auto accident in Michigan.
After a police officer launches into an official investigation of the auto accident, he or she may hand out traffic citations. A traffic citation is a notice that is handed out by an officer of the law and that charges a driver with defying a traffic law. The traffic citation may include the course of action such as a penalty like deduction of points or a fine on the driver. The driver may also be arraigned in traffic court. Running a red light or taking a wrong turn before an accident will earn a driver a traffic citation.
When a traffic citation is issued after an investigation, it doesn’t necessarily prove legally the person responsible for the auto accident in the event of a lawsuit. However, it will be used as evidence to show that the driver is negligent.
In some cases, the police officer who responded may be asked to show up in court as one of the witnesses in the case. In a courtroom, the police officer gives a deeper account of the contents of the police report by elaborating on them and also explains all the conditions that led to the accident and all who were involved.
In addition to police officers playing a part in an auto accident case, their reports also lend a hand in the determination of the settlement amount with your insurance provider. After you report to your insurance provider of an accident, they immediately launch an investigation into the claim that you file. One of the steps they take is to ask for a copy of the report by the police. They may ask you to produce a report or they may source for it from the police station.
In spite of the police report indicating who was at fault, insurance adjusters will still conduct their own investigation. This is because police reports are not entirely accurate. In some rare occurrences, the police might make mistakes. And in their investigation, the insurance adjuster may stumble upon evidence that was missed by the officer. Nonetheless, the police report remains to be a very persuasive document in determining fault.
In the event that your case ends in court because the adjuster disagreed with the assessment of the accident by the police officer, chances are that the jury will go along with the police report. And owing to the persuasiveness of police reports, if you disagree with the police officer’s assessment of the accident, call for a Michigan car accident attorney from Elia & Ponto to help you to counter.
In conclusion, if you are suing for pain and suffering benefits, a police report will go a long way in ensuring you secure the benefits. If you or a loved one was in an auto accident in Michigan, a Michigan auto accident lawyer at Elia & Ponto will help you in filing a Michigan car accident insurance claim and ensure you receive a fair settlement.