Car accidents can cause serious physical and financial harm, and you may need to file an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit to recover your losses. If your crash was caused by another person’s negligence, a police report can help substantiate your claim for damages.
Learn how to get a police report for a car accident in Tampa and how it can help you secure a fair settlement. A Tampa car accident attorney can help you obtain a police report, along with other forms of evidence, to support your claim.
How Can I Obtain a Police Report for a Car Accident in Tampa?
Florida law requires a police report for any accidents that involve personal injury, death, or property damage over $500. If a vehicle must be removed from the accident scene with a wrecker, the accident must receive a crash report.
The responding officer will file the report within ten days of the accident, and it will be available to qualifying individuals for 60 days following its submission. Once the 60 days have passed, the report becomes public information.
You can request a copy of your Tampa car accident report through the following methods:
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Fill Out a Request for Your Tampa Car Accident Report Online
The Tampa Police Department website lets you request copies of crash reports. You can also submit an online request through the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) portal. You will be asked to pay a fee for the document and online service.
Request Your Tampa Police Report by Phone or in Person
To request your traffic accident report from the Tampa police, contact the Tampa Police Department Headquarters at (813) 276-3200 and choose the option for Records. Alternatively, you can request your report in person at:
Tampa Police Department Headquarters
One Police Center
411 N. Franklin Street
Tampa, FL 33602
If your accident occurred on a highway, you may need to request your report from the FLHSMV station nearest the accident site.
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Submit a Tampa Car Crash Report Request by Mail
You may also submit a request for your Tampa accident by sending the following documents to the Records Section of the Tampa Police Department:
- Self-addressed, stamped envelope
- Check or money order for the document fee
- Signed and notarized sworn statement
- A copy of your driver’s license or other identification to demonstrate your qualification
This method is likely the most time-consuming, and you may have to wait several weeks to receive a copy of your crash report. If you have trouble obtaining a crash report for your car accident, contact a Tampa car accident lawyer for assistance. They can help you obtain a report and guide you through the claims process.
For a free legal consultation call (855) 529-0269
A Tampa Police Report Can Support a Car Accident Claim
Florida law limits how you can use police reports for certain legal claims. You could provide a copy to the insurance company to support your claim for damages. If you file a personal injury lawsuit, you may contact witnesses or request testimony from the reporting officer to bolster your case.
A skilled personal injury attorney with experience handling car accidents in Tampa can help you determine the best ways to use the crash report.
What Information Will the Officer Include in a Tampa Crash Report?
The details of a crash report will vary depending on your accident’s circumstances. The document may include:
- Names and contact details of involved parties
- Insurance information for all drivers involved
- Crash location, date, and time
- Witness names and contact information
- Responding officer’s badge number, name, and law enforcement agency
- Officer assessment of the accident’s cause and their determination of fault
- Drawing of the accident
- Description of vehicles and license plate numbers
- Description of injuries and estimated damages
The attending officer may ask for statements from those involved in the crash, but such statements are not admissible in a personal injury trial. Instead, your attorney may ask the officer to provide testimony detailing the statements they received.
Who Can Submit a Request for a Tampa Car Crash Report?
Florida Statutes § 316.066 limits who can obtain a crash report within the first 60 days following a car accident. You can request an accident report if you are:
- A party involved in the accident
- A legal representative of someone involved in the accident
- A licensed insurance agent of an involved party
- An insurance company representing an involved party
- Underwriters for the insurance company
- Victim services programs
- Federal, state, or local government agency
Radio stations, television stations, and newspapers may also request redacted copies for legal reporting purposes.
How a Tampa Police Report Helps With a Car Accident Insurance Claim or Lawsuit
A Tampa police report can help you establish fault by providing details about when, where, and how the accident occurred. While statements from individuals may not be admissible, the facts of the accident can often speak for themselves.
The crash report also outlines property damage and injuries, which can help you substantiate your claim for compensation. A car accident lawyer can help you understand which parts of a police report can benefit your injury claim.
A Lawyer Can Obtain a Police Report for a Car Accident in Tampa
A Tampa car accident attorney can help you obtain a car accident report if you were involved in a crash. They can also assist with gathering evidence, building a case, negotiating a settlement, and filing a personal injury lawsuit.
While you focus on your injury recovery, a car accident lawyer can field phone calls and emails about your case, gather the necessary documents to prove your case and handle the negotiations with the insurance company and opposing counsel. If your case does not settle, an attorney can prepare you for trial and represent your interests in court.
Work With a Tampa Car Accident Lawyer Today
If you sustained injuries or property damage in a motor vehicle crash, a Tampa car accident attorney with Chalik & Chalik Injury Lawyers can help you seek justice and fair compensation. Reach out to our office today to schedule a free consultation. One of our dedicated personal injury lawyers can explain how to get a police report for a car accident in Tampa and help you decide what to do next.
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