auto accident lawyer Rose Park, Utah

What Auto Accident Lawyers Recommend When a Police Report is Wrong

As any auto accident lawyer in Rose Park, Utah, would tell you, a police report can make or break your personal injury claim. Insurance adjusters rely on these documents when making decisions about liability and accident-related losses, so it’s essential for your police report to be accurate.

But what if it isn’t? If you spot an error or disagree with findings of the responding officer, what should you do?

While you can expect the police to have due regard for the facts, anyone can make a mistake. Any error should be taken seriously, and with certain issues, you might need the assistance of an experienced Utah auto accident lawyer. Here, the professional team at Cockayne Law explains what to do when a police report is wrong

Factual Errors

Sometimes, the officer who prepares a police report inadvertently includes information that is objectively incorrect. Examples of factual mistakes include:

  • An inaccurate account of the location of the auto accident
  • The misspelling of a motorist, passenger or witness name
  • An error in the description of the weather or road conditions
  • The incorrect make or model of one of the vehicles involved
  • A transposed birthdate, license plate or driver’s license number

Factual errors are typically the easiest to correct — providing the responding officer or law enforcement agency with evidence of the correct information and requesting that the report be changed is often all it takes. But if you face any challenges, an experienced Rose Park auto accident lawyer can help.

Errors of Omission

Every now and then, the officer who writes up a police report misses important facts or fails to mention crucial details. For instance, the following could be excluded:

  • A statement from a bystander who witnessed the auto accident
  • A description of accident-related property or vehicular damage
  • A traffic violation committed by one of the motorists involved
  • An account of your concerns regarding injuries you sustained
  • A detail that went unnoticed, like a beer bottle in the bushes

If you believe a specific piece of information should be in the police report, it’s ok to politely bring it to the officer’s attention. They may have simply forgotten to put that in the document, or it could be that they didn’t think the information was important. But if you get any pushback, don’t hesitate to contact an auto accident lawyer.

Disputed Facts

Subjective information in a police report is the toughest to change. Disagreeing with the officer is like challenging their expertise – consider the following examples:

  • The officer says that you being distracted is what caused the auto accident
  • A bystander claims you were speeding and that information is in the report
  • The official diagram of the accident doesn’t reflect what you remember
  • Witness statements are conflicting, yet the officer thinks you’re at fault
  • You disapprove of how your statements about the accident are summarized

In these types of scenarios, getting your police report amended can be next to impossible. Essentially, asking for a correction is like questioning the officer’s professional expertise. When it’s your word against theirs, working with an auto accident lawyer is beneficial.

If the officer responsible for your report refuses to be swayed to your point of view, their conclusions will remain in the document. However, you can ask that your version of events be included or documented in a supplemental report. But before you decide to take that approach, talk to an auto accident lawyer – after all, any statement you make about the incident could be used against you, affecting the outcome of your personal injury claim.

Talk to an Experienced Auto Accident Lawyer Today

Whether the problem with your auto accident police report is a factual error, an error of omission or a disputed fact, it’s a good idea to raise your concerns in a polite manner. People make mistakes all the time, and like everyone, police officers deserve our respect. Approach the situation in the right way, and you might be able to get the document changed.

Often, though, the simplest, most effective means of correcting an inaccurate police report is to work with an experienced auto accident lawyer – and the legal team here at Cockayne Law is ready to step in and help.

Generally speaking, police reports aren’t admissible in court. The documents are considered to be a form of hearsay evidence, which can be unreliable. However, there are exceptions to consider. And, a skilled and knowledgeable accident lawyer can use the information contained in your report to help ensure a favorable case outcome.

At Cockayne Law, we’ve been protecting the rights of injured accident victims in northern Utah for many years. We can address any mistakes in your police report, and you can count on us to help you collect photos, witness testimonies and other evidence to support your personal injury claim. Our legal team will make every effort to bring your case to a successful conclusion, and we’ll fight to get you every dollar you deserve. For a free, no-obligation consultation with one of the best auto accident lawyers serving Rose Park, Utah, contact us today.