Many car accidents are fortunately relatively minor in nature, resulting in perhaps a few scratches. Drivers who are in this situation often prefer to settle things amicably, believing it will save them both time and stress. Calling the police for a minor accident might seem like overkill, but it’s important to know when you shouldn’t skip this step.
If you have been involved in a car accident in Missouri, it’s important to be aware of the law regarding car crashes. In most car accident cases, you are actually required by law to call the police and report it. The only exceptions are generally those accidents:
- where the drivers have active insurance policies
- where the property damage is less than $500
- that didn’t result in any physical injuries
We will come back to this shortly.
By Missouri traffic laws, you have 30 days to report a car accident from the moment it happened. However, be aware that you can only delay calling the police if your medical condition prevents you from doing so while you are at the scene. You are actually required to provide medical evidence that you were not able to call the police right away.
My Car Accident Was Minor and I Didn’t Suffer Any Injuries, So Why Bother?
Are you sure you didn’t suffer any injuries? Or can you tell for sure that the damage to your car is less than $500? While exceptions to the rule may, indeed, exist, it’s better to be safe than sorry in these situations.
Car accident attorneys deal with many challenging cases where the victim has experienced delayed injuries (more precisely, delayed symptoms). Some injuries that can show delayed symptoms are TBIs and internal bleeding, so it’s nothing to take lightly. A medical exam should be attended by any person who was involved in a car accident.
The Other Driver Already Admitted Fault
If you are still not convinced that police are needed at the scene, let’s get back to the initial argument: the other driver admitted fault. A verbal statement from the other driver while you were both at the scene of the accident will weigh in much less than a police report. The other driver can always change his initial statement and back his decision with hard evidence you weren’t aware of. Eyewitnesses are not always reliable either, and it’s not because they have bad intentions. Many eye-witnesses have distorted memories of such events.
A police report will not only serve as a crucial piece of hard evidence in a car accident claim, but it is also required by law in many accidents. Our strong recommendation is to call the police at the scene of any accident since not doing so can result in greater trouble than you think.
Should You Speak With a Car Accident Lawyer?
If you’ve been in a car crash and are unsure what your next steps should be, then you should get in touch with an experienced St. Louis auto accident attorney. They can help protect your legal right to compensation after an accident.
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