In a Missouri car accident, it is your responsibility to report the crash to the proper authorities. You may be tempted to not report the incident, which is not only illegal, but can work against you should you want to file a suit for compensation for your damages.
Under the law for Missouri car accidents, it is required that a driver report a car accident that has caused at least $500 in property damage to the police. The police department will file an incident report that can be used as part of your Missouri car accident case.
If someone was injured or killed, it is also required by law that the accident gets reported to the authorities as soon as possible. Filing a report with the police about the Missouri car accident is considered your statement in these types of crashes. In most instances of injury or death, the police will report to the scene of the crash and file an accident report about the events of the crash.
It is also your responsibility as a driver to file a car accident report when you or the other driver does not have auto insurance. This will provide a record of the Missouri car accident and help you in proving the events of the crash should you file a lawsuit to seek a settlement.
How Do I Report a Car Accident in Missouri?
If, for any reason, the police department does not arrive at the scene of the accident to file an incident report, it is your responsibility to fill out the proper information and submit it to the authorities. You will need to send your complete your official accident report form to the Missouri Department of Revenue for processing.
Failure to submit the accident form as required by Missouri law could result in a citation and fine. It is also a good idea to have a record of the Missouri car accident events to help prove the fault of another driver should you need to file a lawsuit for compensation for injuries or property damage.
How Long Do I Have to Report a Missouri Car Accident?
While it is best to call the police immediately after your car accident in Missouri, you do have a period of time to file an official report when required. The law allows you 30 days to file the necessary form with the Missouri Department of Revenue. This is plenty of time to recall the events of the Missouri car accident and submit it to the authorities as necessary.
The sooner you file your accident report, the sooner a record of the crash occurs and helps you gain compensation. Your accident report will act as your proof of your account of the car accident in Missouri and the events surrounding the crash. This can help establish fault and will be used by your Missouri car accident lawyer as part of their investigation of the car accident.
What If I Cannot File a Report of My Missouri Car Accident?
If incapacitated due to a car accident, you have an exemption from the law for filing an accident report within 30 days. You will, however, have to submit your report as soon as you are physically able to do so following your recovery.
You will need to attach proof of your incapacitation with your report which can be obtained by a doctor showing that you were physically unable to file within the 30-day deadline.
Is It Really Necessary to File a Report of My Missouri Car Accident?
Not only is it illegal not to file a Missouri car accident report, but not having a record of your car crash can actually work against you should you need to file a claim for a settlement. Your accident report is the beginning of your car accident in Missouri as it provides the first evidence of the crash.
Your Missouri car accident report will account your version of the crash and can help to establish fault by the other driver. It can be challenging to file a lawsuit against a negligent driver if there is no official record of the Missouri car accident.
Filing an accident report is your responsibility and should be taken seriously after a car accident. You have a right to notify the police department of your Missouri car accident or a judicial official. It is your legal right also to avoid calling the police if there are no injuries or significant property damage, but you must still report the accident to the Missouri Department of Revenue.
Should I Speak to an Attorney After a Missouri Car Accident?
If you are involved in a car accident in Missouri where there are injuries or significant property damage, a lawyer can certainly help you with your case. They can help determine fault in your Missouri car accident case and negotiate with the insurance companies for compensation. This can ease the stress you are facing after the car accident and work to help pay your mounting expenses for your injuries and property damage.
If your case should need to go to court, a Missouri car accident attorney will represent you and prove that the other driver’s negligence led to your accident. This can make receiving a settlement quicker and easier as your attorney will coordinate and manage all efforts related to your situation. You can concentrate on healing your injuries and getting your back to your life without the stress of dealing with insurance companies and filing claims.
When injured because of a Missouri car accident that was the fault of another driver, you need a lawyer you can trust. The Missouri car accident attorneys at Krause & Kinsman Law Firm will advise you of your rights and walk you through the legal process. They will fight for your rights and get you the settlement award you deserve. Contact us today to set up a consultation.
Adam Krause is a personal injury, mass tort, business litigation, and employment discrimination attorney who practices in Kansas City, Missouri. He graduated from the University of Missouri Kansas City School of Law and has been practicing law for several years now. Adam Krause has made a career of taking complicated litigation and presenting it in the most elementary terms for a jury of your peers to understand. Learn more about his experience here.