Talking to Police After a Traffic Accident
Use caution when talking to authorities after a car accident
After a traffic accident, the police will want to take your statement. This can create anxiety if you don’t know how much to share. While you want to be courteous, you don’t want to undercut your own claim for recovery. What you say can impact the value of any recovery you have. Make sure you don’t overshare when the police start to ask questions.
Talk When the Other Driver Is at Fault
Some accidents leave no doubt as to who is at fault. If you are at a traffic light and hit from behind, or another driver hits you when he or she runs a red light, fault should be clear. Telling the police officer what happened will help you move the process along and get the recovery you deserve.
Don’t Admit Mistakes
What if you aren’t as sure about fault? This is where it gets a little trickier. You don’t ever want to lie to a police officer. Still, talking about what you could have done differently can hurt your case down the road. The police report is an official record that can be used in court, so be careful not to admit mistakes you made. Instead, focus on the impact, road conditions, and basic facts about what happened.
Your stress level will be high, and you may be frustrated over injuries and time lost in your day. In this situation, it can be easy to overreact and yell at the police officer asking you questions. Make a focused effort to breathe, remain calm, and show respect to the officer taking your statement. You don’t want him or her to see you at your worst when he or she is interpreting the facts of the accident.
Giving a police statement is always stressful. If you have been in an accident, keep calm and be respectful, but don’t share too much that could hurt you later. If you’ve been in an accident and need legal representation, contact Eisenberg Law Offices online at https://www.eisenberglaw.org/contact-us/ or at (608)256-8356.