How To Get Your Car Accident Report in Bakersfield

Hidden within the details of your Bakersfield car accident report lies crucial evidence that could make or break your case. This report, filled with more information from the scene, eyewitness accounts, and officer observations, is a goldmine of information—but only if done well.

That’s where Text Kevin Accident Attorneys steps in. Our experienced Bakersfield car accident lawyer understands these reports and knows how to leverage them to your advantage. With our guidance, here is how to get your car accident report in Bakersfield.

Table of Contents

Make an online request for your Bakersfield car accident police record

The Bakersfield Police Department (BPD) offers an online option for requesting your police record, providing a convenient way to access information without visiting the station in person.

You can quickly request a copy of a traffic accident report online through the LexisNexis portal. This service is specifically designed to access accident reports and often provides the quickest turnaround time. However, be aware that:

  • While most traffic accident reports are processed within five to seven business days, some may take up to ten business days. Investigations involving catastrophic injuries or wrongful death can take significantly longer.
  • The BPD charges a flat fee of $7 for each accident report. LexisNexis may also apply an additional processing fee for using their online service.
  • Payment for the report must be made online through the LexisNexis portal at the time of the request. They generally accept major credit and debit cards.

You can visit the records section at the Bakersfield Police Department (BPD)

If you prefer a more direct approach, visit the Bakersfield Police Department Registration Unit, 1601 Truxtun Avenue, Bakersfield. They are open to the public from 8:00 AM to 3:00 PM, Monday through Friday.

To ensure a smooth experience, come prepared with the following:

  • A government-issued photo ID, such as a driver’s license or passport, to verify your identity.
  • Relevant case information, such as the number, date of the incident, and names of involved parties, will be readily available and help the Records Section staff quickly locate your desired records.

The Records Section counter staff will guide you through the necessary steps, which typically involve filling out a request form and paying any applicable fees. The various payment forms include cash, check, or money order.

Request your car accident report by mail

If you prefer a traditional approach, you can get your Bakersfield Police Department reports through the mail. Follow these steps to ensure a smooth process:

  • Write a formal letter addressed to the Bakersfield Police Department Records Section. Clearly state your request for a specific type of report (traffic collision, crime/incident, etc.) and include the following essential details:
  • Case Number: If known, this will significantly expedite the search process.
  • Date of Incident: Provide the exact date or an estimated timeframe.
  • Names of Involved Parties: List the full names of drivers, victims, or anyone involved.
  • Your Contact Information: Include your full name, phone number, and mailing address.

Below is an example of what your written request for a report might look like:

DATE

Bakersfield Police Department

1601 Truxtun Avenue

Bakersfield, California 93301

Re:

Report Number: xxxxxxxxx

Date of Incident: xxxxxxxxx

Parties involved: xxxxxxxxx

Subject: Formal Request for Traffic Collision Report

Dear Sir or Madam,

I am writing to formally request a copy of a traffic collision report about the following incident:

  • Case Number: [If known, please provide]
  • Date of Incident: [Date of collision]
  • Location of Incident: [If known, please provide]
  • Names of Involved Parties: [List names of drivers and other involved individuals]

Enclosed with this request is a check for $7, payable to the City of Bakersfield, to cover the required processing fee. The information contained within this report is crucial for my records and potential insurance claims.

Thank you for your time and attention to this matter. If you require any additional information, please contact me at the phone number or email address provided above.

Sincerely,

[Your Signature] [Your Typed Name]

  • If you request a traffic collision report, enclose a check or money order for $7 payable to the “City of Bakersfield.” Payment is not required for crime/incident reports or other non-traffic-related records.
  • Send your request to the following address:

Bakersfield Police Department Records Section

1601 Truxtun Avenue

Bakersfield, CA 93301

Note

Mail requests may take longer to process than online or in-person methods. Allow several weeks for delivery. In your request, include any additional information that may help identify the specific report you need (e.g., incident location, type of crime).

Consider sending your request via certified mail to ensure it reaches the department and to have proof of delivery. If you have questions or need assistance, consult our car accident attorney in Bakersfield, CA.

What Happens if you don’t call the police after an accident in Bakersfield, CA

If you’ve been involved in a car accident in Bakersfield, California, failing to report an accident under specific circumstances can have serious consequences, so it’s always best to err on the side of caution and file a report regardless of the situation.

You are legally required to report your accident using an SR-1 form to the California DMV if:

  • The accident resulted in injury or death, regardless of the extent of damage.
  • The total property damage exceeds $1,000.

Even if your accident doesn’t meet these criteria, reporting it to your insurance company is still recommended. This helps protect you in case any unforeseen complications or claims arise later.

Tip

Reporting your car accident in Bakersfield, CA, immediately after an accident is crucial because the full extent of the damage or potential injuries might not be apparent. It’s easy to underestimate repair costs or overlook minor injuries that could worsen over time.

But, reporting the accident creates an official record that can protect you from liability and ensure you receive proper compensation for any damages or medical expenses. It’s wise to consult an experienced car accident lawyer in Bakersfield.

Reporting Your Bakersfield Car Accident to the DMV

You must report the accident to the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) within ten days. As mentioned above, the SR-1 Form is the official form for reporting accidents to the DMV).

Complete and submit the Traffic Accident Occurring in California (SR-1) even if the accident occurred on private property, such as a parking lot or driveway, and you believe you were not at fault.

You can easily access the SR-1 form through the following channels:

  • Online: The form is available for download on the California DMV website.
  • DMV Field Offices: Visit your local DMV office to obtain a physical copy.
  • CHP Offices: The California Highway Patrol also provides SR-1 forms.

Why Filing the SR-1 Form is Important

Filing the SR-1 form is a crucial step that:

  • Creates an Official Record: The SR-1 serves as formal documentation of the accident, which can be essential for insurance claims and legal proceedings.
  • Protects Your Rights: The report helps establish liability and ensures that all parties involved are held accountable.
  • Maintains Driving Privileges: Failing to file the SR-1 form within the 10-day window or driving without proper insurance coverage during the accident can have severe consequences, including suspending your driving privileges.

Should you report the car accident to your insurance company?

Most auto insurance policies have a clause that requires you to report any accidents, regardless of the extent of damage or injuries. This allows your insurer to initiate an investigation, assess liability, and prepare for potential claims.

While your policy may not specify an exact timeframe for reporting, acting promptly is always in your best interest. Delays raise red flags for your insurer and potentially jeopardize your coverage. Report the accident within 24 hours to demonstrate your good faith and cooperation.

What happens if you don’t report the car accident to your insurance company

Beyond your legal obligations to the DMV, reporting your Bakersfield car accident to your insurance company is equally crucial. While California law doesn’t mandate this, your insurance policy likely does.

Most insurance providers in Bakersfield require their customers to report all accidents, especially those involving injuries or property damage. This is a standard practice to protect both you and the insurance company.

Failing to report a Bakersfield car accident promptly could have unintended consequences like:

  • Your insurer might use your delay to deny coverage for damages or injuries, leaving you with unexpected financial burdens.
  • Sometimes, not reporting an accident could even cancel your insurance policy.

Besides, reporting a car accident shows good faith and allows the insurer to initiate your claim process promptly.

How your car accident report helps your claim in Bakersfield, CA

A car accident report isn’t just paperwork – it’s crucial and can significantly influence the outcome of your claim in Bakersfield. Especially in serious accidents, law enforcement conducts thorough investigations, collecting valuable details like photos, sketches, eyewitness accounts, and potential causes of the crash.

Your car accident attorney can leverage the information in the accident report to build a strong foundation for your case. The report serves as a starting point for their investigation, helping us understand the sequence of events, identify contributing factors, and determine liability.

A well-documented accident report can make a difference when dealing with insurance companies. It provides concrete evidence to support your claim, making it harder for insurers to deny or undervalue your case. This can lead to smoother settlement negotiations and a fair resolution without a lawsuit.

Pro Tip

The accident report becomes even more critical if your case proceeds to court. To win a personal injury lawsuit, you need to prove several key elements:

  • The other driver owed you a duty of care.
  • They breached that duty through their actions.
  • This breach directly caused the accident.
  • You suffered injuries and damages as a result.

The information captured in the accident report and other evidence gathered by your attorney forms a backbone for your case. It helps establish a straightforward narrative of the accident, demonstrating the other driver’s fault and the extent of your losses.

How your attorney can assist with your police report

Hiring a car accident lawyer can be invaluable, especially when understanding and using your police report. Car accident laws and insurance procedures can be complex. Your attorney will explain your rights, legal obligations, and the steps in pursuing a claim, providing clarity and peace of mind.

How your lawyer can help:

  • We offer expert guidance on your rights, responsibilities, and steps in pursuing a claim, providing clarity and peace of mind.
  • Efficient document retrieval secures the crucial police report, a document packed with details essential to your case, saving you time and effort.
  • Thorough report analysis of the police report, identifying inconsistencies, errors, or omissions that could impact your claim.
  • Thorough investigation beyond the report, gathering additional evidence, interviewing witnesses, and building a solid case to prove fault and liability.
  • Skilled negotiation with insurance companies to secure the maximum compensation you deserve.
  • Comprehensive damage assessment of all your damages, ensuring you receive fair compensation for medical bills, property damage, lost income, pain and suffering, and more.
  • Vigorous legal representation if you take your case to court and fight tirelessly to protect your rights and obtain the justice you deserve.

Injured in a Bakersfield Car Accident? We’re Here to Help.

If you or a loved one have been hurt in an accident in Bakersfield or the surrounding areas, seeking legal counsel is a crucial step toward protecting your rights and obtaining the compensation you deserve.

At Text Kevin Accident Attorneys, we understand the challenges you’re facing. Our experienced Bakersfield car accident lawyer is dedicated to helping accident victims throughout the area. We can guide you through the entire process, from reporting the accident to pursuing compensation for your injuries, medical expenses, lost wages, and other losses.

Our priority is to provide you with compassionate support and expert legal representation. You only have to pay if we win your case, so there’s no risk in seeking our help. Fill out our simple contact form today – we’re here to help you through this challenging time.

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