Oregon is a fault car accident state, meaning that drivers who are responsible for collisions must pay for their victims’ damages, whether the collision involved a car-to-car accident or pedestrian accident. If you are injured due to someone else’s negligence, you can file an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver. To support your claim and establish the other driver’s liability, you will need to gather several pieces of evidence—including your traffic accident report.
Under Oregon law, you must file an Oregon Traffic Accident and Insurance Report with the Oregon Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) if your collision resulted in any of the following factors.
Every driver involved in the crash must file a traffic accident report within 72 hours of the collision. Failure to comply with this law can result in serious penalties, including license suspension. You must file a traffic accident report regardless of whether law enforcement responded to the accident and created a police report.
The DMV is unable to provide you with a copy of your accident report after you submit it. However, since the traffic accident report is a document that you fill out yourself, you can save a copy of it for your records before submission.
Unlike a traffic accident report, you have the right to obtain the police report for your accident directly from the responding police department. The procedure for obtaining a police report varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction.
For example, if you are injured in a Portland car accident, you will need to contact the Portland Police Records Division. You will need to pay a small fee and submit a record request online, over the phone, or by mail to obtain your police report.
To prove your right to compensation after an Oregon car accident, you will need to prove that the other driver was at fault for the accident. You will need to prove that the driver owed you a duty of care, breached that duty and that his or her breach of duty caused your collision. Your traffic accident and police reports will aid you in your claim.
For example, say that you are in an accident with a driver who ran a red light and collided with your vehicle. You sustain thousands of dollars worth of damages and serious broken bones. An officer responds to the scene and performs a sobriety test on the other driver, determining that he or she is under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of the accident.
In this situation, your traffic accident report will include important details such as the other driver’s contact and insurance information, a description of the crash, and the injuries or damages you sustained. You can use this document to guide you through the claims process. The police report will include the officer’s assessment of how the accident occurred, which you can use to prove the other driver’s liability.
If you are involved in a car accident in Oregon, it is important to speak to a lawyer as soon as possible. Navigating the claims process can be difficult after a recent injury, and you may be unsure of the steps you need to take to secure maximum compensation. Contact a Portland car accident lawyer for a free consultation as soon as possible to discuss your legal options.