How To File A Police Report
If you are involved in an accident, you may need to call the police and file a police report. In most states, if an accident results in death or injury or property damage exceeds a certain threshold then by law you are required to call the police. That threshold can vary depending on whether or not the motorists involved in the accident are insured. In Illinois, for example, the property damage threshold at which police must be called to an accident is usually $1,500. However, if any driver involved in the crash is uninsured then that threshold is just $500.
Even if you think your accident doesnt meet the minimum threshold, it is usually still a good idea to file a police report. Thats because a police report is an official account of the accident and it can have a huge impact on your insurance claim. Remember that even if you call the police and the police dont come to the accident scene you can still visit the police department later and file a report there. Some police departments, such as the Los Angeles Police Department, even allow you to file police reports online so long as it relates to a non-emergency incident.
Step : Make Sure Your Occurrence Can Be Reported Online
Use the information below to see if you can use this system. If your occurrence qualifies for online reporting, proceed to the next step. If your occurrence does not qualify for online reporting, it cannot be accepted by the officer managing online reporting. These occurrences require contact with a local OPP officer for investigation. Please call the OPP toll-free at 1-888-310-1122 to file a report. Links to external websites including those with video, digital images or documents that are not supported by this application cannot be managed through this online reporting service. Please include a narrative description of the occurrence if you will be filing an online report.
How To Use The Citizens Online Reporting Tool
- COVID NOTICE: Filing a Police Report During Coronavirus
At this time, the online police reporting application may only be completed in English. If you need to file a police report in any other language, please call 3-1-1 or 9-1-1, instead. Interpreters are available to assist. If this is an EMERGENCY, CALL 9-1-1 IMMEDIATELY
Recommended Reading: How To Get A Police Report For Identity Theft
What Is A Police Report
People file a police report with law enforcement for a wide variety of reasons such as domestic disputes, traffic accidents, burglaries, and home invasions, fraud, theft, stalking, violence, and many other reasons. To file a report, citizens usually begin by calling 911, or their local police departments non-emergency line, to report the incident.
Once a citizen reports an incident, dispatchers assign it to local officers in the area. The police officers travel to the appropriate location via car, motorcycle, or other police vehicles. Then, the officers evaluate the situation, make observations, interview witnesses, record data, and complete forms and reports required by their local police department.
Police officers also initiate the filing of a report to record the data and gather the details associated with criminal and civil incidents such as car accidents, burglaries, assaults, and robberies, just to name a few.
Officers gather and record a great deal of information and data on a police report. This is to help ensure thorough and accurate investigations and to support criminal proceedings if they become necessary. Also, background verification services may use them in background checks. The information contained in the typical police report may vary from county to county, but most capture very similar information.
How To Obtain A Police Report
This article was co-authored by Saul Jaeger, MS. Saul Jaeger is a Police Officer and Captain of the Mountain View, California Police Department . Saul has over 17 years of experience as a patrol officer, field training officer, traffic officer, detective, hostage negotiator, and as the traffic units sergeant and Public Information Officer for the MVPD. At the MVPD, in addition to commanding the Field Operations Division, Saul has also led the Communications Center and the Crisis Negotiation Team. He earned an MS in Emergency Services Management from the California State University, Long Beach in 2008 and a BS in Administration of Justice from the University of Phoenix in 2006. He also earned a Corporate Innovation LEAD Certificate from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business in 2018. This article has been viewed 630,245 times.
A police report is a document police officers create after an arrest, accident, or investigation. It explains what happened, details evidence, and provides witness statements and other details. Because these reports are often used in court appearances, settlements, and insurance investigations, having a copy might be very useful for you. Whether they ask you to submit your request in person, via mail, or online, all police departments will provide you with a copy of your police report.
You May Like: What Do You Need To Join The Police Academy
Submit Your Car Accident Report To Dmv
Most states require submitting an accident report to the DMV. Oregon residents, for example, must file these forms within 72 hours of the accident, provided there’s substantial damage and/or serious injury involved. California’s DMV requires something similar, but within 10 days for any accident resulting in death, injury , and/or property damage of $750 or more.
Inquire with your DMV if you’re unsure this requirement applies to you. Failing to comply could result in the loss of driving privileges. Or worse. In New Hampshire failing to submit a car accident report involving death or personal injury is considered a felony.
Car wrecks are traumatic enough. Don’t suffer additional penalties from ignorance of the law. Be certain. Call your DMV for its car accident policies.
Have you ever ordered a traffic accident report? Which agency provided it, and how much did you have to pay?
Reports You Can Submit Online
- Theft from vehicle no limit on value of property
- Theft of property no limit on value of property
- Theft of credit or debit card – regardless of fraudulent use.
- Mischief to vehicle such as vandalism, unless there is evidence of a collision such as paint transfer
- Mischief to property such as vandalism
- Lost property with the exception of government-issued ID such as passports. Please call your local district office to report lost government issued documents.
- Attempted stolen vehicle regardless of damage value
- Break & enter an unlocked premise Entry gained by unknown persons to detached garages, secure parkades, vehicle parkades, porches, sheds, storage lockers and laundry rooms. If entry occurs by forced or kicked indoor, or lock cut then report should be reported to 403-266-1234.
- Theft from a parkade or vehicle parked in a parkade only if no forced entry, otherwise call 403-266-1234.
- Theft of mail including deliveries from postal services such as UPS.
Filing a false police report is a crime.
Note: Please turn off your pop-up blocking software before filing the report.
You May Like: How To Be A Police Officer In Massachusetts
Why Police Reports Matter
Police reports are public records and in some states they may be viewable by just about anybody. Usually there are restrictions on how those records can be used, particularly by employers, landlords, and financial institutions. As already mentioned, police reports are particularly usefuland they may even be necessarywhen filing a claim with your insurer. The contents of a police report are important, so you need to make sure that any police report pertaining to you is accurate and does not cast you in an unnecessarily bad light.
Before You File A Police Report Online
Filing a false police report is a crime.
Before filing a police report online you must verify you meet the criteria listed below:
- Incident happened in Unincorporated Hillsborough County
- These city limits are NOT unincorporated Hillsborough County:
- Plant City
How To Obtain A Traffic Accident Report
Join 1,972,984 Americans who searched DMV.orgfor car insurance rates:
A police report contains the facts and circumstances behind an auto accident. Car damage, passenger and driver injuries, witness names – it’s all there.
Should the accident become a legal matter, the report serves as your paper truth, making it a must read for you, your traffic attorney, and your car insurance agent.
Upon Completion Of This Report Process You Will:
- See the words: “Your online police report has been submitted”.
- You will then immediately receive a temporary police report file number and an email informing you that we have received your report and that it is pending review. A temporary file number will appear in this format: T11000999. Temporary file numbers cannot be used for insurance purposes.
- If you do not receive an email with a temporary file number, please check your Spam or Junk-Email folder.
- A police officer will review your report and either Approve, Reject or request additional follow-up information from you. You will be advised via email of the status of your report. Do not reply via email to any of these automated messages as these accounts are not monitored. Follow the directions provided on how to respond regarding your report.
- Once your report is approved, you will receive a permanent report number – this number appears in this format: 11-123456.
- Be able to print a copy of the police report to keep for your records only. This copy cannot be used for insurance purposes.
Recommended Reading: Can I File A Police Report Online For Identity Theft
Filing A Police Report Online
This system allows you to submit a report from your computer or mobile device without going to an OPP detachment. All submissions will be sent directly to the OPP and reviewed by an officer. You may be contacted to provide more information. You must have a valid e-mail address in order to submit a report.
To file a report online, please follow the simple steps below:
Get A Copy Of Your Police Records
You have the right to ask for a copy of records the police have about you. This is called a subject access request.
You might need a subject access request if you move to another country.
A subject access request has records from:
- police forces in England, Wales, Northern Ireland, Jersey and the Isle of Man
- the British Transport Police
Also Check: Can You Track Police Cars
City Of Plantation Florida
Welcome to the Plantation Police Department Citizens Online Police Reporting System. To further serve our citizens, we offer this website as one manner to easily provide important information to the Plantation Police Department via computer.
If this is an Emergency please call 911. A police officer will not be dispatched to assist you after you submit a Citizens Online Police Report. Using this system, you can submit information about a non-emergency police matter.
Please Note: The State of Florida has a broad public records law. All records of the Plantation Police Department are open for public inspection and copying, subject to certain statutory exemptions. If you do not want your personal information released in response to a public records request, do not use this Citizens Online Police Report system. See our Citizens Online Police Reporting Frequently Asked Questions for more information.
Please confirm the following to determine if Online Citizen Police Report filing is right for you:
If you can answer yes to all of the above, you are ready to file your Online Incident Report. If you answered no to any of these questions, please review our Citizens Online Police Reporting Frequently Asked Questions for more information.
After submitting your Online Incident Report, you will:
All incidents filed using the Citizens Online Police Reporting System will be reviewed. A Plantation Police Department official will only contact you if more information is needed from you.
Will My Case Be Investigated
- Due to the nature of the reports filed – they have no known suspects or information to follow up on – we won’t be able to investigate most cases.
- All cases filed through the online reporting system will be reviewed and will help us track crime trends and patterns.
- The reports filed online are also usually the quickest and easiest way to get a report for your insurance company.
You May Like: Can I Sue The Police For Not Investigating
What Happens After I File A Report Online
- Upon submitting your completed report online, you will see the words Your online police report has been submitted indicating your report is complete.
- You will receive an email with a temporary case number until police have reviewed the report. Check your junk email folder if you do not receive the email in your inbox.
- Once a police officer has approved the online report, you will be notified and provided a permanent case number.
- The accuracy of the information you provide in the report greatly assists Peel Regional Police Service in investigating your incident. Please ensure the report is as complete and concise as possible.
Police Department Request Form
If you cannot submit a police report request online or through the mail, then you will have to visit the police department in person and file a request there. Call beforehand since some departments only allow in-person requests on certain days. You can find your local police department here. Then you can find out about filling out a Police Department Request Form in person and how to get the information you need. Typically these police department request forms can be fulfilled that day.
A request will typically require you to provide your personal and contact information as well as details about the incident, including the type of incident, date, and who else was involved. Be aware that if the report pertains to an ongoing investigation then your request could be denied. If you are unclear about why your request was denied you should talk to an attorney.
Read Also: How To Become A Police Lieutenant
Damage/ Mischief To Property
Has someone damaged, defaced or vandalized public or private property? This may include:
- Breaking windows, mailboxes, throwing eggs, spray painting, writing or drawing on property.
- Accepted only if there are no known suspects.Please Note: If you were a victim of graffiti vandalism, paint vouchers and graffiti wipes are available for pick up at Police Headquarters.
What Type Of Information And Data Is Contained In A Police Report
The following are types of data and information that may be included in a police report. Please note that there is no universal police report. Information will vary from department to department.
- Identifying information for all parties involved in the incident, including full name, address, phone number, date of birth, social security numbers, driver license numbers
- Date of the occurrence or incident
- Location of the occurrence or incident
- The officers name and ID number
- The names of other officers who were present
- Diagrams or drawings of the scene
- The names of witnesses and their statements
- Reference number
The law enforcement case file may also contain motor vehicle information, as well as specific details of the incident and any evidence associated with the case.
Examples of police reports may include but are not limited to domestic disputes, traffic accidents, thefts, fraud, assault, burglaries, and stalking incidents. Other information that may be available includes crime surveys, crime statistics, calls for service, weather information, and traffic accident surveys.
Recommended Reading: Where To Get Police Report
How To Request Records Contained In A Major Collision File
Major Collision Bureau investigates all Motor Vehicle Collisions resulting in a fatality or serious personal injury that occur in the Region of Peel.
If you are NOTthe Involved Party to the Collision
You must provide proof of relationship to the involved party and a signed consent on behalf of the involved individual.
If the Involved Individual is Deceased
You are required to provide an authorization from the legal representative or power of attorney with supporting documents.
***Do Not Send Payment Until You Have Been Invoiced***
Please contact Martine Renwick, Information and Privacy Unit at or email at for additional assistance.
How To Request A Police Report Online
Once you have determined which police department has your police report, you should visit their website. Many police departments now allow you to request your police report online, although some may require you to print off a police report request form and mail it to them with a self-addressed stamped envelope. San Antonio, for example, allows you to submit a request for a police report online, in person, or through the mail.
Don’t Miss: Do I Need A Degree To Be A Police Officer
How To Submit An Online Report
The online civilian incident system allows you to submit a report to the police immediately and print a draft copy of the police report for free. You will be required to create an online account to file your first report. Keep your login and password for future use. Please note: It is a crime to make a false police report.
NOTICE: If your incident involves a firearm of any kind, call and an officer will be sent to investigate.
Please confirm the following to find out if the Online Citizen Police Report is right for you:
- This is not an emergency
- This incident occurred in Lexington/Fayette County, Kentucky
- You do not have any suspect information
- You are at least 18 years old
- You have a valid email address
- The crime did not involve a firearm
- The reported crime is one of the following:
a. Harassing Communications b. Fraudulent Use of a Debit/Credit Card c. Theft by Unlawful Taking d. Criminal Mischief e. Lost Property f. Larceny from Auto
If you meet the above criteria, you are ready to file your report online. Please make sure to turn off your pop-up blocking software before filing the report. If you do not meet the above criteria, call to speak with an officer.