After 2 of more vehicles have collided, the drivers could call for the appearance of a police officer. After arriving, that particular officer would record specific information. The recorded information would become part of a police report.
Each police report summarizes the noteworthy facts about a given accident.
• It gives the date, time and location of the accident.
• It lists the names of the involved drivers and their contact information.
• It could include information on a witness.
• Some of the notes in that report describe the damage to the involved vehicles.
• Some notes make a reference to the weather conditions and the road conditions.
• Frequently, the officer sketches a diagram of the accident scene.
• If the officer had chosen to issue any citations, that, too would be mentioned.
• Sometimes the officer’s notes include an opinion, regarding who was responsible for that tragic incident.
How do insurance companies make use of a police report?
The adjuster will read it, in order to see whether or not in contains an opinion about which driver appeared to be responsible. However, the adjuster does not always accept the officer’s opinion. The adjuster arranges for completion of a separate investigation, and bases the final decision on the results of that same investigation.
How do lawyers make use of the same reports?
Personal Injury Lawyer in Halifax study them, in order to look for the ways that the facts could have been interpreted in more than one way. For instance, if the insurance has stated that the report’s contents had not laid blame on the defendant, the lawyer might point out that it also did not claim that the lawyer’s client was the responsible party.
In addition, police reports could prove useful, if there were to arise an issue concerning the amount of compensation that the client/claimant should receive for any losses. The report’s contents could offer facts about the condition of the driver or any passengers at the time of the officers’ arrival. Those facts could work to support claims about the severity of a given injury.
Why police reports cannot be used in a courtroom trial
The trial judge does not want the jury to hear any hearsay. That is a statement that tries to restate someone else’s opinion. Trial judges forbid the presentation of any testimony that contains hearsay, unless the signature of the plaintiff or the defendant has confirmed the veracity of such a statement.
Normally, no officer is present at the time of a collision. He or she comes later, and records the statements made by others. For that reason, much of what was recorded could be viewed as hearsay. Consequently, the report that contains such statements cannot be used at a trial.