You’re legally required to make a police report in Texas if you’re involved in a car accident and someone is injured or killed. You’re also required to make a report if either party sustained more than $1,000 in property damage. If you’re uncertain about whether or not a report is required, the safest choice is to call the police. In addition to fulfilling your legal obligation, reporting your San Antonio car accident can help you if you decide to seek compensation later.
Of course, to make use of your San Antonio accident report, you’ll need to obtain a copy. Many people skip that step, in part because they don’t know how to get the report. Fortunately, the San Antonio Police Department (SAPD) provides a simple process for requesting a copy of your motor vehicle accident report. You even have multiple options.
Here’s what you need to know to get a copy of your car accident report.
Requesting A San Antonio Accident Report
You can request a copy of your San Antonio motor vehicle accident report in three ways: in-person, online, or by mail.
Who Can Request a Car Accident Report in Texas?
Anyone can request a car accident report in Texas. However, only certain people and institutions are entitled to a complete copy of the report. Others will be issued a redacted copy of the report, which will exclude certain personal details.
To obtain the full report, you generally must be:
- A driver or other person who was involved in the accident, or their authorized representative.
- The employer, parent, or legal guardian of a driver who was involved in the accident.
The owner of a vehicle or other property that was damaged in the accident
- The person who has established financial responsibility for a vehicle involved in the accident, or someone providing claims or underwriting services to such person.
- An insurance company providing coverage for a person or vehicle involved in the accident, or someone providing claims or underwriting services to such company
- A member of the media (with certain qualifications).
- A person or entity with a possible legal claim relating to a fatality resulting from the accident.
How to Request the Report
1. Pick Up a Redacted Report
In San Antonio, you can request the report in person by visiting the San Antonio Police Department at 315 S. Santa Rosa between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. There is a small fee.
The report is typically available five days after the accident. However, you will likely only be able to receive a copy of the publicly-available report. Depending on the purpose, you may need the unredacted report, which you can request by mail or online.
2. Order a Complete Report by Mail
To order the report by mail, print out the request form and mail it to the San Antonio Police Department Records Office at 315 S. Santa Rosa, San Antonio, TX 78207. Be sure to include a self-addressed, stamped envelope and the appropriate fee. As of this writing, the fee for a crash report is $6. To ensure prompt processing, check the fee schedule for the most up-to-date information before ordering.
3. Purchase a Complete Report Online
You may purchase your crash report online. It may take up to 14 days for the report to be available through the online system. You can search for the report using a variety of types of information, such as the name of a person involved in the accident, a license plate number, or a Case ID number. You’ll also have the opportunity to add details. For instance, if the driver has a common name, you can narrow the list by adding the location of the accident or other information.
You won’t be able to view the report online, but you can identify the record and buy a copy. There is a small surcharge in addition to the $6 fee when you purchase online.
How a San Antonio Car Accident Attorney Can Help
If you’ve been injured in a car accident that was somebody else’s fault and want to pursue compensation, you’ll have to gather a lot of information. The crash report prepared by San Antonio police is just one of those items. As your authorized representative, a San Antonio car accident lawyer can gather evidence on your behalf, including the accident report. The sooner you retain an attorney, the less legwork you may have to do on your own.
At the Law Offices of George Salinas, we’re dedicated to fighting for the rights of people who have been injured in car accidents or through other types of negligence. We know how important it is for you to have accurate information as early as possible. So, we offer free consultations to injury victims in and around San Antonio. You can schedule yours right now by calling 210-225-0909 or filling out our contact form or clicking in the lower right corner of this page to chat.
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