Accidents are common occurrences, and the authorities may investigate and write a report on your accident that you can obtain for your records. The location of your accident is important, as it determines who is in charge of the report.
While the NJ Parkway runs through numerous towns and cities, it does not fall under any local jurisdiction. Instead, a crash report from the Parkway would come from state authorities. You must submit a formal written request to obtain a copy of your report. This may be done online, but our attorneys can help you if you would rather make the request in a different way. When police reports are available depends on when the police complete their investigation. This might be relatively quick to very slow. More complicated crashes tend to involve lengthier investigations. Having the report is important if you plan to file an insurance claim. It can also be useful in a civil lawsuit for damages.
Speak to our NJ car accident lawyers about getting a copy of your accident report by calling Legal Care New Jersey at (732) 838-9769 and making an appointment for a free case assessment.
Where Do I get a Copy of the Police Report for an Accident on the NJ Parkway?
The police might often act as a unified force and cooperate with various departments and precincts, but they are comprised of numerous authorities and jurisdictions. In many cases, the local authorities handle accidents in whatever town or city the accident occurred. The situation is different for accidents on the Parkway because it is very long and runs through many towns, cities, and counties.
The New Jersey Parkway – more formally referred to as the Garden State Parkway – falls under the jurisdiction of state authorities. Generally, the New Jersey State Police and New Jersey Turnpike Authority are in charge of accidents on the Parkway. The Parkway runs through various towns and counties, but local authorities would not have the report.
This might cause some confusion, as local authorities might initially respond to a crash on the Parkway. You might talk to the local police before being treated for injuries at a local hospital. While various authorities could be involved, the report is ultimately drafted by and in the hands of the State Police and Transit Authority.
This usually means that you would obtain a copy of the report from the appropriate state authorities. The state provides an online portal through which people can request copies of reports from Parkway accidents. You can also submit your request through the mail to get a hard copy rather than a digital one.
How to Submit a Request for a Police Report for a NJ Parkway Accident
How you submit your request for a copy of your report may vary depending on the nature of the accident. While many accidents require submission of requests through an online portal, like the one mentioned above, fatal accidents tend to come with a few extra steps.
Reports for typical accidents may be requested online by submitting a form through the online portal. According to the New Jersey Turnpike Authority, there may be a fee of $5 for each report, and it might take about 2 weeks from the day you initially request a copy to when you obtain a copy of the report. Physical copies require you to mail a request form, and a hard copy will be returned to you.
Fatal accidents require drivers to follow a somewhat different path. If someone did not survive the accident, you must fill out forms according to the New Jersey Open Public Records Act (OPRA). Your OPRA request may only get you access to the NJTR-1 forms, which include the basic investigation report for the accident. If your accident involved additional forms and reports, speak to our team about how to get them, as you might have a more complex case.
When is a Police Report for a NJ Parkway Crash Usually Available?
While police reports are important for several reasons, they are not always available immediately. How long it takes for the authorities to get you a copy of your report depends on how your accident occurred and the extent of the investigation.
If your accident is complicated, it might take the police longer to investigate, and your accident report might not be available for a while. For example, an accident involving only two drivers will likely not take long to complete. An accident involving three, four, or more drivers will probably take longer, as the police must determine who is and is not responsible.
Additionally, the time it takes for the police to finish their investigation and complete a crash report depends on whether the accident involved any fatalities. A fatal accident is a very serious matter, and the police will take their time to collect evidence and review all the details when drafting their report. Depending on the situation, the authorities might be preparing to make an arrest, and an investigation might take time.
As mentioned before, it might take a few weeks to get you a copy of the report once it is complete. When it is ready, it is available for only 6 years after the crash.
Why Having the Police Report for Your NJ Parkway Car Accident is Important
Having the police report might help you in two important areas. First, you likely need a copy of the police report for an insurance claim. Insurance companies often want proof of the accident and your injuries before they cover any damages. Even when you file a no-fault claim with your own insurance, the insurance company will need evidence that the accident happened.
Second, the police report might be useful if you pursue further legal action and take the other driver or drivers to court. While police reports are usually not admissible themselves because they are considered hearsay, they might still contain important details that we can use to find other evidence that is admissible.
Call Our New Jersey Car Accident Attorneys for Help with Your Claims
Speak to our Jersey City, NJ car accident attorneys about obtaining a copy of your accident report by calling Legal Care New Jersey at (732) 838-9769 and scheduling a free case review.