Do I Need to Report a Car Accident to Police in CO?


If you are involved in a car accident, one of the most important steps you must take to protect your rights and best interests in an auto insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit is to call the police to the scene of the crash. However, it is not uncommon for the other driver to try to convince you to not let law enforcement officials get involved or even offer you cash on the spot and handle the matter without reporting the accident entirely. 

Under Colorado law, you are legally required to call the police when a collision involves an injury, an intoxicated driver, damage to public property, or a fleeing motorist (i.e., hit and run). Additionally, you must file an accident report for any crash online to the Colorado DMV – whether it’s a minor fender bender or a serious multi-vehicle accident. 

When the police arrive, officers will investigate the accident, gather evidence, ask questions to all parties involves and witnesses, seek immediate medical attention for anyone who needs it, test someone for suspected DUI, and determine who is at fault. If there is an injury, death, property damage worth at least $1,000, or an insured driver, an officer will file a police report. 

The police report is one of the most important pieces of evidence in a car accident case. If you decide to file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver, the information contained in the police report can be used to prove your claim. 

For instance, if the officer at the scene issued the other driver a speeding ticket or noticed that he/she appeared impaired at the time of the accident, that information could be used to show the other driver’s negligence. If the other driver admitted fault for the crash at the scene but then changed his/her story later during the legal process, the police report can be extremely helpful. 

If you or a loved one has recently been injured in a car accident in Arapahoe County, contact the Law Office of Joseph A. Lazzara, P.C. today at (720) 809-8262 for a free consultation. Thousands of cases successfully handled throughout Colorado!