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Do I need to report a minor car accident?

Do I need to report a minor car accident?

The majority of car accidents that occur are relatively minor “fender benders” that result in no injury and no major damage. In these circumstances, it is common to wonder whether or not you should report the accident. The answer depends on the severity of the accident and the communication between both parties.

When it comes to minor accidents, the most important thing to do is exchange contact and insurance information with the other driver. Law enforcement does not need to be involved in every minor car accident. In fact, state law only requires that an accident be reported in certain circumstances.

In the state of Georgia, you are required to report a car accident under the following scenarios:

  • The accident has resulted in a death
  • The accident has caused an injury
  • The accident caused more than $500 of property damage

Of course, there are certain accidents in which it may be in your best interest to alert the authorities of an accident, even if major damage has not occurred. If it is apparent that the other driver is being uncooperative, or if he or she does not have car insurance, a law enforcement officer can help gather this information and write a report to document the facts.

Law enforcement may also be helpful when the other driver is cooperative, but a potential good faith dispute exists between the two of you, so that he or she can provide official, neutral insight that may be helpful down the road.

Find answers to more of your legal questions on our car accidents information center.

Always Report Accidents to Insurance Company

No matter what the circumstances are, it is always important to report an accident, however minor, to your insurance provider. Many people assume that insurance rates will increase, or that it will be easier to work out the matter with the other driver, and therefore refuse to report the accident with their company. Not only is this a bad idea, but it also violates your police, which requires you to report every accident in which you are involved.

Failure to report the accident to your provider may also result in conflict later on. Even if you and the other driver seemingly agree on things at the time of the accident, he or she may discover injury or damage later on and file a claim. Your insurance provider will likely deny certain protection since you did not initially report it.

If you have any further questions or concerns about how to protect yourself from insurance conflicts, please contact our experienced team of Atlanta car accident lawyers.


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