Should I Call the Police for a Minor Car Accident?

Red car with dented door

Every car accident seems jarring to the people involved, but they are not all serious or severe. Some auto accidents are considered “minor” because no one appears to be seriously injured. If you’re caught in a minor car accident, do you have to let the local authorities know about it?

Whether or not you should call the police for a minor car accident depends largely on where you live. In some places, you have to notify the authorities after any car accident, regardless of the accident’s severity or who was involved. In others, you only need to call the police if the accident resulted in serious damage and harm.

Here in Kentucky, you have to call the police after a car accident if there was:

  • Any reportable injury
  • Death
  • Property damage worth at least $500

Does that mean you have to call the police after a minor car accident in Kentucky? Maybe. If your car’s bumper is crumpled but you feel fine, then you’d probably call the accident minor. Yet the cost to fix your car could easily be more than $500, especially if some internal workings were damaged, too. Or feeling a neck ache seems like a minor injury, but it is an injury all the same, so the accident might be “minor” to you but still must be reported.

When in doubt, call the police after any car accident that has caused any type of injury, soreness, or vehicular damage.

Reporting a Minor Accident Can Help

Another reason to report even minor car accidents is that the police’s presence will usually help the non-liable party in the long run. Police officers who arrive on the scene should create their own reports of what they saw and what they think happened. In these reports, you might find useful statements that show you were not liable. Also, the driver who is recorded as Party 1 is usually who the officer thinks caused the crash, even if they do not say it directly.

Furthermore, your injuries after a “minor” car accident could be more serious than you realize. A subtle neck ache can worsen to whiplash a few days later, and suddenly you have massive medical bills to worry about. You will be glad if you had called the police to get their input and report despite the accident seeming like “no big deal” at the time.

Kentucky Injury Law Center in Bowling Green assists car accident clients throughout Kentucky. If you were in a crash and you think the other driver might fight your claim, then give us a call at (270) 423-0023. Even if the accident seemed minor, we would like to hear from you to assess the situation and see if we can be of help. You can also use an online form to schedule a complimentary strategy session with our team.

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