A police report, known in California as a collision report when it involves a car accident, is important documentation of just about any personal injury claim based on an accident, especially a car accident. Napa police reports are no exception.
Obviously, a favorable police report is good news for your claim. If the report does not favor you, however, you are still going to need a copy, because the other side will hang you with it if they can. Fortunately, there are ways that you can mitigate the effect of an unfavorable police report.
Favorable or unfavorable, though, your attorney is going to need a copy.
How to Obtain City of Napa Police Reports
You can request a City of Napa police report in the following two ways.
You can mail your crash report request to the Napa office of the California Highway Patrol (CHP). The address is 975 Golden Gate Drive, Napa, CA 94558. Use the online search tool in case the address has changed. You can also call the Napa CHP at 707-253-4906.
Complete CHP 190 by filling in basic information about the accident. This form will ask you the date, time, location and parties to the accident, as well as other basic information. There is a fee of $10 for most collision reports, plus a fee of $5 if photographs are available.
You can print Form CHP-190, fill it out, and present it personally to the Napa California HIghway Patrol office along with the applicable fee.
Either way, you will have to qualify as a “party of interest” in the crash. That means you were a driver, a passenger, a vehicle owner, a parent/guardian of an involved minor, or an attorney or insurance company representative of another involved party. You can prove this by attaching or presenting a copy of your driver’s license or by having your signature on Form CHP-190 notarized.
What Is Contained in a Napa Police Report?
A Napa, California police report typically contains the following information:
- The date, time, and location of the accident;
- Weather and traffic conditions;
- Road conditions;
- The names, contact information, insurance information, and vehicle information for all directly involved parties;
- Names and contact information of eyewitnesses;
- Information about damage to the vehicles;
- Statements from involved parties;
- Witness statements;
- Any citations issued; and
- The officer’s preliminary determination of fault.
This list is not necessarily exhaustive. A Napa police report may contain other relevant information as well.
Is a City of Napa Police Report Admissible as Evidence in Court?
A police report is not admissible in court in California, because it is considered inadmissible hearsay. Instead, the court will want to bring in the police officer or other party who made the report as a witness. However, a police report can still help your attorney organize and negotiate your claim.
Act Quickly to Maximize your Chances of Winning
Napa police reports help people win personal injury claims. Wells Call Injury Lawyers do too. In fact, we have done exactly that, thousands of times. Call us at 707-267-7380, or simply fill out our online contact form for a free consultation.
Our offices are located in Napa, Fairfield, Vallejo, Vacaville, Woodland, and Richmond.