What happens if I don’t report a car accident that I was in?

UPDATED: Oct 11, 2014

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What happens if I don’t report a car accident that I was in?

I was involved in a car accident earlier this week. The other driver was clearly at-fault and her insurance company has accepted liability. We didn’t call the police at the time (I was too shaken up to think about much beyond getting her insurance info) but I understand it’s a requirement. It doesn’t look like I can just do it online, as the damage to my car is more than $1,000. What happens if I don’t report it? Do I have to go to a police station to do it? If I do report it now, will I be penalized in any way, even though I’m the person who was the “victim”?

Asked on October 11, 2014 under Accident Law, Colorado


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Not reporting the accident is generally considered a crime in all jurisdictions.  Reporting it late could have issues with your insurance company because it violates your policy to not report it. But I do not think that filing a report at the police station at this point in time can hurt you.  But please if this ever happens again call the police to the scene.  Good luck.

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