How Long Do You Have to Report a Car Accident?

  • Filed Under:
  • September 5th, 2017

In Kentucky, like most states, there are certain legal obligations that drivers must carry out if they’re involved in a car accident. Generally, you must report a traffic incident to police right away. Typically the local law enforcement agency will take a report. However, exceptions may apply under limited circumstances, such as parking lots or private roads. If you’ve been injured and want to pursue legal action against the responsible driver, you should always discuss your specific situation with an experienced Kentucky car accident lawyer. Here is some information on reporting these types of incidents.

How Long After an Accident Do I Have to Report It?

Duty to Report Certain Accidents

If a person is hurt or killed in a crash, Kentucky law requires the operator of a vehicle that’s involved in an accident to immediately stop and determine the extent of the casualties. That person must then give reasonable help, including making the arrangements for medical care. If the accident results in damage to a vehicle, but not personal injury, you must pull over to a safe spot to exchange contact information.

Where a driver leaves a vehicle unattended, the other driver must try to locate the owner to provide essential contact information and license details. If the vehicle’s owner is unavailable, you can leave a note with your name, address, phone number, and the registration number of your car.

Statutes of Limitations Under Kentucky Law

You should also keep in mind how long you have to report an accident for purposes of a potential lawsuit. In Kentucky, you have two years from the date of the accident, or two years from the last no-fault payment, to file a cause of action for personal injury cases that result from a car or truck accident. If a person dies as a result of an accident, that timeline resets on the date of the person’s death instead of the date of the accident. For vehicle or other property damage, the statute of limitations is two years from the date of the accident. If you don’t file within the applicable statute of limitations, your claim will be forever barred and you will be prohibited from suing for compensation.

Best Practices for Reporting a Car Accident

Keep in mind that you will likely first pursue your own insurance company to recover for your losses that are covered by Ky. no-fault benefits. You must submit a claim and provide medical and wage authorizations. You must deal with the at-fault driver’s liability insurer to recover for your damages that are not covered by Ky. no-fault. An insurer may deny your claim or make a counteroffer to your demand for compensation. The ensuing negotiations can take many weeks, or even months.

Were you injured in a car accident due to another person’s negligence?

The attorneys at Harville Law Offices, PLLC can help protect your legal interests. Our lawyers have extensive experience representing victims involved in Kentucky car accidents. We’ll take on aggressive insurance companies and bring the battle to court if necessary. For more information on reporting a car accident to authorities and insurers, please call our office at (502) 245-2333 or contact us online. We’re happy to set up a free legal consultation or answer your questions. We serve car accident victims throughout the Louisville area, including Lexington, Owensboro, Bowling Green, and throughout the surrounding region.


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