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Car accident - reported to DMV or not?

Studio City, CA |

I was in a car accident 6 months ago (I'm not at fault but the person involved in the accident is trying to make it my fault). 2 days after the accident I hired an attorney as I had constant headache since the accident and I needed a medical treatment. The attorney said that he reported my car accident to DMV (again, that was 6 months ago). Yesterday I was in DMV and asked H6 (record history) and in 'Accidents' field it says 'NONE'. Does it mean that the attorney didn't report the accident? What should I do if thats the case?

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Attorney answers 12

Best Answer
Posted

Actually, the only practical reason for filing the SR1 is if the other side files one, or if you think the other party may be uninsured. The law requires you to carry ins. If you don't file the form and the other side does, the dmv will send you a letter suspending your license for not filing the form and for not proving you had ins. At that point you can file the form and proof of ins, and there will be no suspension. If no one file the SR1, dmv doesn't have record of the accident. Talk to your lawyer, but it really isn't a big deal.

Asker

Posted

I see! I'm just afraid that if this guys sues me, the fact that there was no DMV report from my side would influence my case. I don't have to worry about it ?

Posted

I recommend bringing these concerns to your attorney. He has an ethical duty to tell you the truth. There could be a number of reasons why the report hasn't appeared in the system yet. Best of luck.

The information provided is for general informational purposes only and is not intended to be legal advice. No attorney-client relationship is formed nor should any such relationship be implied. The information provided is of a general nature is not intended to substitute for the advice of an attorney.

Asker

Posted

Is there a way to find out about the situation besides talking to the attorney? I don't trust him anymore as I had several distrust issues with him in this complicated case at which I wasn't at fault at all and I'm very nervous and I don't know what to do and who to speak with?

Robert Bruce Kopelson

Robert Bruce Kopelson

Posted

You can fill out another SR1 and file it again if you want. Id be careful as you don't want it to look like you had 2 accidents.

Asker

Posted

Robert Bruce Kopelson - is there a way to officially find out if the SR1 was reported by my attorney before I file another one ? Who can give me this information besides attorney?

Posted

Consult with your lawyer. That's why you hired him/her.

Asker

Posted

I will definitely do that anyways. But what if he would say that he did report it (as he said in the very beginning) but he actually didn't because of some weird reasons that I don't understand? How will I be able to find out the truth? I'm at risk of not reporting to DMV, not him, correct? Can I get that information from DMV or somewhere else ?

Posted

Discuss your concerns with your attorney. That why you hired them in the first place.

Asker

Posted

I will definitely do that anyways. But what if he would say that he did report it (as he said in the very beginning) but he actually didn't because of some weird reasons that I don't understand? How will I be able to find out the truth? I'm at risk of not reporting to DMV, not him, correct? Can I get that information from DMV or somewhere else ?

Posted

Call your lawyer, although this isn't that big of a deal.

Posted

As a personal injury attorney, I can tell you that reporting an inciden to the DMV makes little difference in how a case is handled. The issue of "proof of insurance" usually is only important if the other party does not have insurance and one needs to file an uninsured motorist claim. With that said how do you know it was your attorney "who dropped the ball?" Is it possible the DMV failed to process the paperwork?

I would recommend that you do not get worked up over this. Contact your attorney and discuss the matter with him, there maybe a reasonable explanation. If you do not get a satisfactory answer, you are always free to change attorneys.

The information provided is for general informational purposes only and is not intended to be legal advice. I am only licensed in the State of California and I am not providing you with specific legal advice. The law changes frequently and varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. Being general in nature, the information provided may not apply to any specific factual and/or legal set of circumstances and/or the jurisdiction where you reside. No attorney-client relationship is formed nor should any such relationship be implied. The information provided is of a general nature is not intended to substitute for the advice of an attorney, especially an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction. Your question, although you may believe is simple, it is not simple. You require legal advice, please consult with a competent attorney licensed to practice in your jurisdiction.

Asker

Posted

Thanks for the info, the answer is really helpful. Another question - I don't know how to change the attorney as I spoke to two other attorneys and they wouldn't take the case because they say they would get a little money for that considering my little injuries and considering the fact that my recent attorney will take a part of that money too.

Richard Marc Katz

Richard Marc Katz

Posted

The economics of small personal injury cases sometimes make it very difficult to retain counsel, especially if liability is seriously disputed. You may wish to contact other personal injury attorneys to discuss your matter and may be able to assist you. You can also sue the other driver in small claims court. I recently posted a guide addressing small claims. I wish you the best of luck

Posted

Robert laid it out well. Avvo has a terrific "find a lawyer" tool to located a top-rated Avvo attorney with a low contingency fee. Good luck.

Licensed & have offices in PA & NJ ONLY. (Philadelphia, PA & Marlton, NJ)

Posted

You should discuss this with your lawyer. But, as you have seen from the many answers, it may not be that big a deal.

Posted

You should discuss this with your lawyer.

Posted

No one can give you a better answer right now than the person who knows all of the legal and factual issues in your case--your lawyer--give he or she the respect they deserve and allow them the first opportunity to answer your legal question about the case he or she is handling. That way there is no hard feelings or trust breach. After all we are all people and we need to know we trust each other during a case.

Posted

Ask your attorney for the letter or form that he sent to the DMV reporting the accident. If he can't produce it, call the DMV and ask them what you need to do to get back on track. It's usually an SR-22. Explain to them that your attorney told you he reported it and that you thought this aspect was taken care of. Much luck.

This is a general statement regarding law and facts and should not be construed as an attorney-client relationship or a solicitation for same.

Posted

Unfortunately DMV is not "fast" in processing SR1's (DMV accident report form). You can ask your attorney to file another one or do it yourself.

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