General Question

rory's avatar

Do police precincts have certain hours?

Asked by rory (1160 points ) 2 weeks ago

I live in New York City. Recently, I was involve in a fender bender (a cab hit me as I was at a 45 degree angle pulling into a parking space). I need to get the accident report from the local precinct. I have the report number, but I need to go there in person to pick up the physical paper.

I’ve been calling the precinct repeatedly, both yesterday and today, and they aren’t picking up the phone. I’ve heard online that this particular precinct is TERRIBLE with picking up the phone, though.

It’s about an hour and twenty minutes away via subway (and my parents have the car out of state for the weekend). Should I go in today, the fourth of July, and hope they can give me the report? Or wait till tomorrow early morning and risk missing plans I have?

I’d like to get this report as soon as possible, because my insurance company needs it.

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11 Answers

jca's avatar

I am not sure how long it takes to get a report written in NYC, but my experience is that police departments take a few days to get reports together. You didn’t say what day the accident occurred. The police will be there 24/7 but they may have certain hours you can do things like pick up accident reports. If I were you, I would want to be positive, before traveling over an hour, that the report was finished and available for me to pick up before I wasted time going.

If I were you, I would call or go online and try to find out what the hours are for picking up this report and if this report is ready before I went.

rory's avatar

@jca The accident was on Monday. I called yesterday morning and they told me the report was ready, and gave me the corresponding number for it. They said I should come down and pick it up. I hung up and a split second later realized that I didn’t know their hours. I called back, but no dice.

jca's avatar

If you live in NYC, call 311.

rory's avatar

update: they FINALLY picked up the phone. Apparently they’re open to pick reports up Monday-Friday 8am-3pm. thanks :)

Darth_Algar's avatar

I would think the insurance company would get the report from the police themselves.

rory's avatar

@Darth_Algar the thing is I didn’t have any of the information for the other driver. He was a cabbie and he was fairly frightening—by the end of it, he had brought two of his friends over and they were all standing there alternately glowering and yelling at me, trying to convince me the accident had been my fault and I should really just give them cash. I figured I’d take their information from the police report.

Darth_Algar's avatar

Right. What I’m saying is shouldn’t the insurance company be getting that info themselves? I know I’ve never been in an auto accident where I’ve had to obtain the report from the police to give to the insurance company. The insurance has always dealt with the police directly.

rory's avatar

@Darth_Algar hmm. I don’t know. This is my first accident and I’m a new driver, so I don’t really know the procedure for these things. I have Geico.

I think the police might require a person involved in the accident to get the report? Because they told me that I had to bring an ID to come pick it up.

jca's avatar

The insurance company can and will get the report from the police themselves, but you’re talking about an overworked insurance worker who is not personally invested in how quickly you get your money. If the insured (in this case the OP @rory) wants his money expedited, the more he can do on behalf of his claim, the better. I have been involved in accidents where I’ve gone to get the police report myself, and that way, I like it better, too because then I can see the details on it, I can keep a copy of it, AND I know that I have done all I can to expedite the matter, so the insurance company has what they need (and no excuses) to get me my money asap.

hearkat's avatar

In the accidents I’ve been in, the front office to pick up the report is usually only open during regular business hours, and the report is usually available 2–3 business days after the incident.

snowberry's avatar

Wait until your next free day and go then. In the long run it’s not going to matter. It’s also not worth destroying your lovely plans over a fender bender. I had a fender bender a while ago and had to duke it out with the other insurance company. They ignored me until I called the state insurance commissioner. Those folks sent the other insurance company a letter on my behalf, and within a few days I got my check. But it took 6 weeks of arguing before I sent my letter.

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