FAQs accident reports

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

Documents provided by the Australian Federal Police (AFP) ACT Policing, are created by the AFP, therefore, as the authors of this documentation they are the owners of this documentation. AFP documents are covered by a legal disclaimer prohibiting the dissemination of AFP documents without prior authorisation from the AFP.

To request information documents there must be a valid lawful purpose for this documentation, such as civil action, insurance claims etc. Documents cannot be released for personal use, filing purposes or any other use that does not fall within a lawful function. Documentation is provided for that sole purpose and is not to be disseminated to a third party for any other purpose other than that for which it was originally disclosed. This includes your client if you are an organisation requesting documents on their behalf.

Documents are requested and released in accordance with the Privacy Act, specifically Australian Privacy Principle 6.2(c) and permitted general situation number 4. Conditions detailed by this Act also limit the use and disclosure of the information provided and prohibit the dissemination of the information to a third party other than for the use in which is originally intended.

To ensure the privacy of every individual involved in the incident is maintained, it is recommended that insurance companies or legal practitioners, request the document/s on behalf of their clients. This is to ensure that representatives receive the necessary information for a claim to be processed.

Consideration will not be given to a request being processed for an individual, unless evidentiary documentation is provided to support legal proceedings or there are other mitigating circumstances.

Documents contain personal information of other individuals therefore to maintain the privacy and safety of every individual involved, strict guidelines are in place to protect everyone. This avoids putting individuals and members of our community at risk particularly where there are situations of hostility between parties, criminal offences and liability issues.

If a request is processed for an individual, the individual’s representative cannot request an additional copy of a document/s, unless there are mitigating circumstances.

Can I report incidents via the Accident Records email?

No. To report minor collisions please refer to the section on reporting a motor vehicle collision.

For other matters such as lost property, thefts, stolen motor vehicles, please contact your nearest police station or call 131 444. 

How can I request a copy of a police report?

You can ONLY request documents by completing the online application form. Please read this form carefully when completing. The online application form allows Accident Records to release documents under the relevant guidelines used by this area.

Requests made under the Freedom of Information Act (FOI Act) should be directed to the Government Relations, Information Access (FOI) Team using the FOI application form.

Important: ACT Policing Accident Records and ACT Policing Information Access Team cannot process requests under the Freedom of Information Act (FOI Act).

What information can be provided by Accident Records?

ACT Policing can only provide documents for incidents that occur within the Australian Capital Territory (ACT), that were attended by ACT Policing or that are recorded on the Australian Federal Police (AFP) system. Incidents that occur within an Australian airport and at Jervis Bay may also be available.

For incidents that occur in any other State or Territory jurisdiction, you will need to contact the relevant State or Territory Police, where the incident occurred. The AFP does not have access to other Police systems to be able to search these.

Information can only be released where there is a relevant purpose for the information, such as pursuing insurance claims or civil disputes. It should be noted that applications are assessed on a case by case basis.

Definition of documents available from Accident Records

Accident Records only provide documents for incidents that are property related matters such as motor vehicle accidents, lost property, stolen motor vehicles, thefts, burglaries, fire/fire damage, property damage etc.

Information Access (ACT Policing) can only provide documents for incidents that relate to assault, sexual assault, family violence, neighbourhood disputes, and child welfare.

If documents are required for court purposes, consideration should be given to obtaining a subpoena from the court handling the matter as an alternative method.

A subpoena for production of documents should be directed to:

ACT Policing Information Access Team
GPO Box 401
Canberra ACT 2601

What information do I receive?

You will be provided with a copy of the police report relating to the incident. You may also be provided with supporting documents such as property details. This may vary depending on the case.

When ‘self-reported’ accident/crash reports are requested, you can only be provided the documents that are located. Unfortunately if one or more parties involved in the incident have not submitted an accident report (online report) you cannot be provided with their details.

Images may also be requested where available and upon payment of the required fee. For information regarding fees please see the section relating to payments/fees.

Please contact ACT Policing Accident Records for further information regarding special requests, such as images.

What information do I have to include in my application form?

The application form has required fields that must be completed in order to proceed with the application.

You will be required to provide the following information in your application form to ensure that Accident Records can locate and confirm the relevant incident is located.

  • Incident type
  • Purpose for the documents
  • Date of incident
  • Incident location – street/s and suburb
  • First and surname of all drivers and/or victims involved
  • Registration numbers of any vehicles involved
  • A police reference number
  • Return address for the report to be posted.

For organisations (Law firms and/or Insurance companies or their representatives):

If your client is not a driver or victim in the incident, please identify how your client relates to the matter. For example if your client is the owner of property damaged or a passenger in a vehicle, etc. This information can be provided in the “other relevant details” section along with your reference number.

Providing this information assists in confirming the correct incident report is located and documents can be provided to you.

How much do I have to pay and what payment methods are available?

Fees are regulated through provisions of the Australian Federal Police Regulations 1979, Schedule 2 (fees). Please view the following to assist you in determining which fee applies to you. This is a guide only.

Please Note: the required fee is per report.

  • A motor vehicle accident report resulting in injury or death is $26.00. This is where there are serious injuries, a person as died as a result and/or someone is taken to hospital via ambulance from the scene of the collision.
  • A motor vehicle accident report without injury is $15.00. This would include copies of self-reported accident reports (online reports).
  • Information access reports that involve property damage, fires, thefts, burglaries, stolen motor vehicles or other matters involving a criminal occurrence is $37.00.
  • Lost Property reports are $19.00.
  • The fee for photos is $19.00, per image. (A special application will need to be made, to do this contact Accident Records).

Payment Methods:

Credit card payment via the online application form is the only form of payment available from the 5 September 2016.

Payments will include a small credit card surcharge (you will be advised of the surcharge amount prior to completing your payment).

* Accident Records is unable to accept any other form of payment.

How long does my application take?

The processing time for a routine request, is approximately 30 working days from ‘the next working day’, after the day the request is received by Accident Records. Please be aware processing times may vary particularly when investigations are not finalised, there is a significant number of requests or there are court proceedings.

Can I request information documents on behalf of another individual or client?

Insurance companies or legal representatives can request information on behalf of their client. An authority from your client is not always necessary as long as a claim number or reference number is provided.

A parent or Guardian may also request information on behalf of an individual if they are under the age of 18 or are incapacitated. Please state in the “Other relevant details” section of the application form, the reason the request is being completed on behalf of another person.

Why was my application returned?

Your application may have been returned to you, due to the case not being finalised. This may indicate that enquiries are continuing or the case has not been completed (often as court proceedings are ongoing). Until the case is finalised by the case officer, documents cannot be released. This can cause significant delays in you receiving the documents you have requested.

If your application is returned for this reason, you will need to email Accident Records to enquire whether the matter is finalised before you re-submit your application form. Please allow some time for this to happen before emailing.

If your application is returned due to being incomplete, you will need to check the covering letter for the reasons, correct the application and re-submit.

What happens when my application is returned?

The covering letter will advise you as to why your application has been returned. A refund will be credited to the credit card in which the payment was used to make the payment with, as the payment cannot be retained.

You may need to re-submit your application at a later date, however this will be clearly outlined in the covering letter. If you are required to re-submit your application you will need to make your payment at that time.

Can I alter or change information in my accident or incident report?

You cannot change, alter or add information via Accident Records to any report. If your report was completed by an ACT Police Officer, you will need to contact that officer directly.

You cannot change, alter or add information to online crash reports (self-reported accident reports). If you have made a mistake or you forgot to include information, you will need to contact Transport Canberra and City Services (TCCS) regarding the report. Alternatively, you can complete another report providing all the correct information, making a note of the previous reports reference number and the error you made.

You can find contact details on the Access Canberra website

What is the online reporting system and how is it different to a report completed by a police officer?

The online reporting system has been designed to replace the paper based crash reports you previously completed at a police station. This means you do not have to physically attend a police station to report minor collisions.

Police attendance is only required when there are serious injuries involved with an accident or there is disruption to traffic due to vehicles that are unable to be moved and/or debris is covering the roadway.

 

 

 

 

 

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