Get help with car accidents

How can Legal Aid WA help?

Our Civil Law Division may be able to provide legal advice on motor car property damage matters, including making or responding to claims with other drivers or through insurers. This is normally not a matter where you can get a grant of aid for a lawyer to help run your case at court. 

Contact us

Call the Infoline or contact your nearest Legal Aid WA office to find out what help we can give for your situation. If we can’t help, we may be able to refer you to someone else who can.

    What do I have to do after a car accident?

    If you are a driver in an accident where anyone is hurt or property is damaged, you must stop immediately. Property includes motor vehicles, houses, fences, gardens, bikes and personal belongings.

    You must give:

    • your name and address, and
    • if you were driving someone else's car, the name and address of the car's owner (if you know that information)

      to anyone who has been injured or whose property has been damaged, or to a police officer at the scene. If the person who was injured or whose property was damaged is not able to take the details, you must give them to anyone representing them.

    You must assist anyone who has been injured. If necessary, this may include getting medical help.

    What information do I need to get at the scene of the accident?

    If possible, write down the following:

    • the names, addresses and insurance details of any other drivers involved
    • the make, colour, model and registration number of any other car involved
    • the names, addresses and phone numbers of any witnesses to the accident
    • notes of your conversations with other people at the scene
    • a sketch of the scene including the street names and suburb
    • time and date of the accident, road and weather conditions.

    If you have a camera, you can take photos of the property damage at the scene.

    You should not admit that the accident was your fault, or offer to pay the cost of any damage, before getting legal advice.

    Do I have to report the accident to the police?

    You must report the accident to the officer in charge of a police station immediately if:

    • anyone was hurt, or
    • if the property damage is likely to cost more than $3,000 to repair.

    You can report the crash to the police if they attend the accident, at a police station or online.

    In some cases, you can be charged with a criminal offence if you do not report an accident.  

    Do I have to inform my insurer about the accident?

    Most insurance policies require you to report the accident to your insurer as soon as possible, even if you do not intend to make a claim. Someone may try to make a claim against you, or you may decide to make a claim later on. 

    If you did not tell the insurer at the time of the accident, they may refuse your claim.  

     

    Where else can I get help?

     

    Reviewed: 7 November 2018

    Have you been in a car crash?

    The Car Crash self-help guide can help you deal with damage to cars and property after an accident.

    Disclaimer

    The information displayed on this page is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. If you have a legal problem, you should see a lawyer. Legal Aid Western Australia aims to provide information that is accurate, however does not accept responsibility for any errors or omissions in the information provided on this page or incorporated into it by reference.