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Illinois Car Accident Reporting Basics

Whether you're in the Windy City or another well-trafficked area of the Prairie State of Illinois, you always have to be careful on the roadway in order to avoid automobile accidents. But if you get into a car crash, you'll need to know whether you should file a car crash report in Illinois. Under state law, a car accident report must be filed if the incident causes death or bodily injury, or results in more than $1,500 in property damage. The report must be filed with the Illinois Department of Transportation (DOT) no later than 10 days after the accident. If you don't file a report when required, then you may also face penalties such as fines, jail time, or having your driver's license suspended.

Illinois Car Accident Report Overview

The following table lists information about automobile accident reporting under Illinois state law, including how to file a car crash report in Illinois.

State Statutes

Illinois Statute Chapter 625 Vehicles § 5/11-406

When to Report:

You must report an automobile accident to the Illinois DOT if any of the following apply:

  • Death or bodily injury; or
  • Property damage more than $1,500

How to File a Car Crash Report in Illinois:

To file a car crash report with the Illinois DOT, which must be done 10 days after the accident, you, your insurance agent, the owner of the vehicle or your legal representative must complete the Motorist Crash Report (which can also be done online) and submit it to the DOT. To fill out the Motorist Crash Report, you will need to supply or gather the following information:

  • Place and time of accident
  • The name, address, and date of birth of all motorists involved in the accident
  • The driver license information (State of license, license number) of all motorists involved in the accident
  • The driver's license plate number and state of all motorists involved in the accident
  • The name and address of all policy holders and the name of their insurance
  • The name and address of all registered automobile owners of automobiles involved in the accident
  • An explanation of what happened during the automobile accident

Note: State laws are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts (including federal decisions), ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

Additional Reporting to Law Enforcement in Illinois

Many towns in Illinois require law enforcement officers to make an appearance on accident scenes. However, if a law enforcement officer doesn't visit the scene of the accident, you need to file a report -- separate from the report you file with the Illinois DOT -- with the local Illinois police department, sheriff's office, or Illinois State Police office as soon as possible. If you are not able to file this report due to an injury, and you had a passenger, the passenger may file it for you.

Do Not Leave an Accident Scene

You should not leave the scene of an accident, especially if it results in bodily injury or death, or property damage over $1,500. Your presence at the accident scene is not only necessary to administer help to people who may be potentially injured, but it is also required so that the authorities can take your statement and note what happened during the accident. Moreover, if you leave an accident scene in Illinois, you may be fined up to $25,000, have to serve three years in jail, or have your driving privileges revoked or suspended.

Research the Law

Questions about Your Illinois Car Accident? Get an Attorney's Help

If you still have questions on whether you need to report an automobile accident in Illinois or on how to file a car crash report in Illinois, then you can contact a local Illinois car accident attorney in your area. Get started by finding out more about your claim today.

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