Collisions: FAQs

Q:   How do I get a copy of an accident report?

Insurance companies routinely obtain copies of Police Accident Reports (form MV-104A) from the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) as part of the insurance claim process. If you are seeking to obtain a copy of a Police Accident Report for your own use or at the request of your insurance company, please refer to the guidelines below:

For Collisions on the NYS Thruway:
Requests for copies of an MV-104A for collisions investigated by the New York State Police (Troop T) that occurred on the New York State Thruway (I-87 South of Albany, I-90 West of Albany & the Berkshire Spur East of Albany) and its subsidiary arterials (I-190 and Westchester County portions of both I-287 & I-95) must be made to New York State Thruway Authority. The form required (TA-W4310) to request a copy of the report is available online at
http://www.nysthruway.gov/commercial/forms/ta-w4310.pdf.

For Collisions on all Other Roads:
Requests for copies of an MV-104A for collisions investigated by the New York State Police that occurred anywhere in New York State on roads or highways other than the Thruway must be made to DMV. The form required (MV-198C) to request a copy of the report is available online at http://www.nysdmv.com/forms/mv198c.pdf.

Note: Although all Police Accident Reports completed by the New York State Police are submitted electronically and are generally available within thirty days, there are several variables that affect the time in which the report is available to the public. Consequently, some reports may be available within three weeks while others may take as long as six weeks to process.

Collisions Investigated by Other Agencies:
Police Accident Reports submitted to DMV by police departments other than the New York State Police may or may not be submitted electronically, therefore, these guidelines may not be applicable. Motorists requesting a copy of an MV-104A submitted by a police department other than the New York State Police should follow the instructions contained in paragraph above entitled, “For Collisions on all Other Roads” or contact the investigating police agency directly. Contact information for all police agencies in New York State is available online at http://www.criminaljustice.ny.gov/crimnet/ojsa/agdir/agencydr.pdf.

Civilian Reporting Requirements:
In addition, some collisions require the drivers involved to complete and submit a “Report of a Motor Vehicle Accident,” also referred to as a Civilian Accident Report (form MV-104), to DMV via U.S. Mail. The “Exchange of Information” form that is issued to motorists by State Troopers at the scene of a collision, in addition to information you personally possess about the collision, are all the information you should need to file the MV-104 with DMV, if required. Form MV-104 is available online at http://www.nysdmv.com/forms/mv104.pdf.
To determine if you are required to submit an MV-104 to DMV, please refer to the DMV guidelines below:

DMV Guidelines
If You Have an Accident
What must I do at the accident scene?
If you are in an accident, you must stop and exchange information with the involved drivers. If the accident caused property damage only, then exchange information about your driver license, insurance, and registration with the involved drivers. If a parked vehicle or other property is damaged, or if a domestic animal is injured, you must locate the owner or contact the police.

If the property damage of any person is $1,001 or more, all the involved drivers must file form MV-104 (Report of Motor Vehicle Accident). File form MV-104 with the DMV no more than 10 days after the accident. The DMV can suspend your driver license if you fail to report an accident.
If a person is injured or killed, immediately notify the police. All the involved drivers and the police must file an accident report with the DMV. It is a crime to leave the scene of an accident that causes personal injury or death.

The accident appears on the records of all the involved drivers. An accident listed on your driver record does not indicate that you were at fault. The DMV does not try to determine fault in an accident.