Get an Accident Report

DMV keeps accident reports for only 4 years from the date of the accident, except for rare instances that are described in Vehicle and Traffic Law Section 201(i).

HOW CAN I GET A COPY OF AN ACCIDENT REPORT?

Mail - You can use form MV-198C - Request for Copy of Accident Report  to order a copy of an accident report by mail. 

  • You must provide the date of the crash/accident and the county where the crash/accident occurred and at least one of the following:
    1. the plate number of a vehicle involved in the crash/accident, and/or
    2. the driver license number of a person who was involved in the crash/accident, and/or
    3. the name and date of birth of a person who was involved in the crash/accident
  • Accident reports are certified copies.  If DMV cannot find an accident based on the information you provide, you will be notified by DMV in a certified letter.

Online - To order a copy of an accident report in PDF format, use the Order and Access Motor Vehicle Accident Reports online transaction.  Before you order online, please read the following information:

Accident reports available through this transaction are certified copies that include an attestation and signature of the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles.  To place an order, you will need one of the following:

  1. the plate number of a vehicle involved in the crash/accident, and/or
  2. the driver license number of a person who was involved in the accident, and/or
  3. the 8-digit DMV case number (starts with the number 3)

 

  • You can access an accident report that you purchased online within the last 7 calendar days.  No fee is charged to access a report that you previously purchased. Enter your email address and the Report Confirmation Number (the number that displayed during the report purchase transaction and was emailed to you in the transaction confirmation). Do not enter the Search Confirmation Number.

  • Note:  Some customers have experienced problems downloading PDF documents from our website.  Make sure your operating system and web browser have been updated with all recent updates.

 

HOW LONG AFTER AN ACCIDENT DOES IT TAKE FOR THE REPORT TO BE AVAILABLE?

  • If the accident was filed electronically by police or occurred in one of the five boroughs of New York City, allow at least 14 days from the date of the accident before you search for the report.

  • If a paper form was used by police to report the accident, allow at least 30 days from the date of the accident before you search for the report.
     
  • If the accident report was filed by a motorist, regardless of where the accident occurred in NYS, allow at least 60 days before you search for the report.  To order a copy of a motorist accident report you must:

    1. be named on the accident report, or
    2. represent a person named on the report, or
    3. be a party to a civil action that arose from the accident, or
    4. represent a person who is a party to a civil action that arose from the accident.

 

HOW MUCH DO I NEED TO PAY?

Search fees are required by law (see Vehicle and Traffic Law Section 202).  DMV is required to charge the fee even if an accident report is not available.

  • Mail - You must pay a required search fee of $10.00 and an additional report fee of $15.00 for each accident report that you order by mail.  The cost is less when you order your accident report online.
  • Online – You must pay a required search fee of $7.00 and an additional report fee of $15.00 for each accident report that you order online.  The system will charge you separately for the search fee and for each report.  You will receive a confirmation email for each transaction.

NOTE:  You can do a free limited search to see if your report is available (see screenshot example below).  The system provides a list of accidents by date and county.   Search for the plate number to see if the report is available.  If you submit a search by county and date, but you do not select any reports, the search fee is not charged.

LEFT SIDE OF SCREENRIGHT SIDE OF SCREEN
Use the date and county fields to see a list of accidents with plate numbers.

No fee is charged for this search unless you click on a specific case number in the list.
A $7.00 search fee is required for each attempt you make if you search by plate number, driver license number, or DMV accident case number.

 

accident report transaction page

 

Do this transaction now online

 


 

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Do it by phone

You can't get an accident report by phone.

Do it by mail

You can order an accident report by mail.

To request an accident report by mail, use the Request for Copy of an Accident Report (MV-198C)

Do it at the DMV

You can’t get an accident report at a DMV office.

For your convenience, many DMV PDF forms can be filled in online and then printed.