What if I Have an Accident on My Driving Record That Didn't Happen?

by Carol Deeb ; Updated July 27, 2017

Having an accident that didn't happen on your driving record can cause problems for you. An erroneous auto accident may be placed on your driving record due to a mistake when the vehicle identification number or the name and birth date were entered into the system. In addition, if you were a passenger in an accident, it can be inaccurately reported that you were driving. There are ways to remove this entry on your record if it happens to you.

An auto accident on your driving record can raise your insurance costs. Your state Department of Motor Vehicles compiles information about your driving record. Since it is not private information, anyone can request to see it. In addition, you can have your license suspended if you have too many accidents. Therefore, if one collision is erroneously placed on your record, you can temporarily lose your license if you have other legitimate accidents on your record.

Impact

Since your driving record is public, employers can request it and make employment decisions based on how responsibly you behave behind the wheel, especially if the job involves driving. Also, accidents add "points" to your record and insurance companies use them as one factor when calculating the cost of your premium. If you are listed as being at fault in just one accident, your insurance rates can increase by 20 percent.

Dispute and Appeals

If there is an accident listed on your driving record that didn't happen, file a dispute or appeal with your state Department of Motor Vehicles. Every state may have different requirements, but more than likely, you will need to attach documents, such as a car vehicle identification number report or notarized witness statements, to prove that you were not involved in an accident. You might not receive a response for one to two months. Sometimes, you may have to contact the appropriate police department or the highway patrol, if the error was on the departmental accident report, and ask them to revise the report to remove the erroneous information.

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Considerations

Check your driving record regularly for any inaccuracies. Request that they be removed immediately if you find any. Also, if you are a passenger in a car that is involved in an accident, check with the local authorities at the crash site or the next day to ensure that all of the information documented in the report is accurate.

About the Author

Carol Deeb has been an editor and writer since 1988. Her work has appeared in magazines, newspapers and online publications, as well as a book on education. Deeb is a real-estate investor and business owner with professional experience in human resources. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from San Diego State University.

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