Before you send a letter of demand to the driver or owner of the other car, you need to make sure you have their name and address. If you do not have the correct contact details for the other party you won't be able to clearly communicate your claim to them. If you end up going to court, you may not be able to serve (give) court documents on the other party and this will cost you money and time.
If you had an accident with someone who was driving another person's car, you will need to decide who is responsible.
A driver may not always be the person who ends up paying for the damage. In some cases, the owner of the vehicle may be responsible. For more information, see Who is responsible?
The other driver should have provided you with their name and contact details at the scene of the accident. For more information, see Exchange details.
If the other driver did not give you their details, and the accident was reported to the police, you may be able to get a copy of the police incident report. If the accident was not reported to the police, you can make an access application to find out the registered owner's details.
If the police came to the accident, or the accident was reported to the police, you can get a copy of the police incident report.
To do this you need to fill in an application for an incident report form. You can get the form from the NSW Police force website.
You should then:
The incident report will usually be sent to you within 10 to 15 working days.
The police will not reduce or cancel the fee in cases of financial hardship.
Normally, an incident report will have the following information:
Sometimes drawings of the location may also be included.
If you don't know who owns the car, you can apply for the registered operator's name and contact details by making an access application. The person who has a car or motor vehicle registered in their name is called the 'registered operator'. Access applications about Roads and Maritime Services (Roads and Maritime) information are handled by Transport for NSW.You can write a letter making an access application. For more information on how to apply, see the Transport for NSW website. Sample: Sample letter to Transport for NSW making an access application
There is a $30.00 application fee (as at July 2016). If you are paying by cheque or money order, you should make it payable to Transport for NSW.
After you submit your application to Transport for NSW, it will be forwarded to Roads and Maritime to make a decision on whether to give access to the information. Roads and Maritime may contact the registered operator of the other vehicle and tell them that you have asked for their details. If the registered operator does not want to release his or her details, Roads and Maritime will take this into consideration before making a decision.
It can take up to 20 working days for Transport for NSW to notify you of the decision. If Roads and Maritime won't give you the registered operator's contact details, you can ask for a review of that decision.
You should get legal advice if you want to apply for a review of the decision.
If you have problems getting the details of the driver from the registered operator you should get legal advice.
For further information, go to 'Government Information Public Access' on the Transport for NSW website.