Police Crime Reports

Obtaining a Crime Report:

Often, particularly following the theft of a vehicle, we need sight of the crime report. Unfortunately, some constabularies are less inclined to release this or to do so promptly.  This is disappointing, particularly because by the time we request the report it is likely days or weeks since the theft and the chances of the vehicle being found are reduced.  Therefore, in the absence of the vehicle, a victim is reliant upon insurers and we would hope constabularies would do all they can to alleviate the distress, inconvenience and financial hardship a vehicle loss often results in for a victim.  Arguably, the insurers’ interest in the vehicle, following a theft has not only increased but exceeded that of the victim; the insurer is expected to stand the loss by making payment to the victim – something the police could assist to progress.

However, a straightforward means by which YOU can acquire the report, which can then be forward to us or your insurers is by use of your Subject Access Right (SAR):

  • At no charge to you, an application can be made to the constabulary receiving the report.
  • Make online inquiries to locate an email address for the ‘Data Protection’, ‘Information’ unit or ‘Legal Department’ and write seeking a copy of the crime report by email (electronically)
  • You do not have to use a specific form but it will help to provide information such as your full name and address, the VRM of the vehicle, date, time, location of loss, and the police crime reference.
  • The police should ask to see identification to prove it is you who is making the request. To this end, an image (taken with a mobile phone for ease of forwarding?) of your driver licence (photo for identify) and a recent utility bill (for address) should suffice
  • The police have a calendar month* in which to provide the information

*Note: if we made the request, it can often take 40 days or more.

If the police raise any objections, please direct them to our email address and advise us by email.

It is possible we will independently seek information from the police in connection with your claim. We are seeking your assistance to progress the claim with the minimum of delay. We will approach the police for information but often we need your consent and irrespective, we wish to take no chances but ensure the police know data can be supplied; it helps you, the police, us and your insurers to ensure your CONSENT has been provided for information to be supplied.

The police will not release the information to insurers, or ourselves, without your consent. This consent is to be in a format that is consistent with an Information Sharing Agreement (ISA) between the Police, Insurance Companies and Loss Adjusters.  Whilst not all insurers are a party to the agreement, the National Police FOI & DP Central Referral Unit of the National Police Chiefs’ Council has written that the absence of an insurer as a signatory would not necessarily be an issue.

They (the insurer) are still a data controller and bound by the provisions of the Act which the ISA addresses. Provided the recipient is satisfied the request is:

1. lawful and
2. meets the purpose and lawful basis made out by the ISA,

they may make the decision to share. Sharing outside the terms of the ISA would need a separate determination to meet DPA’98.


insurers:

‘Data included in crime/incident reports can only be disclosed to an insurance company who are members of the Association of British Insurers (ABI) or their appointed agents. The request should be made in accordance with the criteria detailed within the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Association of Chief Police Officers and the Association of British Insurers.  Applications should be submitted in the agreed format of an Appendix D(a) or D(b) consent form, with the appropriate fee (currently £129.80).’*

A copy of the ACPO / ABI MoU is here: 06/2014 ACPO & the Association of British Insurers (ABI) Memorandum of Understanding on the Exchange of Information between the Police, Insurance Companies and Loss Adjusters

*source – Lincs police


Resources:

Law Enforcement Data Service: Data Protection Impact Assessment – 20-10-30_LEDS_DPIA_v1.0