Car Accident Checklist

If you have recently been injured in a car accident or truck accident, you may be entitled to compensation to make up for your financial deficits resulting from the accident. The state of Massachusetts allows for car accident victims to seek damages within three years of a car accident, but it is important to work with a competent attorney as soon as possible to get you the most compensation possible.

Though Massachusetts is a no-fault state, and minor injuries are usually covered by the driver’s own insurance, more extensive personal injuries will need to be recouped with a personal injury lawsuit. When seeking a personal injury lawsuit, you are required to prove the other driver was negligent. Provide ample documentation of medical treatment, lost wages, and any other damages you are seeking. An experienced attorney will help you collect and organize these documents in a personal injury suit.

Damage Types and Documentation in Car Accident Cases

Massachusetts divides damages into two categories: Economic and non-economic. Economic damages are any of those that have measurable amounts of compensation, like medical expenses, lost income, and vehicle repairs. Non-economic damages are intangible concepts, like pain and suffering, loss of companionship, and punitive damages.

To calculate compensation awards for non-economic damages, insurance companies use a variety of formulas to award an adequate amount. No matter the type of damages you seek, you will need documentation to substantiate your claims. The attorneys at Sweeney Merrigan Law have come up with a checklist to help our clients identify and organize the documents they will need for their case.

Immediately Following the Accident

Anyone who has been in a car accident should collect the following information at the scene (if possible):

  • The address, insurance information, license plate, and other identifying information about the other driver.
  • Photographs of the accident scene and damage to both cars.
  • The official police report of the incident.
  • Witness statements and information.

After the Accident/Economic Damages

  • Medical expenses. Keep an ongoing detailed record of all medical expenses incurred after the accident. This can include treatment, co-pays, physical therapy visits, medication, mental health treatment, etc. Collect a physician’s report and save all receipts for medical expenses.
  • Lost wages. Any work absences should be documented and confirmed by your employer. Compensation for lost wages can include time lost to recuperation, doctors’ visits, and/or an inability to work in the future because of injuries.
  • Car repair bills. Any and all expenses incurred while repairing or replacing your damaged vehicle can be part of the claim. Seek estimates from several repair mechanics.
  • Photographs and witnesses. Keep an ongoing record of the progression of your injuries by taking photographs regularly.
  • Any out-of-pocket expenses. Any expense as a result of the injury can be eligible for compensation. If you’ve had to cancel a vacation, pay extra for help with childcare, spent money on a car rental or any other accident-related expense, hold onto your receipts.

Non-Economic Damages

Although non-economic damages are based off of a calculation and not finite proof, there are a few documents that may help your case. Keeping a journal of your experiences and the progress of your healing may be helpful to both you and your attorney. This may help the insurance company come up with a more adequate “pain multiplier” when determining your pain and suffering calculations.

Contact Us Today

If you have recently been in a car accident and are considering a personal injury case, contact the offices of Sweeney Merrigan Law today. Based out of Boston, we serve clients throughout all of Massachusetts. We take pride in providing exceptional representation with a personal approach, and we consistently achieve excellent results for our clients.