How do you Know if you Have a Personal Injury Case in Arizona?
Typically, personal injury cases have similar qualifications in each state. However, there are some differences worth noting in Arizona specifically. For example, Arizona does not have a compensation cap for personal injury cases, as some states do. So let’s jump into the first step of determining if you have a personal injury case, and that’s if a party is at fault.
How do I determine fault for my case?
Another party can be deemed guilty if there is significant evidence proving fault. For example, if you trip on a raised part of flooring in a store and there was no sign regarding caution, then the store would be liable. If the store did in fact have a sign regarding the hazard, then the store relinquishes any fault. Another example is if a car hits you when you were obeying all traffic laws. If it is clear that fault falls into the other parties’ hands, is how you determine fault for the case. However, Arizona runs on a specific law called Arizona’s Comparative Negligence Rule, which basically means that the other party is allowed to state that you had some contribution to the accident, and thus lessen the total amount of fault for that party. So for example, if you would expect a settlement of $1,000, and they deem that 10% partial fault belongs to you, then that would reduce it to $900. You are, however, allowed to counter these statements. Make sure to have as much proof as you can against their claims, which depending on the case, your lawyer will advise you of specifically.
How long do I have to file for my personal injury case?
Each state has a Statute of Limitations, which means that your case must be filed within the specific time limit. For Arizona, that is 2 years from the date of the accident, or from the date you discovered your injury. If you filed your claim after the Statute, it will be considered void. There are different limitations for the type of case as well. For example, if you are filing a case against the government, you have 180 days to file a claim, and 1 year for a court case.
Types of Personal Injury Cases
When it comes to auto accidents, Arizona runs on an “At-Fault” system, which entails that the victim can either settle the dispute with insurance, or pursue the matter in court. All drivers are required to have auto insurance, in an effort to alleviate the amount of cases going to court.
Dog bites/Animal Attacks
Arizona Law states that the owner is liable for any injuries incurred by their dog, or pet in general, no matter where the incident occurs. The animal must have an owner for there to be a valid claim. If you are injured by a pet, it is important to take photos of the injuries for evidence.
Wrongful death is when a family member has passed away due to a negligent act by another party. Only an immediate family member may file this type of claim, like a spouse, parent, or child. Your attorney will advise you on the extent of the compensation you are eligible to receive.
Slip and Fall
Also known as premise liability, this can occur if you have injured yourself in a hazardous condition on someone else’s property. If you slipped on a wet floor with no caution sign, the store is at fault. Anything outside of the premises would be at fault of the property manager or even the city. It depends on the location of the injury incurred. It is a valid claim if the injury was because of inadequate lighting, wet floors, cluttered aisles, damaged walkways, etc.
After determining that your case is a personal injury case, you’ll be more prepared with moving forward in the legal process. Make sure to call an attorney immediately so they can advise you on the next steps.