The term personal injury can cover a lot of ground. Any time you have been injured due to someone else’s carelessness, negligence, or recklessness; you may be eligible for a personal injury claim. We understand the level of frustration and anxiety you might be under. It is hard to deal with medical bills adding up and if you are missing time at work to recover, it can make everything even more frustrating. Our experienced Arizona personal injury attorney knows how this feels and wants to help you get through everything to reach a successful outcome.
Once you read a bit about your personal injury case, please call our office as soon as you can for a free consultation with our experienced Arizona personal injury attorneys and to let us get started working on your case.
Types of Accidents and Common Injuries
As mentioned, personal injury is a term that encompasses a lot of different areas. There are several different kinds of accidents that the experienced and dedicated Arizona personal injury attorneys at Swenson & Shelley cover. They include:
- Bike accidents
- Bus accidents
- Car accidents
- Construction accidents
- Dog bites
- Motorcycle accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Slip and falls
These accidents have the potential to ruin someone’s life. It is not uncommon for people to almost get killed in these accidents. It is hard to deal with being a victim of personal injury because it could have been avoided. The most common types of injuries we see in personal injury cases are:
- Broken bones and fractures
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Traumatic brain injury
- Concussions or contusions
- Nerve, tendon, or tissue damage
You should never delay seeking medical attention for two reasons. Your health is the most important thing and you do not want to have to risk worsening your case because you did not see a doctor. Also, it is important to seek medical attention so that you can prove that this accident caused you injuries that needed treatment.
What to Do Right After Your Accident
Immediately after the accident, it is not uncommon to be in shock. Your adrenaline levels are probably up and you might not feel your injuries yet. Getting an officer on the scene is sometimes important to help with the collection of information if it is an auto accident. At every scene, there is going to be evidence that should be collected through photos and videos. At a slip and fall scene, there may be faulty steps that you fell on. At a dog bite scene, there may be a broken gate that the animal got through to attack you. Your scenario is bound to have evidence that you will want to collect. You will also need the contact information from any witnesses so that they can help you later on as well as the insurance information from the liable party.
Bringing Your Claim on Time
You have to follow what is called the statute of limitations for your personal injury case. What that means is that you have a deadline in which you are allowed to bring your claim or settle it in civil court. Arizona permits two years from the date of the accident in which you can do these things. If you wait past this deadline, you will be barred from receiving compensation. It is always best to act quickly so that your evidence, witness testimony, and treatment plan is clear.
How to Get Full Compensation
Arizona is one of the more lenient states in regards to receiving compensation even if you are found to be at fault for the accident. In fact, you can receive compensation when you are 99% at fault for the accident. How that works, though, is that your award will be reduced by the amount of fault you shared. For example, if you are awarded $100,000 in damages while being found 30% at fault, your award will be reduced to $70,000.
Avoiding the Liable Party’s Insurance Company
After your accident, you will be contacted by the liable party’s insurance company. They will come off as helpful and polite, but please be warned that they are not interested in what is best for you, which would be the fullest amount of compensation possible. They want to make sure that they owe you as little as possible so that they don’t lose money. When they contact you, they will ask you for a recorded statement. It is important for you to never give them one. It will only hurt your case because the way they ask questions is loaded. Any answer you give, they will try to twist it to favor them. The best thing you can do is tell them to take up all communication with your attorney.
Frequently Asked Personal Injury Questions
What Should My First Steps Be?
If you’ve been involved in a personal injury claim in the state of Arizona, you may be asking yourself, “What do I need to do right away?” First thing you need to do is make sure you take care of your medical needs. Get to the doctors, do what they say, and get the treatment that you need. Second is to make sure that you get an attorney involved in the case early enough so that you can preserve the evidence. You need to lock down as much of that information as you can, as early as you can.
The final thing is to hire the right attorney. Don’t hire somebody who doesn’t have the experience in dealing with personal injury. Don’t hire somebody who only dabbles in this field. Get somebody who has the experience in it, and focuses on personal injury. Lastly, you need to get a trial attorney who can take the case from the beginning to the end and push it as far as they need to, to make sure that you get a fair resolution from the insurance company.
How Do I Pick the Right Attorney?
I’m frequently asked, “How do I pick a good attorney?” If you’ve been injured in the state of Arizona, you want to pick an attorney who has the experience of handling the type of case that you’re dealing with, somebody who deals nearly exclusively with personal injury cases. You want somebody who focuses on that because the laws change, the way the insurance companies deal with claims change, and your attorney needs to be up to speed on that.
One of the other things that I think you always want to do and always should consider is getting a good trial attorney. If you get an attorney who’s known to settle, insurance companies know that and the value of your case won’t be as high.
Should I Speak with the Insurance Company?
I’m asked regularly, and often too late, “Should I give a recorded statement to an insurance company if I’ve been involved in a claim?” My recommendation is that you not give a recorded statement to the insurance company until you’ve had the opportunity to talk to an attorney. Insurance adjusters are trained to ask questions and get information that helps their case and hurts your case.
What Mistakes Should I Avoid After a Personal Injury?
Frequently, we talk to people about what mistakes have been made regularly in handling a personal injury claim. Some of those involve not getting treatment from the doctors, not following doctor’s advice, and not immediately contacting the right attorney for handling your case. You want somebody who has the experience with that type of case. You want a trial lawyer so you’re prepared to push the case as far as you need to, to get a fair resolution. Those are some of the bigger mistakes that people make in dealing with a personal injury claim in the state of Arizona.
Will My Case Go to Trial?
People ask me, “Will my case have to go to trial?” I never know the answer to that initially. It depends on how the insurance company reacts when we negotiate with them and if they’ll make a fair settlement that will fully compensate you for the injuries that you’ve suffered. If they won’t, we’ll push the case towards trial and continue to try to resolve it, but some cases do need to go to trial to make sure that fair compensation is paid to those who are injured.
If your case has to go to trial, we’ll have plenty of time to prepare for it. We’ll spend the time necessary and make sure that you’re ready for trial.
How Much is My Case Worth?
The most common question I get asked is, “What’s the value of my case?” That’s very difficult to determine at the beginning of a case. Part of that is because you need to see what the medical bills are, how much you had to miss work, what kind of permanent limitations you’re going to have, and how it impacts your ability to do the things you love and want to do. All of those things have to be taken into account when deciding what that value of a case is.
As we get that information, we can give you a much better indication of what the value of your case is, and we do that because we’ve got a lot of experience handling these types of cases.
Can I Afford an Attorney?
If you’ve been injured in the state of Arizona and you’re wondering about a personal injury case, you may be wondering, “Can I afford it?” The good news is that you can hire us with nothing out of pocket. When we take a case, we do everything that’s necessary to prepare the case, preserve the evidence, and get the testimony that we need to work the case all the way up to trial, if necessary, without you paying anything. The only time that you pay anything is once we’ve gotten you a fair settlement.
How Long Will My Case Take?
In the state of Arizona, if you’ve been injured and have a personal injury case, it’s very difficult to say, at the beginning, how long that will take to resolve. One of the primary things that needs to happen before you can resolve a case is figuring out what the injuries are. You need to get the treatment that your doctors recommend and see if that treatment is working, and then figure out what kind of care you’re going to need in the future.
Once you have a good understanding of what the injury is, we can get the demand to an insurance company relatively quickly. Depending on whether or not they’re going to pay a fair settlement or fight it and make you litigate the case is going to determine how long that case is going to take. One thing that’s always true is we’re always pushing to get the best deal for our clients as early as possible.
Call Our Office Today for a Free Consultation
If you are suffering from injuries due to someone else’s negligence, please do not hesitate to call our skilled and dedicated Arizona personal injury attorneys today to set up a free consultation. We will protect you from the insurance company and make sure you are on track to get the best possible result.