Automobile accidents can be traumatic incidents that can take life or change it forever. Even minor "fender-benders" can become more of an ordeal than you ever expected as you attend to insurance issues (including an at-fault driver's lack thereof) and even unexpected lawsuits many years down the road. Arizona laws that control insurance claims, statutes of limitations,tort liability and other factors can be extremely difficult to understand and a wrong move or delay can mean the difference between a favorable lawsuit or settlement and having no recourse at all. That's why we urge anyone involved in any kind of automobile accident, whether it be in a car, truck, motorcycle, or even a recreational vehicle like a sand rail, to call us for a free evaluation of your case. We will help you understand your rights and options under the law. Even if you do not go forward with an insurance claim or lawsuit, our knowledgeable attorneys can help you feel confident about the future as you base your decision on trusted counselors that always have your best interests at heart.
It is vital to remember that our bodies are fragile when compared to the size, weight and speed of a motor vehicle. The number of potential injuries that can be sustained in an accident is impossible to list. Some injuries will heal very quickly, while others will last for months, years or perhaps for life. It is important to note that each victim of a motor vehicle accidents needs to have a very firm understanding not only of what their injuries are, but how long it will take to heal and what treatment will be required. Some of the most common injuries include:
Some may be diagnosed as sprain/strain or whiplash while others may causes numbness or tingling down the arm suggesting that may be a more severe injury.
Back pain is something that can be very debilitating. Sitting down, standing up, sudden movements, and even remaining still can all become very labored. Back pain can be caused by a sprain or strain to the muscles, but can also be one of a variety of issues dealing with the spine.
You have to remember that cars are very large, heavy and fast. Broken bones can often occur at the hand or wrist from grabbing on to the steering wheel, foot or ankle from pressure to the brake, or ribs from impact with the steering wheel or air bag. Needless to say, when compared to the size and weight of our vehicles, we are very fragile and can sustain any number of broken bones.
In many instances, cuts and lacerations will heal over time. However, they may leave permanent scarring to any part of the body. There are scar revision surgeries that can be performed to have those scars removed. In some instances, there will still be some evidence of previous injury.
Often, back injuries will cause pain, numbness, or tingling down the legs and into the feet. It has been described on occasion as “pins and needles” down the leg. This can feel like a bad leg cramp, or it can be excruciating, shooting pain that makes standing or sitting almost impossible. The most common cause of sciatica is a herniated or slipped disc. These are sensations that can often be caused by a car accident and often need surgical intervention to repair.
The abrupt nature of car accidents will often result in severe head injury. Concussions are often manifested by confusion, not thinking straight, drowsy, headache, loss of consciousness, memory loss, vomiting, unequal pupils, difficulty walking, and many other symptoms. They can get worse with time and may require prompt medical attention.
There may be several causes of action available to you if you have been injured in an automobile accident. In our initial consultation, our attorneys will ask you to describe the circumstances of the crash and, together, explore the best recourses for legal action that can lead to compensation and alleviation of your suffering. We will help you understand the legalese, but some of the most common claims resulting from automobile accidents include:
To maintain a claim of Negligent Infliction of Emotional Distress in Arizona, the Plaintiff has the burden of proving (1) that the Defendant was negligent, (2) that the Defendant’s negligence created an unreasonable risk of bodily harm to an individual, (3) that the Defendant’s negligence was a cause of bodily harm to that individual, (4) that the Plaintiff’s direct observation of the event resulting in bodily harm to that individual caused the Plaintiff to suffer emotional distress, (5) that the Plaintiff’s emotional distress resulted in physical injury or illness to the Plaintiff, (6) that the Plaintiff and the individual injured in the subject event had a close personal relationship, and (7) that the Plaintiff had damages. (See Keck v. Jackson, 122 Ariz. 114, 593 P.2d 668 (1979); Ball v. Prentiss, 162 Ariz. 150, 152, 781 P.2d 628, 630 (Ct. App. 1989).
Loss of Consortium is generally used in terms of A.R.S. §12-611 through §12-613. These are known as Arizona’s Wrongful Death Statutes. When a loved one dies unexpectedly due to the negligence of another, there is a loss of companionship. Often, the emotional losses, the financial burdens, and the psychological trauma can be overwhelming and even debilitating. The surviving spouses, children and parents are left in a position to proceed in a world that is void of an individual they relied on in so many ways. Loss of Consortium can also be brought in conjunction with a personal injury claim. Sometimes, a victim is injured in such a way that they are deprived companionship with their spouse or significant other. In this circumstance, both the injured Plaintiff and the spouse or significant other may be in a position to carry a successful loss of consortium claim.
(See “Loss of Consortium”). The State of Arizona, by statute, gives guidance on when a wrongful death claim is available and for whom it is available. A.R.S. §12-611 through §12-613 provide that close surviving family members of the deceased can recover for the loss of their loved one (and often the provider of their family) against an individual, corporation or other entity found to be “at fault” for the negligent or intentional death of their family member. These are generally very emotionally charged claims and are heavily focused on the strength of the relationship of the deceased with their family.
Many individuals involved in car accidents find themselves unable to stand, sit or work for any substantial amount of time. They are forced to use vacation days, sick days that would have otherwise been available, or perhaps they lose their employment altogether. These losses are referred to as “lost wages” and are recoverable as a part of a personal injury claim. It will be vital to be able to accurately document all wages lost. Time cards, signed letters from employers, or other evidence of lost time will serve to substantiate and calculate your losses.
Property loss will be identified by damages to the vehicle including customized parts. A victim of a car accident is entitled to take their vehicle to their repair location of choice and to have the vehicle restored to its pre-accident condition.
Often, victims choose to have the claim adjusted by their own auto insurance. Once the victim’s auto insurance pays the claim, they will seek to be reimbursed by the at-fault party or their insurance company in a process call “subrogation.” Once that process occurs, not only will the victim’s auto insurance be reimbursed, but often, they will also recover the victim’s deductible and return that money to the victim.
In addition to the damage to the vehicle, a victim is also entitled to “loss of use.” This is often reflected in the cost of a car rental procured during the time that the victim was without a vehicle. It may be that a victim opted to not rent a car during that time frame, but rather relied on the generosity of friends and family. The victim, in that situation, will still be entitled to the “reasonable cost” of a rental for the time they are without their own vehicle.
Once a car is returned after a repair, a victim may be entitled to a “diminished value” claim. Major repairs are reported on all vehicles. Therefore, if your brand new vehicle was involved in a major collision requiring a substantial sum to repair, it will certainly hurt that car's resale value. The difference in the value of the car in pre-accident condition versus the value in the now repaired condition will be referred to as the diminished value.
When you retain our office, the attorneys and staff at Adam Barlow Law, P.C. will be handling every aspect of your case and guiding you from beginning to end about what to do, how to do it, and when to do it in order to ensure a successful resolution of your case. You will not have to worry about which insurance company to contact or how to keeep your property damage claim separate from your injury claim. We fight for your rights to make your life as whole as possible after a serious injury, death of a loved one, or other tragedy resulting from a car accident. → Read what our former clients have to say
We work under a "contingency retainer" on all injury cases. This means, there is no up-front cost to you to retain our services and we only get paid if we win money for you - whether by settlement or jury trial. We are confident in our abilities and the merits of each case we take and have been able to enjoy a great deal of success in the short history of our practice.
Mesa is the third largest city in Arizona (by population) and one of the main suburbs of Phoenix. It lies in the East Valley section of the Pheonix Metro Area surrounded by Tempe, Apache Junction, the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community, Chandler, and Gilbert in Maricopa County. Home to the Polytechnic campus of Arizona State University and, as of the 2010 U.S. Census, just over 430,000 inhabitants, making Mesa larger than Atlanta, Minneapolis, and even Miami. Despite what you may see on TV, Mesa is also hotter with average July temperatures consistently at 106 F.
Named after the Spanish word for "table" (a reference to the local geography), Mesa is an economically-diverse community with some of its largest employers including Mesa Public Schools, Boeing, and Walmart. The area is believed to have been first inhabited approximately 2,000 years ago by the Hohokam people who constructed extensive canal systems, some of which are still used to irrigate the area today. In the late 19th century, Mormon settlers established themselves in the region and the city of Mesa was officially incorporated, with a population of 300 persons, in 1883. For more information, you can visit the city's official website at mesaaz.gov.