When you or a loved one is seriously injured in an accident or due to another’s negligence, it is important that you seek quality representation from a dedicated legal staff. Our attorneys understand that the legal process can be daunting and overwhelming. By interviewing any witnesses, ensuring that your injuries are well documented, and standing up for you in front of insurance companies, we make sure that your case is thoroughly handled.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident that was caused by someone else’s reckless behavior, we can help you file a claim in pursuit of maximum compensation.
In a personal injury case, you may be entitled to receive compensation for your medical expenses and lost wages, as well as punitive damages for your pain and suffering. Additionally, if you suffered the tragedy of losing a loved one in an accident caused by negligence, you can pursue compensation and justice in a wrongful death claim.
It is important to remember that in Arizona, most personal injury claims must be filed within two years from the date the injury took place. Do not delay in securing the legal representation you need!
Calculating Your Personal Injury Settlement
Suffering a personal injury can have devastating, long-lasting effects. Recovering from physical pain is only the tip of the iceberg. Rehabilitation, loss of wages from missed work, loss of personal property, disruption of your daily life, stress and worry all weigh heavily on victims. It is the magnitude of the sum total of all of these factors that must be considered when attempting to quantify the amount of personal injury compensation.
Special Damages – Bills and Financial Costs
While every case is different, courts and insurance companies both must use some sort of equation to determine how much a personal injury claim payout should be. In order to find the right number, they must gather a straight-forward, objective list of all expenses incurred from the injury first, then add in the more subjective factors to arrive at the final compensation amount.
The first part of the equation is simple. A sum total of every provable financial expense that was a direct result of the accident or injury is calculated. This number usually includes, but is not limited to:
- Medical Bills
- Damaged or Lost Property
- Cost of Medication
- Hospital Stay
- Lost Wages
- Cost of Medical Equipment
- Expenses Paid Out of Pocket
Once these items are added together, that gives you a starting dollar amount. These items are the first half of your overall Damages. Some courts refer to these quantifiable dollar amounts as Economic Damages, Medical Special Damages or even just “Specials.” This number is straight-forward and easy to prove.
General Damages – Pain and Suffering
The other half of the equation is harder to pinpoint because of it more difficult to assign a dollar amount to emotional turmoil and pain and suffering. The term General Damages encompasses all of the more subjective sufferings as a result of your injury. These General Damages can include:
- Emotional Turmoil
- Physical Pain
- Disruption of Daily Lifestyle
- Loss of Enjoyment
- Loss of Consortium
- Recklessness or Gross Negligence (for injuries resulting from another party)
Each Case Is Different
It is important to note that every case is different and many insurance companies will not want you to know that they are using a formula like this one to calculate your payout. It could work to your benefit to have this information, but not share it so the other party will not know if you value your own multiplier as less than they would.
Your best bet is to hire a Personal Injury Lawyer who can help you gather the information you need to accurately calculate and argue for your highest compensation payout.
Settlements are reached before the case goes to jury trial in almost all cases. If the agreement is reached, your attorney will inform defending attorney that you have agreed to the settlement either by phone, letter or some combined methods.
Personal Injury settlements are not taxed by the federal government, or by the state if the proceeds are for personal injury claims. As a result of personal injury, any damage is excluded from federal tax law. The cases where only receive compensation for personal injury, the proceeds are not taxed.
Some of the following examples of damages:
Some of the above are direct examples of the injury that you sustained, and any compensation you receive will not be eligible for taxation.
For example, if you find yourself in a car accident and you sustain injuries that require medical treatment, your bills, emotional suffering, inability to work, wages lost and attorney fees will be compensated for as a result of your physical injury without any tax.
Most of the personal injury is non-taxable, but there are some specific cases where your settlement would be taxed- when a breach of contract is involved. If you breach the agreement, you would be responsible for paying taxes on the damages relating to the breach of contract so long as the offense is the basis of the lawsuit.
Punitive damages are taxed. By definition, compensatory damages are to equal the amount of pain and suffering you sustained.Punitive damages are those awarded to plaintiffs when compensatory damages are ruled an inadequate remedy for the defendant’s actions.
In most situations, compensatory damages are calculated based off of actual costs (medical bills, lost wages, etc.)Punitive damages are meant to turn aside the defendant from engaging in conduct similar to that on which the lawsuit is based. A reasonable attorney will request the verdicts to be separated into punitive (taxable) and compensatory (non-taxable), making it easier to distinguish what settlements you owe taxes on.
Emotional damages are eligible for taxation cause personal physical injuries are non-taxable. Because of this, it’s important to disclose any physical injuries that you endured during an accident. Emotional wounds are not tax exempt.
Contact the Professionals
Settlements and going to court can take a lot of time and energy. In the current world of disinformation, it’s always imperative to have professionals by your side. You need a thorough investigation of any case before you can make a settlement.
Money that is obtained as compensation in settlement (or verdict) of a personal injury claim is not taxable as income under the federal code.
Each state’s tax laws may be different, although many States follow the federal guideline on this point.
Schenk Podolsky Attorneys at law office can help you with Injury claims and vast areas of practice.
Our client comes first. You can try our free consultation service https://www.myarizonainjurylawyers.com/about-us#case-consultation
We have a different approach to every case. Remember, health comes first!
Buses are considered one of the safest forms of transportation. Public transportation is on the rise in Arizona thanks to the environmental movement. Many people consider buses perfectly safe, but accidents can still happen. If the accident happens, it’s not always easy to determine what happened, who’s at fault, or how long you have to file the claim.
Causes of bus accidents
We will try to present the most common causes of accidents, but the reality is many reasons can occur while a bus is on the road.
The most common causes of bus accidents are:
- Bad Road Conditions
- Inclement weather
- Driver Error
- Defective parts of the bus
- Bus fires
- Another driver on the road
- Negligence of the bus driver or the company
- Improper left-hand turns
Common Injuries from Bus Accidents
One of the main reason why bus accidents can be tricky is that the buses are larger and heavier than other vehicles on the road so they can cause much more damage which is right for the accidents as well. There are many types of injuries, and some of them can be serious.
We will try to stick to the most common, but many types of injuries could occur during the bus accident:
- Head Injury
- Brain Injury
- Spinal Injury
- Joint and bone injuries
- Permanent disability
- Wrongful death
The first thought that comes to mind after you are involved in the accident is that the insurance will cover you and provide you with the compensation for all injuries listed above. It’s essential for you to contact a qualified personal injury attorney. In that way, you may be able to get compensation beyond what the insurance company is offering.
Types of buses in Arizona
If you ’re hurt in Arizona bus accident, you want to make sure that people that are responsible are held accountable for it.
Different types of busses in Arizona
- Public/city transit buses– City buses are typically used in the city for those who don’t have their vehicle. Often a bus company is hired by the town or the town itself.
- Private/charter buses – They are significant as city buses, but they are not for public use. Chartered buses are typically hired by a group of people to provide transportation to a specific place for some period.
This can include corporate events, sporting event, or other occasions in which it doesn’t make sense to have multiple people drive. These buses are entirely private and so either the charter company will be responsible, or the driver.
- Tour Buses- they are similar to charter buses, but the difference is that they are driving to several different locations or locations that are quite far away. The buses company arranges these type of buses. Group of people can hire a bus or a company. If the bus is employed through an intermediary company on behalf of the group, that intermediary could also be liable in case of an accident.
How or When Insurance Companies Won’t Settle a Claim
Insurance companies may at times adopt an adversarial position against the insured party’s claim for personal injuries. While this is least expected, clients are definitely shocked on learning that an insurance provider offered an alternative version of the accident to eliminate them from claim settlement. Your insurance claim may be denied as a result of no-fault insurance laws, an expired insurance policy (or excluded driver) or when the policy adjuster denies liability for the insured party. Whatever the reason, an explanation should be given to the insured by the claims adjuster.
Reasons an Insurance Company Won’t Settle
1. No-fault Insurance Laws
Third party immunity may apply in states where no-fault insurance laws are in effect. This means that third party drivers enjoy immunity against minor personal injury claims in states that allow no-fault insurance laws. For damages exceeding a certain amount or where the serious injury threshold is achieved, the insured may claim for pain and suffering. Serious injuries, however, may call for a personal injury attorney, as such cases may be complicated. It is only in states with traditional fault laws where the insured has every right to pursue the at-fault driver claims for damages.
What no-fault insurance entails
No-fault insurance, also called Personal Injury Protection, is an automobile insurance that doesn’t care about the at-fault driver. Under the law, it doesn’t matter who caused the collision, and there is no proof required that another driver was at fault. The insurance company pays for the damages directly. This differs from the traditional liability insurance in which the at-fault driver’s insurance company should pay for losses or damages.
What no fault-insurance covers
The no-fault insurance covers wages lost during recovery, death benefits, funeral expenses, and medical and therapy costs. The amount paid depends on the amount of insurance premium purchased.
What no-fault insurance does not cover
The no-fault insurance does not cover emotional distress, pain, or suffering. It doesn’t cover car repair bills or personal property damaged inside the car at the time of the accident. Except where serious injury threshold is achieved, the insured is also not allowed to file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver for pain and suffering.
2. Expired Insurance Policy And Excluded Driver
The insurer can deny a legitimate claim if either the at-fault driver’s license is expired or the driver in question is not covered in the policy. While driving without a valid license is considered illegal, the penalty may mostly attract a stiff fine or suspension of the license.
In the case of an excluded driver, a claim for personal injury may be denied if the at-fault driver is exempted from the policy. The insurance company’s argument may be that, although the policy covers the policy holder’s family members and others allowed to drive the insured car, the at-fault driver may not necessarily be covered by the policy.
3. Denial Based On Insufficient Coverage
Unscrupulous adjusters may deny a claim for personal injury on the basis of “insufficient coverage” in states that have traditional fault laws.
Insufficient coverage simply means the at-fault driver has no sufficient insurance to cover all damages. This mostly occurs when claims for personal injury exceed the limits of the at-fault driver’s insurance policy. This requires the insurance company to pay all the money under the insured policy, to enable the insured party to file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver for personal injury. Since many insurance adjusters wrongfully deny a claim for personal injury based on insufficient coverage, a personal injury attorney is required as the case may be too serious to handle alone.
In sum,an insurance company may fail to settle a claim for all the genuine and legitimate reasons. Whether one resides in a no-fault or a traditional fault insurance state, an experienced personal injury attorney is required as long as the claim is wrongfully denied.
What’s Involved In a Car Accident Claim.
To begin with, you are liable to file an injury claim if the accident occurred was due to the negligence of the other driver. In case you were at fault, you are not liable to do so and will rather look very stupid while trying to file a claim. However, if you are the innocent party in the accident, then you need to start proceedings as soon as the accident happens.
After you have ensured that people in both the cars are protected and have summoned an ambulance if needed, the next step is to get information from the other driver. Make certain you take down their name, registration number, contact information, as well as pictures of yours and their car if probable. This is not the time to argue whose error it was; you just entail getting the basic information so you can file the claim and continue with the proceedings. Also, it is optimum not to talk too much to the other driver.
Once you have the information, you need to talk to witnesses present at the time of the accident about what they saw, and more importantly, their contact information. Your lawyer will contact them when you forward your injury claim. You should also note down what the weather was like, and exactly what happened so that your testimony if needed, is clear and consistent with that of the witnesses. Once the police arrive, give them your statement and make sure you get the report number so you can inform your lawyer.
Once this part is over, go to the hospital and get your injuries, if any, taken care of. Also, get additional tests if you are experiencing any pains. Make sure your doctor tests you for internal injuries as well. After your treatment, make sure you not only get your receipts but also your doctor’s contact information so they can appear as a witness for your side if needed.
Now, call an attorney. Locate one who focuses on accident compensation claims and plans a meeting with him/her. In your meeting, give him/her with all the facts. Start with the get in touch with details for the other driver and give the pictures, police statement information, hospital receipts, as well as contact information of the witnesses.
Most lawyers job on a “no win no fee” basis which means they will not get compensated except you win the case. Also, your legal representative can have their payment paid for by the defendant, which is the other driver, in case you win, so make certain you chat about this in the meeting as well.
Car Accident Claim
Now the question arises as to how to claim insurance if your meets with an accident. Immediately after the accident, certain details can be conveyed by anybody if the owner is not in a position to do so. After that the company will put somebody in touch with the caller and offer guidance to settle all your claims. One noteworthy thing is that in a case of death, the compensation is settled in the court and it takes about five years to settle this claim, as lot many departments are involved in the settlement of a claim and then court procedures are after all court procedures.
Format for claim settlement
The following information may have to be furnished immediately while you intimate about your claim:
- -Policy Number
- – Name, Contact No. and address of Insured person
- – Vehicle number
- – Make and Model of car
- – A brief description of the accident
- – Particulars and contact details of the garage
- -Date , Time and place of accident
- – Approximate Extent of loss
- -Address and contact details of the individual intimating about claim
- – Whether it is Insurance for car
- -Whether it is damage claim
- – Whether it is claimed against theft
- – Whether it is third-party claim
Once you have retained their services, the lawful representative will take care of all. He/she may confirm all the information you provided, and you will most prone also have to go to a different general practitioner to certify your injuries. You legal representative will contact the defendant, and talk to their lawyers. If they recommend a settlement up front, do talk about it with your lawyer before accepting or refusing it. Now you have what’s Involved In a Accident Claim give your mesa injury lawyers a call should need help after an accident.
Children are prone to accidents and sometimes their injuries are unpreventable. Parents are usually unsure if they can make personal injury compensation claims when their kids get hurt. If their injury is a result of someone else’s negligence you may be entitled to claim compensation.
What types of injury can I claim compensation for?
There are many ways kids can get hurt, and many times it is out of their parents’ hands. In order to be able to get compensation for your child’s injury, you must be able to prove that the responsible party was negligent. Typically, you must also be able to prove that your child was acting with ordinary caution and was not being negligent. The following are the most common ways parents can receive compensation for their child’s injury.
- Road accident as a passenger
- Road accident as a cyclist
- Road accident as a pedestrian
- Accident caused by a dangerous product
- Accident at school, nursery or college
- Amusement park or funfair accident
- Elevator or escalator accidents
- Accident on a vacation
- Accident abroad
- Slips, trips or falls
- Accidents in a public place such as a supermarket or restaurant
How long do I have to make a claim?
The parent of guardian of an injured child can make a claim for compensation as soon as the accident happens up until the child turns 18. In some states, the parent or guardian must get approval from a judge before a personal injury claim can be settled. Usually the insurance company can help by getting you the forms you file with the court for approval.
What happens to my child’s compensation?
As a parent, it is your legal and moral responsibility to hold and use all of your child’s compensation for the benefit of your child and you can be held accountable it you break those obligations. You may also be able to start an account with the court that saves the money for your child until they turn 18.
If you have any questions about seeking compensation for your child’s injury, contact us here.