Determining fault after an auto collision can be a complicated process. In some cases, both parties may be partially at fault for the car accident. When this happens, it can be difficult to determine who should be held liable for the financial losses and injuries caused.
If you find yourself in this situation, it’s important to understand your rights and the laws that apply to your case. At Zanes Law, we want to help accident victims and potential clients get the information they need to recover full compensation after an Arizona car accident. Contact a car accident lawyer from our firm today to learn more about your legal options.
Understanding Arizona’s Comparative Negligence Laws
If you were involved in a car accident in which you and the other party were both partially at fault, it’s crucial that you familiarize yourself with Arizona’s comparative negligence law. According to the law, which is outlined in A.R.S. §12-2505, you can still pursue compensation if you were partly to blame for a collision.
Percentage of Fault
As long as you were less than 99% at fault for the crash, you can still file a claim against the other party. However, the higher your percentage of fault, the less compensation you’ll be able to obtain. For instance, if you were 50% at fault for the incident and your claim is worth $100,000, you’ll be able to recover $50,000 at most.
The insurance company or court will review the collision details and calculate each party’s percentage of fault. An attorney can make sure your percentage of fault is set fairly, so you can get the compensation you deserve.
For a free legal consultation, call 866-499-8989
How to Protect Your Right to Compensation When You’re Partially At-Fault for an Accident
As mentioned above, the money you can receive from a claim will likely be reduced if you were partially at fault for the car accident. If that’s the case, you can take a few steps to protect your right to the compensation available to you.
Here’s what you should do if both parties involved in the car accident are partially at fault:
Don’t Admit Fault
Even if you’re positive that you played a role in causing the crash, don’t apologize or admit fault to the other driver or anyone else who inquires about the collision. Even the slightest admittance of guilt could be used against you in insurance negotiations or the courtroom to reduce the amount of compensation you receive.
Call Local Law Enforcement
Even if your accident was minor, you should call the police immediately after. That’s because the Phoenix police will assess the collision and write an accident report that can be used to determine both parties’ percentage of fault. When the responding police officer asks you to give a statement, remember not to admit fault and make sure your statement is factual and brief.
Document the Scene of the Collision
Once the police have responded to the scene, you’ll want to take photos of the collision scene and the vehicles involved in the car crash. Doing so could give your attorney the evidence they need to get the compensation you’re owed, especially if the other party involved denies liability.
In addition to documenting the crash scene, you should also take pictures of any visible injuries you’ve sustained. The photos you take can be used to show that your injuries resulted from the collision instead of a separate incident.
Talk to Eyewitnesses
Witness testimony can strengthen your claim and improve your chances of obtaining damages, even if you were partially at fault for the car accident. Once you’ve documented the crash scene, talk to anyone nearby who might have seen the collision.
Ask them what they witnessed and find out if they’re willing to give a statement as to what they saw. If they agree to help you, take down their contact information and pass it on to your car accident attorney.
Seek Medical Attention
Getting the medical attention you need to treat your accident-related injuries isn’t just essential for your health but can also protect your right to fair compensation. When the court or insurance company reviews your case, they’ll want to see that you sought treatment for your injuries.
If they see that you went to an urgent care clinic, hospital, or doctor’s office soon after the collision, they’ll realize it was a serious incident. On the other hand, if you don’t seek medical attention after your accident, they might suspect that you’re exaggerating the crash’s impact on you and reject your claim.
Hire a Lawyer ASAP
If you were partially at fault for an automobile accident, you’ll want to contact an experienced attorney immediately. That’s because Arizona has a statute of limitations for car accident lawsuits. A.R.S. § 12-542 states that you have two years from the day of the accident to submit a suit.
Filing your lawsuit even a day later than the two-year deadline could prevent you from getting the damages you’re entitled to receive. Contacting a personal injury attorney today can give you the best chance possible at meeting the state’s requirements.
Compensation You Could Receive If You Were Partially at Fault
As mentioned earlier, you can still receive compensation for losses suffered due to a car accident, even if you were partially at fault for the incident. In situations like this, you can still receive all the damages that would be available if you were 0% at fault, but they’ll be reduced in proportion to your percentage of fault.
If your car accident claim is successful, you could receive any of the following damages:
- Current medical costs
- Future medical expenses
- Vehicle repair costs and property damage
- Lost wages
- Decreased earning ability
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of enjoyment of life
A Phoenix car accident attorney can determine which damages you’re eligible to receive and fight to obtain the maximum compensation available for each one. Reach out to a lawyer today to learn more about the financial remedies you could receive from a claim or lawsuit.
Click to contact our personal injury lawyers today
Speak With an Experienced Car Accident Lawyer
Figuring out exactly what happens when both parties are partially at fault in a car accident can be difficult. Fortunately, a car accident attorney can answer your legal questions and advise you on what to do to collect compensation for your medical bills and other losses.
To learn more about how Arizona’s laws might affect your right to compensation and get the representation you need to maximize your settlement, contact Zanes Law today. We’ll schedule a free consultation so you can discuss your case with an experienced Tucson or Phoenix car accident lawyer and find out if you’re eligible to pursue damages.
Call or text 866-499-8989 or complete a
Free Case Evaluation form