Catastrophic accidents can have life-altering consequences. Severe injuries may require extensive medical care and leave victims unable to work. This could make it difficult for injured parties to provide for themselves and their families.

If you were injured due to another person’s negligence, you should consider contacting a Phoenix catastrophic injury lawyer. A dedicated personal injury attorney could assess your case and help you fight for justice.

Common Types of Catastrophic Injuries

Catastrophic injuries are often the result of careless or reckless acts by a negligent third party. Potential causes of these severe injuries may include car crashes, construction accidents, or high-impact sports collisions.

Dangerous accidents such as these often have permanent or long-term impacts on a person’s health and ability to perform daily tasks. Common examples of life-altering injuries include:

Injured parties suffering from these types of conditions may lose the ability to perform basic tasks. Individuals may require long-term medical treatment or rehabilitation in order to return to their everyday lives. A seasoned local attorney familiar with catastrophic injury cases could work to determine who is responsible for an individual’s injuries and file suit to recover compensation for their specific damages.

How Catastrophic Injuries Differ from Most Injury Claims

MMDAF awards_logo1Due to their serious nature, it is often more challenging to a pursue catastrophic injury claim compared to a standard negligence case. This difficulty is due to a number of factors. First, the compensation for catastrophic injuries is often much higher than other accident claims. With so much at stake, litigation becomes more likely.

The severity of these injuries can also cause these claims to take much longer to resolve. Investigating a catastrophic injury can require more time, and building a successful case could require the use of multiple experts. These delays can lead to lengthy litigation proceedings, as the discovery phase of a catastrophic injury lawsuit can be extensive.

Establishing Liability in an Injury Claim

Before filing a claim, the injured person must prove the fault of the other party. To establish liability, plaintiffs must prove the at-fault party owed them a duty of care and breached that duty. Further, injured parties must show that the negligent person’s actions directly caused the accident and the resulting damages.

Those responsible for an accident often avoid admitting fault. A skilled catastrophic injury attorney could assist potential plaintiffs in proving negligence in their case.

Shared Fault for a Catastrophic Injury

AzTLA awards_logo4Not every catastrophic injury claim will have a clear-cut case of negligence against the at-fault party. In some cases, the injured party could also share some responsibility for their injuries.

Fortunately, a degree of responsibility will not bar an injured party’s catastrophic injury claim, as Phoenix courts abide by the legal theory known as pure comparative fault. Under pure comparative fault, a plaintiff’s negligence will not completely prevent them from obtaining financial recovery. However, it will diminish the amount of compensation the court ultimately awards them. A person who suffered a catastrophic injury could pursue a claim against another party even when they were primarily at fault.

The judge or jury deciding the case will ultimately determine the degree of fault every party is responsible for by assigning a percentage to each party. The judge or jury will then determine the total amount of damages suffered by the plaintiff and reduce that amount by the percentage of the plaintiff’s negligence.

Time Limit for Filing a Lawsuit in Phoenix

ASLA awards_logo3It is important to act quickly in an accident, as there are time limits for filing a civil suit. Under Arizona Revised Statutes § 12-542, personal injury lawsuits should be filed within two years of the accident, though there may be some exceptions. For example, if the victim is less than 18 years old at the time of the accident, they may have more time to file.

Missing the filing deadline could harm an individual’s chances of recovering damages. A diligent attorney could help injured parties manage these important dates to avoid facing negative consequences.

Damages Available

The compensation available in most personal injury lawsuits consists of economic and non-economic damages. In certain cases, punitive damages may be awarded to the victim.

Compensatory Damages

Compensatory damages are categorized as economic and non-economic. Economic damages have a specific dollar amount. These losses may include medical bills, lost wages, and property damage.

Non-economic damages are subjective losses such as pain, suffering, and diminished quality of life. Arizona is one of the few states that do not place a cap on compensatory damages.

Punitive Damages

Punitive damages are meant to punish outrageous acts or instances of intentionally to harm. A lawyer familiar with the laws governing catastrophic injury cases could determine what types of damages may be available to an injured person.

Identifying the Value of a Claim for Compensation

It is understandable for any person suffering from a catastrophic injury to be curious about the potential value of their claim. However, there is no simple and exact way for an injured person to calculate the compensation they will receive by filing a lawsuit.

Fortunately, a consultation with a catastrophic injury lawyer in the Phoenix area could provide an injured person with an idea of their claim’s value. It is important to remember that no attorney can guarantee a specific outcome in an injury case. However, a knowledgeable attorney could carefully review the facts of a particular accident and related medical records to advise an injured person regarding what to expect. Our attorney’s evaluation could provide helpful insight into the injured person’s chances of obtaining the compensation they desire and fully prepare them for the litigation process.

A Phoenix Catastrophic Injury Attorney Could Advocate for You

Doug Zanes

Doug Zanes, Phoenix Catastrophic Injury Lawyer

Severe injuries can be physically and emotionally overwhelming. You should not attempt to take on the legal claims process on your own, especially while you are still recovering from your injuries. Contact a Phoenix catastrophic injury lawyer who could advocate for you and improve your chances of success in court.

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