While you forgo some of your rights while being held by law enforcement, you are still entitled to certain protections. Law enforcement representatives should provide you with essential medical care and ensure that you’re treated with a reasonable amount of care. Facilities that fail to protect you from preventable injuries can face legal consequences for their negligence

You can work with our Phoenix, AZ, jail injury attorneys at Zanes Law Injury Lawyers to take a negligent institution to civil court. Our team will fight for reparations on your behalf, making it easier for you to pay for any medical care you may need.

When to Call a Jail Injury Lawyer

Incarceration does not rob you of your right to your health and well-being. No matter what crime you’ve been accused or convicted of, you are entitled to a certain degree of healthcare. Similarly, employees at an incarcerating institution must treat you with a reasonable amount of care, as dictated by their duty of care.

What does this mean if you’re injured while incarcerated, then? If it seems as though negligence may be to blame, you can hold your incarcerating institution liable for your losses. Phoenix’s jail injury lawyers can help you fight for your right to compensation under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA).

The FTCA allows incarcerated individuals to circumvent what is known as government immunity. However, the Prison Litigation Reform Act also dictates that you must explore all your possible administrative options before you pursue a civil suit. You don’t have to go through your administrative options alone, though. You can contact an attorney as soon as you’re injured. 

Responding to Injuries Sustained in Jail

The injuries you sustain while in confinement can be physical, legal, or emotional. With that in mind, you may have the right to pursue legal action for instances of:

  • Assault or physical injury
  • Denied medical treatment
  • Habeas corpus
  • Wrongful death

The rise of COVID-19 cases in today’s jails and prisons has also opened up new personal injury suits for inmates exposed to dangerous conditions. If you believe an institution violated your Eighth Amendment right and unduly exposed you to COVID-19, you can sue for reparations. 

If you want to pursue legal action for a jail injury, you need to file a legal complaint. Phoenix jail injury attorneys can help you bring together the information that a county clerk needs to consider your losses.

Understanding Your Rights While in Confinement

Jail time and convictions restrict your right to movement. They do not strip your right to reasonable care. If you want to pursue legal action for injuries sustained while in the care of a government body, you must prove to a judge that an institution actively endangered your well-being. You can do this by establishing a duty of care. This duty dictates:

  • Individuals at your institution knew you were in danger
  • Individuals are your institution were in a position to limit or control that danger
  • Representatives refused to intervene in incidents resulting in your injuries

An institution’s employees have a duty to intervene if they think an institution’s or inmate’s behavior may result in your harm. Failure to do so can make an institution liable for your injuries.

That said, these institutions also have common defenses that they can use to contest liability. For example, attacks that are short-lived or that take place in private parts of an institution may be more difficult to bring to court. Fortunately, we fight back against allegations that might deny you your rightful compensation.

Holding the Right Parties Liable for Jail Injuries

Depending on the damages you suffered, jail injury lawyers in Phoenix can choose to hold either an entire institution or an individual liable for your jail injury losses. 

You can bring another inmate to civil court if that individual engaged in behavior that resulted in your harm. You cannot, however, bring an individual prison guard or official to court. Rather, these individuals are protected by their offices. If you want to pursue compensation for your losses, you’ll need to hold the institution accountable in court.

Requesting Compensation for Jail Injuries

The compensation to which you may be entitled after a jail injury can include:

  • The cost of essential medical care
  • Reimbursed fines, if deemed inappropriate
  • Property damage
  • Emotional damages, including PTSD
  • Long-term or short-term disabilities
  • Wrongful death and loss of consortium

You can fight for a personal injury settlement via a traditional trial or negotiations with your allegedly-liable party. 

If you go to trial and a judge determines that your mistreatment was particularly egregious, the court may award you punitive damages. Do not include anticipated punitive damages in your initial estimate, though. These awards are only distributed at a judge’s discretion.

Arizona’s Personal Injury Statute of Limitations and Your Jail Time

Arizona puts a limit on how much time you can take to file a lawsuit for a jail injury. If you feel you’ve suffered a personal injury via false incarceration, A.R.S. § 12-541 describes your statute of limitations. You will have one year from the day your injury takes place to file your suit with a county clerk.

All other physical injuries fall under A.R.S. § 12-542. You have two years to act on your applicable losses. 

The speed at which these deadlines can pass you by makes it important for you to contact a jail injury attorney in Phoenix, AZ, as soon as you suspect your rights have been violated. We can work with you despite your circumstances, offering you the legal guidance you need to challenge authoritative misconduct.

What to Expect After Filing a Jail Injury Suit

You can expect an attorney to file your complaint with a county clerk within Arizona’s applicable statute of limitations. Provided that a court considers and approves your complaint, you can then enter into negotiations regarding your losses. Alternatively, you can take your losses to trial.

Negotiations allow you to present evidence of misconduct to the party you want to hold liable for your losses. We can fight for compensation based on the economic value of your damages. Trials can lead to much the same result, provided that you can convince a judge and jury of the wrongs done against you.

There are some circumstances in which injury via improper arrest can see a judge reduce or overturn your sentence. To determine whether these options are on the table or not, sit down with an attorney and look over the evidence of misconduct you’ve collected.

You Deserve Protection from Injuries in Confinement

Incarceration should not rob you of your health and safety. Any staff members who refuse to uphold your care can make those parties liable for any injuries you sustain while under their care. If you endured injuries or medical neglect while incarcerated, you can take liable parties to court for damages.

Our jail injury attorneys in Phoenix, AZ, at Zanes Law Injury Lawyers are prepared to hold a jail or similar institution liable for your injuries. Contact us over the phone or through our website to learn more.

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