After the chaos from an accident has dissipated, you’re likely to have a lot of questions about the accident and what happens next.
Here are answers to the most common car accident questions people in Arizona ask us:
Q6: Should I go to the doctor even if I’m not injured?
A: You might feel fine after an accident, but everyone involved in the incident should still seek medical attention. You may have sustained an injury that’s not readily apparent. Further, doctors are trained to recognize issues that might not manifest themselves for days or weeks after the accident.
In many cases, these visits are covered by your insurance company, and if the other party is at fault, then their insurance provider will pay for your treatment. It’s recommended to avoid settling any claims before you’ve been thoroughly examined by a medical professional.
Q5: Do I have to go to court if I file a personal injury claim?
A: It depends. If the other driver’s insurance company agrees to pay the damages outlined by your representation, then the matter can be closed and settled without court involvement. However, if there is a dispute over the amount, court involvement may be necessary.
Q4: I wasn’t wearing a seatbelt when the accident happened, and I was injured. Can I still receive compensation for damages?
Yes, however, they may be reduced. Arizona is one of 16 states that allow defendants to use the “seat belt defense.” This means that the amount you’re able to cover for damages will be less than if you had been wearing your seatbelt.
Keep in mind that it’s the law to wear a seat belt in Phoenix if you’re in the front seat. However, Arizona law does not require passengers in the back seat to be buckled up. Still, it’s helpful to remember that this could jeopardize the amount you’ll receive in an injury claim, so we encourage everyone in the vehicle to wear their seatbelt.
It’s estimated that up to 132,000 injuries could be prevented annually in the US if everyone wore their seatbelt. Therefore, if you and your passengers buckle up, you have a better chance of avoiding an injury.
Q3: What should I do if I suspect the accident was my fault?
A: Perhaps you ran a red light, rolled through a stop sign, or there was a car in your blind spot when you made a lane change. You might be quick to accept blame for the resulting accident, but never admit fault to anyone.
Stick to the facts when it comes to reporting the incident to your insurance company and the police. It is their job to evaluate the details of the case and determine who was at fault and to what extent.
If you apologize to the other driver and accept blame for the incident, then that information can serve as evidence if your case goes to trial. It can be challenging to remain calm and objective, especially if someone was injured and you are reasonably sure that it’s your fault. Study our guide on the 12 Steps to Take after an Accident so that you know what to do when the time comes, and you can act rationally without letting emotions get the best of you.
Q2: My airbags didn’t deploy in the collision? Can I sue the car manufacturer?
A: A manufacturer could potentially be liable for a product liability claim, especially if they did not take proper action to inform consumers and correct the situation. Determining whether the manufacturer is responsible involves working with an attorney who will also consult with an engineer to evaluate whether the airbags should have deployed and if the car manufacturer is at fault.
Q1: If I’m in an accident, should I work with a lawyer to file a lawsuit, or do I just let the insurance company handle it?
A: Most of the time, your insurance company will negotiate with the other party’s insurance company and come to a settlement. However, in some cases, you might want to have your own attorney on your side to help represent you. If in doubt, you should reach out to an accident attorney for advice on this matter as you may be able to get more compensation when working with an attorney.
If you’ve been injured in an accident, don’t hesitate to contact us. At the Folger Law Firm, we are dedicated to helping our clients seek the compensation they deserve.
We work on a contingency basis, so you won’t pay fees unless we recover for you.
Contact us today to learn more.
Folger Law Firm – Phoenix Accident Lawyers
11811 N Tatum Blvd #3031, Phoenix, AZ 85028