If you have ever been in an accident, you know how frustrating it can be to go back and forth with the insurance companies and their adjusters over your damages. In minor accidents that only involve property damage, the process typically involves your repair bills being forwarded to the insurance company. The auto body shop charges for labor and parts, and that is what is covered. You may have a slight out-of-pocket expense, but these cases are usually straightforward.
When injuries are factored into an accident, the claims process becomes much more complicated. With injuries to people, the process is not as simple as a damaged car—there is no set market price for repairing a broken femur. Remember, with a personal injury claim, the following damages are considered:
- Medical expenses
- Property Damage
- Lost income related to injuries
- Temporary or permanent disability
- Non-economic damages such as pain and suffering
Of that list, property damages and medical expenses are the only damages that may have clear monetary value. For other damages, the insurance company has specific equations to get a “ball park” of what a reasonable settlement should be. Typically, the adjust will add up all medical expenses, and depending on the severity of the injuries, multiply that figure as much as 10 times. This is how “pain and suffering” and other non-economic damages can be estimated.
After reaching a figure, lost wages and future potential earnings are also calculated and added to the amount. After a final amount is determined, adjustments will be made to accommodate for any comparative negligence on your behalf. Arizona practices pure comparative negligence, meaning that if you were 25% at fault for your accident, you will only receive 75% of the amount the insurance company agrees on.
In order to ensure that you receive the maximum compensation for your injuries, it always helps to have an experienced personal injury attorney on your side—contact us today for a free consultation to learn how we can strengthen your case.