Filing a car accident claim against another party or with an insurance carrier can seem like a confusing process, at least initially. That’s understandable. Filing a car accident claim is not something many people do on a regular basis, and there are specific processes in place for doing so. Here, we want to examine the car accident claim filing process and discuss the possible routes a person could take to recover compensation for their losses.
Arizona Car Accident Reporting Requirements
As soon as any traffic collision occurs in Arizona, we encourage you to contact law enforcement officials. If you are in a municipality, contact the municipal law enforcement agency. However, if you are not in a municipal area, you may have to deal with county or state officials.
Police officers are required to report any vehicle accident that results in an injury, death, or property damage of more than $1000, per Arizona law. The law also requires a report made if any citation was issued to a driver. The vast majority of vehicle accidents that occur will fall under these requirements.
If you are involved in an accident that meets these criteria, the police officer will typically file the written report within 24 hours after the incident. You need this accident report for your insurance carrier. One of the first things the insurance carrier will do is ask whether or not the incident was reported to the police. The claims adjusters will work to obtain the accident report so they can process any claims related to the incident.
What Happens After the Crash?
After the incident occurs, it is crucial that you take the steps needed to preserve the integrity of the claim. We encourage you to reach out to a Phoenix car accident attorney who can examine the facts of your case and help you determine the best steps moving forward. You may need a lawyer to help recover compensation on your behalf, depending on the complexity of the claim.
Typically, you need to report the incident to your insurance carrier as soon as possible after the collision. However, when you make your initial report to the insurance carrier, you do not need to go into much detail. In fact, just let the insurance carrier know that the incident occurred and give them the contact information of the other parties involved. Let your insurance carrier know that you are seeking treatment for your injuries and have them refer any further questions to your Phoenix personal injury attorney.
Can You Recover Compensation?
If the negligent actions of another driver caused the collision, you may be able to recover compensation. In order to recover compensation for injuries and property damage expenses, you will have to show that the other driver was indeed at fault, which involves establishing various elements of negligence. An attorney will usually work to recover both economic and non-economic damages on your behalf, which can include the following for a car accident:
- Emergency medical bills related to the collision
- Coverage of any follow-up medical expenses
- Lost wages if a victim cannot work while recovering
- Property damage expenses
- Physical and emotional pain and suffering damages
- Loss of enjoyment of life damages
The total amount of compensation a person receives for a successful car accident claim in Arizona will vary depending on specific factors related to their case.