Does it Matter Whether Arizona is a “Fault or “No Fault” State?
Accidents happen, and sometimes your regular health insurance isn’t enough to cover the cost of treatment in your personal injury case. That’s where additional car insurance kicks in.
Arizona Is A “Fault” Insurance State
Arizona operates under a traditional “fault” auto insurance system, which means that drivers involved in Arizona car accidents have several options:
- They may file a claim with their own auto insurance company,
- They may file a claim with the at-fault driver’s auto insurance company, or
- They may file a personal injury lawsuit in court seeking damages from the at-fault driver
Determining Fault For A Car Accident
If you live in a “fault” state you need to prove fault and liability for any resulting injuries and damage in a car accident case if the fault is not straightforward, there are three things that an injured person must prove:
- A legal duty was owed: if you get behind the wheel of a car, you owe a legal duty to everyone else on the road, drivers, passengers, pedestrians, bicyclists, to operate your vehicle with a reasonable standard of care
- A duty was breached: the behavior of the driver who is supposedly at fault is compared to what a reasonable driver would have done
- The breach of duty led to injures: the driver’s carelessness had to have actually been the direct cause of the accident
No-Fault Is Mandatory In 12 states
The District of Columbia, Florida, Hawaii, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota, Pennsylvania and Utah
Car Accidents In No-Fault States
Arizona is one of the 38 “fault” states where Personal injury protection (PIP insurance), also known as med pay coverage, is considered additional optional coverage rather than mandatory. PIP eliminates injury liability claims and lawsuits in accidents in exchange for direct payment by the injured person’s insurance company regardless of who was at fault for the accident. No-fault often does not apply at all to vehicle damage. PIP can take care of what your health insurance might not cover, for ecample:
- Personal injury expenses related to the accident, such as:
- Hospital and doctor’s bills.
- In-home services and rehabilitation.
- Transportation to medical appointments.
- Lost wages, such as those due to a disability arising from the accident.
- Funeral expenses.
An experienced personal injury attorney at Kamper, Estrada & Simmons, LLP can help you make the right choices in an auto accident. We offer free consultations and contingency-fee arrangements, so our services won’t cost you a thing until there’s a successful outcome in your case.