Flagstaff, AZ Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Attorneys | Gonzales & Poirier Law Firm

Flagstaff, Arizona Injury & Wrongful Death Attorneys

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Do I Have a Personal Injury Case?

When accidents happen, personal injuries often follow. A personal injury refers to an event from which you have suffered some form of injury, either physical or psychological, as the result of an accident, whether it’s a car accident or tripping over an exposed tree root. Some of the most common types of personal injuries include slip and fall, automobile accidents, dog attack, medical malpractice, and defective products. Regardless of the type of personal injury you experience, always contact an attorney to know your rights and options.

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What to Do if Involved in a Slip & Fall Injury

Slip & Fall Caution Wet Floor Sign

This is an injury received when you fall down and hurt yourself while on someone else’s property, either a private residence or a business, due to a hazard. If you walk and trip on your own shoe string, that is not a personal injury because the only hazard was your own failure to keep your laces tied. Personal injury hazards include things like a wet floor, snow- or ice-covered sidewalks and steps, insufficient lighting, unexpected gaps in flooring, and exposed wires. If you get hurt on someone else’s property, it may be possible to recover damages for medical costs as well as pain and suffering. Similarly, if someone hurts themselves on your property, you could find yourself on the wrong end of a lawsuit.

If you fall on someone else’s property, use whatever means are at hand to document the condition of the property. Take detailed notes and, if possible, photos. Look to see if there were warning signs and whether the hazard was new (such as wet stairs due to a recent rainstorm) or of longstanding hazards like broken floor tiles.

What You Need to Know About Being Injured in a Car Accident

Woman Suffering Whiplash Pain

Arizona is a comparative fault state, meaning that fault can be apportioned to different individuals. So if you are in a car accident and the other driver was 75 percent responsible, should you sue for damages, your settlement would be reduced by your 25 percent of responsibility. Always get checked out by a doctor, even after what may seem like a minor fender bender. Many times soft tissue damage may not present for days, sometimes weeks, after an accident.

The parts of your body most vulnerable to this type of personal injury are your neck and back, and one of the more common injuries is whiplash, caused by your head suddenly jolting forward, backward, or even sideways. Historically, it was nearly impossible to definitively diagnose soft tissue damage because x-rays could not identify injuries to ligaments, muscles, and nerves. But now there’s technology doctors can use to make definitive diagnoses, so get checked out.

Who is Liable for a Dog Bite Injury in Arizona?

If a dog bites someone, the owner is held liable for the injury, including medical expenses, lost wages, and therapy expenses. If you own a dog, train it; keep it on a leash in public, and separate it from children. Even calm dogs can get spooked by small kids who may unwittingly scare or hurt them. If you get bit by a dog, always get checked out by a doctor immediately. Take photos of the injury, write down the circumstances, get the names of any witnesses, and call an attorney.

How Do I Prove Injury Due to Medical Malpractice?

Generally speaking, medical malpractice means a doctor’s care deviated from a standard level of care that other physicians would provide under the same circumstances. Proving medical malpractice nearly always requires the testimony of an expert witness, usually another doctor in the same specialty. As a rule of thumb, a plaintiff must prove there was a breach of the standard of care that another doctor would not have made under the same circumstances; proof that the injury would not have occurred except for the doctor’s mistake; and damages such as lost wages, medical bills, emotional and physical pain and suffering, or death. The burden of proof in a medical malpractice case is entirely on the plaintiff.

Can I Sue the Manufacturer of a Defective Product?

This category includes everything from faulty home appliances to prescription drugs. Although the U.S. Food and Drug Administration regulates pharmaceuticals, it is not a perfect system. There are still many prescription drugs that have not been thoroughly tested. On average, more than 300 prescription and over-the-counter drugs are recalled every year, many of which have caused illness or even death. If you believe you have been harmed by a prescription or over-the-counter drug that you have used as directed, you may be able to bring a lawsuit against the drug manufacturer or join an existing class action lawsuit.

Do not wait for your pain to subside, contact a knowledgeable attorney in personal injury law immediately to begin building your case and to provide sound legal guidance.

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