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The Differences Between Personal Injury and Bodily Injury

March 23, 2021 By John Torgenson

Personal Injury VS. Bodily Injury in Arizona

If you or somebody you love has been injured due to the careless or negligent actions of another individual, there is a chance that you are familiar with both of the following terms – “personal injury” and “bodily injury.” While both of these terms may seem very similar to most people, they actually have two different meanings when it comes to the legal aspects of various types of cases that may arise. Here, we want to discuss the difference between bodily injury and personal injury, as this could play a role in the outcome of an injury case and the compensation a victim is awarded.

Criminal Court Versus Civil Court

We do want to distinguish between the two types of courts where injuries are dealt with – criminal court and civil court. In general, the term “bodily injury” is used often when it comes to criminal cases. That is because the phrase “bodily injury” appears regularly throughout criminal statutes in Arizona. You may see somebody charged with committing a crime and causing “great bodily injury” to another person.

The term “personal injury” often comes up in civil court claims. For example, if the careless or negligent actions of another individual cause an injury to somebody else, then the injury victim will likely file a personal injury claim against the at-fault party.

We also want to distinguish between these two courts when it comes to compensation that a victim receives. In general, an injury victim will not be awarded compensation for their damages during the criminal court process (except maybe through a victims’ restitution fund). However, an injury victim is often able to receive full compensation for their injuries and other losses if they are successful in a civil court personal injury case against another party.

Bodily Injury Language Used in Insurance Policies

One of the most common areas that residents in Arizona see the term “bodily injury” has to do with their vehicle insurance policies. For example, let us take a look at the required types of insurance that drivers must have to remain legal on Arizona roadways:

  • Bodily injury liability coverage: Minimum $25,000 per person / $50,000 per accident
  • Property damage liability coverage: Minimum $15,000

We can see that every driver in this state is required to maintain bodily injury liability coverage in order to operate a vehicle. This type of coverage is in place to pay for any injuries that the driver causes if they are at fault in an accident.

We do want to point out that Arizona does not require drivers to maintain uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage, but we strongly recommend that all drivers do carry this type of insurance. This coverage will help pay for the injuries a person sustains if they are involved in a vehicle accident caused by an uninsured driver. For more information, contact a Phoenix car accident attorney at Torgenson Law today if you believe you have a case.

Car Accidents and Bodily Injury Claims in Arizona

There are various types of expenses that bodily injury coverage will pay for if you are injured in an accident caused by another driver. This can include, but is not limited to, the following:

  • Medical bills arising due to the incident
  • Any surgical care needed
  • Rehabilitation or physical therapy
  • Medical devices such as crutches, wheelchairs, or walkers
  • Lost income is a victim cannot work

Work With an Attorney

If you or somebody you love has sustained an injury caused by the careless or negligent actions of another individual, company, or entity, please seek assistance from a skilled Phoenix personal injury attorney. An attorney can use their resources and legal expertise to help you through every aspect of your claim. You do not have to do this alone.

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John Torgenson

After high school, John attended the University of Utah, graduating in 2001. John then attended his dream school, Notre Dame Law School, where he graduated, with honors, in 2004. John is licensed to fight in court for real people in the State of Arizona, the United States Federal District Court of Arizona, and the 9th Federal Circuit Court of Appeals.

Before establishing what is now Torgenson Law, John practiced in the litigation group at Fennemore Craig, the oldest law firm in Arizona, and one of the largest firms in the Southwest. Having practiced at Fennemore Craig in both the defense and plaintiff’s practice areas gives John a complete perspective of the litigation process, and valuable insight into how to efficiently and effectively advance his clients’ interests. His unique and balanced background enhances his credibility with defense lawyers, insurers, and defendants as well as with judges and arbitrators.