from the Superior Court in Maricopa County The Honorable Jo
Lynn Gentry, Judge No. CV 2009-001261
of the Court of Appeals, Division One 241 Ariz. 572 (App.
Brnovich, Arizona Attorney General, Dominic Draye, Solicitor
General, Daniel P. Schaack (argued) and Fred M. Zeder,
Assistant Attorneys General, Phoenix, Attorneys for State of
P. Leader (argued), The Leader Law Firm, Tucson; and
Christopher J. Zachar, Zachar Law Firm, P.C., Phoenix,
Attorneys for Diana Glazer
JUSTICE BRUTINEL authored the opinion of the Court, in which
CHIEF JUSTICE BALES, VICE CHIEF JUSTICE PELANDER, and
JUSTICES TIMMER, BOLICK, LOPEZ, and BERCH (Retired) [*] joined.
JUSTICE BRUTINEL, JUDGE
In 2012, Diana Glazer obtained a $7.8 million judgment
against the State. The State appealed, and we affirmed.
See Glazer v. State (Glazer I), 237 Ariz. 160
(2015). Here, we are asked to decide the rate at which
interest on that judgment accrued pending appeal. We hold
that the interest rate prescribed by A.R.S. § 41-622(F)
applies to the entire judgment against the State, including
any portion for which the State may be reimbursed by its
excess insurance coverage.
In 2007, a car accident badly injured Glazer and took the
lives of her husband and daughter. Glazer sued the State for
negligently failing to install a freeway median barrier or
warn of its absence, see Glazer I, 237 Ariz. at 162
¶ 3, and, in June 2012, a jury awarded her $7.8 million,
see id. at 163 ¶ 7.
Following the State's unsuccessful appeal, the Arizona
Department of Administration's risk management section
directed that the judgment should be paid from the
State's Risk Management Revolving Fund ("Revolving
Fund"). An accounting technician, however, erroneously
paid the judgment from the Construction Insurance Fund
("CIF"). When the mistake was discovered, the
Department reimbursed the CIF from the Revolving
The legislature created the Revolving Fund to pay claims
against the State and to buy insurance, among other things.
See § 41-622(A). It is funded by premiums paid
by State agencies, insurance reimbursements, and other
sources. The State self-insures for claims up to $7 million
and purchases an umbrella policy to reimburse it for payments
that exceed that amount.
In 2015, the parties filed cross-motions for summary judgment
to resolve the calculation of post-judgment interest accrued
during the pendency of the appeal. Glazer argued that,
because the judgment had initially been paid from the CIF, it
was subject to the rate of interest prescribed by A.R.S.
§ 44-1201(B) instead of the lower rate prescribed by
§ 41-622(F) for judgments paid from the Revolving Fund.
The State maintained that the lower rate applied because the
Revolving Fund had reimbursed the CIF. At the time, the
§ 44-1201(B) rate was 4.25% per year, and the §
41-622(F) rate was less than 1 %. The superior court granted
judgment for the State.
The court of appeals affirmed in part, agreeing that the
mistaken payment from the CIF had no bearing on the interest
rate. Glazer II, 242 Ariz. at 394-95 ¶¶
13-14, 17. The court noted that because the Revolving Fund
and not the CIF ultimately paid the judgment against the
State, the lower rate applied. Id. at 394 ¶ 14.
The court, however, took this analysis one step further,
finding that because the State's excess insurer would
reimburse the State for any portion of the judgment that
exceeded its self-insured retention, the State would
ultimately pay only $7 million. Id. at 395 ¶
16. The court held that "[t]he remaining $800, 000 of
the judgment will be paid by the State's insurer and does
not qualify for the reduced interest rate." Id.
at 395 ¶ 17.
We granted the State's petition for review because the
calculation of interest on judgments against the State is a
recurring legal question with statewide significance. We have
jurisdiction under article 6, ...