Do I Need to Hire a Personal Injury Attorney?

If you’re involved in a car accident, will you know what to do next? After you’ve received medical care and talked with your insurance company, how can you protect your rights?

After being involved in a car accident or any other type of personal injury accident, you should call a personal injury attorney. These professionals can help you understand your case, assess its full value, and if needed, represent you in court. If you’re the victim of a personal injury case in Colorado, Call Paul today.

But how exactly do you know whether or not you need a personal injury attorney? If you believe you’re partially at fault, could pursuing a lawsuit even hurt you? To understand these various aspects, let’s break down what a personal injury attorney does and how these lawyers can benefit you and your case.

At the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm, we’re dedicated to defending the rights of anyone involved in a personal injury accident, including car accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, wrongful death cases, and more. Even if you believe you’re partially at fault, don’t hesitate to give us a call. Our team of specialized personal injury lawyers will do what it takes to ensure that you receive fair compensation for your injuries.

WHAT IS A PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY?

A personal injury attorney is a lawyer who provides legal representation for any plaintiff who claims they suffered physical or psychological injury as the result of the actions or negligence of another person or organization. Personal injury lawyers specialize in a field known as tort law, which protects and compensates those who have been injured by negligent, intentional, or reckless actions. These laws are designed to compensate the victims and to discourage others from committing similar infractions.

WHAT TYPES OF CASES DO PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEYS HANDLE?

Personal injury law covers a wide range of accidents, which can make it confusing to know whether your case falls under this category of law. The best way to know for sure is to call a personal injury law firm and provide details about your case. Since most Colorado law firms provide free consultations, this will only cost you a few minutes of your time.

Here are some of the common types of cases handled by a personal injury lawyer:

    • Car and truck accidents.
    • Motorcycle accidents.
    • Pedestrian accidents.
    • Drunk driving accidents.
    • Bicycle accidents.
    • Brain injuries.
    • Head or neck injuries.
    • Slip and fall accidents.
    • Bad faith insurance.
    • Wrongful death cases.
    • Defective products.
    • Medical malpractice.

Any accident where injury was caused by a liable party (which could be an individual, company, or government organization) is fair game for a personal injury attorney. If you aren’t sure whether your suit falls under this umbrella, it never hurts to make a quick call to learn more.

BENEFITS OF HIRING A PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY

Many people hesitate to hire a personal injury attorney because they believe their insurance company will handle everything. However, this often isn’t the case. Insurance companies will try to limit the amount they pay out—even on valid claims. After all, insurance companies are still working to make a profit.

Some plaintiffs may also hesitate to call because they don’t think their accident necessitates financial compensation. Deciding whether to pursue compensation is difficult, but you shouldn’t simply ignore your accident or assume your insurance company has your best interests in mind. To understand the full complexities of your case and the full financial value of your claim, you’ll want to work with a personal injury attorney.

Here are some of the benefits of hiring a professional personal injury lawyer:

1. Legal issues are complicated. A personal injury lawyer can help you understand the complexities of your case and help you choose the best options for your case.

2. They can help you receive the proper medical care.

3. They’ll stand up to other lawyers and insurance companies.

4. Personal injury attorneys are experts at the art of negotiation.

5. They can help you make a rational, objective decision.

6. They can help you receive financial compensation fast.

7. Peace of mind–after an accident, the last thing you should worry about is handling your own lawsuit.

DO I NEED TO HIRE A PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY?

While every personal injury accident is unique, most stand to benefit from the knowledge and expertise of a personal injury attorney. For example, if you work with a truck accident law firm, they’ll know the ins and outs of these types of suits and give you the best chance of winning. Even if they don’t end up taking your case, they can outline the legal aspects of your accident and help you determine your next step, and refer you to another firm.

To help you determine whether or not you need to hire a personal injury attorney, consider how you’d answer the following questions.

1. How bad are your injuries?

Take a slip and fall accident as an example. Let’s say you slide on a wet floor at a store and only slightly bruise your elbow: a minor injury like this likely won’t warrant a personal injury suit. However, if you slip on the wet floor and break a bone or get a concussion. These injuries can be expensive, time-consuming, and impact your career. These are all reasons that you’ll want to get a personal injury attorney involved with your case.

2. Have you determined liability?

Who or what caused your accident? In many accidents, it may not always be crystal clear and many states have shared liability laws that disperse liability between multiple parties. These laws impact the financial compensation parties are eligible to receive. Even if the other party is clearly liable, they can deny responsibility, hoping you don’t seek legal representation.

3. Can you afford all your medical expenses?

Whether it’s a car accident, motorcycle accident, pedestrian accident, or any other type of personal injury incident, the medical expenses can pile up fast. If you have trouble affording these expenses, consider calling a personal injury attorney. Most personal injury lawsuits include compensation for medical expenses, both physical and emotional, and can potentially cover lost wages caused by the accident.

4. Are you having problems with your insurance company?

As previously mentioned, your insurance company may not always have your best interests in mind. Following an insurance claim—even one that is completely valid—your insurance company may refuse to honor the claim, provide only a partial payment, or fail to thoroughly investigate the incident.

These are all examples of bad faith insurance when an insurance provider fails to hold up their end of the bargain. Even if your insurance company simply won’t return your calls or delays the process, you’ll want to call a personal injury attorney to back you up.

CONCLUSION – DO I NEED TO HIRE A PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY?

If you believe you’re the victim of a personal injury accident, don’t wait to reach out to an experienced and professional personal injury attorney. These specialized lawyers will help you understand your case, determine its true value, and if needed, fight for you at trial.

If you Call Paul, you’ll receive immediate and comprehensive support. We’ll meet with you on your schedule and begin researching your case without hesitation. Additionally, the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm operates strictly on contingency fees. This means that we only get paid if you do.

Contact us at the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm today to schedule a free consultation. We look forward to helping you receive the justice you deserve.

What Kinds of Cases Do Personal Injury Attorneys Handle?

Most of us have heard of a personal injury attorney, but do you know what they actually do? A personal injury attorney provides legal representation for those involved in personal injury cases. When seeking legal counsel or representation, it’s important that you first find a lawyer who specializes in your type of case. It might seem like just any lawyer could handle your case, but for the best chances of winning, you’ll want to find a lawyer with experience and expertise in your case.

In this blog, we’re taking a closer look at what exactly a personal injury attorney does and what kinds of cases these lawyers typically handle. If any of these cases sound familiar to someone you’ve experienced, don’t wait any longer—Call Paul to learn more about your rights and whether or not you may be entitled to legal compensation.

If you’re in Colorado and believe you’re the victim of a personal injury incident, don’t hesitate to reach out to an experienced personal injury lawyer in Denver. The Paul Wilkinson Law Firm is dedicated to defending the rights of anyone involved in a personal injury case, whether it’s a car accident, bicycle accident, truck accident, or any other type of personal injury.

Even if you believe you’re partially at fault, don’t hesitate to give us a call. Our firm will educate you on what to do next and show you your options and determine whether or not your case is entitled to any form of legal compensation.

WHAT IS A PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY?

A personal injury attorney is a professional lawyer who provides legal assistance to someone who has suffered harm or injury as the result of another party’s negligence. The negligent party could be an individual person, a company, a government agency, or any other type of legal entity. Personal injury attorneys work on a variety of cases, but they primarily work in a field of law known as tort law.

WHAT IS TORT LAW?

According to the Legal Information Institute, a tort is an “act or omission that gives rise to injury or harm to another and amounts to a civil wrong for which courts impose liability.” In this context, “harm” references a loss suffered by the individual, and “injury” describes the invasion of your legal rights.

Thus, tort law is a set of laws that guide legislation in these types of cases. While they vary by state, most tort laws are consistent. There are three primary categories for tort law: intentional, negligent, and strict liability torts.

Here’s a brief look at each of these primary categories:

  1. Intentional torts: when a party causes intentional harm or injury to an individual (ex: physically assaulting someone in a fight).
  2. Negligent torts: when the harm or injury arises out of neglect or as an accident (ex: being involved in a car accident).
  3. Strict liability torts: when a defendant is liable for committing an action (ex: creating and selling a defective product).

WHAT KINDS OF CASES DO PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEYS HANDLE?

In the aftermath of an accident, it’s normal to feel overwhelmed. Where do I receive the proper medical care? What if I can’t immediately go back to work? How do I deal with my insurance company and what should I tell them? Finding the right lawyer can help you answer all these questions and more. The key is finding the right attorney to represent you for your case.

To see if a personal injury attorney is right for you and your case, here’s a look at the kinds of cases that these attorneys normally handle:

1. Car accidents.

Car accidents are one of the leading causes of personal injury in the United States. In fact, according to Driver Knowledge, there are roughly 6 million car accidents in the United States every year. As a result of these crashes, approximately 90 people lose their lives in car accidents each year.

2. Truck accidents.

The potential for injury is particularly high when there is a crash between a passenger vehicle and a commercial vehicle like a semi-trailer truck. Since commercial vehicles are represented by companies and their teams of lawyers, you’ll want an experienced personal injury attorney in your corner following a truck accident.

3. Bicycle accidents.

Riding a bicycle is an excellent way to get exercise, reduce traffic, and save money on gas and car repairs. However, it can also be dangerous as there are accidents between bicyclists and motor vehicles every day. In fact, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA), about a third of all bicycle accidents occur when they are struck by a motor vehicle.

4. Pedestrian accidents.

These personal injury cases occur whenever there is an accident between a pedestrian (someone walking near a road) and a motor vehicle or motorcycle. Often, these accidents prove to be the most critical because a pedestrian has little to no protection compared to someone operating a car or motorcycle. Common types of pedestrian accidents include aggressive driving, driving under the influence, or vehicles failing to yield or stop at a crosswalk or stop sign.

5. Bad faith insurance.

What is bad faith? The purpose of an insurance company is to protect yourself and your property by paying out on a claim. However, insurance companies are still for-profit companies, which means that they often try to reduce how much they pay on claims (or avoid paying entirely). If this happens to you, a personal injury attorney can represent you and make sure your insurance company holds up its end of the bargain.

6. Medical malpractice.

Everyone in the healthcare field, especially doctors and nurses, has a responsibility to provide an appropriate level of care. When doctors deviate from best practices or fail to provide the appropriate care, this may be a medical malpractice case. Examples of medical malpractice include misdiagnosis, failure to diagnose, misinterpreting lab results, or calling for unnecessary surgeries.

7. Wrongful death.

A wrongful death case is the most extreme type of medical malpractice. This type of personal injury case occurs whenever someone loses their life due to the negligence of another person or entity (such as a company, hospital, or government agency).

CONCLUSION – WHAT KINDS OF CASES DO PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEYS HANDLE?

If you’re the victim of a personal injury case, the negligent party should be held responsible. By hiring an experienced personal injury attorney, you’ll have the best chance of ensuring that this happens. Additionally, you stand the best chance of receiving the complete financial compensation that your case warrants.

Whether you’re the victim of a car accident, truck accident, pedestrian accident, bad faith insurance, or medical malpractice, a personal injury lawyer can provide critical assistance. They can help you understand your rights, assess your individual case, and if needed, fight for your case in court.

After a personal injury accident, the last thing you should be worried about is how you’ll pay your medical bills or legal fees. However, at the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm, we operate strictly on contingency fees. What does this mean for you? Essentially, it means that we only get paid if we win. That’s how confident we are in our experience and capabilities.

Contact us at the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm today to schedule a free consultation to learn more about your rights, your case, and what we can do for you. Let our team of experienced personal injury attorneys help you on the road to recovery.

Is it Worth it to Hire a Personal Injury Attorney?

In the aftermath of a personal injury accident, your head is most likely swirling with questions. What do I tell my insurance company? How much will medical care cost? Is it worth it to hire a personal injury attorney in Denver? In the event of a car accident, bicycle accident, truck accident, or any other personal injury case, you’ll definitely want the assistance and representation of a professional, experienced personal injury lawyer.

In this blog, we take a closer look at reasons why you should seriously consider hiring a personal injury attorney for your case. While you’re not technically required to do so, an experienced attorney can help you understand your rights, deal with insurance companies, and even help you find the proper medical care. If necessary, they’ll take your case to court.

Here at the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm, we’ve assembled a team of experienced personal injury attorneys who aren’t afraid to go to court to see that your rights are defended. Even if you believe you were partially at fault, don’t hesitate to reach out and Call Paul.

The Paul Wilkinson Law Firm will provide a free consultation, assess your case, and help you determine the best course of action. If your case is eligible, we’ll see that you receive the financial compensation that you deserve.

WHAT EXACTLY IS A PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY?

A personal injury attorney is a lawyer who provides legal services for those who have suffered injury or harm from the negligence of another person or entity (such as a business or government agency). Personal injury lawyers work in the field of law known as tort law.

A tort is an act that causes injury or harm that amounts to a civil wrong where the responsible party can be held liable. Examples include truck accidents, medical malpractice, product liability issues, and much more.

WHAT TYPES OF CASES WILL A PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY HANDLE?

Tort law covers a wide range of legal cases, so it can be difficult in some situations to know if a personal injury lawyer is right for you. If you’re unsure, reach out to a personal injury attorney and ask if they have experience working on cases similar to yours.

Here are the most common types of tort law cases that personal injury lawyers handle:

· Car accidents.
· Truck accidents.
· Texting while driving accidents.
· Motorcycle accidents.
· Bicycle accidents.
· Pedestrian accidents.
· Bad faith insurance.
· Product liability.
· Drunk driving accidents.
· Uninsured motorist.
· Head and neck injuries.
· Spinal cord and back injuries.

IS IT WORTH IT TO HIRE A PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY?

While each case is individual, we believe that it’s always worth it to hire a personal injury attorney. Even if your case doesn’t go to trial, it makes a major difference to have a professional in your corner.

Most of us aren’t well-versed in legal processes and jargon—this is where the professionalism and experience of an attorney become essential. They can help you navigate your case, deal with insurance companies and other lawyers, and give you the best chance of receiving financial compensation.

Additionally, many personal injury attorneys work on contingency fees. This means that they take a percentage of the settlement as payment and only get paid if you win your case. Even if you choose not to go forward with a personal injury attorney, they can provide vital information to help you determine the best course of action.

WHAT DOES A PERSONAL INJURY LAWYER DO?

An experienced personal injury lawyer can make a vital difference in the success of your case—but what exactly do they do? Here’s a look at some of the advantages of having an experienced personal injury attorney working for you:

1. Assess your case.

The first thing a personal injury lawyer will do is assess your case. This will usually occur during an initial free consultation where the lawyer will determine if they’re a good fit for taking on your case. They’ll help you translate complex legal jargon and lay out your options for you.

2. Help you receive medical attention.

Since personal injury attorneys are experienced working with individuals involved in a range of personal injury cases, they understand the medical process and can help you find the right care. They may even be able to refer you to specific doctors or physical therapists that they’ve worked with and trust.

3. Gather information and evidence.

If you agree to work with a personal injury attorney, one of the first things they’ll do is gather information about your case and evidence on your behalf. This could include medical records, police reports, and physical evidence from the accident.

4. Deal with the insurance companies.

While insurance companies are obligated to honor your claims, they’re still for-profit companies, which means that they will try to reduce their payouts in any way that they can. Insurance companies have entire teams of experienced lawyers who are paid to do this very thing. Personal injury lawyers will negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf. For example, if you hire an attorney with a truck accident law firm, you won’t have to deal with the trucking company’s lawyers. If you don’t know whose insurance to use after an auto accident you can check out our complete guide.

5. Take your case to trial.

If a settlement can’t be reached, a personal injury lawyer will take your case to trial and fight for you in court. This is where it’s absolutely critical to have an experienced and skilled attorney on your side. Courtroom strategies, such as speaking before a judge and presenting evidence in a trial, should not be handled lightly.

HOW TO SELECT THE RIGHT PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY

Once you’ve decided that you need a personal injury attorney, the next question becomes: how do I pick the right one? There’s no easy answer to this question as the “right” personal injury lawyer will depend on varying factors, including the specifics of your case. However, there are certain things to look for when selecting the right personal injury attorney.

1. Experience.

Make sure that your personal injury attorney is not just experienced, but experienced taking on (and winning) cases similar to yours. Check their track record to see how often they win these cases and feel free to ask them how often they settle and how often they end up going to trial.

2. Professionalism.

Small details can reveal a lot about an attorney. How quickly do they respond? Do they treat you with respect? How does their office appear? Do their website and advertising present a professional and confident image? All of these details will reflect the professionalism of your attorney.

3. Time and resources.

What resources will this personal accident law firm be committing to your case? Will your personal injury attorney handle your case directly or hand it off to an associate? You should also ask how long these cases usually last. While they usually won’t be able to give you an exact date, they should be able to provide an estimate.

CONCLUSION – IS IT WORTH IT TO HIRE A PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY?

You should never have to face a personal injury accident alone. Juggling medical bills, insurance calls, and personal distress can be overwhelming for anyone—the last thing you need to do is add the stress of handling a legal case onto your plate. This is why it’s always worth it to hire a personal injury attorney.

These professionals will assess your case and help you understand your rights. Especially for complex cases, such as multi-car accidents or bad faith insurance, it can be challenging to know who is at fault and the appropriate next steps. A good personal injury attorney will communicate with you clearly and consistently and keep you updated on your case. While many personal injury cases are settled out of court, they should also be willing to defend your case if it ends up going to trial.

Finding the right personal injury attorney is essential for the success of your case. Make sure your personal injury lawyer has the right experience to help you win your case.

If you’re located in Colorado and have needed an experienced and professional personal injury attorney, contact the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm. In just a matter of minutes, we can give you a free consultation and help you understand your rights and determine if your case is eligible for financial compensation. For those in need of legal assistance, don’t wait to Call Paul.

How to Choose a Personal Injury Attorney

Following a personal injury accident, there will be countless thoughts and concerns running through your head. But don’t let these concerns prevent you from contacting a personal injury attorney. After you’ve received the proper medical care, this is one of the first calls you should make—and it could end up being the most important one.

In this blog, we walk you through how to choose a personal injury attorney. This is an important decision and will inevitably affect the outcome of your personal injury case. Choosing the right attorney should not be taken lightly, which is why we’re guiding you through some things to look for and specific questions you should ask. You want to ensure that you hire a personal injury lawyer with a proven track record, experience handling similar cases, communicates openly and frequently, and aren’t afraid to take your case to trial.

The Paul Wilkinson Law Firm is dedicated to defending the rights of anyone involved in a personal injury case. Whether you’re involved in a car accident, bicycle accident, wrongful death case, or any other type of personal injury, we’re here for you.

Even if you think you were partly at fault, don’t hesitate to give us a call to learn more about your specific case. Our team of personal injury attorneys will guide you through what you should do next and determine whether or not your case is entitled to legal compensation. To learn more about your rights and what to do next, it only takes a few minutes to Call Paul.

WHAT IS A PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY?

Before determining how to choose the right personal injury attorney, it’s helpful to first understand what exactly they do. A personal injury lawyer provides legal services to those who have been injured or harmed as the result of the negligence of another person or entity (such as a government agency or business). Personal injury attorneys are experienced in working on a wide range of cases; however, these lawyers primarily work in the field known as tort law.

WHAT IS TORT LAW?

Let’s break this down. According to the Cornell Law School, a tort is “an act or omission that gives rise to injury or harm to another and amounts to a civil wrong for which courts impose liability.” In this legal definition, an “injury” is an invasion of your rights while “harm” is understood as a loss suffered by the individual.

Tort law, then, aims to provide relief and legal compensation to those who have suffered injury or harm from a third party who could be deemed liable or legally responsible. There are many examples of personal injury cases, including car accidents, product liability, medical malpractice, or even wrongful death. While tort law does change from state to state, most courts use the Restatement of Torts as a legal guideline.

WHAT CASES DOES A PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY HANDLE?

In addition to the examples previously listed, there are many different types of cases that are commonly handled by personal injury attorneys. Some may specialize in certain types of cases like a car accident law firm while others may cover many areas. Here are some of the most common cases these lawyers will work on:

  • Car accidents.
  • Bicycle accidents.
  • Truck accidents.
  • Drunk driving accidents.
  • Medical malpractice.
  • Product liability.
  • Pedestrian accidents.
  • Motorcycle accidents.
  • Head and brain injury.
  • Back and spinal cord injury.
  • Bad faith insurance.
  • Texting while driving accidents.

While this covers some of the most common types of personal injury cases, it should be noted that this list is not comprehensive. Reach out to an experienced personal injury attorney to see if they can handle your specific case.

HOW TO CHOOSE A PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY

As a leading personal injury attorney in Denver, we know how confusing life can be in the aftermath of an accident. With medical bills and insurance calls, you may simply just wish for the whole incident to go away. But, regrettably, it isn’t that simple. Working with a personal injury attorney can not only help you manage medical bills and your insurance company, but they can also help you receive financial compensation for your case.

But how do you pick the right one? Like any other important decision, it’s crucial to first do your homework before committing to a personal injury attorney. Research the firm, their attorneys, and their case history. Do they commonly take on cases similar to yours? If so, what’s their success rate? You should also determine whether or not they are willing to defend your case in court. While many personal injury cases are settled out of court, you still want an attorney who is both willing and adequately experienced to fight for you in a trial.

Never rush into a decision and avoid those personal injury lawyers who guarantee results or make quick promises. Regardless of the details, no case is absolutely certain. Make sure you select a personal injury attorney with experience (especially on similar cases), professionalism, and who communicates clearly and consistently.

QUESTIONS YOU SHOULD ASK A PERSONAL INJURY LAWYER

There are certain questions you should ask a personal injury lawyer before having them formally take your case. Choosing the right attorney will save you time, resources, and help your case go as smoothly as possible. Here are some questions you should keep in mind when speaking with a personal injury attorney:

  1. What are your fees? (Most personal injury lawyers work on contingency fees, which means that they only get paid if you win your case).
  2. Do you have a history with personal injury cases similar to mine?
  3. How much time and how many resources will you dedicate to my case?
  4. Will you be personally handling my case? (Sometimes, personal injury lawyers will hand off cases to less experienced associates).
  5. How long does it usually take to resolve a case like mine?
  6. Will my case go to trial?
  7. What is your firm’s success rate going to trial?
  8. What is my case worth? (While your personal injury lawyer may not initially have an exact number, they should be able to provide a rough estimate).
  9. What is my personal role in this lawsuit?
  10. Can I speak to any of your previous clients?

These are just a few of the important questions you should ask your personal injury attorney in the preliminary phase of your case. A reputable personal injury lawyer will welcome these questions and strive for open and clear communication. If they’re unable to answer some of these questions, this may be an early red flag.

CONCLUSION – HOW TO CHOOSE A PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY

If you find yourself involved in an accident, even one that you may be partially at fault for, you shouldn’t hesitate to reach out to an experienced personal injury attorney. These professionals can help you assess your case, determine whether or not you’re eligible for financial compensation, and even help you receive the proper medical care.

Finding the right personal injury attorney is an important first step. Take your time to research the firm and the individual attorneys to ensure they have the experience and success on cases similar to your own.

If you’re in Colorado and you’re involved in a personal injury case, contact us at the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm today to schedule a free consultation. It takes just a few minutes to learn more about the options available for you and your case. Don’t wait to Call Paul and allow us to help you on the road to recovery.

When to Get an Attorney for a Car Accident

In the event of a car accident, it can be confusing to know exactly what to do next. Do I call 911? Do I need to file a police report? If there aren’t any major injuries or damages, do I have to call my insurance company? And of course—do I even need a car accident attorney?

In most cases, the answer to the last question is yes. Even if the car crash seems insignificant and the fault seems obvious, a car accident attorney can provide the knowledge, experience, and care to help you navigate the aftermath of the crash. If the situation warrants it, these professionals can even help you receive financial compensation.

In this blog, we’re taking a closer look at car accidents and when you should definitely consider calling a car accident attorney. We also help to clarify whether or not you can settle a car accident claim without a lawyer. Hopefully, you never find yourself in a car accident, but if you do, don’t hesitate to reach out and Call Paul  for more information.

Here at the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm, we’re dedicated to defending the rights of anyone involved in car accidents, truck accidents, bike accidents, and many other types of personal injury cases. Even if you believe you’re partially at fault, give us a call so we can help you understand your rights and whether or not you’re entitled to legal compensation.

MOST COMMON TYPES OF CAR ACCIDENTS

According to data accumulated by Driver Knowledge, there are roughly 6 million car accidents in the United States every year. These accidents result in more than 90 deaths each day and over 30 million injuries annually. Clearly, car accidents are a significant issue in this country and we believe it’s the responsibility of every driver to work to minimize these numbers. We can all do our part to make the roads a safer place.

While every auto accident is unique, there are several common types of accidents. By becoming aware of these common types, this additional awareness could cut down on the overall number of car accidents. Here’s a quick look at the most common types of car accidents:

1. Rear-end collisions.

A rear-end crash is the most common type of car accident. Accounting for almost a third of all car accidents, these occur when one driver collides into the rear of a car in front of them. On a busy highway, these collisions can quickly pile up into multi-car accidents and cause significant damages and injuries.

2. Side-impact collisions.

A “T-bone” collision occurs when one vehicle hits the side of another. These are especially common at intersections when drivers are distracted and fail to stop at a light or stop sign. These crashes may also occur when drivers are merging into other lanes.

3. Head-on collisions.

Head-on collisions are some of the most dangerous types of auto accidents. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), these collisions cause the most occupant deaths in car crashes in the United States.

4. Single-car collisions.

A car accident doesn’t always require two cars. If a driver loses control of their car, often due to distracted or impaired driving, they can quickly run off the road and collide with a tree, lamppost, guard rail, or another object. These accidents are known as single-car collisions.

CAN YOU SETTLE A CAR ACCIDENT CLAIM WITHOUT A LAWYER?

In most cases, you definitely want to work with a car accident law firm in the event of a crash. These professionals can offer guidance, support, recommend medical care, and if necessary, fight for your case in court.

However, there may be some instances when a car accident lawyer is not necessary. If there is minimal to no damage to the vehicles and no one is hurt, you can most likely settle the incident through your insurance companies. If you’re at fault for the accident, your insurance premium may go up. For very minor car accidents, this could be the only consequence.

But in most cases, you do want to reach out to a car accident attorney. Even if your car accident seems like an “open and shut case,” dealing with insurance companies can be challenging because they usually try to avoid paying out the full compensation on a claim. Remember: at the end of the day, insurance companies are still for-profit companies.

WHEN TO GET AN ATTORNEY FOR A CAR ACCIDENT

So, when exactly should you get an attorney for a car accident? We believe it’s never a bad idea to work with an auto accident attorney since they can utilize their knowledge and experience to help you understand your individual case. If needed, they’ll defend your case in court and can help you receive financial compensation. Here are some situations where you should definitely be working with a trusted attorney:

1. Death and significant injuries.

In the event of a crash that causes death or significant injuries, you should always work with a car accident lawyer. These crashes will commonly lead to criminal charges that should not be taken lightly.

2. Issues of fault.

The issue of fault may not always be crystal clear. In many cases, each driver may deny fault and it will come down to the police report or any eyewitnesses. Some states have shared fault laws that divvy up the percentage of fault between both drivers, which impacts your eligibility for legal compensation.

3. Construction zones.

If a car accident occurs in a construction zone, multiple parties are now involved and the fines and penalties become more excessive. An auto accident attorney will help you understand your rights in these unique situations.

4. Additional parties.

While the majority of car accidents are between two vehicles, multi-car crashes or those involving pedestrians or private businesses (like trucking companies) can become much more complex. When additional parties become involved, you’ll want an experienced car accident attorney on your side to help you navigate the legal logistics.

5. Bad faith insurance.

If an insurance company fails to pay out on a valid claim, doesn’t honor the entire claim, or otherwise makes the process too complex, lengthy, or convoluted, this is called bad faith insurance. A car accident attorney can make sure that your insurance company holds up its end of the bargain by honoring any valid claims.

WHAT TO DO AFTER A CAR ACCIDENT

In addition to reaching out to a car accident attorney, there are other important steps you should take following a car accident. These steps not only ensure your safety and health, but can be critical to your case if it goes to trial. After a car accident, regardless of severity, you should always do the following:

  • Receive medical attention as needed.
  • Call the police.
  • Obtain an official police report.
  • Gather photographic evidence from the scene of the accident.
  • Exchange insurance information with other parties.
  • Contact your insurance company to report the accident.
  • Contact a car accident attorney to learn more about your rights.

CONCLUSION – WHEN TO GET AN ATTORNEY FOR A CAR ACCIDENT

Car accidents are a frightening experience for anyone. Even in the event of a minor accident, it can be confusing to know what actions to take. Always contact the police to receive an official police report and seek medical attention immediately. Once you’re safe, contact a professional car accident attorney. Even if you believe you’re at fault or your case never goes to trial, these lawyers can help you understand your legal rights, assess your case, and determine what to do next.

After a personal injury accident of any kind, the last thing you should be worrying about is paying for medical bills, recovering wages, or the long and drawn-out process of fighting your case in the courts. Since our goal is based on getting you the compensation you deserve, the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm operates strictly on contingency fees. This means that our firm only gets paid if you do.

Contact us at the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm today to schedule a free consultation to see the options available for you and your case. Allow us the privilege to be the ones to help you on the road to recovery.

The Difference Between Buzzed and Drunk Driving Accidents

Drunk driving is one of the leading causes of car accidents and traffic fatalities. In fact, someone dies in a drunk driving accident in the United States every fifty minutes—totaling out to over 10,000 deaths in a single year. What makes these fatalities even more regrettable is that drunk driving accidents, compared to accidents caused by weather or your car malfunctioning, are easily preventable.

If you ever find yourself involved in a drunk driving accident, it’s important to reach out to an experienced drunk driving accident attorney. When you’re not sure where to turn, don’t hesitate to Call Paul. Here at the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm, we’re dedicated to defending the rights of anyone involved in personal injury cases, including car accidents, drunk driving accidents, and truck accidents.

Even if you believe you’re partially at fault, give us a call. Our team of lawyers will educate you on the specifics of your case, assess the situation, and determine whether or not your case is entitled to any form of legal compensation. Our experience and expertise in personal injury cases is unmatched.

We hope that you will never be involved in a drunk driving accident. To reduce the number of these accidents, we believe that education is an important tool. In this blog, we’re dissecting the key differences between buzzed driving and drunk driving and demonstrating how even a small amount of alcohol in your system can impair your ability to safely drive. We then review alternatives to driving under the influence that everyone should know. Even if you’ve only had one or two drinks, it’s never worth it to get behind the wheel.

WHAT IS DRUNK DRIVING?

Whenever someone operates a motor vehicle and their blood alcohol content (BAC) is above the legal limit, this is considered drunk driving. In every state in the US, the legal limit is 0.08 percent. If your BAC is 0.10, for example, this means that your blood supply contains one part alcohol for every 1,000 parts of blood.

Everyone processes alcohol differently and your BAC depends on a variety of factors. The number of drinks consumed your body weight, enzyme production, and the amount of time in which the drinks were consumed all impact your BAC. Despite the myths that would claim otherwise, there is no quick fix for sobering up. Simply chugging coffee or water won’t make an impact on your BAC. Your body needs time to naturally process the alcohol—no matter how many drinks you’ve had.

WHAT IS BUZZED DRIVING?

While most of us are familiar with the risks associated with drunk driving, it’s common for people to wonder: what is buzzed driving? Buzzed driving refers to any time that someone is operating their vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) between 0.01 and 0.07 percent. Thus, while they may be below the legal BAC limit, they are still driving under the influence and may not be able to safely operate their vehicle.

Compared to drunk driving, buzzed driving is a bit more ambiguous in legal terms. Laws pertaining to buzzed driving differ from state to state and may have different ramifications. In many states, you can still receive a DUI for buzzed driving if you are pulled over by a police officer.

Some of these buzzed driving charges can be pleaded to a lesser charge known as a “wet reckless” charge. In these cases, you’re pleading guilty to reckless driving instead of a DUI or DWAI, which is a lesser charge. However, in most cases, the individual will still be required to complete an alcohol education course.

WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN BUZZED DRIVING AND DRUNK DRIVING ACCIDENT?

Technically, the difference between buzzed driving and drunk driving is the driver’s blood alcohol content. While driving with a BAC of 0.01 to 0.07 is considered buzzed driving, a BAC of 0.08 crosses the threshold into drunk driving.

Additional differences lie within the legal repercussions. Each state has specific laws concerning drunk driving and buzzed driving, but overall, drunk driving laws are more consistent. Generally, if you’re arrested while drunk driving, you’ll receive a DUI, which can come with heavy fines, loss of driving privileges, or even jail time. Buzzed drivers can still get a DUI, but these can be pleaded down in some cases to a “wet reckless” charge.

HOW DOES ALCOHOL AFFECT YOUR DRIVING ABILITY?

While—legally—buzzed driving is different than drunk driving, buzzed driving is still just as dangerous. Any amount of alcohol in your system can impair your ability to see the road, make quick decisions, and safely operate your vehicle. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), created a chart that details the predictable effects on your driving as your BAC increases. Here’s a brief glance at these effects:

  • 0.02 BAC – reduced visual functioning and ability to multitask
  • 0.05 BAC – difficulty steering and an overall reduction in your ability to concentrate on the road and track other moving objects.
  • 0.08 BAC – difficulty controlling speed, processing visual information, and reduced concentration and short-term memory.
  • 0.10 BAC – impaired ability to brake and maintain lane control.
  • 0.15 BAC – impaired ability to process auditory and visual information and control your vehicle.

As you can see, any amount of alcohol in your system impacts your ability to safely and effectively operate your vehicle. It’s simply never worth it to get behind the wheel when you’ve been drinking—even if it’s just a few and you think you feel fine. In many cases, it takes time to feel the full effects of alcohol, which means that you could become even more impaired while you’re driving.

ALTERNATIVES TO BUZZED AND DRUNK DRIVING

There are many different alternatives to operating your vehicle while under the influence of alcohol. Even if you’ve just had a few, it simply isn’t worth the risk. Here are a few options for getting home safely if you’ve been out drinking:

  • Designate a sober driver before going out.
  • Ridesharing services (Uber and Lyft).
  • Call a taxi.
  • Ask the host if you can stay or if they know any sober drivers.
  • Get a hotel room (this may seem costly at the time, but it’s still much cheaper than the fines associated with a DUI).

CONCLUSION – THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN BUZZED AND DRUNK DRIVING ACCIDENTS

In the eyes of the law, buzzed driving and drunk driving may be different, but they still lead to the same result. No matter the number of drinks, alcohol still impairs your ability to control your vehicle, slows your reaction time, and makes it harder for you to respond to changing road conditions. If found guilty of buzzed or drunk driving, a driver may face heavy fines, loss of their license, or even jail time. It’s never worth the risk to drive under the influence.

However, if you find yourself involved in a buzzed driving or drunk driving accident, you should reach out to an experienced car injury attorney. Following a car accident, the last thing you should be worrying about is paying for medical bills, recovering wages, or the long process of fighting your case in court. We operate on contingency fees, which means that we only get paid if you win your case.

Contact us at the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm to schedule a free consultation. We’ll assess your individual case, help you understand your legal options, and get you started on the road to recovery.

What to Ask a Truck Accident Lawyer

Following a truck accident, it’s expected to be confused, scared, and unsure of what to do next. For most people, this includes a series of phone calls. Call 911. Call the police to receive a police report. Call your family. But what should you do next? We recommend you don’t forget to make one more important call and reach out to an experienced truck accident lawyer.

Truck accident lawyers can help address most legal issues related to truck accidents. In some cases, you may be entitled to substantial compensation or other legal remedies. In this blog, we take a closer look at the important questions you should ask your truck accident lawyer. Before committing to a firm, you want to make sure they have the knowledge, compassion, and experience to help you win your case. It’s also important to find a truck accident lawyer who, if necessary, isn’t afraid to take your case to court.

If you or a loved one are ever involved in a truck accident, don’t hesitate to call Paul. Here at the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm, we have years of experience in taking on (and winning) truck accident cases. Even if you believe that you might be partially at fault, don’t hesitate to give us a call. Our team of experienced truck accident attorneys will educate you on what to do next and show you your options and determine whether or not your case is entitled to any form of legal compensation.

DO YOU HAVE EXPERIENCE WITH TRUCK ACCIDENTS?

Before selecting a personal injury attorney, you need to make sure they have ample experience with these types of accidents. Do your homework to see what types of cases the firm usually represents (not to mention how successful they are). An experienced truck accident law firm will have years of experience and should be able to easily discuss their qualifications with you before ever asking you for a commitment. Transparency is a key quality you should be looking for in a personal injury attorney you can trust.

HOW WOULD YOU ASSESS MY TRUCK ACCIDENT CASE?

You should ask your truck accident attorney for a brief assessment of your individual case. While a complete assessment will take time, they should be able to provide a quick review that answers some of these questions: what kind of financial reward could I receive? How often do you settle or take these kinds of cases to court? How long would this type of case normally take? Is arbitration an option? This type of initial education is an important step for developing a strong relationship with your attorney.

HOW WILL YOU MANAGE MY TRUCK ACCIDENT CASE?

Depending on your case, it could end up taking weeks, months, or possibly even years to reach a settlement. It’s important to know how your truck accident lawyer will manage your case over time. Will they be handling your case personally or will another attorney manage it? Who will be your primary point of contact? You should also discuss how they handle progress reports and updates, which become especially critical for longer cases. Ensuring regular contact is important for any attorney-client relationship.

WILL YOU REPRESENT ME IN COURT?

In many cases, an experienced truck accident attorney will be able to settle your case out of court. Most trucking companies will prefer to offer an out of court settlement to avoid a lengthy court battle, but this isn’t always the case. If the trucking company refuses to offer you fair compensation, you’ll need a personal injury attorney who has experience in litigation and isn’t afraid to face these trucking companies in court.

MOST COMMON CAUSES OF TRUCK ACCIDENTS

Each large truck accident is unique; however, there are some common factors that lead to the majority of these collisions. Here is a quick review of some of the most common causes of truck accidents:

1. Driver fatigue.

Driver fatigue is the most common cause of truck accidents. Truckers work notoriously long hours traveling over long distances, which is the perfect recipe for developing fatigue behind the wheel. In fact, most truckers are on the road for about 70 hours per week. Fatigue can dramatically slow a driver’s reaction time and decision-making ability.

2. Driving under the influence.

Driving under the influence of drugs, alcohol, or prescription medication is dangerous for any vehicle. But this is especially hazardous when you factor in the sheer size of a large truck. Regrettably, driving under the influence is a common cause of truck accidents. Some drivers take stimulants to stay awake on the road; however, these drugs still impair your ability to safely operate a vehicle.

3. Speeding.

Timing is everything for truck drivers. Since they’re required to meet certain quotas and hit a certain number of miles each day, many may be tempted to overtake small vehicles and speed down the highway. This reckless behavior is a leading cause of truck accidents.

4. Distracted driving.

Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of auto accidents across the country. Whether texting while driving, talking on the phone, eating a meal, or simply daydreaming, distracted driving can quickly lead to a collision when you take your full attention away from the road.

5. Poor maintenance.

Truckers and trucking companies are required to maintain their trucks and meet specific safety regulations. However, this doesn’t always happen. Whether looking to save on time or costs, proper maintenance may be overlooked or not completed to meet regulations. Even the simplest malfunction (like a flat tire) can have major repercussions while speeding down a highway with a full load.

Some truck accidents are inevitable, but by taking preemptive actions to prevent these risk factors, you can significantly reduce the likelihood of experiencing a truck accident.

TRUCK ACCIDENT STATISTICS

Despite professional training and safety precautions, truck accidents remain an issue on highways across the country. In fact, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), over 4,000 people died in large truck crashes in 2018. It’s never possible to fully account for the actions of other drivers, which means you should always remain focused and aware while behind the wheel.

To gain better insight into the prominence of these types of crashes, here are some important statistics on truck accidents in 2018:

  • 96 percent of vehicle occupants killed in collisions between large trucks and cars were occupants of the car.
  • 11 percent of all motor vehicle deaths were from large truck accidents.
  • 74 percent of large truck accident deaths involved tractor-trailers.
  • Roughly a third of large truck accident deaths occurred on major highways.

Clearly, truck accidents are something that we all need to take seriously.

CONCLUSION – WHAT TO ASK A TRUCK ACCIDENT LAWYER

Selecting the right truck accident attorney is an important decision. You want to ensure you’re choosing someone with knowledge, dedication, and the experience to successfully defend your legal rights. You also want a truck accident lawyer who will be compassionate and stick by your side every step of the way.

The Paul Wilkinson Law Firm has years of experience in a variety of personal injury cases, including truck accidents. We know the ins and outs of dealing with trucking companies and insurance companies, ensuring you’ll receive the complete financial compensation that you’re entitled to. If necessary, we never shy away from defending your case in court. Additionally, our firm operates strictly on contingency fees, which means that we only get paid if you win.

Contact us at the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm today to schedule a free consultation. We can help you understand your rights and determine the best course of action for your unique case. Give us a call or email and let us help you begin your journey on the road to recovery.

What to Do After a Bike Accident

According to Statista, over 47 million people hit the road as bicyclists in the United States. Bicycling has grown over recent years as an enjoyable hobby, type of exercise, and effective form of transportation. Bicycling is good for your health, your wallet, the environment (and it’s simply fun)—so it should come as no surprise that this activity is so popular.

However, riding your bicycle does not come without risks. In 2015 alone, there were over 45,000 accidents between bicyclists and motorists, and regrettably, hundreds of these proved fatal. Bicyclists are especially vulnerable on the road because, even with a helmet, they have very little protection against motor vehicles traveling several times faster than their bicycles. Because of the inherent risks, bicyclists should practice safe riding habits and obey all traffic signs and laws.

However, even the safest bicyclists may still be involved in an accident due to no fault of their own. Many motorists may fail to see bicyclists or give them the appropriate amount of space on the road. So, if you are involved in a bike accident, what should you do?

After ensuring that you’re safe and you’ve called 911, you shouldn’t wait to reach out to a professional bike accident attorney. When in doubt, Call Paul. The Paul Wilkinson Law Firm is dedicated to fighting for the rights of those involved in bike accidents, car accidents, truck accidents, and many other types of personal injury cases. Even if you believe you may be partially at fault, we’re here to show you your options and educate you on the steps to take after an auto accident. We can help you find medical assistance, navigate your insurance company, and determine if your case is entitled to compensation.

WHAT TO DO AFTER A BIKE ACCIDENT

1. Get to safety.

This may seem obvious, but the first thing you should do following a bike accident is to get to safety. Depending on the severity of the accident, this may be difficult. But if you’re able, you should move yourself and your bicycle to safety. Clearing the road will help to make sure that another crash doesn’t occur.

2. Call 911.

Once the scene is safe, call 911. Paramedics will respond to the scene and provide any necessary medical attention. Additionally, police will arrive to ensure everyone’s safety and to file an official police report. Even if you believe you may be at fault, you should never hesitate to call the police.

3. Exchange information.

While waiting for the police or paramedics, use this as an opportunity to exchange pertinent information with anyone else involved in the accident. You should exchange insurance and contact information, but don’t feel pressured to share more information than necessary.

4. Obtain a police report.

This is an important step. When the police arrive, they’ll speak with you and anyone else involved in the accident. They may even speak to any eyewitnesses. They will then file an official police report. Receiving a copy of this report may be a critical component of your court case. When determining fault, the court sees the police report as one of the most reliable and objective pieces of evidence.

5. Collect evidence.

In addition to the police report, you should gather as much evidence as possible from the scene of the accident. If in the future, you intend to pursue legal action, this evidence will be critical for your case.

6. Seek medical attention.

If you suffered injuries from your bicycle accident that require immediate medical attention, you should make this your top priority. Regardless of police reports and evidence, your health is the most important thing to consider following an accident.

7. Call your insurance.

Notify your insurance about the accident. However, try to avoid agreeing to anything final before having the chance to collect research and reach out to a professional bike accident attorney.

8. Avoid any negotiations.

Whether with your insurance company or the motorist, you should never enter into negotiations (or accept any agreement) before you fully understand the situation and your rights.

9. Call a bike accident attorney.

After you’ve spoken with the police and your insurance company, it’s time to reach out to a professional bicycle accident attorney. Even if you don’t plan to pursue legal action or believe you were partially at fault, a Denver bicycle accident attorney can provide an invaluable asset: information.

An attorney specializing in this type of personal injury case can educate you on your options and help you determine the best path forward. Many will even work with you to help you access any necessary medical treatment. Additionally, if your case warrants it, a bike accident attorney will ensure you receive full and fair compensation for the accident.

STATISTICS ON BIKE ACCIDENTS

In 2018 alone, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), over 800 bicyclists were killed in traffic accidents in the United States. Data also indicates that while bicyclists’ deaths have decreased since the 1970s, they have increased by nearly 40 percent since 2010. Experts also believe that as more people see the benefits of bicycling, including saving on gas, improving your health, and cutting down on harmful emissions, these numbers may continue to increase.

To make our roads safer, researchers, engineers, and politicians use data and statistics to better understand bicycle accidents to ultimately make our roads safer. Here’s a look at some important bike accident statistics to help keep you safer on the road—as both a bicyclist and motorist.

    • Annually, 2 percent of deaths caused by motor vehicles are bicyclists.
    • Child bicyclist deaths have declined, but deaths for bicyclists 20 and up have tripled since 1975.
    • More men die in bicycle accidents than women.
    • Florida, California, and Texas report the most bicycle accidents.
    • 75 percent of bicyclist deaths occur in urban areas.
    • Bicyclist deaths occur most often during the hours of 6 and 9 PM.

HOW TO AVOID BICYCLE ACCIDENTS

When taking your bike out on the road (even if it’s just around the block) safety should be your first priority. Motorists and bicyclists, in addition to pedestrians, have a shared responsibility to keep our roads safe. Here are a few practical, common tips on how you can avoid bicycle accidents:

    • Keep up with your bike maintenance.
    • Wear bright, reflective clothing (even during the day).
    • Obey all traffic signs, laws, and regulations.
    • Tuck your shoelaces in your pants or socks so they don’t get caught in your chain.
    • Ride with the flow of traffic.
    • Always assume that drivers don’t see you.
    • Avoid listening to music or using your phone while riding.

CONCLUSION – WHAT TO DO AFTER A BIKE ACCIDENT

We hope you never find yourself or a loved one in a bicycle accident; however, you should be prepared and know what to do if one does occur. Receive the appropriate medical attention, receive an official police report, and gather as much evidence from the scene as possible. While you may be scared after a bicycle accident, these steps could prove critically important if you pursue legal action.

If you or a loved one is involved in a bike accident, you shouldn’t be worried about how you’re going to pay for your medical bills, recoup lost wages, or fight your case in court. Because our primary concern is getting you the compensation you deserve, our law firm operates on contingency fees, which means we only get paid if you win. Call the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm today and get a free consultation to see what options are available for you and your case.

Common Causes of Car Accidents

Although we do everything we can to prevent them, car accidents are a common and dangerous occurrence on roads all across the country. Even the safest drivers can’t be in total control when you’re unable to predict the actions of a reckless driver. In fact, on average, there are over 6 million car crashes in the United States every year.

And regrettably, according to the Association for Safe International Road Travel, over a million people lose their lives each year to auto accidents all over the world.

These statistics show that car accidents are a global public health crisis. However, addressing this crisis is challenging, in part, because of the many different causes of car accidents. Whether on a busy highway, single-lane road, or rural dirt road, car accidents can occur anywhere and at any time. Because of their unpredictability, it’s critical to be cautious and aware whenever you’re behind the wheel.

If you are involved in a car accident, don’t hesitate to Call Paul. At the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm, we fight for the rights of those involved in car accidents of any kind. Even if you believe you may be partially at fault, we’re here to show you your options and educate you on the steps to take after an auto accident. We can help you find medical assistance, navigate your insurance company, and determine if you’re entitled to compensation.

DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE

Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is one of the most common causes of car accidents. No one should sit behind the wheel after they’ve been drinking or using drugs—even if they’re prescription drugs. Driving after drinking, even if it’s just one or two (often referred to as buzzed driving) is never worth the risk of a DUI charge (which can be a felony in some cases) or injuring yourself or another motorist or pedestrian.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 30 lives are lost to drunk driving every day in the United States—that’s one person roughly every fifty minutes. What makes these drunk driving accidents even more tragic is how they are so easily prevented. In the age of ride-sharing services, such as Uber and Lyft, a ride home has never been more accessible (not to mention the classic option of calling a taxi).

If a friend has been drinking and plans to drive, help them find another way home—it could save their life. As a last resort, consider a room at a nearby hotel or motel, which we guarantee will still be cheaper than a DUI charge.

If you or a loved one has been injured by a drunk driver, contact our Denver Drunk Driving Accident Attorneys for a free case evaluation.

RECKLESS DRIVING

Reckless driving takes many forms, but at its core, it refers to someone operating a vehicle in such a way that puts other vehicles, people, and property, in harm’s way. Reckless driving can be intentional or unintentional and still have the same impact. Operating a vehicle, no matter where you are, is a real responsibility and should always be treated as such.

The exact specifications for reckless driving vary by state. Some states may also consider a driver’s mental condition for these cases, and therefore, driving under the influence could fall under this category. Common examples of reckless driving include failing to obey traffic signs or signals, swerving into traffic, tailgating, speeding, and racing other vehicles.

DISTRACTED DRIVING

While this infraction may seem harmless compared to drunk or reckless driving, distracted driving is one of the leading causes of car accidents. Taking your eyes off the road, even for just a few seconds, can lead to crashes with other vehicles or pedestrians. In 2018, distracted driving claimed over 2,800 lives in the United States.

Additionally, these types of wrecks are becoming even more prevalent due to our infatuation with cell phones. Texting while driving, for example, has become a common cause of car crashes, especially for teens and young drivers. Compared to answering a call or changing the radio station, reading and responding to a text message takes your focus away from the road for an extended period of time. No matter how urgent a message might seem, trust us—it can always wait. If the urge is too strong, some apps can prevent you from texting while driving.

WEATHER CONDITIONS

Unsafe and hazardous road conditions cause many auto accidents. In fact, according to the US Department of Transportation, approximately 21 percent of car crashes are weather-related. This percentage of crashes includes those occurring in rain, snow, sleet, ice, or slick pavement. Of these weather conditions, most crashes (almost 50 percent) occur on wet pavement during rainfall. Not only does wet pavement make it more difficult to stop, but rainfall also makes it much more difficult to see the road and other vehicles.

If possible, try to avoid driving during hazardous conditions, such as rain, sleet, or snowstorms. If you’re on a long road trip, stay up to date on local weather conditions and plan accordingly. Of course, as we all know, weather conditions can change on a dime. If you find yourself in hazardous conditions, consider pulling over to a safe shoulder of the road until the conditions pass. If you must keep driving, stay extra cautious and slow your speed.

SPEEDING

Most of us are guilty of this infraction at some point in our years of driving. Whether you’re late for work, excited to reach your destination, or not paying attention to your speedometer, speeding is a common occurrence on highways, two-lanes, and single-lane roads.

At times, speeding may seem harmless, but this activity is one of the most common causes of car accidents. Year over year, speeding is the cause of roughly a third of auto accidents in the United States. In 2017, speeding was the cause of a quarter of all traffic fatalities. Thus, this driving behavior should not be taken lightly.

What makes speeding so dangerous is that it’s difficult to gauge how fast you’re really going inside of a moving vehicle. Even once you hit the brakes, the momentum of your car prevents a quick and immediate stop. A car traveling 60 miles-per-hour, for example, requires over 300 feet of space before coming to a stop. That’s the length of driving across an entire football field. No matter where you’re driving, be aware of the posted speed limits–they’re there for a reason. Using cruise control on your vehicle (if it’s available) is a helpful method for keeping a steady speed.

HOW TO PREVENT CAR ACCIDENTS

You can never totally predict the actions of another driver; however, there are certain steps you can take to keeping yourself safe on the road. Consider these tips the next time you get behind the wheel:

· Keep both hands on the steering wheel.
· Avoid tailgating.
· Pull into traffic slowly.
· Scan the road ahead.
· Use a GPS system instead of your phone.
· Keep up with your car’s maintenance.

CONCLUSION – COMMON CAUSES OF CAR ACCIDENTS

In the end, we hope you’ll never actually need the services of a Denver car accident attorney. However, even the safest drivers can’t always be accountable for other drivers’ reckless and unpredictable actions. Paul Wilkinson Law group has a team of professional lawyers who cares about ensuring the right of motorists involved in auto accidents—no matter the cause.

If you or a loved one is involved in a car accident, you shouldn’t be worried about how you’re going to pay for your medical bills, recoup lost wages, or fight your case in court… Because our primary concern is getting you the compensation you deserve, our law firm operates on contingency fees, which means we only get paid if you win. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation to see what options are available for you and your case.

What is Bad Faith Insurance?

Merriam Webster defines bad faith as a lack of honesty when dealing with other people. In the context of insurance, it’s not much different. Bad faith attorneys protect you from insurance companies lying to you about your claims.
It’s easy to deal with people who lie to us in our personal lives. We stop talking to them and cut them out of our lives. But holding insurance companies accountable is a little more complicated. These companies have ample financial resources, negotiating power, and they are experts at voiding liability claims
This article discusses bad faith insurance, the different types of bad faith insurance claims, and the challenges of filing a claim. It also discusses how to find the right bad faith insurance attorneys if you suspect you’re being victimized.
Your insurance companies have a duty of good faith to their policyholders. If insurance companies aren’t holding up their end of the bargain, contact us to schedule a free legal consultation.

Understanding Bad Faith Insurance

Insurance companies have duties to uphold for their members. You pay their premiums expecting that insurance companies maintain their policy terms and pay the claims covered on your policy. Bad faith insurance results from an insurance company neglecting its responsibility to its policyholders.
Bad faith lawsuits don’t pertain to a specific type of insurance. All kinds of insurance companies act in bad faith. Companies may manipulate policy language and records, avoid paying claims for unjustified lengths or make unnecessary demands for proof of loss. They can also conduct a negligent investigation of the claim or use abusive tactics to force claim withdrawal.
However, merely having a disagreement with an insurance company over a perceived slight won’t stand in a courtroom. You have to clearly show insurance companies don’t have sufficient enough evidence to refuse your claim.

Insurance bad faith attorney Denver can be the difference between getting the compensation you deserve and walking away empty-handed.

The Most Common Examples of Bad Faith Insurance:

The following examples are the most common examples of bad faith insurance in the United States.

  • The insurance company didn’t conduct a thorough investigation of your claim and refused to pay anyway.
  • The insurance company intentionally misinterprets or manipulates the data to disprove or reduce your claim.
  • The insurance company denies your claim without providing a reason.
    These examples demonstrate the tendency for companies to neglect their insurance contract. If you notice your company engages in these behaviors, you should consider filing a lawsuit.

First-Party Vs. Third-Party Bad Faith Insurance

There are two types of bad faith insurance claims: first-party and third-party. First-party insurance claims are those that policyholders bring against their insurance company for not covering their damages. In these cases, plaintiffs believe their insurance provider withholds payment on a claim they shouldn’t.

Third-party claims involve the policyholder, insurance company, and a third-party the insurance company refuses to accept liability for. The policyholder can sue the insurance company for not covering the third party’s damages.

Third-party cases typically involve flawed investigations on behalf of the insurance companies. The insurance company knowingly engages in deceptive actions throughout their investigation, and because of this deception, the policyholder is held liable.

Common-Law Bad Faith Insurance

There are two types of bad faith insurance laws: common-law and statutory claims. Common law refers to case law, and statutory law relates to claims that use statutes and regulations as their legal ground.

A United Policyholders Advocation and Action Program survey demonstrates how common law bad faith insurance laws vary from state to state. Some states describe bad faith as any claim denial that is “unreasonable or without proper cause.” Other states only assign liability to cases in which a denied claim is not “fairly debatable.” Furthermore, some states view bad faith insurance law as a breach of contract, while others view it as a tort case.

Though common law for bad faith insurance is still evolving, its roots lie in Comunale V. Traders General. Today, the prevailing common-law tort theory is that “the insurer owes its policyholder good faith and fair dealing.”
Generally, common-law bad faith insurance lawsuits must prove the following two points:

  • Valid Claim– The lawsuit must establish you had a valid insurance claim under your policy terms. You also have to prove your insurance provider denied your claim. Keep in mind that some states require you to send a final demand to your insurance provider before filing a suit.
  • Unreasonable Withholding– States’ definition of “unreasonable withholding” varies. For example, Wisconsin only issues liability in claims that insurance providers intentionally deny claims. In states such as this, negligence does not constitute bad faith.

Colorado Common-Law Bad Faith Insurance

In the 2018 court case, Shultz V. Geico Casualty Company established some standards for Colorado’s bad faith insurance law. For example, the Colorado supreme court decided that insurance companies cannot present evidence to the court after the incident. Insurance companies can only use the information they considered at the time of their decision to delay or deny a claim.

According to Travelers Ins. Co. v. Savio, (Colo. 1985), Colorado bad faith claims must establish the insurer acted unreasonably with knowledge of their behavior.
Statutory Bad Faith Insurance Claims
Statutory bad faith cases use state legislature laws as precedents. States create statutes to protect policyholders from dishonest and fraudulent actions. Unlike common-law claims, regulations set clear distinctions for what insurance companies can and cannot do regarding bad faith.
Common examples of statutory precedents courts find insurance providers liable for:

  • Insurance providers must give their policyholders a reasonable explanation for denying their claim or providing a compromise settlement.
  • Insurance providers’ negligence in regards to issuing a prompt, equitable settlement for claims when liability is clear.
  • Sub-standard investigations resulting in claim refusal.
  • Insurance providers’ failure to implement adequate investigation standards

Colorado Statutory Bad Faith Insurance.

Colorado has several statutes that are particularly favorable to policyholders. For example, Colorado limits insurance providers to information present at the time of their delay or refusal of a claim. This statute means insurance companies cannot hire expert litigators to cover up their mistakes or deception.

Common law claims require proof the insurer engaged in deliberate misconduct. The only relevant points in statutory law are whether insurers deny benefits without a reasonable explanation.

Whether it be common-law or statutory law, bad faith insurance law isn’t straightforward. Hiring a bad faith insurance attorney to handle your case puts you in the best position to win your claim.

Document Your Correspondence With Your Insurance Company

Insurance companies train their employees to avoid liability, so you might be unsure of whether you have a case or not.

If you’re unsure whether your insurance company is taking advantage of you, write down all your correspondence and requests. Demand you get all of their stances in writing as well. Many insurance adjusters see what they can get away with so long as they don’t have to write anything down. Their positions become more apparent when you force them to write them down.

Failure to get an insurance adjuster’s position in writing can have adverse outcomes down the road if you decide to sue. Without written proof, insurance companies can change their stances at-will, helping them avoid accountability.

Bad Faith Lawyers Who Fight for Integrity

Paul Wilkinson Law group has a team that cares about upholding the sanctity of the law. We hold dishonest insurance companies accountable for their promises and get people the compensation they deserve. You don’t deserve to be taken advantage of, and we can ensure you keep insurance companies honest.

Because bad faith insurance law is unpredictable, we operate on contingency fees, which means you only pay us if you win. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation to start your case in motion.

What Does a Personal Injury Lawyer Do?

Personal injuries cause more than physical pain. They cause emotional stress, fear, and they can drastically change your life. Personal injury lawyers help their clients financially recuperate medical bills and physically recover from injuries. They also guide you through the trying legal process and make sure you can get back to your everyday life.

Personal injury law is a specific variant of “Tort” law. Personal injury lawyers represent clients who allege a psychological or physical injury resulting from negligence or careless acts by other people, companies, entities, government agencies, or organizations.

Let’s take a closer look into what personal injury lawyers do and how they can help you put your injuries in the past.

What is Tort Law?

Most civil lawsuits that do not involve a contract will be decided by tort law. There are three types of personal injury tort law: intentional tort, negligence, and strict liability. An intentional tort is a form of deliberate wrongdoing, as in the case of assault and battery. But intentional torts are not always criminal and can be civil if the culprit commits transgressions against personal property or an individual’s well-being.

Negligence is by far the most common form of tort law. Everyone has a set of standards they need to follow when interacting with fellow human beings or groups, and negligence results when they don’t adhere to those standards. Negligence is unlike intentional tort because it is not deliberate, but rather, harm caused by oversight or a failure to provide a duty.

The final example of personal injury tort law is strict liability. Strict liability tort involves cases where there is no direct proof of either intentional or negligent wrongdoing. The most common type of strict liability tort involves defective product cases. In strict liability cases, the plaintiff only has to establish the product-in-question caused by their injury.

Personal Injury Lawyers Perform Complex Duties

Determining property damages is one thing, but monetizing damage to a human being is another. As Joseph Sindell says in his 1960 essay published in Case Western Reserve’s Law Journal, “It is considerably more difficult to evaluate the pain and suffering of a human being than an inanimate object. Attorneys attempting to gain injury compensation must understand the nature of the human-machine – a machine more perfect and complex than any yet designed by man.”

Paul Wilkinson Law Firm doesn’t reduce people to numbers. We make sure the legal system takes all of your pain into account.

When you’re healing, the last thing you want to deal with is trying to figure out how to respond to insurance companies and medical bills. You may also be worried about how you’re going to pay your lost income if you can’t work.

Personal injury lawyers relieve your stress by simplifying the legal process and dedicating themselves to your recovery and well-being. Throughout the case, investigation and discovery, negotiating with insurance companies, and if necessary, taking your case to trial, personal injury lawyers hold your hand to make the legal process as comfortable as possible.

How Can a Personal Accident Lawyer Help Me?

It’s common to think of personal accident attorneys helping you in the courtroom. However, the majority of their responsibilities are outside of the courtroom. The following section discusses those duties in detail.

Case Discovery and Investigation

Preparing the right settlement for your case depends heavily on the investigation and discovery phase. Personal injury lawyers investigate your case and compile evidence by hiring expert witnesses on your behalf.

Lawyers have different methods for conducting their investigation. Some hire other investigators, and some conduct the investigation themselves. Investigators interview witnesses, gather on-scene evidence, examine police and employer reports, and compile vehicle photos. If there were adverse conditions at the site where you sustained your injury, personal injury lawyers would also archive those.

If authorities did not document the accident with photo or video evidence, the investigator would travel to the accident site to do so. Some examples of evidence that authorities often overlook are skid marks and accident debris.

The investigation process also includes your medical bills and records. Your attorney will need access to your medical records and statements to build your case and hold the insurance company accountable. Because personal injury cases involve sensitive information such as your medical bills, you’ll want to hire an attorney with whom you feel comfortable.

The final part of the investigation process is attorneys collecting witness statements and performing depositions. Depositions are under-oath interviews with witnesses that strengthen your case. Without these statements, building your case is very difficult.

Correspondence With Insurance Companies

Dealing with insurance companies is the last thing you want to do after an accident. Regardless of your type of injury, be it an auto accident, premises fall, or on-the-job injury, insurance companies will want recorded statements. The flow of information in these interactions can undermine your claim.

There are a few ways personal injury attorneys protect your case from insurance company interference. Personal injury attorneys can refuse insurance companies’ interview requests by acting as an insurance attorney. They also provide valuable coaching for when you issue statements.

Detecting Product Flaws

Personal injury attorneys will do everything they can to uncover product flaws in strict liability cases. If a defective product caused your injury, attorneys research to find any prior lawsuits. Trying to obtain product testing reports is challenging if you’re not an attorney.

If a defective product injures you, the company or liable insurance agency may try to hide flaws by tampering with the product. For this reason, you must obtain testing on the defective product quickly. If you aren’t an attorney, it’s challenging to get such tests. Attorneys ensure an industry expert inspects the product in question right away.

Handling Financial Compensation

Personal injury attorneys take your financial compensation seriously. They ease your economic concerns by contacting your employer to discover lost wages and estimate your injury’s total damages.

Your settlement shouldn’t only account for initial damages. It should also account for future medical bills and lost income. Personal injury lawyers understand how to estimate those total costs accurately, protecting you from insurance companies minimizing your financial strain.

Explaining Your Rights

Personal injury laws vary from state, so having an expert explain them is crucial to getting the most out of your case. Colorado uses comparative negligence for accident and injury cases to determine your entitled compensation.

Comparative negligence assigns fault as a percentage. For example, if the court determines you’re 10% at fault for your accident or injury, you’re entitled to 90% of the total compensation. Having a personal injury attorney take your case ensures you only take the blame for what was your fault.

Guiding Legal Decisions

Good personal injury attorneys consult you through the legal process with your best interest in mind, giving you the control to make the decisions in your best interest. The most common guidance personal attorneys can offer is teaching you how to deal with insurance companies trying to pay as little as possible.

After an injury, you have every right to be upset. But anger, fear, sadness, and uncertainty cloud judgment skills. Personal injury lawyers serve as a calming influence so that you can make sound decisions with a level head.

Court Representation

The majority of cases settle outside of court, but if you go to trial, do you want the responsibility of defending yourself? Insurance companies can deny your claim, and in these cases, having a personal injury lawyer puts you in the best position to fight the case in civil court.

Hire a Personal Injury Attorney Who Cares About You

Litigation may not be rocket science, but it’s close. Having a trained professional who can compound evidence and navigate legal procedures gives you the best chance at securing the compensation you deserve.

The Paul Wilkinson Law Firm focuses on your continued well-being. We fight for your rights and ensure insurance companies don’t take advantage of you while you’re in recovery. By arming you with the right knowledge to understand the personal injury claims process, we put you in the best position to receive the settlement you deserve.

If you or a loved one were injured in an accident, reach out to our expert attorneys at our firm to set up a free initial case consultation where we will offer our honest assessment of your claim. Reach out to us via our Contact Page today to see the many ways we can help.

Do I Need an Attorney for an Auto Accident?

Following an auto accident, even one that wasn’t your fault, it can be confusing to know what to do next. If you or anyone else is injured, the first step should be clear—call 911. Then, once you’re safe, you should consider reaching out to a car accident law firm. Following an accident, an auto accident attorney can answer your questions and help you understand your rights, including if there’s any possibility of a claim or legal compensation.

No matter the size of the accident, you should contact an auto accident attorney. Even if you don’t end up having a case, a professional car accident attorney can answer questions and help you better assess the situation. They can even assist you in dealing with your insurance company, who may not always quickly or sufficiently honor your claim. When an insurance company refuses to honor a valid claim, it’s referred to as bad faith insurance, and a lawyer can help you receive compensation.

The Paul Wilkinson Law Firm is an experienced and professional Denver law firm that has won countless auto accident cases. We handle every aspect of your car accident claim so that you can focus on your health and wellbeing. In this blog, we walk you through the important steps to take following an auto accident. We then look into when exactly you need an auto accident attorney.

WHAT TO DO AFTER AN AUTO ACCIDENT

Following an auto accident, safety should be your first priority. Make sure that everyone involved in the accident, including the other vehicle, is safe. If there are any injuries at the scene, even minor ones, call 911 immediately. Then you should move the vehicles to a safe area, which can usually be the shoulder of the road or a nearby parking lot. Once you feel secure, follow these steps:

1. Call the Police

Even if you believe the accident was your fault, it’s essential to call the police to the scene of the accident. A police report is critical for obtaining a neutral, objective version of the accident. If there’s no police report, the incident can be reduced to two competing stories and it becomes much more challenging to develop an effective case. A police report is critical documentation of the accident.

2. Exchange Information

While you wait for the police, you should exchange information with the other driver. Basic contact and insurance information should be exchanged to ensure your insurance claims can be properly and quickly processed. Again, even if the accident was your fault, you need to attain this information. In addition to their insurance, you should also get basic contact information, like a cell number and email address.

While it’s important to exchange contact and insurance information with the other driver, there is some information you don’t want to exchange. No matter who was at fault, never admit fault or provide more information than is needed. Remain polite and respectful, but avoid apologizing or admitting fault—these words could come back to bite you in a future case.

3. Gather Evidence

After you receive the other driver’s information, you should gather as much evidence from the scene of the accident as possible. Take pictures of your car and any other vehicle or piece of property that was damaged. Take pictures from multiple angles and snap some wide-angle ones, as well, to serve as a context for the scene as a whole. Being able to recreate the scene through photography can be extremely beneficial in a case.

In addition to pictures, try to write down statements from any witnesses. Police may do this when they arrive, but you can also gather this evidence. Remember to also attain basic contact information from any key witnesses. The more evidence you have, the better case an auto accident attorney will be able to build for you.

4. Call Your Insurance

Following a car accident, you should call your insurance and begin filing a claim as soon as possible. Contacting your insurance company will get the ball rolling on processing your claim. Additionally, the sooner you make this important call, the less likely you are to lose any evidence or forget important details.

5. Call an Auto Accident Attorney

After you’ve filed your insurance claim, consider reaching out to an experienced auto accident attorney. Even if you’re not sure if you have a case or not (or believe you may be at fault), a car accident lawyer can answer questions and help you determine what to do next. These calls are free, quick, and could make a huge difference in your ability to receive fair compensation.

WHEN YOU NEED AN AUTO ACCIDENT ATTORNEY

But when exactly do you need an auto accident attorney? Shouldn’t your insurance company handle the rest? Sadly, this often isn’t the case. Even though an insurance agency’s primary purpose is to protect your health and property, it’s important to remember that these are still for-profit companies. Your insurance provider doesn’t make money by honoring claims, and at times, may act in bad faith to avoid completely fulfilling their end of a claim.

If you believe your insurance company is acting in bad faith (which can include failing to honor a valid claim, providing only partial payment, delaying payment, or ineffectively processing the payment), an attorney can help you fight back.

Additionally, there are many other instances where you will certainly need an auto accident attorney’s professional assistance and expertise. If there are any injuries or medical costs and you are not at fault, a car accident lawyer can ensure you are fully compensated for these damages. If you believe the fault is disputable or the police report does not accurately document the accident, an auto accident attorney can be of assistance.

STATISTICS ON AUTO ACCIDENTS

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 2.3 million people are injured in auto accidents in the United States. In 2017 alone, these accidents accounted for over 75 billion dollars in damages and medical care costs. Clearly, car accidents are a major issue in our country and worldwide. To better understand the scope of the issue, here are a few statistics on auto accidents.

In the United States, car accidents account for:

  • 6 million accidents every year.
  • 3 million injuries every year.
  • 2 million permanent injuries.
  • 90 deaths each day.
  • Teen drivers (16 to 19) are three times more likely to be in a car accident than an adult driver.
  • Texting while driving causes 1 out of 4 car accidents.

CONCLUSION – DO I NEED AN ATTORNEY FOR AN AUTO ACCIDENT?

We hope that you never find yourself involved in an auto accident of any size. However, auto accidents do occur—and if one happens to you—preparation and knowledge are essential to ensure your rights are protected. Getting a police report and filing an insurance claim are crucial steps, but that’s not enough for many cases. A professional auto accident lawyer can assess your case and determine whether or not you’re entitled to any form of compensation.

If you’ve been injured in a car accident, reach out to The Paul Wilkinson Law Firm today. We will investigate your claim and take care of all the details, including helping you obtain help for your injuries.

To schedule your free case consultation, reach out to us today (24/7) at 303-578-4524 or via our Contact page.

Whose Insurance Do You Use After an Auto Accident?

Most everyone has been in the unfortunate situation of standing outside their cars after a car accident and debating with a stranger about how one of you will have to pay for the damages. But when it comes down to the law, whose insurance do you use after an auto accident?

The answer mostly depends on determining who the at-fault driver is for the accident. Sometimes this process is cut and dry, and drivers may even be able to settle the dispute without involving their insurance companies. Additionally, some states have no-fault insurance laws that ensure both drivers are covered regardless of who’s at fault.

However, Colorado doesn’t have no-fault insurance laws, and many cases with more severe damages may necessitate the influence of litigators. If you’ve been involved in an auto accident, having a Denver car accident attorney on your side to help fight for your rights to compensation can improve your chances of payments for your damages. Call Paul today to see what damages you’re entitled to after being involved in an accident.

Using Your Insurance Provider

Collision coverage gives you the ability to make a claim on your own insurance policy after an accident. In this case, your insurance will pay for any damages your car incurs, minus the deductible.

After they issue recompense for your claim, your insurance company will likely issue a subrogation demand from the other party’s insurance. Subrogation is the process by which your insurance company reserves the right to recover its damages from third-parties such as the other individual in the accident or their insurance company.

Once the other party’s insurance admits its policyholder was at fault, it will reimburse your insurance company and refund your deductible. Subrogation claims take anywhere from 3-9 months, and the process virtually eliminates all of your costs- as long as the other party is at fault.

Subrogation works the same way for personal injury protection (PIP) as it does your car damages. However, subrogation only works up to the limits for your PIP coverage.

Benefits to Using Your Insurance Provider After an Auto Accident

If you feel more confident in your insurance company than the other drivers, you should use your insurance provider. Using your insurance company can expedite the payment process so you can get your car repaired quickly and have assurance for your medical bill payments.

Your insurance company may be faster because it won’t have to determine fault to do so. If you decide to go through the other driver’s insurance company, they must establish that the accident was their policyholder’s fault, delaying the claims process.

If you have rental reimbursement on your insurance policy, you may also be able to get a rental car right away and get a timely refund for the rental car.

If you didn’t cause the accident you were involved in, your insurance company shouldn’t raise your rates. In any case, the fault for your accident has to be determined before any adjustments to your policy occur.

Drawbacks to Using Your Insurance Company After an Accident

When you use your insurance company, you expedite the process by which you can recover your damages. However, this means you have to pay a deductible upfront, with no guarantee that you’ll get it back.

Using the Other Party’s Insurance Provider

Coordinating your claims process with the other driver’s insurance company can take longer, but doing so will save you from incurring the upfront deductible costs. If you contact the other party’s insurance company, they will investigate whether their policyholder was at fault.

After determining that their policyholder was at fault, the insurance company will send an adjuster to estimate the repair cost for your vehicle. They will also pay you for a rental car until the shop completes your car’s repairs. Except for no-fault states, the other insurance company will also cover your medical bills.

However, when compensation from the other driver’s insurance company, it’s important to note that they will only cover up to the policyholder’s limits.

Benefits To Using the Other Party’s Insurance

If you don’t have collision coverage, using the other party’s insurance may be the only way to recover your damages. Even if you have collision coverage, you won’t have to pay your deductible and wait for reimbursement.

Drawbacks to Using the Other Driver’s Insurance

If the other driver doesn’t have liability coverage, or they have limits that can’t cover your medical expenses, you may have to file a claim with your insurance provider anyway. In this situation, your uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage from your insurance coverage would pay for your injury treatment plans and car damage.

Subject to a deductible, you might have to use your collision coverage or uninsured motorist property damage coverage in these situations. If the other driver doesn’t have insurance, you can use an uninsured motorist lawyer to try and recover your compensation.

Determining Fault After an Accident

Determining fault after an accident isn’t as simple as pointing your finger and saying “they did it! they did it!” You can’t expect to simply call the other driver’s insurance company and ask for money. Without sufficient proof that their policyholder was at fault for the accident, the insurance company can easily deny your claim.

In cases such as those where the other driver doesn’t admit fault or the at-fault party is unclear, hiring an attorney can help you with your claim and recover damages. One of the most common reasons claims get denied is that a driver may be at-fault while not being negligent. For example, the driver might have caused the accident while trying to avoid hitting a negligent pedestrian, or they may have had a medical emergency that prevented them from driving safely.

If the other driver’s policy doesn’t cover your cost, and you end up paying a deductible, you can pursue the other driver independently. This type of compensation requires the skills of a litigator who understands the various aspects of litigation. Whether you successfully recover your damages from the other party depends mostly on proving they were negligent. If they are uninsured, recovering your damages from them will depend on whether the party has the available funds to pay you back.

Tips for the Aftermath of an Accident

After being involved in an accident, you may feel incapacitated to the point of shock. Shock can lead you to make rash decisions that have adverse consequences. Whatever you do after an accident, never admit fault. Accidents happen in the blink of an eye, so it’s challenging for people involved to determine fault with any degree of certainty.

After an accident, stay calm, avoid getting into an argument with the other driver, and call the police. The police will be able to examine the situation from a legal perspective to determine who is responsible. The authorities will also help both parties exchange information and create a report for both insurance companies to investigate.

Hiring a Car Accident Attorney Can Save You From Admitting Fault

After an accident, there are many moving parts, and insurance companies try to avoid claiming responsibility. They can engage in deceptive practices to confuse you into admitting fault. Because insurance companies have extensive experience avoiding losses, having a car accident attorney at your side to walk you through the complex legal process and receive the compensation you deserve.

The Paul Wilkinson Law Firm has a team of Denver accident attorneys who will fight to bring you the compensation you deserve. Whether the other party’s insurance company tries to avoid paying for your losses, or you need to seek compensation from an uninsured driver, our experienced attorneys are here to help. Contact us today to discuss your case.

How to Negotiate Subrogation Claims

Subrogation law is a term used to describe the rights insurance companies have to seek reimbursement for insurance losses from responsible third parties. Insurance companies do this because it is in their best interest to recover a portion of the claim they paid.

For example, Sarah gets injured in a car accident, makes a claim, and the insurance company pays for her initial medical expenses. However, after investigation, they determine Chelsea was responsible for the accident. In this case, Sarah’s insurance company has the right to recover damages from Chelsea or Chelsea’s insurance company.

People often wonder why insurance companies have the right to recuperate damages from Sarah’s accident. Shouldn’t Sarah receive those finances? This issue sometimes confuses people. According to Colorado law, insurance companies don’t have the right to seek reimbursement directly from the injured party; they only have the right to seek reimbursement from responsible third-parties.

That said, subrogation is a complex legal process with rules and regulations that can sometimes leave people scratching their heads. People who don’t consult legal advice throughout subrogation often leave the claims process feeling like insurance companies duped them.

This blog explains what subrogation rights policyholders have and what Colorado laws affect those rights. It also provides some tools to negotiate subrogation and discusses whether policyholders should have an attorney present throughout the process.

Paul Wilkinson Law Firm specializes in Colorado car accident law and has a team of experienced attorneys who can tactfully guide your claim through subrogation. Whether you are the policyholder who was injured or whether the insurance company tries to attribute blame to you for damages, we protect you from any potential deceptive practices on the insurance companies’ behalf.

Subrogation: A Brief Overview

To better understand the subrogation negotiation process, you must first understand what subrogation is, why it happens, and who it affects. In nearly all subrogation cases, the injured party’s insurance company pays for its client’s claim and then seeks direct reimbursement from the third-party responsible for the accident.

Insurance contracts often contain clauses that prohibit their policyholders from seeking reimbursement from both the insurance company and the at-fault third-party. This way, people can’t collect damages from different parties. Clauses like these protect the insurance company from sustaining losses.

Subrogation for the Insured

As previously noted, Colorado has laws that protect the injured party from having to reimburse the insurance company for their losses. These laws make the subrogation process relatively easy for the injured policyholders. The aim of the subrogation process should always be to protect the injured party.

Subrogation can also come into effect for injured parties when you receive payments from third-parties to pay for your medical expenses and other compensations. For example, you receive a check from the person who caused the accident, and your insurance company claims some of your settlement due to the subrogation clause in your insurance contract.

Another fundamental reason for injured parties to have an attorney present throughout the subrogation process is to ensure the insurance companies don’t commit any false steps. Though the subrogation process should be clean and straightforward for injured parties, insurance companies sometimes fail to communicate the subrogation terms, which is against the law. In rare cases, they might knowingly delay claims and engage in bad faith insurance practices. Unsure of when it’s bad faith insurance? Hire a bad faith insurance attorney.

Subrogation for the Third-Party

The third-party the insurance company seeks compensation from can either be an individual or an insurance company. If the insurance company designates you as the responsible third-party, they will seek compensation from you to recuperate their losses, even if you have insurance. However, if you don’t have insurance, the insurance company will try to use you to recover their losses.

If you have insurance, you will likely get a written notice from the injured party notifying you they want you to reimburse them. In this case, you will probably only have the responsibility of making sure your insurance carrier is aware of both the accident and any subrogation rights claimed. After it, your insurance company should step in and settle the claim.

If you don’t have insurance, you will have to defend the subrogation claim yourself. In these cases, you should hire an attorney to help guide you through the legal process. Most insurance companies send their subrogation claims to collection firms. These collection firms are usually amenable to taking less than the full amount to settle the claim.

Accident Victims’ Subrogation Rights and Subrogation

Subrogation and insurance companies have the right to seek compensation for their losses. However, there are limitations to this practice, and accident victims and others need to understand how to protect their rights.

Experienced subrogation attorneys might mitigate the potential losses one incurs by working with the insurance company to negotiate their terms and conditions. Having an attorney present helps you by protecting your rights and potentially reducing your costs.

What is the “Made-Whole Doctrine,” and How Does it Work?

In Colorado, The Made-Whole Doctrine states that subrogation will not be allowed unless you are first “made whole” for all of your damages from your case. In many cases, an insurance company cannot pursue subrogation at all until the individual has received full compensation for all of his or her damages. Proper utilization of the Made-Whole Doctrine can result in a waiver by the insurance company of its right to reimbursement, vastly increasing your recovery. The requirements on how to use this law are intricate. Make sure your attorney knows how and when to use this law to your benefit and if it applies to your specific case and insurance plan.

What is the “Common Fund Doctrine” and How Does it Work?

In Colorado, The Common Fund Doctrine requires your health insurance company to reduce the amount of its right to reimbursement to an amount equal to your attorney’s fees. Suppose you are paying a 1/3 attorney’s fee, and your insurer has requested reimbursement. In that case, they may be required by Colorado Law to reduce the amount that they are demanding by 1/3 plus expenses that were incurred in the course of procuring the settlement or judgment of your claim. Make sure your attorney knows how and when to use this law to your benefit, and if it applies to your specific case and insurance plan.

Negotiation Tactics

Reading the Fine Print

Subrogation is an obscure concept to the general public. People often become upset when they find out they have to hand over more of their settlement to the insurance company than anticipated. Much of this stems from a lack of preparation and reading. Every insurance policy has a subrogation clause, so preparing yourself for your case’s potential outcome is an easy way to gain negotiation leverage.

Failing to Communicate

While you go through the subrogation process, it’s crucial to remember that your insurance company has to communicate with you every step of the way. Failure to do so is against the law.

Make Sure the Expenses are Only From the Accident

Make sure the claimed expenses are only from the accident. By obtaining all of the medical bills from the accident, you or an attorney can make sure you don’t have to pay for damages you didn’t cause.

Request to Take Out the Attorney Fees From the Settlement

Requesting the insurance company takes out any attorney fees is an easy way to lessen the impact of a subrogation claim. After all, if you hadn’t used an attorney, you likely wouldn’t have received a settlement in the first place.

Negotiate the Remainder of the Claim

Skilled negotiators can often prompt insurance companies to settle for less because they understand insurance companies don’t want to go through long, drawn-out legal battles. The more experienced the negotiator, the more likely they are to reduce the subrogation. Skilled negotiators can reduce the subrogation by as much as a couple of percentage points.

Paul Wilkinson Law Firm Can Handle Your Subrogation Claim

Subrogation is a confusing process that no one should have to fret over. Whether you were injured in an accident or caused an accident doesn’t change how draining it can be dealing with insurance companies. Our Denver car accident attorneys ensure that you get the compensation you deserve if you sustain an injury in an accident. If you cause an accident, we make sure you don’t pay for damages that aren’t your fault.

Contact us today at 303-333-7285 to set up a free consultation!

What is Subrogation?

When you have been injured in an accident and your health insurance company pays out money on your behalf so you can get the treatment you need for your injuries, something called subrogation will occur in your case.

Subrogation means that one person or party (your health insurer) stands in the shoes of another (you). If your insurer has a right to subrogation, your insurer is permitted to collect the money that it paid out for your accident related medical care from your settlement or judgment. In short, your health insurance company has a right to be reimbursed. If you have health insurance of any type and you plan to use or are using it for care related to your case, the question you should be asking yourself is, “Does my health insurance company have a right to be paid back out of my settlement; and if so, should the insurer be paid back in full, in part, or even at all?” Without proper representation, the insurer will not tell you. The insurer will simply demand reimbursement in full, which may be against Colorado and/or Federal Law.

Here is an example, Sarah was injured in a motor vehicle collision. She has health insurance, and her health insurance paid for the medical treatment that she received as a result of the motor vehicle collision. Sarah receives a settlement from the at-fault party’s insurance company. Once she settles, her health insurance claims may be entitled to a portion of her settlement in the amount her medical insurance paid for her treatment. Sarah’s health insurance is claiming a right to subrogation and is demanding reimbursement. Sarah needs to know how much her insurer should be paid. Only an experienced attorney who understands complex and ever changing subrogation and insurance law can determine how much that health insurer should be paid back, if anything.

For more information, contact a Denver car accident attorney today!

Brain Injury From Motorcycle Accident

Because of the increased population in Denver, there are more motorcyclists on the road than ever. With the increased traffic, motorcycle accidents are also on the rise. Because motorcyclists aren’t fastened to the vehicles or protected by steel, motorcycle accidents are more dangerous than automobile accidents.

This guide discusses why a motorcyclist is more likely to sustain brain injury from a motorcycle accident. While you may already understand the increased risk you take when you ride a motorcycle, you might not understand why motorcyclists are inherently more likely to endure brain injuries and the serious complications resulting from such injuries.

Understanding the dynamics of how motorcyclists sustain brain injuries can help you protect yourself from potentially hazardous conditions. It can also help direct you if you are involved in a motorcycle accident and experience a brain injury.

Learning about brain injury from motorcycle accidents can reduce your risk of sustaining them and reduce their severity if injuries are unavoidable. If you experience a brain injury from a motorcycle accident, hiring a motorcycle accident attorney denver can drastically reduce the financial impact of your injury, potentially giving you access to better healthcare and ensuring you don’t sustain further economic damages.

Motorcycle Accident Vs. Automobile Accident Severity

Motorcycle accidents cause more fatalities and severe injuries than automobile accidents because passengers aren’t fastened or protected by steel like automobile passengers. Because of these factors, motorcyclists are often thrown from their bike or take head-on collisions from automobiles.

With the decreased protection and the more vulnerable nature of motorcycle accidents, passengers are more likely to experience concussions and brain damage. This increased vulnerability to traumatic brain injuries, or TBIs, is exceptionally high when the rider neglects to wear an approved helmet.

In fact, recent studies have shown that helmets can reduce motorcyclists’ risk of fatal injury by 29% and reduce the overall risk of injury by 67%. Additionally, in another study conducted by the NHTSA, helmeted motorcyclists reduced their risk of facial injury by half compared to unhelmeted motorcycle drivers.

Examining the likelihood of injury from motorcycle accidents reveals how risky riding a motorcycle is to your health. According to the Hurt Report, 98% of multiple vehicle collisions and 96% of single-vehicle crashes result in injuries to motorcyclists. Motorcycle accidents are also 26 times more fatal than automobile accidents.

What Type of Motorcycle Accidents Are More Dangerous?

In addition to motorcycle accidents being more severe than automobile accidents, sport and supersport motorcycle accidents have a death rate four times as high as conventional motorcycles. Sportbikes also have a fatality rate twice as high as conventional motorcycles.

TBIs- The Motorcyclists’ Epidemic

Traumatic brain injuries, or TBIs, are often referred to as a silent epidemic because they range in severity and are difficult to prove in a court of law. TBI victims may appear completely normal to the naked eye. People who have sustained a TBI may also speak normally, and they might not display the apparent signs of injury.

Misleading Diagnosis

TBIs are also challenging to diagnose. The medical diagnosis of “mild” traumatic injury conceals TBIs’ underlying severity and doesn’t accurately represent the health challenges people face when they sustain TBIs.

Why Don’t Motorcyclists Wear Helmets?

With all of the data surrounding the importance of wearing a helmet, it may come as a shock that a significant number of motorcyclists neglect to fasten a protective shell on their head while riding.

Some states make it illegal to ride a motorcycle without a helmet. However, in Colorado, motorcyclists over the age of 18 aren’t required to wear a helmet, leaving the head unprotected in the case of accidents.

Reasons Why Motorcyclists Refuse to Wear Helmets-

The reasons why motorcyclists neglect to wear helmets range from purely aesthetic to the invasiveness of helmets. Riders may simply think helmets don’t look cool. Others feel that helmets impair their ability to ride. Regardless of the reasons to not wear a helmet, neglecting to do so increases your risk of injury significantly.

Considering the primary cause of death in motorcycle accidents is brain trauma caused by the head’s direct impact on the pavement, wearing a helmet is a small inconvenience when weighing the price of your life. Put simply, if you want to survive a motorcycle accident, wearing a helmet is your best protective measure and your only protective measure for your head.

What Causes Brain Injuries In Motorcycle Accidents?

Most authorities would assert that the primary cause of TBIs in motorcyclists is neglecting to wear a helmet. However, there’s another reason analysts attribute to the rising number of traumatic brain injuries in motorcyclists. Because of the increasing congestion on freeways and streets, the link between more motorcycle accidents and more head injuries is easy to connect.

What Are the Symptoms of Brain Injury After a Motorcycle Accident?

TBIs’ symptoms range from moderate to severe, and the patient may be unaware of his/her condition. Because traumatic brain injuries may not be apparent, those involved in motorcycle accidents should receive treatment regardless of how they feel following the accident.

The most common TBI symptoms include:

  • Disorientation
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Confusion
  • Mood impairment
  • Cognitive impairment (difficulty moving, thinking, or acting)
  • Dizziness

After being involved in an accident, someone can display no symptoms of a traumatic brain injury. However, because it’s common for people to suffer from shock after an accident or to have heightened adrenaline levels, people may not be aware of their injuries at the time they occur.

Because of this delayed response, patients may not experience the brunt of the injury until hours or even days later.

What Happens to the Brain After an Accident?

This delayed response and harm happen because when the brain sustains an injury, it jostles around in the skull. This jostling can cause bruising, bleeding, or tearing within the brain. The bleeding, bruising, or tearing may not be severe, but these conditions cause the brain to swell.

Because the skull can’t expand, the brain presses against it, causing further damage to the brain tissue. Thus, while you may have a mild injury to the brain, the aftereffects can quickly turn it into a severe injury. If brain swelling is left untreated, it can cause brain damage and even death.

Long Term Effects of TBIs

Even if the patient doesn’t die from brain swelling, it can cause severe long-term effects that reduce the patient’s quality of life and require extensive treatment plans. Long term effects of brain swelling include:

  • Difficulty speaking
  • Memory loss
  • Seizures
  • Loss of motor skills
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Mood changes such as depression, anxiety, or anger

Brain injuries range in seriousness. They can be so mild that you only experience shock, mild concussion, and short-term memory loss. Or you can suffer from a more traumatic brain injury.

Signs of more traumatic brain injuries include nerve damage, long-term memory loss, personality changes, long-term disability, organ failure, loss of cognitive functions, and death. It is not uncommon for traumatic brain injury victims to need ongoing care and support from their friends, family, and medical professionals for the rest of their lives.

Ways to Prevent TBIs in Motorcycle Accidents

The easiest way to prevent brain injuries is by being more conscious while you’re on the road. By being more aware on the road, you can reduce your chances of being involved in an accident.

However, some accidents are unavoidable. In this case, the best protective measure you can take as a motorcycle rider is to be diligent about your protective equipment, especially your helmet. It can be tempting, especially if you’re only traveling a short distance, to neglect to wear a helmet because you don’t think you’ll need it.

With an estimated 52% of accidents happening within five miles of the driver’s home, motorcyclists must resist the urge to travel helmetless, even over short distances. When you leave your helmet at home, there’s a chance you’ll lose your head on the road.

Conclusion- Avoid Brain Injury From Motorcycle Accidents

Because motorcyclists are more vulnerable on the road, they must be more aware of potentially harmful situations such as inclement weather, speeding, and avoiding alcohol while driving. One cannot overstate the importance of wearing a helmet if you decide to ride a motorcycle.

However, in some motorcycle accidents, brain injury is unavoidable. Wearing your helmet will reduce the severity of motorcycle accidents, but you still may sustain an injury even if you wear a helmet. In these cases, it pays to have a Denver motorcycle accident attorney on your side to ensure you don’t sustain any economic damages if you’re involved in a motorcycle accident that wasn’t your fault.

Call Paul to get back on the road to recovery with attorneys who take your health and well-being seriously. Contact us today to see how we can best fight your case and get you the compensation you deserve.

Types of Injuries Suffered By Motorcyclists

Colorado motorcyclists are likely aware of the potential for motorcycle accidents. At the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm, we hope they also know the importance of working with a trusted and experienced motorcycle accident attorney if they are ever involved in an accident. The knowledge and expertise of a motorcycle attorney can ensure that you have a complete understanding of your rights, and if your case is eligible, receive full compensation for any damages and injuries.

Compared to car accidents, motorcycle accidents tend to have much more severe injuries because there is so much less to protect the motorcyclist. While the driver of a car has a seatbelt, airbags, and even the frame of the car to protect them in the event of a collision, motorcyclists have very little protection. This may add to the thrill of the open road, but it can also lead to critical injuries.

If you’re ever involved in a motorcycle accident (even if you believe you may be at partial fault) don’t hesitate to Call Paul. At the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm, we have a team of dedicated motorcycle accident attorneys who are experienced with this specific type of personal injury case. We don’t hesitate to take cases to trial if that means you’ll receive every bit of compensation you’re entitled to. We also understand how insurance companies may not always have your best interest in mind, even if you experience injuries, and we’re dedicated to fighting for your rights.

In this blog, we’re taking a closer look at motorcycle accidents and why an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer could make a major difference. In particular, we’re examining the most common types of injuries suffered by motorcyclists and offering suggestions for keeping you safer on the open road.

MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENTS

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) studied the cases of more than 1.2 million motorcyclists who were treated after an accident in emergency rooms across the U.S. between 2001 and 2008. According to the CDC, 30 percent of all non-fatal motorcycle injuries occurred to the legs and feet. Twenty-two percent of nonfatal motorcycle accident injuries occurred to the head and neck. The number of injuries in the upper trunk, the arms and hands and the lower trunk followed.

A study by the Advancement of Automotive Medicine showed that those who wore helmets had a greater number of less severe injuries and a lower number of severe injuries. When it comes to fatal accidents, data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) showed that the number of head injuries resulting in a fatality was lower in riders who were wearing helmets than riders who were not wearing helmets when the accident occurred.

Some distracted drivers in passenger cars fail to notice the motorcyclists who may be sharing the roadway with them. This could cause a driver to swerve into a motorcyclist or rear-end a bike, resulting in a serious motorcycle accident. Any injuries that are suffered by a motorcyclist could be considered life-threatening, or even life-altering. If a distracted driver was found to be liable for the crash, a personal injury attorney can often assist in seeking appropriate compensation.

Next, we examine some of the most common types of injuries suffered by motorcyclists.

HEAD INJURIES

Even if you’re wearing a helmet, motorcycle accidents always have the potential for head injuries. Without airbags or the structure of a car, there’s nothing between the head of a motorcyclist and the asphalt of the road (or another vehicle). Head injuries for motorcyclists can range from minor cuts and bruises to concussions, brain injury, or even death. No matter how fast you’re going (or the laws in your state) you should always wear a helmet when operating a motorcycle.

LEG INJURIES

Lower body injuries, such as those to the legs and feet, are one of the most common types of injuries for motorcyclists. When a crash occurs, the rider’s legs are the closest thing to the ground and there’s little protection. Additionally, if the motorcycle flips or rolls, the rider’s legs can become trapped beneath the weight of the bike.

ROAD RASH

Road rash is much more than a few minor cuts and bruises. Road rash occurs when the skin comes into contact with a hard surface, like an asphalt road, and the surface actually shaves off the outer layer of skin. There are three types of road rash: avulsion, compression, and open wound.

An avulsion is the most common type, occurring when the skin is shaved away to expose bone, muscle, or tissue. Compression road rash is when the body is trapped between two objects. An open wound is the last and perhaps most severe type of road rash where the wound may require stitches, surgery, or a skin graft. Following an accident, road rash is common on the hands, face, legs, and arms.

EMOTIONAL TRAUMA

Physical injuries can heal with time, but emotional and mental damage may last much longer. Emotional trauma is another major issue for many individuals following a motorcycle accident. While you may not realize it at the time, the trauma from the experience may linger and actually become worse. If you’re involved in a motorcycle accident, a motorcycle accident attorney can help you receive any compensation for injuries, at times including therapy costs to help you handle the emotional burden of the experience.

HOW TO AVOID MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENTS

The open road can be an unpredictable place. Even the safest, most cautious drivers may be unable to account for the distracted or reckless behavior of other drivers or pedestrians. This is why you need to always remain focused and aware when operating a vehicle of any type. For motorcyclists, there are certain things you can do to help prevent accidents. Here are a few of the top tips for staying safe on the road:

1. Slow down

In 2015, the NHTSA reported that speeding played a factor in a third of all fatal motorcycle crashes. The faster you’re going, the less time you have to react to other drivers or obstacles on the road. Even after you hit the brakes, there’s still a good distance to go before you come to a complete and safe stop. Always obey posted speed limits and go even slower if there’s inclement weather.

2. Never ride between cars

Just because your motorcycle can fit in a tight space, it doesn’t mean you should be driving there. It might be tempting to ride between cars, especially in traffic, but this is extremely unsafe (even illegal in some states, such as Colorado). In this tight space, a vehicle could easily pull out and hit you without ever even seeing you.

3. Never share a lane with a car

Again, just because your motorcycle fits, it doesn’t make this riding practice safe. Even if there is excess room in the lane, vehicles are not expecting to share a lane and can easily sideswipe a nearby motorcycle. They could also easily hit a motorcycle when changing lanes.

4. Never ride under the influence

Even just a few drinks can significantly impair your ability to safely and effectively operate a motorcycle. In fact, roughly half of motorcycle accidents involve alcohol. Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs can slow down your reaction time, which as any rider knows, is of the utmost importance.

5. Regular maintenance

Never let your motorcycle fall into disrepair. One of the easiest ways to ensure safety on the road is to keep up with regular maintenance and immediately address any damages or safety issues.

CONCLUSION – TYPES OF INJURIES SUFFERED BY MOTORCYCLISTS

We truly hope you never find yourself in need of a motorcycle accident attorney, but if you do, we’re here to help. Even the safest drivers can’t always be accountable for the reckless behavior of others, and at times, unsafe road conditions or inclement weather can present unexpected risks and hazards. If you’re involved in a motorcycle accident of any kind, the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm has a team of professional and dedicated lawyers who want nothing more than to ensure your rights are protected and your case is successfully executed.

If you or a loved one happens to be involved in a motorcycle accident, money is the last thing you should be worrying about. This is why our law firm operates on contingency fees, which means we only get paid if you win. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation to see what we can do for you.

Safety Tips for Driving Around Semi-Trucks

Semi-trucks often give drivers the most anxiety while driving on the road, and rightfully so. These large trucks are technically 80,000lbs of hurling metal that pose a concern to driver safety. However, the reality is, if each of us does our part and respects the semis on the road, there is a lot less to be nervous about. At the end of the day, a majority of truck accidents are caused by drivers in a passenger car.

I-25 is a crucial highway that serves nearly 16,000 trucks per day. Anytime you drive on Colorado’s highways, whether in the city or through the mountains, you are bound to drive by multiple semi-trucks. What are the keys to making sure you stay safe while passing them? Where are their blind spots? Why is that truck swerving so much, making you nervous to even pass them?

These are common thoughts that run through a driver’s mind as they set off to their destination, especially on longer trips. However, it’s important to remember that truck drivers have gone through testing to acquire their CDL license to become, at the core, professional drivers. They will typically be the big tortious on the road, doing their part in keeping others safe. We, as regular drivers, need to be mindful of what these drivers are up against so we can stay safe while sharing the road. If you or someone you know has been involved in a truck collision contact the Paul Wilkinson injury attorneys today,

Here are some safety tips for you and your family to consider when driving near or around large trucks.

1. Pass them, don’t drive next to them

Anyone can admit that driving next to a truck is simply not as leisurely as driving independently with no one on either side of you. With that said, traffic can oftentimes pose a challenge here, making it a bit more difficult to pass a semi-truck without getting stuck next to them.

Trucks have a handful of blind spots, and the biggest ones are on the right and left sides. If you want to pass the truck, wait until the car in front of you has fully cleared the side of the truck so you can pass them in one swift acceleration. Do what you can to stay either behind or in front of the semi, not next to them.

When passing a large truck, you’re safer to pass on the left side of the truck because that is the side the driver is on. The driver will have more visibility into their own side of the vehicle than they will the right side, meaning that they will be more aware of your presence as you go by.

2. Avoid their Blind Spots

As mentioned, semi-trucks have more blind spots than one might imagine. The image below shows where these blind spots are, and where you should avoid hanging out at all costs. If the truck driver cannot see you, you are running the risk that they may change lanes, swerve to avoid debris, or accelerate/decelerate without knowing that your car is in the way.

The primary blind spots to be aware of are:

  • Directly in front of the truck.
  • Nearly the entire right side of the truck, spanning to nearly two lanes.
  • Directly behind the truck.
  • Nearly half of the left side of the truck, behind the tractor.

Being aware of these blind spots alone can save your life and the life of those around you on the road. Too many times, drivers think these semis should be at the beck and call of other drivers on the road, but the reality is, it’s much easier to maneuver a regular, passenger vehicle than a 40-ton semi-truck. There are physical limitations that these drivers have to deal with, such as blind spots nearly all around them, that we as drivers need to understand and respect in order to safely share the road.

3. Try not to drive in front of them

Driving in front of a semi-truck is not a huge deal when there is no traffic or inclement weather. However, if you are in a position that you find yourself slamming on the breaks through stop and go traffic, or even driving on icy roads, it’s best to avoid driving directly in front of a semi-truck. If a truck is going 60 mph, it could, in some cases, take them the distance of three football fields to come to a full stop. If you stop abruptly in front of them, or they have icy roads to deal with on top of the slower stopping time, they could plow through whatever is in front of them. You don’t want your vehicle to be the one in the way in this scenario.

Now, of course, truck drivers will usually maintain a safe distance from the vehicles in front of them to allow themselves enough time to stop. However, if you want to simply play it safe, avoid that position when you can.

4. Don’t cut in front of them

As mentioned above, one of the blind spots that truck drivers have to deal with is directly in front of their vehicle. Whether you’re merging on the highway or changing lanes, there are certainly best practices to keep in mind for the safety of everyone in your vehicle.

When changing lanes, first and foremost, use a blinker. Keep your blinker on for at least 5 – 10 seconds to make sure the driver sees your intent to merge in front of them. Second, continue driving ahead of the semi until you can see both headlights, and ideally the whole nose of the semi-truck in your side view mirror. This will be a helpful identifier that you have been in their line of sight for long enough that the truck driver is most likely aware that you are merging. After all, awareness is key to safe driving, no matter what vehicle you are in.

5. Don’t tailgate

This is another tip based on the blind spots of a truck. The kicker here is that a semi-truck sits higher than regular vehicles. When traveling behind large trucks that need to brake quickly, a collision would occur at the level of your windshield rather than your bumper. The results are self-explanatory. Don’t tailgate anybody, especially semi-trucks.

6. Give them plenty of space to make turns

Wide turns are a real thing, and the bigger the truck, the wider the turn. If you are at an intersection, mind the lines to stay behind. You may even benefit from staying a few feet further back at busy intersections, especially if you are in a turning lane. Trucks will usually go wide to allow themselves enough room, but they need the cooperation of those of us on the road as well to make sure they can get by without running into another car.

7. Watch out for drifting

We’ve all been there – driving down the highway and we see a truck that keeps swerving in and out of their lane. They must be drunk, right? Maybe he’s falling asleep and needs to get off the road? It’s possible but hopefully, that is not the case. Of course, there are bad apples out there, but usually, truck drivers know better.

The primary cause of this could be simple – the wind. When semi-trucks don’t have any cargo in their bed and are driving back from making a delivery, they are very susceptible to the wind due to the lighter weight they are toeing. High winds can push the semi-truck from side to side, making it so they have to swerve to avoid tipping over. Now, if a semi-truck driver finds themselves in a high wind storm, they should probably get off the road, and they probably will if it is making that much of an impact on their driving abilities. But you might be the one seeing them experience the winds initially picking up.

What do you do in this situation? Avoid them. Whether that means slowing your speed to stay well behind them, or finding an opportunity to pass them on the left side, get away from them and give them plenty of space.

8. Stay off your phone

Stay off your phone in general while driving, whether you are around a semi-truck or not. This is especially important, however, if you are around a semi. The 3 seconds that you look down to check your phone could be the 3 seconds that it takes to collide into a semi-truck or neighboring vehicle near a semi-truck. Accidents are much more likely to be fatal when there are semi-trucks involved, and we all owe it to each other to be vigilant when driving near, next to, or around a semi. Unfortunately, texting is one of the leading causes of collisions that Denver truck accident lawyers see.

9. Wear your seatbelt

Regardless of the collision, those who wear their seatbelt have a much higher chance of survival than those who do not. When it comes to a semi-truck, the truth only becomes more amplified. Wear your seatbelt, it’s simple.

10. Drive sober

When driving after a few drinks, there is no question that your judgment, depth perception, and decision making will be altered. Drunk driving is one of the leading causes of fatal vehicular deaths in Colorado, and it’s important to note that truck collisions become an even bigger threat to those with dimmed judgment on the road. Stay sober behind the wheel, and you’ll save not only your own life but the lives of those around you.

If you or someone you know has been involved in a truck collision and is looking for a truck accident attorney, it’s important to find the right help. Our Denver legal team is dedicated to providing the utmost care for our clients, and we will fight for your best interest rather than settling on the first offer. We are happy to be the sounding board that will help you determine your next steps in such an accident.

For more information about the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm, contact us at 303-333-7285.

Most Common Places for Accidents

This blog discusses the most common areas for car accidents to occur. It also reveals how motorists can avoid these dangers and stay safe on the road. However, no matter the level of preventative measures motorists take, accidents can happen to the most cautious and prepared, so it’s crucial to have a contingency plan.

Motorists in Colorado and throughout the country tend to do most of their driving within 25 miles of home. Therefore, it may not be surprising to hear that this is where most accidents occur. Drivers might mistakenly believe they can rely on muscle memory when driving, but it is still one of the most dangerous activities a person can do. It is the leading cause of death for males from ages 5-23 and females aged 3-23.

Despite the inherent danger involved in driving an automobile, there are ways to mitigate risk. For example, wearing a seatbelt may be an effective way to stay safe while operating a motor vehicle. In front seat passengers alone, seatbelts reduce the risk of death by 45%.

The vast majority of motor vehicle accidents are attributable to human error. Because human negligence causes most accidents, courts need to hold the correct parties responsible. If you’re involved in a car accident, consulting with a car accident law firm can ensure you receive the correct compensation for any losses you may incur.

Why Do Most Accidents Happen Within 5 Minutes of Home?

You may think neighborhoods are some of the most unnatural areas for auto accidents. With their low-speed limits and lack of traffic, how could they be dangerous?

Despite their idyllic appearance, neighborhoods are among the most common areas for car accidents for many reasons.

Drivers Let Their Guard Down

Because neighborhoods seem like the safest area to drive, drivers often let their guard down. Drivers may feel like they can finally take a breath after a long day’s work, or they might be fatigued after a long commute. Whatever the reason, drivers are more likely to take their eyes off the road and direct their attention to their phones or other distractions.

Collisions with Parked Vehicles

Another, often overlooked, reason for residential accidents is the parked vehicles on the side of the road. Drivers on the road might not be on the lookout for pedestrians entering their cars or a poorly parked vehicle whose rear-end is sticking out into the street. Drivers are especially likely to miss these obstacles if they are in an area where they feel comfortable driving.

Fatigue

Fatigue often couples with distracted driving in residential areas because drivers feel like they can relax when they’re in familiar territory. The mental exhaustion that comes from working long hours and a brutal commute can be especially dangerous when combined with the promise of relief someone’s home provides.

Intoxicated Driving

When people drink and drive, they tend to try and avoid freeways to evade legal ramifications. Avoiding freeways diminishes the probability of high-speed crashes, but it doesn’t make drinking and driving safe. Driving under the influence leads to an estimated 16,000 fatal accidents every year, about 40% of the United States’ total fatality rate.

Rush Hour

People with long commutes may misjudge the amount of time they have to get ready in the morning. Their misallocated time can have damaging effects on their day, as they might rush to get to work and cause an accident.

Inexperienced Drivers

Parents often use their neighborhood as the driving safe-haven for their up-and-coming teenage drivers. But their neighborhood safety can quickly turn south when they learn their teenager has no idea what they’re doing. Inexperienced drivers who aren’t familiar with how to operate a motor vehicle often cause accidents in neighborhoods.

Other Common Areas for Auto Accidents

Rural Areas

It’s understandable why people might think urban areas are more dangerous for car accident fatalities. After all, with all the stopping and going and increased traffic, how could they possibly be safer than rural areas?

Though these are logical reasons why driving in urban areas might be more dangerous, in 2017, 46% of fatal car crashes occurred in rural areas. Given the population disparity between urban and rural areas, driving in a rural area is just as risky, if not riskier than urban areas.

Rural areas have less lighting and decreased speed limit regulations. People might also be less cautious since there are fewer drivers on the road.

Stoplights

One of the most common areas for rear-end collisions is at stoplights. Rear-end collisions at stoplights are understandable because all it takes to cause an accident is a split second of taking your eyes off the road. You may think, “the light is green, and I can go ahead and pick up that thing I dropped.” But when you look up, the light is red, and you have no time to stop. Cars may also have faulty brakes that fail at stoplights.

Because of the decreased speeds, rear-end collisions are rarely fatal. But even though rarely fatal, rear-end collisions can still cause severe damage and lead to injury.

Intersections

Intersections often confuse drivers because they don’t understand who has the right of way. Failure to understand who has the right-of-way causes people to pull out in front of other vehicles when they should remain stopped. These types of accidents can sometimes be fatal due to the nature of a t-bone accident.

For example, someone might mistakenly believe they are at a four-way stop, fail to yield the right-of-way to an oncoming vehicle and pull out in front of them. Because the oncoming car wasn’t expecting to stop, they might be traveling at high-speeds and smash directly into the side of the vehicle that failed to yield.

Parking Lots and Garages

Because of their cramped space, accidents in parking lots represent a significant portion of all car accidents. Drivers are also making maneuvers they don’t often make, like backing out of a parking space. Backing out of a parking space creates blind spots for drivers, and other drivers tend to drive carelessly through parking lots without looking for cars that are backing out of their spaces.

When Do Most Accidents Happen?

Afternoons

It makes sense why more accidents would occur in the afternoon; there are more drivers on the road. Fridays between 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm are especially dangerous because people are getting out of work for the weekend. They might be excited about their upcoming activities, which can lead to decreased attention.

Summer

There are several reasons accidents increase during the summer months. Perhaps most importantly, drivers log the most miles during the summer months because they take trips and are less afraid to travel on the road in warm weather. Students are also on their break, which means they have more free time and are on the road more often. Increased construction can catch drivers off-guard as well.

Holidays

The two primary reasons accidents increase over the holidays are because more people are traveling and alcohol consumption increases. Negligent vehicle maintenance is another contributing factor to holiday accidents.

How To Avoid Auto Accidents

There’s no concrete way to avoid auto accidents, but you can take measures to reduce the risk. If you care about your safety and the safety of your passengers, other drivers, and pedestrians, consider the following suggestions.

Examine Your Driving Habits

When you get into the driver’s seat, note whether you’re alert or mindlessly performing the actions necessary to turn the car on and begin your journey. Committing to this practice can reduce your tendency to drive recklessly.

While driving, consciously avoid checking your phone even if it buzzes or rings, and put the GPS on voice direction rather than looking at it. Performing these tasks reduces the chance that you cause an accident, and while you can’t control what other drivers do, you can take comfort in not causing others harm due to your negligence.

Take a Defensive Driving Class

If you want to feel especially safe on the road, you can take a defensive driving class to protect yourself from other drivers. Some insurance companies even offer discounts on the course, while others offer a discount on your premium after completing the class.

Denver Car Accident Attorneys Help No Matter Where Your Accident Happens

No matter where your car accident occurs, our car accident injury lawyers can help you navigate the complex legal process that happens after your accident. Our caring, knowledgeable attorneys instruct you on how to respond to insurance companies appropriately. We also conduct thorough investigations of your case to determine your entitled compensation.

Contact us today for a free consultation to determine how best to approach your case.

How to Talk to Teens About Driving Safely

Teen Driving Safety (How to Talk to Your Teen About Their Driving Safety)
This teen driving guide answers the question, “how can teens be convinced to drive more safely.” It also discusses what a safe driver is responsible for and how parents can speak to their kids about how to become a safe driver.

Parents might feel both excited and anxious when their teens first start driving, and for a good reason. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, teenagers are nearly three times more likely to end up in a car accident than adults. Additionally, the leading cause of death for teens is motor accidents.

Because teens may not understand the potentially fatal consequences of operating a motor vehicle, parents need to have an open line of communication with teenagers getting behind the wheel.

Before a teenager can drive on his or her own, the parents need to sit down with their child and talk about the importance of driving safely. It is vital for parents to clearly define how to become a safe driver. Any parents having trouble figuring out how to sit down with their youngsters should follow these guidelines.

The Paul Wilkinson Law Firm can help you with whatever car accident issues you run into. Whether someone runs into your unsuspecting teen or your teen causes an accident, we can make sure you find justice. Read on to discover what teen driving safety tips you can use when talking to your teen about driving safety.

Bring Confidence to the Conversation

Part of talking to your teen about becoming a safe driver stems from being confident about your approach. You understand how severe the issue of safe driving is, don’t hesitate. You can positively influence your teen’s driving habits, but to do so, you have to approach the conversation confidently.

Establishing Your Ground Rules

To speak confidently about teen driving safety tips, you need to establish your expectations from the start. Make it clear where in town your teen can drive to and how late he or she can stay out.

Setting a Good Example

The best way for your teen to become a safe driver is by showing them how to become a safe driver. The best way to lead is by example, be mindful of your driving habits because they will inevitably pass to your children.

Remember, you are their role model, and if you want your teenager to be a safe driver, you have to set a good example.

Understand Facts About Young Drivers

If you aren’t aware of national teen driving statistics, how can you accurately speak on teenage driving dangers? Research the prevalent dangers teenage drivers face so you can approach your conversation without apprehension or tentativeness.

Stay Involved

One of the most critical aspects of new driver safety is staying involved in your teen’s driving habits. Once your teen gets their license, their driving education shouldn’t stop. If anything, it should continue on a more regular basis.

Because they will be driving independently, you must continue to monitor your teen’s driving habits.

Teen Driving Statistics

The following statistics come from the Center for Disease Control and teensdriversource.org.

Motor vehicle accident risks are highest among teens aged 13-19.

  • The motor vehicle death for male drivers aged 16-19 was almost two times higher than the death rate for females of the same age.
  • The majority of serious teen driver crashes have to do with critical errors that teen drivers make. The most common of these critical errors are lack of scanning the road, speeding, and distracted driving.
  • The crash rate per mile is 1.5 x higher among new drivers aged 16 than 18-19-year-old

What Are the Biggest Risk Factors for Teen Driving?

The primary risks for teen driving accidents revolve around common mistakes that all drivers make. However, because teen drivers are inexperienced in these situations, these risks are heightened. The statistics contained in this article are from the CDC and other cited sources.

Inexperienced Driving

Teenaged drivers have fewer skills in their repertoire to avoid potentially hazardous situations. In these situations (such as poor road conditions), experienced drivers can avoid obstacles more easily. Teens are more likely to make critical mistakes than adults, which can lead to severe crashes.

No Seatbelts

Teens are more likely not to wear their seatbelts than adults. Not wearing a seatbelt is one of the most dangerous aspects of driving. In fact, of the 37,133 people killed in car accidents, 47% were not wearing seatbelts. This statistic displays the importance of creating awareness with your teen about the importance of wearing a seatbelt.

Teens are notorious for not wearing their seatbelts. For example, the National Occupant Protection Use Survey Controlled Intersection Study found that teenage seatbelt use was approximately 87% each year, whereas the usage rate for adults over 25 was 90% or higher.

Distracted Driving

Distracted driving always causes adverse effects, but distracted driving affects younger drivers disproportionately.

A Youth Risk Behavior Survey revealed that 39% of the high school students in the survey texted or emailed while driving throughout the 30-day study.

Many teenagers do not see the harm in quickly responding to a text while driving. However, taking your eyes off the road for even a couple of seconds can lead to disaster. These days, there are many apps parents can download onto their teens’ phones. The app will disable the phone when it is going over a specific speed limit.

Speeding

Teens are more likely to speed, and they allow shorter headway distances between cars. Because teens are more careless with their speed and follow people more closely, you should teach your teens how to maintain speed limits and appropriate distance.

2018 statistics published on the CDC’s website found that 30% of male drivers between the ages of 15-20 and 18% of the female drivers between the ages 15-20 involved in fatal car accidents were speeding. Both of these numbers were the highest percentages by sex for any age group.

Alcohol Use:

Drinking any alcohol before driving increases your risk of being involved in an accident. Buzzed driving is not any safer than drunk driving.

Teen drivers also have an increased risk with alcohol because they don’t have experience operating a vehicle. The inexperience of operating a motor vehicle combined with alcohol inhibition and inebriation causes higher risks to teens.

The same Youth Risk Behavior survey mentioned earlier in this guide also found that among high school students who drove, 5.4 % drove while drinking alcohol. The same study found that older, male, underperforming students were more likely to drink alcohol before driving.

16.7% of the high school students in the survey rode with a driver who had drunk alcohol at least once during the 30 days before the survey. Riding with a driver who had drank and driven was more prevalent among students who had lower grades.

Students who engaged in other risks such as speeding were 3-13 times more likely to engage in drinking and driving.

Denver Car Accident Attorneys Who Care

Talking to your teenager about the potential hazards of teenage driving is a crucial component of answering the question, “how can teens be convinced to drive more safely.” Though conversations help, teaching your teenager how to become a better driver also comes down to being a role model for them.

Wearing your seatbelt, defensively driving, and not speeding will help teach your teenager how to safely navigate the road and become a safe driver in the future.

The Paul Wilkinson Law Firm consists of Denver car accident attorneys who care about you and your family. Regardless of whether your teenager was at-fault in an accident, we can ensure that you and your family protect yourselves against shady insurance practices and lawsuits.

How Do Collision Avoidance Systems Work?

According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), one of the most effective measures for keeping cars and drivers safe on the road is the development of collision avoidance technology. This new technology helps alert drivers when a potential collision is imminent by monitoring drivers and other vehicles with sensors, AI technology, and cameras. Collision avoidance systems can alert the driver through sounds or lights or even in some cases, like automated braking systems, help you prevent a car accident or serious injury by partially applying some of your vehicle’s braking power.

These systems make roads safer and decrease motor vehicle accidents, potentially preventing traumatic brain injuries, reducing car accident victims, avoiding drunk driver and buzzed driving accidents, and reducing common injuries from car accidents. In other words, collision avoidance technology is the wave of the future.

With support from large organizations such as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), it’s tempting to think car accident avoidance technology is the greatest thing since sliced bread. In many ways, it is, but there are also some potential pitfalls of the burgeoning technology, such as the liability it creates for insurance companies and the possible legal fees that can occur from a malfunction. The collision avoidance technologies are by no means failproof, which can ironically increase the risk of physical injury, head injuries, fatality, and car accident lawsuits.

This blog takes a closer look at collision avoidance to understand how these systems work and the potential benefits and drawbacks to the technology. As with most other technology advancements, there is good news and bad news. It reviews how effective these advanced systems can be at reducing automobile wrecks while at the same time causing some confusion regarding the at-fault driver or who the negligent party is in a car accident case.

Paul Wilkinson Law Firm is a team of experienced Denver car accident attorneys who fight to achieve maximum compensation for their clients. Whether you have minor injuries such as whiplash, or more serious injuries such as a concussion, we investigate your case to ensure you achieve fair compensation.

We take accident victims’ expenses into account, such as their medical bills, property damage, economic damages, and any non-economic damages. Call Paul today to find out what a trusted car accident lawyer can do for your case.

WHAT IS COLLISION AVOIDANCE?

Also known as driver assistance systems, this advanced technology is essentially a safety system designed to prevent collisions between motor vehicles. Each collision avoidance system looks a little different, but for the most part, they utilize AI technology, sensors, and dash cams to detect an imminent collision. Once detected, the vehicle will alert the driver, or even in some cases, respond automatically by pumping the vehicle’s brakes to prevent the car accident.

As crash avoidance systems advance and their algorithms account for more potentially hazardous conditions, more and more auto makers are outfitting their new vehicles with these driving systems.

HOW DO COLLISION AVOIDANCE SYSTEMS WORK?

There are several different types of collision avoidance systems. While each one works uniquely, and it is up to automakers to decide which ones to implement, they all serve the similar purpose of preventing auto collisions. Here’s a closer look at the most popular features:

Collision Avoidance Features:

Adaptive Cruise Control:

Adaptive cruise control is a preventative collision avoidance feature. These tools help prevent rear crashes by utilizing radars and lasers and implementing imminent braking systems. Not only do these systems help you relax on the road, but they also issue collision warning systems that help assist you in your driving experience.

Automatic Emergency Braking:

Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB): AEB is another brake system that helps prevent potential hazards. This system uses feedback from sensors to control automatic braking while issuing both forward-collision warnings and helping you avoid obstacles on the road.

Rear Automatic Braking: This collision warning system issues imminent braking when using reverse on your vehicle.

Electronic Stability Control (ESC): In inclement weather conditions, ESC uses sensors to automatically apply brakes when your vehicle struggles to maintain traction. This system determines which brakes to apply and appropriate acceleration depending on where the traction issues reside.

Parking Assist: Parking assist uses sensors and assisted steering to guide you into the appropriate parking space while controlling your speed and steering angle.

Forward Collision mitigation.

This type of collision avoidance measures the speed of your vehicle, any vehicles in front of you, and the change in distance between your vehicles. If the vehicles get too close, the car will alert the driver.

Lane Departure Warning System.

Even experienced drivers will occasionally drift into other lanes. Lane departure collision avoidance is designed to signal drivers when they do so and can also effectively avoid rear crashes from other cars when changing lanes. Lane departure warning comes in handy with cars lower to the ground who have trouble seeing the whole road.

Pedestrian detection.

Collisions with pedestrians occur most often at intersections. Pedestrian detection uses sensors to detect movement on the road to prevent these collisions between vehicles, pedestrians, or cyclists at intersections and alerts the driver so they can effectively respond.

Collision Avoidance Efficacy

In a recent study conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, researchers found that collision avoidance tech effectively prevents many types of car accidents in Colorado and throughout the U.S. The vice president for research at IIHS said that collision avoidance tech is “saving lives.”

Furthermore, she added that anti-crash technology warning systems are working as intended. In its study, the IIHS found that collision avoidance systems reduce single-vehicle, sideswipe, and head-on car crashes by 11 percent. Moreover, injury-inducing car crashes of the same types get reduced by 21 percent when drivers operate vehicles equipped with anti-crash systems.

The findings by IIHS are interesting because they do more than simply show the effectiveness of these collision avoidance systems. The results also demonstrate that it’s likely that many drivers disable their crash avoidance technology. The researchers at IIHS found that car accident and injury reduction numbers were low compared to findings from other studies that tracked US fleet vehicles and Volvo cars in Sweden. Researchers in those studies found a 50 percent reduction in crash rates when collision avoidance systems were included in a vehicle and actively utilized by the driver.

Drawbacks to Crash Avoidance Technology

Whether you have a Toyota or BMW, your new car likely has some form of crash avoidance technology, but how much can we trust this technology, and how does it account for determining fault in car accident law?

Can its drawbacks potentially cause serious injuries, including traumatic brain injuries, concussions, or even fatalities? Can we rely on this technology to detect pedestrians at intersections every time, or could one failure prove you guilty of negligence and put you behind bars?

Car crash avoidance technology poses a few potential legal implications. The first has to do with the insurance company. Insurance companies use insurance adjusters to determine the extent of property damage and determine whether a claim is legitimate. If someone is involved in a car wreck caused by crash avoidance technology, who the police assign designate as the negligent driver, and who will wind up bearing the impact of the personal injury lawsuit?

All of these questions display how car accident attorneys and car accident law itself may have to adjust to accommodate car crash avoidance technology. Insurance companies, adjusters, and police officers filing police reports will also have to shift their focus to better account for the challenges these emerging technologies pose.

TOP CARS WITH Crash Avoidance Technology

In recent years, crash avoidance technology has become much more common in new cars and trucks. Here are just a few of the top-rated vehicles that come equipped with advanced automated safety features.

1. 2021 Genesis G80.

This car comes with automatic emergency braking, pedestrian detection, blind-spot monitoring, and lane-control assistance.

2. 2021Audi A8.

This new Audi comes with predictive suspension that raises the side of your car in the event of a collision. There’s also a laser scanner that works with the front camera to detect other vehicles’ motion.

3. 2021 Nissan Altima.

This model is equipped with a one-of-a-kind Safety Shield 360 that combines automatic braking, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, and forward collision mitigation.

4. 2021 Subaru Outback.

Subaru’s patented EyeSight technology includes adaptive cruise control, driver-focus monitoring, forward collision mitigation, and automatic emergency braking.

5. 2021 Tesla Model 3.

For those interested in a safe and environmentally friendly vehicle, this car is for you. The new Tesla Model 3 comes with adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring, emergency lane departure avoidance, and emergency braking.

CONCLUSION – HOW DOES CRASH AVOIDANCE SYSTEMS WORK?

The federal government’s support in organizations such as the NHTSA shows how car accident avoidance systems are here to stay. Automobile manufacturers show no signs of ramping down. This is understandable considering crash avoidance systems reduce the likelihood of accidents. However, they do not eliminate this risk. In 2021, we stand at an intersection between the benefits technology brings and how to account for their inherent bugs. How automobile manufacturers continue to adapt to the emerging issues will dictate how easy the transition to car accident avoidance technology will be.

Motorists who have been injured in car accidents by negligent drivers should reach out to an experienced personal injury attorney. These professionals can help you understand your accident, assess your case, and determine whether or not you’re eligible for financial compensation.

Here at the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm, our team of experienced personal injury attorneys is dedicated to helping those involved in a wide range of personal injury cases, including car accidents. We can help assess your case, educate you on your rights, and help you receive financial compensation if your case warrants it. If you’re ever involved in a car accident, don’t hesitate to Call Paul and contact us for more information.

Sleep Apnea’s Effect on Truck Drivers

Sleep apnea is a prevalent sleep condition that prevents people from getting a full night’s rest. Sleep apnea causes your breathing to temporarily stop in the middle of the night, causing you to wake up momentarily before falling back asleep. Some individuals with sleep apnea may wake up several times in the night and never even realize it. This can make it extremely challenging to fall into a deep and restorative sleeping pattern. While only about two percent of the American population suffers from sleep apnea, roughly a third of commercial truck drivers suffer from this sleep condition.

Sleep apnea is problematic (and can cause truck accidents) because individuals with this sleep disorder often are more tired or may even fall asleep during the day from exhaustion. Recently, President Trump rejected legislation that would have required truck drivers to pass sleeping exams before getting a position as a truck driver. Falling asleep at the wheel greatly increases the risk of a truck accident, and yet, currently it is only the responsibility of drivers and companies to remain vigilant. If you need to contact a Denver truck accident lawyer, contact the attorneys at the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm.

WHAT IS SLEEP APNEA?

According to the Mayo Clinic, truck driver sleep apnea law applies to all truck drivers and is a sleep disorder where an individual’s breathing will stop and start. Loud snoring, gasping for air during sleep, dry mouth, and a headache are some of the most common symptoms of sleep apnea. This sleep disorder can also disrupt your sleeping pattern, leading to a lack of sleep or a lack of deep sleep. Over time, this can develop into insomnia or hypersomnia, which is a condition characterized by excessive daytime tiredness and sleepiness.

HOW DOES SLEEP APNEA AFFECT DRIVERS?

Sleep apnea can have a dramatic effect on your driving ability. Since this sleep disorder disrupts your regular sleeping pattern, it can make you drowsy and tired when you get behind the wheel. Lack of sleep is a common cause of distracted driving accidents. For someone with sleep apnea, it can be more difficult to stay awake, focus your gaze on the road, and can also slow down your overall reaction time.

Just because sleep apnea doesn’t make you completely fall asleep at the wheel doesn’t mean that it doesn’t increase your risk of an auto accident. Any level of sleep deprivation can degrade your ability to focus, think, and make safe decisions when driving.

WHY ARE TRUCK DRIVERS MORE PRONE TO SLEEP APNEA?

At first glance, it may not initially make sense that truck drivers are more prone to this sleep disorder than your average citizen. However, it helps to understand the various risk factors that can increase the likelihood of someone experiencing sleep apnea. Some of the most common risk factors include:

  • Obesity.
  • Male gender.
  • Oversized uvula, tongue, or tonsils.
  • Smoking.
  • Over 40 years of age.
  • Larger neck circumference.

Because driving commercial trucks is a primarily sedentary job, truck drivers are at a greater risk of obesity. Additionally, this risk is further complicated since their diets often consist of meals eaten on the road that may be higher in salt and fat. While every case is individual and unique, these could be important factors in pinpointing the root cause of this problem.

CAN YOU STILL DRIVE IF YOU HAVE SLEEP APNEA?

Being diagnosed with sleep apnea does not mean that you can never drive again. Per the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), there are no restrictions on driving for someone with sleep apnea; however, it is recommended that they do not operate a commercial motor vehicle (CMV), as a commercial truck.

However, sleep apnea is a treatable medical condition, which means that most individuals can safely return to the road following successful treatment. Currently, there are no federal laws dictating the actions of commercial drivers. Laws regulating one’s ability to drive a commercial vehicle vary depending on the state.

WHY ISN’T MORE BEING DONE ABOUT TRUCK DRIVERS AND SLEEP APNEA?

While federal regulations may be currently up in the air, many trucking companies are paying the medical costs associated with screening truckers for various sleep disorders. A single sleep disorder test is expensive, especially if a trucker has to pay out of pocket, which is why it’s so important that trucking companies get involved. Accidents could be prevented and lives could be saved if more trucks were aware of the effects of sleep apnea.

CONCLUSION – SLEEP APNEA’S EFFECT ON TRUCK DRIVERS

No sleep disorder should be taken lightly. Sleep apnea, in particular, can have a range of symptoms and effects, including difficulty breathing, headaches, and insomnia. It can also disrupt your regular sleeping pattern, which can have a wide range of adverse health effects. A good night’s sleep affects your weight, blood pressure, mental functioning, and overall mood. No one should be operating a commercial truck (or any motor vehicle) under these adverse health conditions.

However, even with sleep testing and precautions, truck accidents still happen. If you or a loved one has been injured or involved in a truck accident, contact the experienced team of Denver truck accident attorneys at the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm today. With our years of experience, dedication, and expertise, we’re here to help put you on the road to recovery. Contact us for more information.

What is an Autonomous Vehicle?

We all get excited about future technology. However, while Colorado residents might anticipate the day when driverless cars will be widely available, that day might not come as quickly as they hope. There are several issues that must first be addressed before self-driving cars can be available in mass production. Other factors, such as high upfront costs, may also make people less willing to purchase these vehicles when they are first available.

Here, we’re taking a closer look at autonomous vehicles to better understand this new technology. We also highlight some of the many risks and barriers that inherently will come with this new type of vehicle. While driverless cars may seem like the inevitable and exciting future of transportation, it’s important to also understand the risks.

At The Paul Wilkinson Law Firm, we’ve grown a specialized team of personal injury attorneys who are experienced in various personal injury practice areas, including car accidents, motorcycle accidents, and truck accidents. We also know how important it is to adapt to new technologies, which will inevitably alter legislation, regulations, and insurance practices. This, in part, is why we believe it’s so important to prepare for the future of driving—however it may appear in the days to come.

WHAT IS AN AUTONOMOUS VEHICLE?

According to TWI Global, autonomous vehicles, also known as driverless cars, are vehicles that are capable of operating themselves without any human intervention or action. Autonomous vehicles are designed to sense their surroundings and respond accordingly as a human driver would on any road.

The technology behind autonomous vehicles is still a work in progress. While there are no fully autonomous vehicles currently on the roads, there are partially autonomous ones being developed and tested. Companies like Uber and Waymo (associated with Google) are leading the way in producing driverless vehicles. Currently, autonomous cars are classified on a five-level scale that dictates their level of autonomy. Level 1 cars, for example, only have autonomous features, like cruise control or braking, while level 5 cars will eventually be completely autonomous in every driving scenario.

RISKS OF AUTONOMOUS VEHICLES

The risk of car accidents is one of the greatest factors to overcome before autonomous vehicles become widely available. However, there are many additional risks that come with the introduction of autonomous vehicles that could delay their widespread adoption. Here are some important risks to consider with driverless cars:

1. Unregulated industry.

Like any new industry, an initial period with new regulations (or simply the lack of complete regulations) may cause issues. For example: when a driverless car gets into an accident, who’s responsible? The driver? The manufacturer? These are all legal issues that will need to be hammered out over time.

2. Autonomous and traditional vehicles.

For a certain amount of time, there is bound to be an overlap when autonomous and traditional, manual vehicles are sharing the road. This will create entirely new driving situations, which will inevitably lead to risks for even the most experienced drivers. Driver’s education courses and safe driving rules will have to be overhauled and reimagined to account for driverless vehicles.

3. Hacking and computer malfunctions.

Whether purposeful (hacking) or unintended (computer malfunctions), there’s a high risk of new equipment and technology going awry when autonomous vehicles are introduced to the general public. This will greatly increase the potential for dangerous auto accidents that are completely out of control for those inside the vehicle. Manufacturers will have to develop extremely sophisticated (and safe) technology before self-driving cars can become available to the public.

WHAT COULD DELAY DRIVERLESS VEHICLES

Before driverless cars can be released to the general public, state and federal lawmakers, along with regulatory agencies, will first need to draft new laws and regulations to specifically address and govern these new vehicles. The process of drafting and passing these new laws and rules could easily take years. There are also thorny issues of liability that will need to be determined, including the party (or parties) that could be held financially and legally responsible if a self-driving car is at fault in a car accident. This may also change what type of insurance individual drivers will need.

Generally, consumers are only willing to pay set amounts for advancements in technology. If driverless cars have higher prices, consumers are likely to stick with traditional vehicles. This has been demonstrated in the early years of electric vehicles. Even though electric cars may save consumers money over the vehicle’s lifetime, fewer consumers opt to purchase them due to the higher upfront costs.

CONCLUSION – WHAT IS AN AUTONOMOUS VEHICLE

Even in our future of driverless vehicles, car accidents may still happen. In addition to a transition period where self-driving cars are sharing the roads with traditional vehicles, widespread car accidents may also be caused by defects in the equipment, software hacks, and adverse weather conditions.

When people are the victims of car accidents that are not their fault, an experienced personal injury attorney may be able to offer them assistance. Car accident attorneys may work to determine which parties should be held financially responsible (fully or partially) and then help victims recover damages in amounts that will equate to fair compensation.

Whether it’s a manual or self-driving car, being involved in an auto accident can be a frightening, confusing, and stressful experience. If you’ve been involved in a car accident, don’t hesitate to Call Paul. Contact us for more information to see if we can provide you with the guidance and help you deserve.

4 Apps to Prevent You from Driving While Distracted

In recent years, distracted driving has become one of the most significant causes of car accidents. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), over 2,800 people were killed in distracted driving accidents in 2018 alone. This averages out to almost eight lives lost every single day from this very preventable, and dangerous, driving habit.

Anything that diverts your attention from driving your vehicle counts as distracted driving; however, generally, there are three main categories: visual, manual, and cognitive. Visual refers to any distraction that takes your vision from the road. Manual, then, refers to incidents when you take your hands from the wheel. Cognitive distracted driving occurs whenever you take your mind, or your cognitive focus, from the act of driving.

Here at the Call Paul Law Firm, we’re dedicated to keeping drivers safer on the road. For many of us, this begins with education, which is why we’re taking time to learn more about distracted driving and even show you some useful apps you can download to prevent you from the temptation of distracted driving. Keeping our roads safe is a collaborative effort and we’re here to do our part.

But if you are in a distracted driving accident (or car accident of any kind), you’ll want to understand your rights and whether or not your accident warrants any type of legal compensation. Don’t hesitate to reach out to the Call Paul Law Firm, one of the top car accident law firms in Colorado, to see what kind of assistance we can provide for you and your case.

WHAT CAUSES DISTRACTED DRIVING?

Distracted driving can take many forms, but in recent years, our smartphones have become one of the greatest distractions. More so than answering a call, texting and driving is a significant hazard because it removes your focus from the road for an extended period of time. Checking your email on your smartphone is another major distracting factor that is especially common for busy commuters.

In addition to our phones, there are many other ways to be distracted behind the wheel. Checking directions on your GPS, playing with the radio, eating, or talking with passengers can all easily account for distracted driving accidents.

WHO IS MOST AT RISK FROM DISTRACTED DRIVING?

According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), teen drivers are most at risk of distracted driving. In 2018, CDC data shows that drivers aged 15 to 19 were most likely to be distracted in fatal crashes. Roughly ten percent of all teen deaths in motor vehicle accidents were caused by distracted driving.

However, distracted driving isn’t limited to just teen drivers. Per CDC data, 25 percent of distracted drivers in fatal crashes were between the ages of 20 to 29. And of course, older drivers are not immune to the temptations of distracted driving.

HOW TO PREVENT DISTRACTED DRIVING

We all live busy lives, which is why it’s often so tempting to multitask while driving. Since driving often takes up a good portion of our days, especially for commuters, we often view this time as an opportunity to make phone calls, check our email, or even enjoy a meal. But the small amount of time you’ll save is never worth the risk of a car accident that could lead to injuries or even prove fatal. No matter the situation, there’s always time in the future to answer that phone call or text.

When driving, always keep your full focus (including eyes, hands, and mental awareness) on the road. Maintaining focus is a core component of being a safe and responsible driver. Even when you’re not behind the wheel, you can help prevent distracted driving. As a passenger, refrain from distracting the driver and encourage them to practice safe driving habits. You can also help them perform certain tasks, like checking on directions or finding your location.

As a parent, you should always encourage your children to practice safe driving habits. Since distracted driving is so prevalent among novice drivers, this is a conversation you simply can’t avoid. Talk to your teen drivers about the hazards of distracted driving and strategies you employ to stay more responsible behind the wheel. You can also take practical steps to help them avoid distracted driving, such as limiting the number of passengers they can drive with.

However, if you still find you could use some extra help to keep your eyes and hands from your smartphone, here are some of the top apps for preventing you from driving while distracted. Most of these are free and easy to download.

SAFE DRIVING APPS

While our cell phones are without a doubt one of the leading causes of distracted driving, many companies and app developers have designed specific products to help us stay safer on the road. Here are some of the most popular:

1. LifeSaver.

LifeSaver has become one of the most popular apps aimed at reducing distracted driving. Developed for use by insurers, businesses, or even just families, LifeSaver works to remove the distraction created by your cell phone. Available for both Android and iPhones users, this free app blocks calls and texts while a driver is in motion. By removing the distraction, this app has proven to be quite effective.

2. EverDrive.

This free app takes advantage of our natural love of competition to help you prevent distracted driving. Available on both Android and iOS, EverDrive assesses various factors of your driving, including speed, acceleration, and phone use. You can then compare your overall grade with others to see who’s the safest driver in town.

3. HUM.

This unique app prevents distracted driving by improving your ability to communicate with your car. Using Google Assistant, you can monitor your vehicle’s health and even find out how many miles are left in your tank. You can also use this app to ask Google questions about finding the next rest stop or other vital questions that might make you want to reach for your phone.

4. Drivemode.

This app enables you to have a safer, smarter, and more connected driving experience. With the Drivemode app, you can use voice commands to interact with your phone so that your eyes and focus stay on the road. Interact with various applications, such as GPS, Google Maps, or music and messaging apps, in a much safer way.

If you are ever in a distracted driving accident contact a Paul Wilkinson attorney!

Causes of Truck Accidents

Shockingly, a staggering 74% of fatal car accidents involve a big-rig truck. This statistic shows that big-rig truck and delivery truck drivers are a significant risk to other drivers on the road. But what causes these catastrophic accidents and why do these numbers continue to rise year over year?

Most people assume truck drivers cause these accidents with reckless driving, but the reality is there are many more causes of truck accidents. Causes such as fatigued driving and driving under the influence are just a few. Understanding these causes will help you prevent these potentially dangerous situations when you’re on the road.

For Denver residents who have been involved or injured in a truck accident, it’s critical to understand how filing a personal injury claim can get you the proper compensation for your losses. The Paul Wilkinson Law Firm has a team of truck accident lawyers who care about your well-being to guide you through the legal process. Continue reading to learn more about truck accident causes and how a truck accident attorney can provide assistance.

Common Causes for Truck Accidents

Lack of Training

The demand for truck drivers continues to increase, and due to this demand, companies might not devote as much of their efforts and resources to training their drivers. Trucks are imposing forces on the road, which is why companies must train their truck drivers to deal with potentially dangerous conditions and maneuvers.

Distracted Driving

Driving safely requires focus. Being aware of changing road conditions, aggressive drivers, and potential upcoming threats, is an essential part of avoiding collisions. You may be the most attentive driver on the road, but that doesn’t save you from other drivers who aren’t paying attention.

Drivers often use GPS, cell phones, or other electronic gadgets. They might also be eating, carrying on a conversation with a passenger, or listening to their favorite music. Regardless of the distraction, neglecting to focus on the road puts people in danger. Most truck companies have regulations for their drivers, but this doesn’t ensure drivers’ compliance. If you’re on the road, it’s your responsibility to maintain focus at all times, and if you’re hit by someone who neglects to do so, you deserve compensation for any losses you incur.

Driver Error

Large trucks are not easy to handle. That’s why truck drivers need to possess skills that other drivers are not equipped with. However, too often, truck drivers do not possess these skills and wind up committing costly mistakes that put other drivers at risk. For example, trucks have larger blind spots than other vehicles. Truck drivers who fail to check their blind spot correctly can cause severe accidents.

Wide Turns

No matter which direction a truck turns, they need a lot of space on either side. Both truck drivers and other drivers sometimes forget how wide and sweeping truck turns can be. Truck drivers can misjudge the amount of space they have between cars and cause a collision, or cars might ignore how much room a truck needs to turn and run into them in an intersection.

Despite the wide radius trucks need to turn, they are still supposed to stay in their lane. Failure to adhere to this principle often results in an otherwise avoidable crash.

Driver Fatigue

In some cases, driving while fatigued is as dangerous as driving while intoxicated, and truck drivers have long, challenging schedules. Though truck drivers’ hours are limited by law, they still have ample opportunity to drive fatigued, putting others at risk. In fact, long-haul drivers may be in the cab for days or even weeks at a time. It’s easy for drivers to lose focus during these stretches and perhaps fall asleep at the wheel.

Failing to Secure Loads

Truck drivers often transport trailers full of products. Whether these products are big or small, they can cause catastrophic damage on the road if they are not safely secured. Products must be securely packed and the weight must be appropriately distributed. If it is not, the product can dislodge during transit and hit other vehicles. Products dislodging from trucks’ trailers can cause horrific accidents that lead to serious injury.

Truck drivers must be especially mindful of their cargo’s storage because it is easy for products to become loose on wide turns or sudden stops.

Driving Under the Influence

Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is illegal in every state. Laws and regulations often hold truck drivers to a more rigid standard because of the job’s dangerous nature. The size, weight, and force of semi-trucks make them an increased threat to others on the road.

Failing to Fill Liquids to the Correct Level

Gas and oil trucks are designed to hold a specific amount of liquid. When the tanks aren’t filed correctly, the fluid can splash around the inside of the trailer and cause it to sway when the truck changes speed or direction. These unpredictable movements can cause the truck to lose control and crash into other vehicles.

Rear-End Crashes

Rear-end semi-truck crashes are some of the most deadly. When a semi-truck fails to slow or stop their vehicle in time to prevent a collision with another vehicle, the struck strikes the car’s rear with an immense amount of force. Since cars are much smaller than trucks, they often cannot withstand the damage from this type of collision, so these accidents are some of the most dangerous. Backseat passengers, often children, have an increased risk of injury or death.

Lack of Maintenance

Truck driving companies have to maintain their trucks and adhere to local, state, and federal laws that require them to perform routine maintenance and keep them in a safe condition. However, truck driving companies often can’t afford the cost of repair or their oversight causes them to overlook maintenance needs. Poorly maintained trucks with faulty equipment often cause accidents. There are normally many different contributing factors.

Determining Liability

Determining liability in truck driving accident cases is different than determining liability in a passenger car accident case. Because truck driving companies, truck driving manufacturers, loaders, and drivers can receive liability, it’s harder to determine negligence. There may also be multiple liable parties, known as third-party liability.

Truck Drivers

The court often deems truck drivers liable due to conditions such as driving fatigued, speeding, and incorrect turns. Other common causes for truck drivers to receive blame are texting while driving, driving under the influence, or driving recklessly.

Trucking Company

The trucking company often receives liability in cases where they didn’t properly train the truck driver. Companies might also instruct drivers to ignore regulations or overschedule drivers. In other conditions, companies might knowingly skip scheduled maintenance or neglect safety evaluations.

Manufacturer

If some of the truck’s parts were faulty, the manufacturer could receive liability in a truck accident. In these cases, the manufacturer should have identified defective parts during product testing. However, if the manufacturer recalled the product, and the trucking company ignored the request, the liability falls to the trucking company.

Loaders

In accidents caused by improperly loaded liquids or products, the loaders may be found liable. The truck driver might also receive liability if they knew the loader failed to adhere to the correct loading protocol.

Determining Compensation

If you were involved in a truck accident, you might be wondering how you’re going to pay for your medical bills, lost wages, and even physical or emotional therapy. Experienced attorneys who care about making the legal process as painless as possible can help you better understand the compensation you deserve.

Our attorneys can help determine your lost wages, surgery costs, ambulance rides, or other medical damages. Your compensation should also include any economic damages and you might even be eligible for different recompenses such as in-home care or childcare.

Non-economic damages can include compensation for pain and suffering, permanent disability, or loss of earning capacity. Courts determine these damages based on how significantly they impact your life.

Hiring a Truck Accident Lawyer

After a truck accident, contacting a Denver truck accident attorney is crucial for anyone concerned about liability or whether they will receive compensation for their losses. If you’ve been involved in a truck accident and you sustained injuries, it will likely be challenging to consider the legal process, let alone strategize and prepare for the upcoming legal proceedings.

Having a legal expert you trust to walk you through the process will improve your chances of receiving the compensation you deserve and improve your confidence in making critical legal decisions. Paul Wilkinson Law Firm is here to guide you through the complex legal process and help you recover from your accident as quickly as possible. To demonstrate our client commitment, we operate on a contingency fee basis, meaning you only pay for our services if you win.

Contact us today for a free consultation and get started on the path toward the compensation you deserve.

Reasons to be wary of buzzed driving

Before becoming completely intoxicated, most people have a feeling known as being “buzzed.” This is when a person can slightly feel the sensation of alcohol but is still mostly in charge of his or her motor functions.

In an effort to lower the number of DUI arrests that take place every year in Colorado, it is vital to inform the public of what truly constitutes drunk driving. According to the Colorado Department of Transportation, over 26,000 drivers are arrested every year for driving under the influence. Many assume they are fine to drive if they are only buzzed, but that can be misleading.

Colorado has stricter laws
In Colorado, motorists can be charged if they are caught driving with a blood alcohol content percentage of 0.05. This qualifies as a DWAI, which stands for “driving while ability impaired.” A BAC of 0.08 still constitutes as a DUI. However, this all means that driving with a BAC of 0.05 could still land a person in jail.

It does not take much to reach 0.05

For some people, it may only take one drink to hit 0.05. First, it is important to understand what exactly is considered to be one drink. Most standards hold that one drink equals 12 ounces of beer, five ounces of wine or 1.5 ounces of hard liquor, which for these purposes is anything that is 80 proof.

For a woman who weighs 100 pounds, one drink can result in a BAC of 0.05 right off the bat. Men have a slightly different scale since their bodies tend to process alcohol differently. For example, a 100-pound man who had one drink would get a BAC of 0.04. Those interested can consult with the graphs provided by Business Insider.

Another component is how often drinks were consumed. A person who had two drinks in 60 minutes as opposed to one alcoholic beverage would have an even greater BAC. Therefore, even if a person is only feeling buzzed, it is still advisable to not get behind the wheel of a vehicle.

What Are the 3 Types of Distractions While Driving

This guide answers all of your questions regarding the three main types of distracted driving. It explains these distracted driving types in detail while providing tools for you and your loved ones to steer clear of these harmful distractions.

When it comes to automobile accidents, most people assume that drunk or inexperienced drivers cause the most incidents. However, many of these car accident injuries are a result of distracted driving. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that approximately 391,000 people suffered injuries in 2015 due to distracted driving.

If you’re involved in a distracted driver accident that you didn’t cause, you might need the help of a Denver car accident attorney to help see your claim through the legal process. At The Paul Wilkinson Law Firm, our attorneys care most about getting you the compensation you deserve for distracted driver-caused accidents.

Use this guide to better understand distracted driving statistics and conceptualize how the 3 different types of distracted driving put drivers at risk. No matter how skilled people think they are at driving, getting distracted can be dangerous, even if it’s only for a second. Don’t fall prey to this easily avoidable danger.

What is Distracted Driving?

Distracted driving includes engaging in anything that takes your mind, eyes, or hands off the wheel and road. It takes three seconds to shift your attention back to the task of driving after you’re distracted, and while this may seem like a menial amount of time, it doesn’t take long for accidents to occur.

Your car travels at high speeds, which means it doesn’t take long for a distraction to cause catastrophic damages. Because automobiles travel at such high speeds, it is more difficult for drivers to anticipate hazardous conditions after being distracted, even if for only a short time.

What Are the Three Types of Distracted Driving?

The three types of distractions drivers face are visual, manual, and cognitive distractions.

Visual- taking your eyes off the road.
Manual- taking your hands off the wheel.
Cognitive-taking your mind off the road.

Visual Distracted Driving

Visual distracted driving includes any time that a driver’s visual attention diverts from the road. The instances that cause distracted driving range from texting while driving to taking your eyes off the road while traveling on a scenic stretch of highway.

Regardless of the cause, the results of visual distracted driving can be fatal. Because drivers have to be aware of the rapidly changing road conditions, keeping their eyes on the road is crucial.

Texting While Driving

Driving while texting in Colorado is currently prohibited and can result in significant penalties. The current texting while driving Colorado laws include stipulations that drivers must adhere to, such as:

  • Texting while driving is prohibited.
  • Drivers under 18 are prohibited from all cell phone use while driving. (This includes hands-free devices.)

In addition to the Colorado laws that already exist, Current legislation is under consideration that could result in stiffer penalties for drivers caught texting while driving.

Texting While Driving Law Exemptions

Drivers may use their cell phones while driving if they experience the following conditions:

  • The drivers fear for their life or safety.
  • The driver believes a criminal act is taking place.
  • The driver is reporting a fire.
  • The driver is reporting a careless driver.

Of the 36,750 lives lost to motor accidents in 2018, 5.7% of those were caused by texting drivers. Texting while driving may seem innocuous, but it can cause fatalities quicker and more sudden than one realizes

Outside Occurrences

It is not uncommon to be driving along and find something eye-catching. Perhaps there is an accident on the roadside, or another driver is doing something strange. Regardless, focusing on something else other than what is directly in front of you is dangerous. Drivers should not be engaging in rubbernecking.
There are plenty of other things that can cause a driver to become distracted, such as eating something or adjusting climate controls. However, everyone should be as safe as they can to avoid auto accidents.
Manual Distracted Driving
Texting while driving isn’t only an example of visual distractions; if someone takes their hands off the wheel, it can also be a manual distraction. Another common type of manual distracted driving is eating/or drinking.
Eating/Drinking Distracted Driving

No matter someone’s hunger level, they should never take their hands off the wheel to grab that burger or sandwich they have in the passenger seat. This type of distracted driving can also be visual because to reach for your food items or take a bit out of your sandwich, you might take your eyes off the road.

According to a study completed by Lytx, drivers who are eating/drinking are 3.7x more likely to be involved in a car crash than their attentive counterparts. Additionally, eating/drinking causes many near-miss accidents. This is because people can keep their eyes on the road some of the time while eating, but they still wind up diverting some attention to the act of eating and drinking.

Eating/Drinking Laws in Colorado

While Colorado laws don’t explicitly rule out eating/drinking non-alcoholic beverages, distracted driving is against the law. Thus, if you cause an accident due to you eating your lunch in the car while driving, you could face legal consequences.

Vice versa, if someone hits you with their car because they were distracted by eating, you might be entitled to damages. In both cases, Paul Wilkinson accident attorneys can walk you through the legal process to ensure no one can take advantage of you.

Cognitive Distracted Driving

Have you ever driven somewhere, and upon arrival, you have no clue how you got there? The third type of distracted driving is cognitive distracted driving, which involves no tangible source for the distraction. Cognitive distractions include being lost in thought and talking to other passengers.

Lost in Thought While Driving

Bloomberg found that ten percent of auto accidents are caused by distracted driving, and of those accidents, 62% were caused by drivers who were lost in thought.

People occasionally daydream or get lost in thought while driving. While it happens to everyone, being aware of the dangers of this distraction can potentially save lives.

Talking to Passengers While Driving

According to federal data, texting while driving isn’t the most dangerous type of distracted driving. “What is the most common cause,” you ask? Talking to the person in the passenger seat.

This statistic may come as a surprise to you, given all of the attention paid to cracking down on texting while driving. However, if you think about the attention level you pay to passengers and how humans communicate, the statistic makes sense.

Humans don’t only communicate using their voices; they use their body for physical gestures. Additionally, while a text appears one-at-a-time, conversations have a steady stream of information on which to focus. These factors may explain why talking while driving is one of the most dangerous distractions while driving.

Consider Your Distracted Driving Habits and Call Paul if You Have Distracted Driving Legal Issues

Distracted driving can have fatal consequences, which is why it’s essential to educate yourself on the various risks one takes when indulging in such practices. This guide explained the three types of distracted driving and the emerging distracted driving laws. Use it as a guide to benefit your driving habits.

The Paul Wilkinson Law Firm has attorneys who specialize in all sorts of accidents, including distracted driver accidents. If you or a loved one has been involved in a distracted while driving accident, contact us today to schedule a free consultation.

What is Aggressive Driving?

Here at the Paul Wilkinson Law firm, we’re setting out to learn: just how common is aggressive driving and road rage? According to a 2016 study from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, nearly 80 percent of participants admitted to experiencing road rage at least once in the prior year. That same study showed that roughly eight million American drivers engaged in extreme road rage activities, such as intentionally hitting another vehicle or getting out of a car to confront another motorist.

It’s easy to see how these behaviors can lead to car accidents and personal injury. Car crashes may result in serious injuries such as concussions, broken bones, or whiplash. If a driver is negligent in causing a car accident, he or she may be liable for any financial damages incurred by an injured victim. Negligent actions might include texting while driving or failing to stop at a traffic light. Compensation may pay for medical bills or help make up for lost wages or future earnings.

If you’re involved in an aggressive driving or road rage accident, you shouldn’t hesitate to Call Paul. Our experienced team of personal injury lawyers is dedicated to helping the victims of a wide range of accidents. We can help you understand your case, assess your needs, and determine whether or not you’re eligible for financial compensation. If so, we’ll fight for your rights in court.

WHAT IS AGGRESSIVE DRIVING?

According to AAA, aggressive driving can be defined as any type of unsafe driving behavior that is performed deliberately with ill intention and a disregard for the safety of other drivers or pedestrians. There are many forms of aggressive driving with the following being the most common types:

  • Tailgating.
  • Speeding.
  • Running red lights or stop signs.
  • Cutting off other drivers.
  • Weaving in and out of lanes of traffic.
  • Blocking other cars from merging or changing lanes.

WHAT IS ROAD RAGE?

While these two terms may seem synonymous, road rage is generally understood as the most intense form of aggressive driving. Road rage is the escalation of aggressive behaviors and may include such actions as making obscene gestures or throwing objects at the other vehicle. Road rage can also include threats to the safety of other drivers, including sideswiping another vehicle, ramming them, or running them off the road.

WHAT CAUSES AGGRESSIVE DRIVING?

There are a variety of causes that lead to aggressive driving behaviors. Poor driving, congested traffic, and general stress were cited as the most common factors leading to aggressive driving and road rage.

In some cases, the perceived offenses of other drivers were relatively minor in nature. A study by AAA found that roughly 90 percent of respondents feel that aggressive driving is a threat to their safety. Additionally, 66 percent found that aggressive driving is a bigger problem today than it was three years ago.

WHO MOST COMMONLY DRIVES AGGRESSIVELY?

According to reports, male drivers are more likely to drive aggressively compared to female drivers. Additionally, drivers between the ages of 19 to 39 have a higher propensity for driving aggressively. Furthermore, men were three times more likely than women to get out of a vehicle to confront a driver or even hit another vehicle on purpose.

HOW TO AVOID AGGRESSIVE DRIVING

It’s the responsibility of every motorist on the road to help prevent and cut down on forms of aggressive driving and road rage. As a driver, you should always remain calm when you’re behind the wheel. Even if another driver acts aggressively or even performs an illegal maneuver, avoid responding aggressively. This, quite simply, is often the recipe for a car accident.

When driving, try to give other vehicles both time and space. We may often feel rushed or stressed when driving, but this anxiety should never be the source of a potential car accident—the little bit of time saved simply isn’t worth it. Avoid tailgating, using your horn excessively, and only use positive hand gestures. You’d be amazed by how quickly courteous driving can reduce aggressive behaviors in other drivers.

If you notice another driver acting aggressively, stay a safe distance from their vehicle. Change lanes if you can do so safely and never reciprocate their aggressive behaviors, like tailgating or speeding, just to get back at them. This type of behavior often leads to car accidents.

CONCLUSION – STUDY FINDS AGGRESSIVE DRIVING TO BE RELATIVELY COMMON

Most drivers in Colorado are shocked to find that aggressive driving is such a common occurrence on our highways and roads. Aggressive driving can lead to car crashes, personal injury, and make the roads a less safe—and enjoyable—place to drive. Do your part to cut down on aggressive driving by practicing safe, courteous driving behaviors. Also, you should avoid responding to aggressive drivers, which often just escalates the situation and can even develop into road rage.

However, if you do find yourself involved in a car accident, don’t hesitate to call the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm for assistance. We can help you understand your case, find the proper medical treatment, work with your insurance company, and determine if you’re eligible for any financial compensation. Contact us at the Paul Wilkinson Law Firm today to schedule a free consultation to see the options available for you and your case and let us help you on the road to recovery.

What Is the Most Common Motorcycle Accident Injury?

Most everyone knows the injury risk involved with riding motorcycles, but what are the most common injuries to worry about if you’re out on the road, and how can you protect yourself from enduring them?

This blog answers the question, what is the most common motorcycle injury? It also discusses what causes the most motorcycle accidents and how a motorcycle injury attorney can help you if you had a motorcycle accident.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention studied the cases of more than 1.2 million motorcyclists who were treated in emergency rooms across the U.S. between 2001 and 2008 after they were involved in non-fatal motorcycle accidents. They found that 30 percent of all non-fatal motorcycle injuries occurred to the legs and feet.