| Read Time: 3 minutes | Category Name

Who Pays for Medical Expenses in a Car Accident in Colorado?

Car accidents can leave a person facing many frustrations, including injuries, property damage, and financial distress. After an accident, you may wonder, Who pays for medical expenses in a car accident in Colorado? The answer depends on your particular situation, but you may be entitled to financial recovery for your injuries. If you or a loved one have been involved in a car accident leaving you with mounting medical expenses, there are options. The Tenge Law Firm, LLC., is ready to help protect your rights and fight for fair compensation. Colorado Is an “At-Fault” State States are either “at-fault” or “no-fault.” Colorado was previously a “no-fault” state, but as of 2003, Colorado is an “at-fault” state. When a state is “no-fault,” this means blame is not placed on either party after an accident. This means that injured parties must seek compensation from their own insurers. On the other hand, when a state operates under an “at-fault” system, this means the individual responsible for the accident must pay. If Someone Else Was At Fault for Your Car Accident If the other driver is at fault for the accident, they are responsible for your medical bills. The driver themself or their insurance company will need to provide compensation. There are multiple ways you can have your medical bills paid, including: Filing a claim with your own car insurance; Filing a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance; or Filing a lawsuit against the at-fault driver. How you get compensation for your medical bills depends on the details of your accident. Filing a Claim With Your Own Insurance Company Many individuals opt to file a claim with their own insurer because this is often the quickest and easiest way. Your insurance company will typically cover medical expenses and then seek reimbursement from the at-fault driver’s insurer.  Med-Pay Insurance companies in Colorado offer drivers medical payment coverage, or “med-pay.” Med-pay covers up to $5,000 of medical expenses after an accident, regardless of who is at fault. Drivers in Colorado must opt out of med-pay if they do not wish to have this additional coverage. Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage In the event the at-fault driver is uninsured or underinsured, you can file a claim through the uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage on your policy. Unless you opt out of this coverage, you are covered should the responsible driver not have adequate insurance or any car insurance at all. Filing a Claim with the At-Fault Driver’s Insurance Instead of filing a claim with your own car insurer, you can also choose to file a claim directly with the other driver’s insurance company. If the insurance company refuses to pay the claim, you can file a lawsuit. Filing a Lawsuit Depending on the details of your case, you may be able to file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver’s insurance company or the driver themselves. It is imperative you speak to a Colorado car accident lawyer to understand your rights and options. If You Were Responsible for Your Collision If you are completely at fault for your car accident, you are unable to collect for your medical expenses. In this case, you can use your own health insurance or pay medical expenses out-of-pocket. Modified Comparative Negligence  Colorado’s modified comparative negligence law could affect how much compensation you are entitled to recover. Under this law, the plaintiff’s award is reduced by their percentage of fault for the accident. However, if the plaintiff’s fault is greater or equal to the defendant’s percentage of fault, the plaintiff gets nothing. For example, suppose the plaintiff and defendant are involved in a car accident. Let’s say the plaintiff is 55% at fault, while the defendant is 45% at fault. In this case, even though the plaintiff and defendant are almost equally at fault, the plaintiff would get nothing because their fault is greater than the defendant’s. Statute of Limitations Depending on your particular situation, you may need to file a lawsuit to recover your medical expenses. It is crucial to note that there is a time restraint on the amount of time you have to file your claim. In Colorado, a plaintiff has two years from the date of the accident to file their lawsuit. Therefore, if, for example, your car accident was on June 5, 2020, you would have until June 5, 2022, to file your claim. Failing to file your lawsuit in time can result in a complete bar to recovery of any compensation for your injuries. Contacting a Colorado car accident lawyer sooner rather than later is the best way to avoid running out of time and ensuring you have the best ally for your legal battle. Consult with a Qualified Colorado Car Accident Attorney The Tenge Law Firm, LLC has over two decades of experience helping injured clients seek the financial recovery they deserve. Our boutique firm consists of skilled and passionate attorneys and staff offering the highest quality service. We never back down from a fight and are ready to go the extra mile for our clients. Our firm offers free case evaluations. Contact us today, and let’s discuss your case.

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| Read Time: 3 minutes | Car Accidents

How Often Do Auto Accident Settlements Exceed the Policy Limits in Colorado?

Colorado law requires automobile owners to have insurance. Car insurance policies have policy limits that dictate how much an individual is entitled to for injuries and property damage after a car accident. In some cases, policy limits may not be enough to cover the expenses incurred after your accident. So after a crash, you may wonder, How often do auto accident settlements exceed the policy limits in Colorado? This is a valid concern. But keep in mind that while policy limits are strict, there may be other ways to seek more compensation if your claim exceeds these policy limits.  After a car accident, The Tenge Law Firm, LLC., is ready to help you get the financial compensation you need. Auto Accident Requirements in Colorado Colorado drivers are legally required to carry liability insurance. The minimum coverage required by the state includes: $25,000: bodily injury or death to any one person in an accident; $50,000: bodily injury or death to all persons in any one accident; and $15,000: property damage in any one accident.  This is only the minimum and higher coverage is always available. Additional types of coverage are also available, including uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.  Options for Additional Compensation After an accident, injured parties are entitled to the policy limits. Taking the above as an example, if an individual were to have the minimum coverage, this would mean an injured party would be entitled to up to $25,000 for their injuries—assuming they had accrued that much or more in damages. Insurance companies may offer a settlement, but these settlements are often low and do not exceed policy limits. If your claim exceeds the policy limits, some additional options may be available for more compensation. Filing a Lawsuit Against the At-Fault Driver The at-fault driver’s insurance company pays you because that is what the insurance is for. However, the at-fault driver is ultimately the one responsible for your injuries. Therefore, if your claim exceeds policy limits, you may be able to file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver to recover the excess you are owed. However, keep in mind that not all of us have large sums of cash available to pay out judgments. So the individual’s financial situation factors into the question of whether or not a lawsuit against them is worth pursuing. Filing a Lawsuit Against Multiple Parties If multiple parties are responsible for your accident, you may be able to recover under more than one insurance policy. For instance, if the driver of a pizza delivery vehicle caused an accident that injured you while in the course of their job duties, you may be able to sue the pizza company as well as the driver. A car accident lawyer can review your case to determine whether you can seek compensation from more than one individual.  Filing a Lawsuit Against the Insurance Company for Bad Faith Colorado law requires insurance companies to settle within the policy limits if they are able to do so. In some cases, insurance companies may refuse to pay when your claim exceeds policy limits. If the insurer does not make any effort to settle, you can file a lawsuit against them for bad faith. Your claim may go to court, and if a jury awards you more than the policy limits, the insurance company will need to pay whatever amount the jury dictates.  Statute of Limitations to File a Lawsuit While you may wish to file a lawsuit to obtain more compensation, keep in mind you will not have an unlimited amount of time to do so. Statutes of limitations exist to limit the amount of time a person has to file a lawsuit. In Texas, the statute of limitations for personal injury claims is two years from the date of the accident. So, for example, if your accident occured on May 1, 2020, you would have until May 1, 2022 to file your lawsuit.  If you fail to file your claim within the two-year period, you will likely forfeit all of your rights to compensation. Having the help of a car accident lawyer will help ensure your lawsuit is filed timely and handled properly. Consult with a Knowledgeable Colorado Car Accident Attorney If your claim exceeds policy limits, it is wise to seek the help of a skilled Colorado car accident lawyer. An attorney will be able to review your case, answer your questions, and determine what the best course of action is for your particular situation. If filing a lawsuit is in your best interest, your attorney will fight aggressively to protect your rights and get you on the road to financial recovery. Navigating these kinds of claims can be challenging, but a car accident attorney is your best ally. The Tenge Law Firm, LLC., is a boutique law firm dedicated to helping injured clients during their time of need. In our many years of experience, we have had the privilege of providing quality legal services, care, and compassion to countless clients. We take on fewer cases to be able to provide clients with the personalized attention they deserve. Our firm offers free case reviews. Contact us today, and let’s discuss how we can help you.

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| Read Time: 5 minutes | Personal Injury

Colorado Personal Injury Laws & Statutory Rules

Whether you are in the Boulder, Denver, or Fort Collins area, injuries happen every day. In Boulder, we see quite a few bicycle-related injuries. In the Denver metro area, we see a lot of injuries caused by car accidents. Sometimes we injure ourselves and have to personally bear all of the associated costs. Other times, injuries happen through no fault of our own.  If someone else causes you an injury, you can hold them liable in civil court for the damages you suffer. Different states have different rules surrounding civil liability, so it is important for Coloradans to know Colorado’s rules on the matter. After an injury you may wonder, How long do I have to file a personal injury lawsuit in Colorado? Or, How is liability established in Colorado personal injury claims? If you have questions like these, you are in the right place. Read on for more information from Tenge Law Firm’s personal injury team.  Who Can File a Personal Injury Claim? In a general sense, anyone who suffers an injury due to someone else’s negligent or intentional actions can hold that person liable for damages. For a successful civil claim, the evidence the plaintiff puts forth must confirm their story. Unlike in criminal court, where the evidence must prove guilt “beyond a reasonable doubt,” the evidence threshold in a civil case is lower. Civil claimants need only prove their story by a “preponderance of the evidence.” If a jury believes the plaintiff a mere 51% or more, their claim succeeds. Establishing Liability for Damages In legal terms, there are four things an injured party must show in order to establish liability for damages caused by negligence. Here, we will go through those four requirements. In doing so, we will use “plaintiff” to describe the injured party and “defendant” for the party who caused the injury. Duty of Care First, we must establish whether or not a duty of care existed between the defendant and the plaintiff at the time of the incident. A duty of care requires that someone acts with the attention and caution of a reasonable person when dealing with others. For example, all drivers owe a duty of care towards others on the road to drive reasonably safely, follow traffic rules, and avoid collisions. Alternatively, business owners owe a duty of care to customers legally in their store to provide a reasonably safe environment for conducting business. If a duty of care exists, the first requirement is met. Breach of Duty Once we establish a duty of care between the plaintiff and defendant, we need to assess whether the defendant breached that duty of care. In law, we use the “reasonable person standard” to assess whether someone’s actions breach a duty of care. The reasonable person standard is a four-part assessment. Juries assess whether: A reasonable person; Given all the faculties and capabilities of an ordinary person; Would have acted in the same way; Given the same or similar circumstances. If the answer to the fourth part of the question is “no”, the defendant has acted negligently and thus violated the reasonable person standard. Actual Harm Once the existence and violation of a duty of care are established, the next step is establishing that real damage occurred. Real damages include both economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages are easier to prove than non-economic damages. In fact, without the existence of economic damages, proving non-economic damages is exceedingly difficult. Consider someone slipping and falling on a wet spot at the supermarket. If they visit the emergency room, proving economic damage is as easy as providing the medical bill. However, if the person who falls does not seek medical attention, they do not suffer economic damage. Even if that person suffers psychological distress due to the fall, proving that distress is difficult. Causation Finally, a plaintiff must establish causation in a personal injury claim. To do so, the evidence must show that the real damage occurred because of the breach of the duty of care. A plaintiff may suffer damages, but if those damages are not caused by the defendant’s breach of the duty of care, the defendant is not liable for those damages. If the evidence establishes that all four of these requirements are met, the plaintiff is entitled to damage recovery. Negligence Per Se in Colorado Sometimes in Colorado, a plaintiff can establish a defendant’s negligence in a separate but similar manner by showing negligence per se or presumptive negligence. If someone violates a law, regulation, or statute, and injures or otherwise damages someone else in the process, they are liable for the damage their actions cause. In other words, by breaking a law or regulation, Colorado law presumes those actions are negligent by default.  Colorado’s Statute of Limitations Statutes of limitations limit the amount of time after an incident that someone can file a legal action pertaining to that incident. Courts will throw out a legal claim filed after the statute of limitations expires. Colorado’s general statute of limitations for most personal injuries is two years from the date of the accident. However, if an injury is not immediately apparent and takes some time to discover, the clock doesn’t start running until after the victim discovers the injury. This is not the only statute of limitations relevant to personal injuries. The statute of limitations for property and personal injury damages caused by car accidents is three years from the date of the accident. Exceptions to Colorado’s Statute of Limitations There are a couple of exceptions to Colorado’s statute of limitations for personal injuries. The first exception applies to minors without legal representation and those who are mentally incompetent at the time of an accident. If someone is a minor, lacks legal representation, and suffers an injury before the age of 18, or, while mentally incapacitated—the statute of limitations only starts to run when they turn 18, gain a legal representative, or see their mental faculties restored. The next exception applies in cases where...

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| Read Time: 3 minutes | Brain Injury

4 Factors to Consider When Hiring a Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyer

If you or a loved one suffered a head injury in Colorado, you need help from an experienced traumatic brain injury lawyer. Victims can sustain severe head injuries in car accidents, bicycle accidents, or slip and fall accidents, or as a result of a defective product. No matter what type of injury accident caused your brain injury, you could be entitled to recover compensation from the at-fault party. A traumatic brain injury, or TBI, is defined by the Brain Injury Association of America as “an alteration in brain function, or other evidence of brain pathology, caused by an external force.” This type of injury typically requires specialized medical treatment, trauma care, and specialized support services. In many cases, victims require assistance and care for years—potentially until the end of their lives. Choosing an experienced TBI lawyer can help ensure you get the justice you deserve. When talking to Colorado personal injury attorneys about your case, consider these critical factors. No. 1: What Experience Does the Attorney Have with Traumatic Brain Injury? Successfully investigating and documenting a serious head injury claim requires a high level of knowledge and experience. Not every Colorado law firm focuses on personal injury cases, and of those that do, not all of them have direct experience with traumatic brain injury claims. Colorado has no legal requirements for having an attorney to handle any personal injury case. Likewise, most attorneys can take on a personal injury case on your behalf. However, because TBI cases are highly complex—and typically high-stakes in terms of potential claim value—choosing a lawyer with direct experience can make a significant difference. No. 2: What Is the Attorney’s Track Record with Head Injury Cases? Even if an attorney has experience with head injury claims, that fact does not automatically indicate prior successes. Ask potential attorneys about their track record of TBI settlements and awards. Attorneys cannot always share details about past cases they have handled. However, you can ask what their average traumatic brain injury settlements have been in the past. Although attorneys settle most head injury claims without going to court, negotiating a settlement with the insurance company is never a given. If your attorney cannot negotiate a fair settlement, they may have to file a lawsuit and take your case to trial. Consequently, be sure to choose an attorney who has a history of litigating brain injury cases successfully. Hopefully your case won’t have to go to court, but you need an attorney who is well prepared to handle a trial if necessary. No. 3: What Resources Will a TBI Lawyer Devote to Your Case? As noted, traumatic brain injury cases pose a complex challenge, even for the most experienced attorneys. Choose a law firm that has a vast network of resources that they can put to work on your case. To build the strongest possible case, your attorney must investigate and assemble the necessary evidence to prove the at-fault party’s negligence or wrongful actions. This may require opinions or testimony from expert witnesses and other specialists. No. 4: What Level of Service Will the Law Firm Provide? Traumatic brain injuries can leave victims with long-lasting or permanent neurological and physical deficits. Consequently, the value of head injury claims can be higher than other types of personal injury claims. Look for an attorney who will provide specialized service and attention. Ensure the firm will craft their legal strategies based on the details of your case, rather than taking a one-size-fits-all approach. Never hesitate to ask any potential attorney who in the firm will be handling your case. You want to be sure that you won’t be handed off to junior associates or others within the firm. Ask about how they will keep you updated about the progress of your claim and how accessible your lawyer will be when you have questions or need information. Finally, pay attention to your comfort level with any potential attorney. It is critical that you feel comfortable talking to your lawyer, asking questions, and getting the respect and response you deserve. Contact an Experienced Colorado Brain Injury Lawyer Now The experienced TBI lawyers of the Tenge Law Firm are committed to getting you the justice and compensation you deserve. To date, we have helped hundreds of clients, recovering more than $50 million in settlements and awards. Read our client testimonials to learn more about our commitment to getting the best possible outcome for you. Although our past case results may not reflect on the outcome of your claim, they reflect our dedication to exceptional service and personalized attention. Our firm and team of experienced attorneys have received countless awards and recognition. However, the only achievement that matters is what we can accomplish for you. We provide a boutique service for our clients, with an unparalleled level of support. We limit the number of cases we take on, allowing us to put the full force of our firm’s resources and experience to work for you. We offer a free consultation, and you never owe any legal fees until we recover compensation for your damages. Contact us today to schedule a consultation or to speak directly with one of our Colorado traumatic brain injury lawyers now.

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| Read Time: 3 minutes | Car Accidents

What Is Considered a Serious Injury in a Colorado Car Accident?

You may hear people tell you that you should hire an attorney if you sustained severe injuries in a car crash. However, what is considered a serious injury in a car accident?  Serious injuries are ones that result in permanent damage, loss of a body organ or function, significantly limited use of a body part, fractures, disfigurement, spinal cord damage, brain injuries, and death. In these situations, retaining an experienced Colorado car accident attorney is extremely helpful. At the Tenge Law Firm, LLC, our practice focuses on Colorado auto accident claims. We have years of experience assisting injured clients just like you to recover the compensation they deserve in these accidents. Types of Accidents that Often Cause Severe Injuries There are numerous ways you could sustain a severe injury in a car accident. Some of the most common types of car accidents include the following. Rollover Accidents SUVs are especially prone to rollover accidents because of their high center of gravity when compared with smaller vehicles. Many rollover accidents involve the car flipping multiple times, resulting in severe injuries such as spinal cord injuries, broken bones, internal organ damage, etc. Side-Impact Crashes Side-impact crashes are typically known as T-bone collisions and occur when one vehicle makes an impact on the side of another vehicle. These accidents can leave victims with severe injuries since the side of a vehicle is typically not built to withstand the impact in the same manner as the front and rear of the car is. Head-on Collisions Head-on collisions often occur when a vehicle attempts to overtake another vehicle on a one-lane road, so they are going the wrong way. These collisions are very serious and pose an increased risk for fatalities for both front passengers and drivers in either vehicle. Other types of collisions can also result in severe injuries. If you were involved in any serious auto accident, contact the Tenge Law Firm today to schedule an initial consultation. Understanding Brain Injuries in a Colorado Car Accident One of the most severe types of injuries in a car accident is a brain injury. Brain injuries are unfortunately quite common in car accidents. In some cases, symptoms of a brain injury might not appear for days or even weeks after an accident. Some people may not even be aware they have symptoms until they engage in everyday activities of work and life. These are all reasons why getting evaluated after an accident is so important. You may not even realize you have symptoms of a brain injury, but a doctor will. Symptoms of a Brain Injury in a Car Accident Brain injuries are classified as mild, moderate, or severe. A mild brain injury is one where there’s a loss of consciousness for under 30 minutes. Many traumatic brain injuries are mild, but some injured victims will experience symptoms for at least a year or more. Mild Traumatic Brain Injury Symptoms There are multiple symptoms and signs of a mild brain injury. These symptoms include: Nausea, Coordination issues, Depression, Excessive sleep, Memory loss, Mood changes, Comprehension issues, Seizures, and Sensory issues. Many victims who have a mild traumatic brain injury will fully recover and enjoy their previous quality of life. Moderate to Severe Traumatic Brain Injury Symptoms Victims who have a moderate to severe brain injury will experience symptoms right away or within several days. Symptoms include: Repeated bouts of nausea or vomiting; Confusion; Depression; Clear fluid that drains from your nose or ears; One or both dilated pupils; Difficulty walking or speaking; and Bouts of irritability or combativeness. In the most severe cases, the victim will be unconscious for an extended period of time. They may be in a coma or need to be in a medically induced coma to potentially stop further damage. Types of Traumatic Brain Injuries in a Car Accident There are several different types of brain injuries you can sustain during a car accident. Some of the most common brain injuries include: Concussion: Concussions usually cause a brief loss of consciousness and no permanent damage. However, multiple concussions can cause more significant damage over time. Contusion: A contusion is a bruise on a specific part of the brain which results from an impact. Hematoma: Hematomas are blood clots in the brain that develop when a blood vessel ruptures. Hematomas can be small, or they can enlarge and compress the brain. There are different names for clots depending on where they develop. For example, an epidural hematoma forms between the skull and dura lining, while a subdural hematoma is one between the brain and dura. Traumatic Subarachnoid Hemorrhage: Also called tSAH, this is bleeding into the area that surrounds the brain. This type of injury occurs when small arteries tear during the initial injury. There are other types of brain injuries that you might sustain during a car accident as well. Don’t assume that if your injury is not on this list, we cannot assist you. Contact Tenge Law Firm Today If you suffered a severe injury in a car accident, don’t attempt to handle your claim alone. Let the skilled legal team at the Tenge Law Firm assist you. To learn more about how we can protect your rights and help you fight for the compensation you deserve, schedule an initial consultation. Contact our office today, so we can review the facts of your case and advise you of the best course of legal action.

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| Read Time: 5 minutes | Wrongful Death

Can I Sue for Wrongful Death in Colorado

If a member of your family lost their life in an accident caused by another’s negligence or willful act, you may wonder who can sue for wrongful death in Colorado. If you are the surviving spouse, child, beneficiary, or, in certain cases, the surviving parents of a loved one killed, you have a right to file a wrongful death lawsuit.  There are few situations in life more emotionally devastating than losing a loved one. But that pain may be magnified by the fact that their loss could have been avoided. An experienced wrongful death attorney understands that no amount of money can replace the loss of your family member. However, recovering in a wrongful death claim may assist you in the healing process, so you and your loved ones may move forward.  What Is Wrongful Death? Unlike a personal injury lawsuit, which the injured person brings on their own behalf, a wrongful death lawsuit is brought by the loved one of the person killed due to another’s negligence. Several key elements must be established to prevail on a wrongful death claim based on negligence, including:  Duty of care. A wrongful death claim requires proving that the defendant owed your loved one a duty of care. A duty of care requires an individual to behave reasonably in situations where they may harm others.  Breach of duty. A breach of duty occurs when a person with a duty fails to behave reasonably.  Causation. Causation requires proof that a person’s failure to act reasonably resulted in the death of another.  Damages. There must be damages to support a wrongful death claim, such as loss of financial support and loss of companionship. A wrongful death claim may also exist in situations where someone causes a death intentionally. It’s important to reach out to a wrongful death attorney to analyze the facts of your wrongful death claim. Establishing the key elements for a wrongful death claim builds a strong case and will help you recover compensation for your devastating losses. Types of Wrongful Death  Wrongful death can have many causes. However, some types of wrongful death occur more commonly than others.  Traffic Accidents More than 38,000 people die every year in road-related accidents. Some of these fatal accidents may result from the negligent acts of another. Medical Malpractice Many deaths each year result from medical malpractice. Medical malpractice, or medical mistakes, require evidence that a health care provider violated a set of rules required to ensure the safety of patients. Dangerous or Defective Products When filing a lawsuit claiming that a product is defective, you must establish that the defect caused the wrongful death. There are several different types of product defects including: Manufacturing defects, Design defects, and Warning defects. An experienced wrongful death attorney works to establish the type of defect relevant to your wrongful death claim. Nursing Home Neglect Nursing home neglect, resulting in death, requires an extensive investigation to establish your wrongful death claim. Nursing home neglect cases often include federal and state law violations and criminal investigations, in addition to your wrongful death claim. Therefore, don’t go through this process alone. A wrongful death attorney can work to establish your claim so you can recover for the harm to your loved one.  Premises Liability  For premises liability cases where an accident on another’s property resulted in the death of a loved one, certain elements must be established to determine the duty of the property owner.  The duty owed by a property owner under Colorado law depends on what your loved one was doing on the property at the time of their death: Trespasser. Property owners owe no duty to trespassers except to refrain from willfully or intentionally harming them. Licensee. A licensee is someone whom the owner permits to be on the premises, such as a party guest or a salesperson. Property owners owe licensees a duty to disclose a dangerous condition if they know about it.  Invitees. Invitees are those invited onto property for the benefit of the owner, such as customers at a store. Property owners owe invitees the highest duty of care. Property owners must fix all dangerous conditions and take additional steps to prevent dangerous conditions.  Premises liability represents a complex area of law for a potential wrongful death claim. In some situations, you may be filing a claim against grocery store chains or other large companies. Therefore, it’s important to ensure your representation by a qualified wrongful death attorney.  Workplace Accidents Employers must take steps to keep their employees safe while they work. These requirements are federally enforced by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).  A wrongful death caused by a workplace accident has the potential to financially devastate a family. If the loved one killed was the sole breadwinner for the family, the loss is not only emotional but economic.  While family members can typically recover for a work-related wrongful death only through Colorado’s workers’ compensation system, there are some circumstances where you may be able to pursue a wrongful death claim. A qualified wrongful death attorney works to analyze the facts of your case and help identify your options.  Statute of Limitations in a Wrongful Death Lawsuit  Colorado sets a deadline for when a loved one may file for wrongful death, known as a statute of limitations. Colorado’s statute of limitations provides that a wrongful death claim must be brought within two years of the date of death. Although two years may seem a long time, after experiencing the loss of a loved one, that time period may sneak up quickly. During this period, important evidence may be lost and events surrounding the death may be forgotten. Who Can Sue for Wrongful Death in Colorado Who may bring a wrongful death claim under Colorado law depends on the decedent’s family situation. First Year After Wrongful Death If the decedent was married, only the surviving spouse of the decedent may file a wrongful death claim in the first year following the death. During that...

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| Read Time: 4 minutes | Personal Injury

Tips to Follow After a Slip and Fall Accident

Slip and fall accidents are some of the trickiest situations in personal injury law. One reason for this is that they can happen most anywhere and to anyone. They are not very predictable and the weather doesn’t have to be icy, snowy or wet for an accident to take place. Most everyone will suffer a fall at some point in their lives and there’s a good chance it won’t be your fault when it happens. There is a level of safety that needs to be provided at homes, workplaces, and other public spaces to ensure people are not injured by a slip and fall accident. This is called premises liability. If you are injured on someone else’s property because they failed to make that space properly safe, then you could be entitled to compensation. Compensation in slip and fall accidents will usually cover medical expenses, loss of work while recovering, and more as it relates to the accident. What to Do After a Slip and Fall Accident So what should you do if you or someone you love is injured in a slip and fall? Here are some personal injury law tips to help you. Seek Medical Attention Immediately Your health and well-being is the most important thing at this time. How long do you have to go to the doctor after a slip and fall accident? The only sensible answer to this question is as soon as possible, even if you do not believe you are injured. A slip and fall injury might not produce symptoms right away. You are going to need documentation of any injuries as soon as possible. If you suffered an injury, you are going to need a medical report to establish exactly how serious it is. Your medical records will serve as crucial evidence to support your claim. Report the Incident You should also report the incident to the manager, supervisor, homeowner or some other person in charge at the location of your fall. A landlord or business manager should take a written statement and provide you with a copy before you leave the scene.   Take Photos Always try to take photos of the location you fell and the area around it. You want to document the exact location with as much photographic evidence as possible. You also need to document the time and date of the accident. Additionally, be sure to photograph anything that could establish a cause for the accident. Follow Medical Advice Do not miss doctor’s appointments, and do exactly as your doctor tells you to. Otherwise, the defendant can attempt to blame you for your own condition. Missing doctor’s appointments in particular suggests that you were not seriously injured—even if you were in too much pain to go. Collect Info Document absolutely everything. You should collect all relevant info such as names, phone numbers, and addresses of witnesses or people involved. Write out a complete description of the accident while it is fresh in your mind. Keep a medical diary where you record your symptoms and the pain and suffering that you experience. Stay Off Social Media Don’t use any of your accounts until your compensation is already in your bank account. If you must use social media, don’t talk about your accident or upload any photos that make you look healthy.. Don’t accept friend requests from strangers, because an insurance adjuster will try to gain access to your accounts. Save Your Clothing and Shoes You should take the clothing and shoes you were wearing at the time of the accident and keep them in a safe place. They could be used as important evidence in the case at some point. Call an Attorney You should call an experienced premises liability lawyer as soon as possible after your accident. Slip and fall cases are often difficult to prove, and you want to involve a professional as soon as possible.  Have your lawyers negotiate your claim for you. Remember, your lawyers cannot accept a settlement offer on your behalf unless you authorize them to. If they are experienced slip and fall lawyers, they almost certainly have a lot more experience negotiating claims that you do. Take advantage of their skills!  Remember: insurance adjusters are professional negotiators, and they are not your “good neighbor.” They are your adversary. At The Tenge Law Firm, LLC, we have been helping personal injury clients for nearly 30 years. We have the experience you need to seek the compensation you deserve. What to Do If You Slip and Fall in a Store  If you slip and fall in astore, take the following steps, in addition to those above: Identify any substance or obstacle that caused your accident. It might have been water on the floor, a banana peel, an uneven surface, merchandise left on the floor or something else. Do your best to identify it before you leave the scene of the accident. Request a copy of the store security video. You need to do this right away, because some shops erase their footage every 24 hours. Video footage can be very convincing evidence. File an incident report with the store. The store will almost certainly have a procedure for filing one. Be careful what you say, because the store is already your adversary. Read the report carefully, and sign it yourself if it is accurate. Make sure to obtain a copy of the incident report for yourself before you leave the store. If you’d like to learn more about personal injury law, or how we can help you with a slip and fall case, contact us today.

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| Read Time: 4 minutes | Blog

15 Strategies to Win Your Personal Injury Case

Most of the civil cases in the United States have to do with personal injury. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the country has an average of 6 million car accidents a year, which does not include 125,000 collisions involving other vehicles, 5,000 deaths from road accidents, and 1.5 million medical malpractice cases every year. How do you get a better than fair chance of winning your personal injury case? Here are 15 strategies to consider: Be Transparent with Your Attorney. Present all the facts to your lawyer. Do not hide anything, even the details that you think are unimportant or make you look bad. It is the job of your attorney to decide what is and what is not important for your case, including preexisting medical conditions. Your legal team can only do an effective job with all the relevant information. Keep Case Details to Yourself. Do not talk about the incident until you have hired a lawyer who can guide you appropriately. Something you say off the cuff may be put on record and used against you by the other party, causing you to lose money. The last thing you want is to torpedo your case because of a stray comment. Do Not Talk to Insurance Providers. Do not make any commitments to insurance companies. Many insurance companies manipulate people, and try to back them into a corner or get them to say something harmful to their case on the record. Play coy and wait for your lawyer to give you proper legal advice. Ask Yourself if You are Ready for a Legal Battle. Can you afford to sue? Do you have the time to do this? Believe it or not, many people do not ask themselves these questions before pursuing legal action. If you think it will be too much for you to handle, then it is okay to walk away. Steer Clear of Pie-in-the-Sky Attorneys. Avoid lawyers who promise you thousands of dollars in compensation right away – without hearing your case completely. Flashy and loud attorneys can be impressive with their words, but this does not automatically translate to skill in the negotiating table or courtroom. Do Your Homework. Study cases like the one you plan to file and look at how they were won or lost. This will give you a better idea of what to expect, and help you understand if you have a quality claim or not. However, try to stick to cases that were filed in the last five years only, as these are probably the most relevant. Try to Get a Medical Professional on Your Side. Make sure your doctor is on your side. The attending doctor is crucial to winning a personal injury case because if he says the injury is unrelated to the accident, then you have a major problem. Doctors are looked upon as expert witnesses and their testimony can make or break a case. Your doctor should be credible, with a good reputation, for his or her testimony to carry as much weight as it can in the courtroom. Document Every Piece of Evidence in Your Case. Try to document everything using a camera or written official documents. Good-quality evidence is the cornerstone to any legal case. Collect anything and everything that appears relevant and bring it to your attorney. Try Not to Bloviate When Discussing Your Case. Avoid exaggeration when discussing your case with anyone. Many people cannot resist the urge to talk about ongoing legal action, and sometimes details get overemphasized. Again, this can be taken out of context by the other party and used against you. You and Your Attorney Are a Team. Don’t fight with or try to upstage your lawyer, especially in front of other people. If there is an issue or something you do not agree with, discuss it privately and try to agree on a common strategy. Both attorney and client need to be in tight tandem if they are to be successful. Trust the Process. Be patient. Many people tend to get stressed because civil claims take a while to resolve, but losing your patience can work against you. The best approach would be to keep up to date with the goings on and overall strategy with your attorney. Don’t get antsy and decide to change you what you want midway through the negotiations. This is a recipe for disaster and a great way to set your case up for failure. Cover All of Your Bases. Do the math with your lawyer. Understand the best and worst possible outcome for your case. Being aware of every possible scenario, find common ground on how far you want to take the case, and what outcomes you would be willing to accept. Your Character May Be a Point of Contention. Be ready to have your life turned upside down because the other party will do their best to damage your reputation in order to win. During a lawsuit, the opposing parties may stoop to character assassination to win the case. This means being on your best behavior. Sometimes a Settlement Is a Good Option. Consider a settlement. This will resolve your case faster and allow you to put everything behind you. Chose an Attorney Who Is Right for You. Hire the right lawyer. Don’t pick someone based on a recommendation or rumor. Study the experience, training, and skills of the lawyer and the firm he works for before making your decision. Also, make sure you like his style and personality. Making an educated choice will make the process much easier on you and your loved ones. Need a Personal Injury Lawyer? Call the Tenge Law Firm, LLC! Here at the Tenge Law Firm, LLC, we know how difficult it can be to navigate a personal injury case. There are a lot of factors to consider, and the difference between a successful and unsuccessful case can be razor-thin. Our veteran trial lawyers know the ins and outs of the Colorado...

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The Statute of Limitations in Colorado Car Accident Claims

After you’ve been injured in a car accident in Colorado, your first move is to seek medical attention. It doesn’t take long, however, before you start wondering how long you have to file a claim. If you weren’t the one responsible for the accident, you want to know that you won’t have to bear the full weight of your medical bills on your own; but how long do you have to ensure that the responsible party will pay the funds you’re due?

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What Is Colorado Law Regarding Seat Belts?

In Colorado, adults sitting in the back seat of a car do not have to wear a seat belt, but all drivers and passengers sitting in the front must be wear a seatbelt. Why the difference? The reason is that a seat belt’s effectiveness has been shown to be much greater for front seat passengers. That is not to say that a seat belt is not effective for those sitting in the backseat. Studies have proven that safety belts save lives when worn properly, regardless of where a person is sitting in a car or truck. For example, a seat belt can save the lives of back seat passengers by keeping them from being thrown from a car in a violent accident. Moreover, not all seat belts are equal. A three-point seat belt, or one that goes across the shoulder and lap, has been proven to be more effective than a belt that only goes across the lap, especially for passengers in the front seat of a vehicle. Under Colorado law, all minors – those under 18 years of age – must be in a seatbelt, regardless of where they are sitting in the car. Younger children are required to be in an appropriate child restraint seat until they reach the age of eight. For babies who are less than 20 pounds, the seat must be rear facing; and for all other children, the forward-facing car seat must be in the backseat of the car. Parents will be ticketed for any children not properly buckled in or in car seats. Although police officers are not permitted to pull cars over because the driver is not wearing a seatbelt, if the officer pulls the automobile over for a different traffic violation, the officer may also ticket any drivers or passengers in violation of the safety belt laws. I have a classic car and I live in Colorado – do I need to install seat belts? You enjoy cruising around with the top down in your 1960 Oldsmobile 98, but there is one problem – you do not have any seat belts installed in the car. The good news is that Colorado’s law makes a specific exemption for cars manufactured before 1968. This is because, prior to that year, car manufacturers were not required to install seat belts in cars. The bad news is that you would be driving around without a seat belt, which is a rather dangerous activity. Seat belts can usually be installed in an antique car fairly easily and without too much of a cost. Considering that the Colorado State Patrol Department of Safety estimates that a properly worn seat belt gives a person a 50% better chance of surviving in a crash, it would seem like an easy choice to install seatbelts in a classic car. Although wearing a seatbelt during an accident can help prevent serious bodily injury or death, it will not prevent all harm. If you have been injured due to the negligence of another driver, then you should seek the counsel of an experienced Colorado auto accident attorney. Most attorneys will provide you with a free initial consultation, which can provide you with an estimate for your potential damages and answer any questions that you may have about your case.

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