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Is Colorado a No-Fault or At-Fault State?

If you suffered injuries in a Colorado car accident, you can bring a personal injury lawsuit against the party or parties you believe were responsible for your injuries. However, how you bring your case depends on the state’s insurance laws. Thus, before filing a lawsuit, it is imperative that you understand how Colorado insurance laws operate. At the Tenge Law Firm, our Denver, Boulder, and Fort Collins, Colorado car accident lawyers have nearly 30 years of experience holding negligent drivers accountable for their actions. We routinely deal with some of the largest and most powerful insurance companies in the country, aggressively advocating for our clients at every step in the process. If you have questions or need immediate assistance, please contact us online or call (303) 665-2929 for a free consultation. Is Colorado a No-Fault State? After a serious accident, you may be wondering, is Colorado a no-fault state or is Colorado an at-fault state? You may also wonder what the difference is between the two. Colorado is an at-fault state. This means that, after an accident, you can file a claim with the other driver’s insurance company. In a no-fault state, state law generally requires accident victims to file a claim through their own insurance company. Only in certain cases, usually involving very serious injuries or death, can an accident victim file a claim against the at-fault party. However, in an at-fault state like Colorado, the law allows you to file a claim with the at-fault party’s insurance policy, regardless of your injuries. Colorado Insurance Requirements In an at-fault state like Colorado, ensuring that every driver has adequate insurance is crucial. If drivers did not have car insurance, an accident victim would have no way of ensuring that an at-fault driver has the means to pay their expenses after an accident. Thus, Colorado law requires all drivers to obtain a certain amount of car insurance. The minimum coverage required is: Bodily Injury Liability – $25,000 per person / $50,000 per accident; and Property Damage – $15,000 per accident. While this may sound like a lot of coverage. But after a significantly serious car wreck, medical expenses alone can easily and quickly surpass these limits. Thus, to ensure adequate coverage after an accident, many drivers purchase underinsured motorist (UIM) protection. UIM protection kicks in if the person who caused an accident doesn’t have enough insurance coverage to fully compensate you for your injuries. For example, assume another driver hit you and you suffered $75,000 in damages. However, the at-fault driver only carried the minimum insurance required by law. In this situation, the at-fault driver’s policy would only provide $25,000 in coverage, leaving you on the hook for the remaining $50,000. However, if you have enough UIM protection, your own insurance would compensate you for the balance. Have You Been Injured in a Colorado Car Accident? If you were hurt in a Colorado car accident, contact the experienced auto accident attorneys at the Tenge Law Firm. We handle serious personal injury and wrongful death cases. In fact, we don’t handle any other claims. This gives us an in-depth knowledge of these challenging cases, which gives you an advantage when negotiating with the insurance company or taking your case to trial. Over the past seven years, we’ve recovered more than $50 million in settlements and jury verdicts for our clients. To learn more about the services we provide, give us a call at (303) 665-2929 today. You can also connect with us through our online contact form. Calling is free, and we won’t charge you for our services unless we can get you compensation for your injuries.

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How Long Do You Have to Report an Accident in Colorado?

A Colorado auto accident triggers at least two different deadline clocks that begin ticking as soon as the crash occurs. The first clock is the deadline for reporting the accident to the police. The second deadline is the deadline for filing a lawsuit against the responsible party.  Below, the experienced car accident lawyers at Tenge Law Firm go over the details about how long you have to report an accident in Colorado. If you have any questions, contact us today to schedule a free consultation. When Are You Required to File an Accident Report? Colorado law requires you to file an accident report for any accident that causes injury or property damage. In other words, you must file an accident report for any accident, even a fender bender. Today, most people use their cell phones to file the report verbally. You must also provide the other driver with your name, phone number, and insurance information. How Long Do You Have to Report an Accident?  Colorado law also requires you to report the accident to the police immediately. Of course, this might not be possible if you are seriously injured. If the police come to the scene of the accident, they will not file a police report unless there are injuries or property damage above $1,000. The police must file a report, however, if one of the drivers cannot provide proof of insurance. But what if you are unable to file an immediate report, and if the police do not come to the accident? In that case, you must file an online report with the Colorado DMV within 60 days of the accident. Remember that if you file an accident report because no police officer arrived at the scene of the accident, the police will not file a report at all. The Police Report as Evidence of Your Claim If you have a personal injury claim, you are probably going to need to obtain a copy of the police report. You will need a copy of the police report to investigate and evaluate your claim. You also need it so you know what testimony to expect from the police officers who responded to the accident. Nevertheless, you cannot use an accident report as evidence at trial, because Colorado law considers accident reports to be inadmissible hearsay. Instead, you are expected to testify personally, and you can call a police officer as a witness at trial. That way, both parties have a chance to cross-examine anyone making statements about the accident. The “Other” Deadline: The Statute of Limitations Deadline In Colorado, you generally have three years after the date of an accident to file a lawsuit. Speak to your lawyer, however, because certain limited exceptions sometimes apply. If you miss the statute of limitations deadline, your claim will likely become worthless, even at the negotiating table. So don’t wait until the last minute to call a lawyer一get started early. We Are Ready for Action Here at Tenge Law Firm, we have recovered over $50 million for our clients over the past 10 years alone. In fact, we have procured many seven-figure verdicts and settlements for our clients. Contact us online immediately or call (303) 536-7686 for a free, no-obligation consultation.

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What Are Pecuniary Damages in Colorado?

When you file a claim for damages in civil court, you can typically seek two types of damages: pecuniary damages and non pecuniary damages. While the two types of damages are very different, they are equally relevant in civil claims. If you are considering filing a claim for damages in Colorado, you should know the characteristics of each. By doing so, you can help ensure that you recover the entirety of the damages you are owed. After all, if someone else’s negligence causes you injury, you deserve compensation for all the losses you suffer. What Is the Difference Between Pecuniary and Non Pecuniary Damages? The law often refers to pecuniary economic damage and non pecuniary damages as economic damages and non economic damages. Pecuniary or economic damages are the damages you suffer that are tangible and have a readily identifiable cost. Medical bills, lost wages, and lost employment benefits are all pecuniary losses in Colorado. Because they are tangible and have an identifiable value, recovering pecuniary damages in Colorado civil claims is relatively straightforward. In contrast, non pecuniary or non economic damages are, by their nature, intangible losses. The pain, trauma, and anguish that you might feel after an injury are all forms of non pecuniary damage. Non pecuniary damages also include things like losing a limb, experiencing permanent disfigurement, or losing the ability to do something you once loved. As you can see, despite their intangible nature, non pecuniary damages are just as real as pecuniary damages. Because they are intangible, non pecuniary losses are harder to place a value on than pecuniary losses. Furthermore, they are often harder to identify and prove in court than pecuniary losses. Are There Caps on Pecuniary Damages? Many states cap the amount of damages that you can seek in a civil claim. While Colorado law does not cap the amount of pecuniary losses one can recover in a civil claim, there is a cap on non pecuniary losses. It is logical to leave economic damages uncapped. Of course you should recover whatever tangible and easily evaluable damage you suffer. Conversely, however, non economic losses have a cap due to their inherently subjective nature. In all but rare instances, the cap on non pecuniary damages in Colorado is just over $500,000. If You Need to Seek Damages for a Colorado Injury There are no two ways about it: if someone else’s negligence injured you in Colorado, you deserve full compensation for the damages you suffered. To ensure you recover all your pecuniary and non pecuniary damages, call the team at Tenge Law Firm for a free consultation today. Our only objective is our clients’ satisfaction, and there is no length we won’t go to in order to make that happen. With offices in Boulder, Fort Collins, and Denver, we are never far, so call us today!

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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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