123 North College Avenue, Suite 160, Fort Collins, CO 80524
3 Convenient Locations:Ft.Collins | Greeley | Longmont
Hoggatt Law Office, P.C.

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970-225-2190 | 
1-800-664-3151

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Larimer County workers' compensation lawyer

Even when safety precautions are put in place, accidents can and do happen in many industries. Although no workers’ compensation case is alike, there are certain things a person can expect when filing for benefits regardless of the type of accident. If an individual is hurt and cannot work due to a workplace-related incident, most employees have the right to file a workers’ compensation claim. Employment laws exist to protect employees, and if a claim is approved, an injured worker will be compensated for lost wages and medical bills.  

Colorado Employment Law

Almost all public and private employers in Colorado are required to have and maintain workers’ compensation insurance, with few exceptions. Keeping with regulations, a “Notice to Employer of Injury” poster should be visible to employees at all times. Employees should not feel threatened to report an injury if it ever happens. It is illegal to fire an employee who reports an injury and files a workers’ comp claim. 

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Larimer County auto accident injury lawyer

From a minor fender-bender to a rollover accident, car accidents can cause emotional and physical damage to a motorist. It may be nerve-wracking to get behind the wheel again, or an injury can completely change a person’s quality of life. Knowing the main causes of a vehicle accident can help a person become a more defensive driver, and it may also help determine if an accident victim is eligible for a personal injury settlement. 

Determining Fault in an Auto Accident 

How much a person contributes to the cause of a motor vehicle accident will determine who is liable and who is eligible for compensation. An important part of proving fault is whether or not the other driver acted negligently when the accident occurred. These common causes of car accidents often have a negligent party involved, and are the result of human error: 

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Larimer County trucking accident injury attorney

Most people have records of when they work. Whether this is simply for recordkeeping, or to ensure that employees are properly paid for the hours worked, it is important to keep accurate data. If an hourly employee tried to manipulate his or her time card to make it appear as if he or she was working, the worker may be disciplined or even fired for stealing corporate time. However, when a truck driver records incorrect data and provides false driving records, this can not only affect a company's bottom line, but it can result in safety issues. If a driver falsifies information in order to exceed their allowed number of hours on the road, this can lead to dangerous truck accidents

CMV Driving Limits

Commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers are subject to continuous driving limits. A CMV is any type of vehicle that is used for business purposes and meets any one of the following criteria:

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Larimer County motorcycle accident injury lawyer

In 2018, according to the Colorado Department of Transportation, 16.3 percent of motor vehicle fatalities were motorcyclists—totaling 103. This is because, in an accident, a motorcyclist is more likely to suffer fatal injuries compared to a car or truck driver. When a motorcyclist weaves through other vehicles at a high speed, this can cause concern for other drivers. It also creates a poor stereotype that all motorcycle riders are reckless and irresponsible. Motorcycles are viewed as dangerous modes of transportation, and in many cases, the people who ride them have an equally negative bias against them. It is imperative for motorcyclists to adhere to certain safety standards in order to avoid being involved in an accident and suffering serious injuries. However, in some situations, a motorcycle accident can be caused by another driver's negligence.  

Safety First

Responsible motorcyclist enthusiasts are passionate about safety. Compared to a car, the amount of protection a motorcycle provides is extremely limited. In the event of an accident, a motorcycle rider is exposed directly to the incident, while a car has an external shell, and occupants are protected by systems such as seat belts and airbags. 

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Larimer County workplace injury lawyer

Workers in industries that require manual labor, such as construction, are at most risk for a spinal cord injury while on the job. The spinal cord is one of the most important organs in the human body. Housed by vertebrae, the spinal cord is the information highway of the nervous system that transmits signals to and from the brain. Humans have 33 individual vertebrae, which are the bones that make up the spine. These bones can be damaged as easily as a femur or humerus bone, except that instead of a broken leg or arm, the result can be damage to the spinal cord, resulting in paralysis in some cases. When this happens, and an employee is unable to return to work, he or she may be eligible for workers’ compensation

What Is Workers’ Compensation?

Every Colorado business with employees, no matter the size, is required to provide workers’ compensation insurance. This is a protection for employees in the unfortunate event they are hurt on the job. Workers’ compensation also protects employers from lawsuits solely based on an accident or an injury an employee may sustain. Eligible employees have the right to file for workers’ compensation if the injury is suffered at the workplace. Whether an employee is permanently or temporarily disabled, workers’ compensation benefits provide financial security by compensating an employee for lost wages and medical bills. Even if an accident on the job is the employee’s fault, he or she is still eligible for workers’ comp benefits. 

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Larimer County personal injury lawyer rollover accident

When a car rolls over, the driver and passengers can suffer serious injuries or fatalities. The roof of a passenger car is not built to withstand the weight of the lower half of the vehicle, and therefore, it is likely to collapse. Even a minor car accident can lead to painful injuries, but when extreme trauma is involved, a victim may be temporarily or permanently disabled. In some cases, another driver’s negligence may have caused the rollover crash, and a victim can file a personal injury lawsuit. 

Proving Negligence

Larger vehicles, such as SUVs and commercial trucks, are more likely to roll over than a compact car. This is because the center of gravity is higher on large automobiles. A quick turn or maneuver can easily cause a larger vehicle to flip over. A driver may try to act quickly in response to another driver’s actions, and that reaction may cause their car to turn over. A car may also roll over if forced off the road. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the most common cause of rollovers is the latter, where a vehicle’s wheels are affected by uneven terrain after colliding with another automobile. 

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Larimer County pedestrian accident injury lawyer

When it comes to pedestrian accidents involving motorists, both parties can be at fault. However, with vehicles having more protection and power than a person walking down the street, drivers have a different level of responsibility when getting behind the wheel. A pedestrian can be put into a dangerous situation by the actions of a driver, even if the person behind the wheel is following the law. Each year, approximately 5,000 pedestrians are killed in an accident with a vehicle. Many more are injured, and these injuries can have lifelong effects. If a pedestrian suffers injuries due to the negligence of a motorist, he or she may be entitled to compensation.

Safety Tips for Motorists

According to the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT), the number of pedestrian fatalities went up 11 percent from 2016 to 2017. To help avoid more fatalities, it is a good idea to review safety measures when it comes to sharing the road. Below are some tips drivers can follow to help prevent accidents with pedestrians: 

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Larimer County workers compensation lawyer

When it comes to workers’ compensation, truck drivers who are injured are in a unique situation in Colorado, depending on their employment status with a company. Many trucking companies hire drivers as independent contractors as opposed to regular full-time employees in an effort to save costs. There are many liabilities with having truck drivers as employees, so technically, an independent contractor would not qualify for workers’ compensation. Instead, under 2018 legislation, independent contractor truck drivers in Colorado qualify under occupational accident coverage for vehicles weighing more than 16,001 pounds. This coverage must be comparable to the employer’s workers’ compensation benefits. 

Types of Truck Accidents

Every type of job has the potential for a person to get injured while performing their occupational duties. Truck drivers are different than office workers due to the amount of time they spend on the road for their jobs. While truck drivers are subject to common workers’ compensation claims, such as slips and falls, they can also be involved in accidents specific to trucking. The following are accidents that a truck driver may face while on the job: 

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Larimer County motorcycle accident attorney

The kind of vehicle a driver owns is a matter of personal choice. Some motorists may avoid owning or riding motorcycles due to the high risk of injury. There is a smaller percentage of motorcyclists on the road compared to passenger and commercial vehicles, but according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), motorcyclists account for 14 percent of all traffic fatalities. Motorcycles are unique because they are not restricted, like bicycles or pedestrians, on major highways. However, they offer limited protection for the driver, and therefore, a motorcycle accident can have devastating consequences. 

Precautions to Take When Riding a Motorcycle

There are many safety precautions that motorcycle drivers and passengers should take when going out on the road. A driver's and rider’s entire bodies are subject to the surrounding environment since a motorcycle does not offer protection like a car. Basic motorcycle gear includes a helmet and gloves, plus rugged shoes and clothes. Leather is a popular choice because of its durability. In the event of falling off the motorcycle, these items will help protect the driver's and passenger's bodies. Protective eyewear such as sunglasses is also important to reduce the chances of a motorcyclist losing his or her eyesight in a crash. 

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Fort Collins truck accident attorneyAll companies must uphold the standard practice requirements of their industry. These standards keep consumers safe from issues such as faulty products or contaminated foods. When companies neglect to fulfill these standards, and someone gets hurt as a result, the company may be held liable for the injuries. The same goes for transportation corporations when a truck accident is caused by poorly maintained vehicles.

What Are the Federal Standards for Truck Maintenance?

It is required that all commercial vehicles on the road are driving safely and operating within the conditions set by federal regulations. For instance, if a truck cannot safely carry freight, then it should not be on the road. Companies can monitor how a fleet is operating by keeping accurate and frequent records, requiring regular inspections, and having a staff that routinely maintains the vehicle. 

Commercial companies in Colorado are required to keep maintenance records for any vehicle that has been a part of their fleet for 30 days or more. These records must include:

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Posted on in Car Accident

Ft. Collins car accident personal injury attorney

Rear-end collisions are often considered just fender benders, but any car accident can cause significant damage to a vehicle and the people inside. Rear-end crashes are the most common motor vehicle accident in the United States, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Knowing what factors lead to a rear-end collision is not only a way to avoid causing an accident, but it can also help you determine your best options for seeking compensation after such an incident. Not every car accident leads to permanent disability or wrongful death, but if you are faced with difficult circumstances following an accident, you may be able to collect damages. In the state of Colorado, fault in an accident contributes to how much damage can be recovered. 

Factors That Lead to Rear-End Crashes

A rear-end collision occurs when a car hits the back of another car. Sometimes, this just results in some scratches or minor damage to a vehicle, but hitting a car from behind can also cause serious injuries like whiplash or traumatic brain injuries. A rear-end crash can start a chain reaction of accidents by pushing one car into another vehicle or into the opposite lane of traffic. The following are some of the factors that can lead to rear-end collisions: 

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Larimer County pedestrian injury attorney

Getting hit by a car as a pedestrian can be a dangerous and traumatic experience. A person walking down the street has little protection against a car or truck, and the results are often fatal. Colorado is a “fault state.” This means that whoever is responsible for an accident pays damages to the other party. Sometimes, the fault of an accident is clear. For example, if a drunk driver goes through a red light and hits a pedestrian who is crossing the street at a crosswalk during the appropriate time, the driver will be at fault. However, if a pedestrian was crossing the street at the wrong time or place, and the driver was distracted, fault in an accident can be more difficult to determine. If both parties are determined to be equally at fault, no party may collect damages.

No one plans on getting hit by a car while out for a stroll, but knowing what to do after an accident can not only help you address your physical injuries, it can help protect your ability to recover financial compensation. 

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Ft. Collins work injury lawyer

People work in order to support themselves and their families. That is why if you are hurt and cannot perform your job, there is a cause for concern. The good news is, if you are injured while at work, you may be eligible for workers' compensation benefits to compensate you for your lost wages and medical bills. If you were hurt at work, you may wonder if you are entitled to benefits, depending on the type of injury. You may also not know how to initiate the process. Here are some answers to frequently asked questions by those who are considering filing for workers' compensation.   

What Is Workers’ Compensation? 

Most employers throughout the United States are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance that provides coverage in the unfortunate event an employee gets hurt while at work. In these cases, workers' compensation insurance will pay for the full costs of any necessary medical treatment. If an employee cannot return to work due to an injury he or she sustained while on the job, then workers’ comp will pay a percentage of his or her lost wages. In Colorado, some classes of employees, such as real estate agents and federal employees, are not eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. 

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Larimer County, CO motorcycle accident injury lawyer

Motorcyclists are often cast as irresponsible and reckless individuals due to their choice of transportation. While motorcycles do lack the external protection that cars have, most motorcycle riders care about safety and take the proper precautions while they are on the road. Motorcyclists make up only 3 percent of drivers in Colorado but contribute to 20 percent of fatalities on the same roads. There are factors that a motorcycle driver will not be able to control, and there are times when motorcycle accidents are unavoidable, but following laws and safety recommendations can be the difference between life and death. 

Safety Precautions 

To legally operate a motorcycle in Colorado, a driver must get a motorcycle endorsement on an already valid driver’s license. One of the biggest safety precautions motorcyclists can take is to follow the law. Road rules exist for everyone’s safety, and there are penalties to discourage recklessness. Motorcycles are not allowed to share a lane with a car or drive in between two lanes of traffic. Since car and truck drivers do not expect smaller vehicles to speed past them, doing so can create a dangerous scenario. Two motorcycles can share a lane space and ride parallel, but it is recommended to drive in a single file line. 

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Larimer County truck accident lawyer

Trucks are not inherently dangerous. With the proper driver training and maintenance of the truck, goods can reach their final destinations safely. However, accidents involving trucks can and do happen on many highways across the country. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), 4,889 large trucks and buses were involved in fatal crashes in 2017. Crashes can occur due to many reasons, including driver error, bad weather, traffic, and road conditions. No matter whose fault a truck accident is, the consequences can result in devastating injuries and even fatalities for the truck driver as well as passengers in other vehicles.

Common Causes of Truck Accidents

The legal weight of a semi-truck can be up to 80,000 pounds without an oversize permit. Such massive machines require specific training and maintenance compared to passenger cars. Driver fatigue is often associated with truck accidents. Truck drivers are pressured to complete their routes within specific time frames while being legally required to rest in between shifts. An overly tired person can experience the same impairments to physical and mental coordination as someone who is over the legal limit for alcohol use while operating a vehicle. While this is a common reason why truck accidents happen, other factors include inexperienced or negligent driving, inclement weather, brake failure, tire blowouts, or poor road conditions.

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Larimer County car accident lawyer teenage driver

By this time of year, most schools are out of session for summer vacation. For a teenager with a brand-new driver’s license, this newfound freedom is exciting. Operating a car is a privilege and a responsibility that may be overlooked with the long summer nights and lack of supervision. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control, car accidents are the leading cause of the deaths of teenagers in the United States.

Colorado Driving Laws for Teenagers

In Colorado, the minimum age for a teenager to have an initial driver’s license is 16 years old. This is only after taking a drivers' education course, having a permit for at least 12 months, and completing a minimum number of hours on the road driving with an adult over the age of 21 who has a valid driver's license. During this time, there are restrictions for new drivers under the age of 18, but a teenager may choose to ignore these rules.

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Fort Collins pedestrian accident lawyer

Walking is an easy and inexpensive way to get places, and it provides the added benefit of physical activity. However, a pedestrian may be involved in a collision with a car or truck, and these types of accidents can be incredibly dangerous. In 2017, 5,977 pedestrians were killed throughout the United States as a result of being hit by a vehicle. Although this is down 1.7 percent from the year prior, the large number of pedestrian fatalities and injuries continues to be a serious concern.

In this type of accident, a person on foot is likely to suffer a serious injury or even death. In a car, the driver and passengers have seat belts and airbags, while a pedestrian has no protection. Pedestrians who are hit by a car may experience injuries such as broken bones, head trauma, spinal cord damage, nerve damage, amputated limbs, and lacerations.   

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Larimer County workplace brain injury attorney

A head injury can be one of the most dangerous and life-altering situations a person can face on the job. In regard to the workplace, most head injuries are the result of a fall. It is more common for physical laborers, such as construction workers, to suffer a fall as a result of working conditions, but it is possible for an office worker to fall and receive a head injury, too. Regardless of the circumstances, a traumatic brain injury can be devastating. If you sustain head trauma at work, you may be entitled to benefits for medical expenses or lost wages. 

Symptoms of Head Injuries

After falling and hitting your head, it is recommended you seek medical attention immediately. This is especially important to ensure that you receive workers’ compensation. A doctor will be able to verify the severity of your injury to report to your employer and workers’ compensation representative. This will allow you to be eligible for benefits such as compensation for medical expenses and lost wages. Head injuries are also not always apparent right after a fall or accident. If the following symptoms appear after you fall, be sure to visit a doctor:

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Larimer County truck accident lawyer

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, the number of accidents involving a large truck or bus increased by 40 percent from 2009 to 2017. An 18-wheeler truck can weigh up to 80,000 pounds and can cause massive destruction in an instant. Driving on the road next to a semi-truck can give anyone anxiety. Knowing what circumstances can lead to a truck accident may make you a more mindful driver. Being knowledgeable about truck accidents may also help you determine if a truck driver or trucking company was liable for your accident.

Contributing Factors

There is more at stake during a truck accident due to the size and weight of trucks versus passenger cars. It takes an experienced truck driver to know how to properly handle safe road conditions, let alone poor weather. When a truck driver or company is at fault for a severe or fatal accident, passenger car occupants are the most vulnerable. Even with a seat belt, the force of a truck and its impact can change a person's life forever. To know your rights after a truck accident, it is important to consider the following factors that contribute to truck accidents:

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Ft. Collins accident lawyer

Car accidents have the potential to cause physical and emotional trauma. Cars are large machines that can reach high speeds, and upon impact, create havoc for the people inside. Physical trauma to the body has the potential to change a person's life, but mental recovery is also critical. Surviving a car crash can lead to mental disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, or depression. 

Severe car accidents often cause an emotional response, but a person facing mental trauma after an accident may feel extreme feelings that do not go away quickly. In fact, they may worsen. In this case, a person may have developed PTSD or another mental illness. PTSD symptoms may include:

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Hoggatt Law Office, P.C.

970-225-2190 | 1-800-664-3151

123 North College Avenue, Suite 160,
Fort Collins, CO 80524

Greeley
3835 W. 10th Street
Greeley, Colorado 80634 |
970-460-2220
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353 Main Street, Suite A
Longmont, Colorado 80501 |
720-575-0509
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