123 North College Avenue, Suite 160, Fort Collins, CO 80524
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Hoggatt Law Office, P.C.

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970-225-2190 | 
1-800-664-3151

Recent blog posts

Larimer County pedestrian accident injury attorney

It is no secret that pedestrian accidents often end tragically. Even at slow speeds, a pedestrian can be severely injured or killed after being hit by a car. Last year in Colorado, 90 pedestrians were killed in auto accidents, which was up 40 percent from three years prior in 2015. As of September, official records report 37 deaths so far this year. The final total for 2019 will include this number and likely other pedestrian deaths. Therefore, it is important to be aware of crosswalks and the role they play in pedestrian safety. 

Crosswalk Safety

Last month, a pedestrian died after getting hit by a car at night in Fort Collins. The victim, a 23-year-old man from the area, was hit by a minivan. Although the crash is still under investigation, it is noted that a crosswalk was not being utilized by the pedestrian at the time of the accident. Alcohol and reckless driving were not thought to be contributing factors.

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Larimer County workplace injury attorney

When an accident happens at home, most people know what to do right away if they suffer an injury. When a person is injured at work, however, there are more variables, and a person may not know where to begin. Although most employees are eligible for workers’ compensation in the event of a work injury, there are certain steps and timelines to follow. In Colorado, it is important to obtain professional legal counsel to make sure you follow the proper procedures for filing a claim when seeking benefits. 

Steps to Take After a Work-Related Injury

When an injury is life-threatening, or there is a risk of losing a limb, an employee is allowed to seek immediate medical attention. Otherwise, medical care will need to be administered from a provider chosen by the employer. This doctor will then become the authorized treating physician for that employee’s work-related injury. 

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Larimer County distracted driving car accident lawyer

It may feel like there is not enough time in the day to focus on one task at a time, but operating a motor vehicle should be the only thing on a driver’s mind when he or she is behind the wheel. In Colorado, 43 accidents each day are caused by distracted driving. Although it only accounts for 13 percent of all accidents, distracted driving often causes serious injury or wrongful death. If a distracted driver causes a car accident, other parties involved may be eligible for compensation if they suffer injuries, property damage, or pain or suffering. 

Proving Negligence for Distracted Driving

A personal injury case is reliant on being able to prove that negligence was involved in an accident. Under Colorado law, contributory negligence plays a role in determining compensation. A defendant is only obligated to compensate the plaintiff for his or her proportion of fault. If the court determines the plaintiff's negligence is greater than the defendant’s, the plaintiff may not recover any damages at all. 

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Larimer County trucking accident lawyerLast week, a Chicago truck driver died in an accident near Fort Collins. Although the official cause of death has not been released, the 52-year-old man was declared dead at the accident site. Initial reports, however, have declared that intoxication or speed were not contributing factors. There were also no other people were injured during this accident on Interstate 25. The semi-truck went off to the right side, hit a sign, and rolled over. Any death on the road is a tragedy, but we know when a truck accident happens, the casualties can often be very serious. 

A Truck Driver's Negligence Can Cause a Crash  

What is unusual about this crash is the death of the truck driver. Statistically, passengers of other vehicles are much more likely to die as the result of a truck accident. In 2017, 683 truck occupants died in accidents, while 2,797 car passengers died in the same year. People in cars are much more vulnerable to truck accidents. Cars have more protection than a motorcycle, but either can be helpless against an 80,000-pound truck at full speed. 

Although preliminary reporting on this Fort Collins truck accident suggests that speeding or substance abuse was not involved, many truck accidents involve negligence. When drivers do not take proper precautions, like following the rules of the road, they can be at fault for causing an accident. Trucking companies can also be held liable for poor maintenance and not following industry standards. When a person in another vehicle is injured and suffers because of these failures, the victim has the right to file a personal injury lawsuit and seek compensation for their damages. 

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Larimer County motorcycle accident injury lawyer

It is no secret that motorcyclists are at a higher risk of injury that the drivers or passengers of cars and trucks. The lack of protection provided by motorcycles compared to other vehicles exposes a motorcyclist to major risk of injury if he or she is thrown from a bike or is involved in a crash with an automobile. Riders can take certain precautions to reduce injuries in the event of a motorcycle accident. However, the drivers of other vehicles are more likely to pose a significant danger to motorcyclists. For instance, driving while drunk presents a serious risk to everyone, but especially to motorcyclists.

Colorado Motorcyclist Dies After Being Hit By a Drunk Driver

Recently, a 35-year-old motorcyclist died in Colorado Springs after being struck by a drunk driver. The motorcyclist was hit at a high speed from behind by a pick-up truck. The driver was thrown from the bike, and he was subsequently hit by a minivan. He was pronounced dead by authorities at the scene. The drunk driver, a 34-year-old man, was later charged with DUI and vehicular homicide. 

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Larimer County pedestrian accident injury lawyer

When a personal injury case is on the table, one of the most difficult parts is proving which party was at fault. This often affects the amount of compensation a person can receive or whether someone has a case at all. In cases involving pedestrian accidents, there are many factors that may have caused the incident. In some cases, a collision can be caused by a reckless motorist who is driving under the influence or distracted. It is imperative to know what rights a pedestrian has and how these rights can impact the ability to recover damages in a personal injury claim.

Proving Fault 

Colorado is what is called a “fault state” in regard to personal injury cases. This means whoever caused the accident may be held liable. Sometimes, there is a clear answer as to who was at fault, but most cases are not that cut and dry. Whether someone is operating a car or a truck or is a pedestrian, there are rules for every person on the road. These laws are to keep each other safe, and when broken, they can lead to accidents, injuries, or even death. Knowing the rights of a pedestrian may help determine whether a person is eligible for a personal injury claim.

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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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Hoggatt Law Office, P.C.

970-225-2190 | 1-800-664-3151

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

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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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