Experienced Car Accident Lawyers On Your Side
When a Denver, Colorado car accident occurs, lives can be changed forever. One moment you may be driving home from work, thinking about dinner, then in an instant a negligent driver changes everything. You must now think about your injuries, your recovery, how much time away from work you will need and how you will pay your bills when you are unable to work. In other words, you are now facing injuries with long-term consequences through no fault of your own.
And, while you are certainly entitled to compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, out-of-pocket expenses, pain and suffering and damages to your vehicle, you may find the insurance company is playing hardball, trying to convince you to settle for much less than you deserve—or even refusing to pay you at all. It is during a difficult time like this that a smart, aggressive car accident attorney Denver from the Law Offices of Dianne Sawaya can be an invaluable resource for your future.
Dianne Sawaya will work with the insurance company, ensuring they honor their obligation to pay for your injuries, your time away from work, your pain and suffering. While Dianne Sawaya is a skilled negotiator, she is also a tough litigator who will never hesitate to litigate your case in front of a judge and jury in order to help you get the settlement you deserve.
If you, a family member, friend or neighbor have been injured in a car accident or were hurt by a hit-and-run driver, you could be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, out of pocket expenses, pain and suffering, and more. But you may find that the insurance company won’t do right by you. They try to convince you to settle quickly for less than you deserve – or even refuse to pay you at all.
It takes a smart, aggressive car accident attorney like Dianne Sawaya to work with the insurance company so they live up to their obligation and pay you the money you deserve. Insurance companies have learned that if they don’t offer you a fair settlement, our car accident attorneys won’t hesitate to take your car accident case to trial and litigate your needs in front of a judge and jury.
Car Accident Facts
According to DriverKnowledge.com, there are about 6 million car accidents every year in the United States, with 90 people dying in car accidents each day. As a result of those 6 million car accidents, there are an estimated 3 million injuries, with a staggering 2 million of those injured victims suffering permanent injuries. Even though seat belt use decreases the risk of death by 45 percent, one in seven people do not buckle up when then drive or are a passenger in a vehicle. Despite the level of education regarding impaired driving, alcohol remains a factor in 40 percent of all car accidents.
Excessive speed is responsible for about 30 percent of all auto accidents, and reckless driving is responsible for about 33 percent of all auto accidents. While experts believe distracted driving is a major factor in auto accidents, distraction is more difficult to prove, as few drivers want to admit they were talking on a phone, texting, eating, turning around to see what the children were doing in the back seat or simply not paying attention. Despite this, it is estimated that distracted driving is a factor in at least one in every five auto accidents, and that at least nine people are killed in auto accidents each day as a direct result of distracted driving.
Where Car Accidents Happen Most Often in Denver
While any road in Denver—or any other city in Colorado—can potentially be dangerous, findlaw.com found the following Denver roads and intersections to be the most dangerous in the city:
- I-25 between Santa Fe and I-70—It is estimated that more than 250,000 cars travel this stretch of highway every day.
- University Blvd. and Hampden Road—Although this intersection technically lies in Englewood, it is close enough to Denver to make the list. An increasing volume of traffic can render this area a “bottleneck,” during certain times of the day.
- Monaco Parkway and Hampden Avenue—This intersection is a busy one, with the I-25 exit causing congestion which spills over to these streets.
- Colorado Blvd. and Alameda/I-25—With a ton of businesses in this vicinity, this is a major traffic area—which always increases the risk of auto accidents.
- University Blvd. and 1st Avenue—Heavy traffic during rush hours as well as throughout the day may this an extremely accident-prone area.
- Colorado Blvd. and 17th Avenue—Major traffic in this area makes getting to the Denver Zoo a challenge.
- Colorado Blvd. and 6th Avenue—Tons of traffic in this area as a thoroughfare for commuters.
- Colorado Blvd. and Mexico Avenue—Drivers coming from I-25 as well as surrounding businesses produce major traffic headaches.
According to a Denver Post article, traffic deaths in the state of Colorado reached the highest numbers in nearly a decade in 2017, with 634 people dying in traffic accidents. Experts believe the increase in traffic accident fatalities is the result of more and more people on the roadways, due to a better economy. Travel has increased, with people taking longer trips, and going out more often on weekends.
How is Negligence Proven in a Car Accident?
Negligence means a driver acted in a manner which disregarded his or her duty to drive in a safe manner, and that negligence resulted in an accident and subsequent injuries. Negligence does not involve intentional acts by the defendant, simply that the driver failed to follow their duty of care to ensure the safety of others. Under the law, all drivers owe other drivers the duty to drive safely, obeying all traffic laws.
To prove negligence, it must be shown that the defendant breached his or her duty of care (i.e., by exceeding the speed limit or running a stop sign), that this breach of duty of care was responsible for the plaintiff’s injuries, and that there were damages associated with those injuries. The argument from the defendant will be that he or she did not breach the duty of care, which is just one of the reasons it is so important to have a police report following a car accident in Denver. Aside from failure to obey traffic laws, drivers are required to maintain a good degree of vigilance while driving, which means not driving while distracted. Drivers must also maintain control of their vehicle and must use the equipment on the vehicle properly.
Types of Car Accidents
The five most common types of car accidents include rear-end collisions, head-on collisions, side-impact or “t-bone” collisions, single car accidents and rollovers. Rear-end collisions happen frequently, and while they do not usually cause the same level of injury severity as other types of car accidents, they can result in serious neck and back injuries. Rear-end car accidents usually occur when cars are following too closely, or when distractions are involved. The driver of the car in the rear is usually considered at-fault in a rear-end collision. Side-impact collisions are also known as “t-bone” or broadside collisions occur when the front of one vehicle crashes into the side of another. Side impact collisions usually occur at intersections and can cause severe injuries to the passengers and driver in the t-boned car.
Rollovers often occur when a vehicle makes a sharp turn at a high speed. SUVs are more prone to rollover accidents than other vehicles because they are taller and have a higher center of gravity. When the front of one vehicle strikes the front of another, the results can be traumatic, or even fatal, particularly at high speeds. In fact, head-on collisions are the type of auto accidents most likely to result in fatalities. A single car accident occurs when a vehicle strikes a fixed object, such as a pole, a fire hydrant, a tree or a wall. In some cases, a single car accident can involve innocent bystanders, and often results in property damage as well as injury.
Car Accident Injuries
While there are many injuries which can result from a car accident, some of the most common injuries include:
- Whiplash is the name for tendon, ligament and muscle injuries which occur in the neck area following a car accident, particularly a rear-end car accident. Whiplash is an extremely painful condition.
- Cuts, scrapes and bruises are common following a car accident, and while not the most serious of injuries, infections and other complications can set in.
- Traumatic brain injuries can occur following a car accident and can result in immediate injury as well as long-term complications.
- Broken ribs and other broken bones are also common car accident injuries, particularly in side-impact car accidents.
- Internal bleeding and organ damage can be particularly dangerous if not treated quickly following a car accident.
- Back injuries, including herniated discs, or more serious spinal cord injuries can result from car accidents, particularly side-impact and head-on accidents.
- Knee trauma is common among car accident victims, when knees strike the dashboard during the crash. Braces, crutches or surgery to rebuild the knee may be necessary. Knee injuries are not only painful, they can cause significant difficult in walking.
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder can occur following a car accident, bringing mental and emotional issues associated with the accident. Even tasks which were once routine, may become extremely difficult, if not impossible.
The Role Insurance Plays Following a Car Accident
Having car insurance is, in most states, mandatory; however, many of us are truly not fully cognizant of the role insurance plays following a Denver car accident. Liability insurance is the part of your auto insurance which protects authorized drivers against any claim made against them which might arise when negligence caused the accident. As an example, if another driver makes a claim against your insurance for $40,000, and you are insured up to $75,000, then you would not be responsible for any payments. If the numbers were reversed, you could end up owing a significant amount of money.
Something few people know about auto insurance is that if you are in an accident, and you file a claim for $175,000, but the person you are filing the claim against has only $100,000 worth of coverage, the insurance company is not required to even respond to your claim because it exceeds the driver’s coverage. This brings up the question of uninsured and underinsured drivers. If you have uninsured/underinsured coverage on your own insurance, and you are hit by a driver who has no insurance or has very low limits, you will make a claim against your own insurance company under your uninsured/underinsured coverage. Auto insurance plays a crucial role in your ability to obtain the money you need to pay for damages to your vehicle and medical expenses for your injuries. It is always a good idea to speak to a car accident attorney Denver in order to explore your options.
Steps to Take Following a Car Accident
Following a car accident in Denver, there are certain steps to remember to ensure the process after the accident goes smoothly, and that you receive a fair settlement if the accident was the result of negligence. These steps include:
- Never leave the scene of the accident;
- Make sure all drivers and passengers receive necessary medical treatments;
- Contact the police—and wait for them to arrive so you will have a police report;
- Exchange contact information with the other driver, including insurance information, drivers’ license numbers and license plate numbers;
- Never admit guilt at the scene, even to the point of saying “I’m sorry,” to the other driver as this could be construed as an admission of guilt;
- If there were witnesses to the accident, get their names and contact information;
- Take photographs of the scene of the accident if you are physically able;
- Let your insurance company known about the accident, giving them only the basic facts of the accident;
- Keep careful track of all your medical treatments, including ER treatment, doctor visits, rehabilitative therapies and even prescription medications related to your injuries;
- Keep a detailed journal of every single detail related to the car accident;
- Exercise caution on social media when talking about the car accident;
- Be wary of early settlement offers; and
- Hire an experienced Colorado car accident attorney as quickly as possible.
Getting the Help You Need from an Experienced Colorado Car Accident Lawyer
While it is normal to feel frustration, anxiety and stress following your Denver, Colorado car accident, it is important to remember that you are not alone. At the Law Offices of Dianne Sawaya, our experienced car accident attorneys Denver are compassionate, aggressive and highly skilled. We understand you are going through a tough time, however working with a knowledgeable Colorado car accident attorney can help get your life back to the way it was prior to the car accident.
When you call the Law Offices of Dianne Sawaya, you are giving you the attention deserve and need. We are aggressive when it comes to the needs of our clients; if you are eligible for compensation, we will work hard to secure those deserved benefits, including medical expenses, lost wages, future lost wages, pain and suffering, out-of-pocket expenses and more. Contact the Law Offices of Dianne Sawaya today for a consultation to discuss the specific facts of your car accident.