5 Steps to Take After a Truck Accident

Categories Truck AccidentsTags

Truck accident with red car

Collisions involving large trucks are on the rise in the United States. After a 34% decrease in fatal truck crashes between 2005 and 2009, fatality rates jumped 40% between 2009 and 2017. The effects of a crash can be devastating. You should know how to protect yourself and your potential claim after a truck accident.

Step 1: Check Everyone in Your Vehicle for Injuries

Safety is paramount after a crash. Prompt medical attention can mean the difference between life and death. Check yourself for injuries and ask everyone else in the vehicle if they are safe.

If you feel okay, check on the truck driver and any other involved parties too. Take note of any injuries and be ready to report them during your 911 call.

Step 2: Report the Crash to Local or State Authorities

After a truck accident, call emergency services right away. An officer will block off the accident scene and contact any other emergency services needed. Anyone injured in the truck crash should get medical care as soon as possible.

An officer will also write up a police report. This police report will contain details of the crash that could be useful for your claim.

Step 3: Gather Evidence

Any evidence you can gather is very helpful to your truck accident attorney in Denver. Photos and videos of the crash scene may be useful in determining how a crash occurred, accident liability, and amount of damage.

If anyone observed the accident and stopped to help, get their contact information before leaving the scene. Make copies of every piece of evidence you collect and submit them to your attorney.

Step 4: Seek Medical Attention After Leaving the Scene of Your Truck Accident

Many people fail to get proper medical care after a crash. You may think your injuries are minor or worry about the possible expenses of medical treatment. Remember that your health is your top priority after a truck crash.

Injuries may not be immediately noticeable after a truck accident. The adrenaline released in a truck crash can hinder the pain response, so you may not feel the full effects of a crash for days or even weeks.

Even if you only have minor aches and pains, see a medical professional to get checked out. The longer you wait to seek medical attention, the harder it is to prove that the crash caused or worsened your injuries.

Step 5: Choose a Truck Accident Attorney in Denver

While we recommend that you speak with an attorney for any vehicle accident, it is particularly important for a truck accident. Truck accidents are often much more complex than collisions involving two non-commercial drivers.

Truck accident liability can involve many parties. These parties may include:

  • Truck driver
  • Truck driver’s employer
  • The truck owner
  • Manufacturing company

Our Lakewood truck accident attorney can investigate the cause of the accident. Then, we can determine liability using evidence such as trucking logs, drug and alcohol screening results and maintenance logs.

Then, our Denver truck accident lawyers can fight for the compensation you deserve. We understand that truck accidents can be financially devastating. Medical bills, property damage, lost wages and permanent disability can result from these crashes.  With a record of experience and success, we may be able to help you get what you need to begin the path to recovery.

Contact a Lakewood Truck Accident Attorney From Our Firm to Explore Your Options

After a truck accident, you have a lot to process. Trying to negotiate with an insurance company is the last thing you want to do. Our team at Dormer Harpring fights aggressively for our clients at the negotiating table and in the courtroom. Call us for a free consultation at (303) 747-4404 to discuss your situation.

Additional Reading:

Who Is Liable in a Denver Truck Accident?

,Categories Truck AccidentsTags ,

Picture of truck driver behind the wheelTruck accidents are often catastrophic and result in serious and life-threatening injuries. When a Denver semi accident occurs, it is important to know that you are not alone. Our Denver truck accident lawyers can help protect you during this time, so you can focus on what matters most – your recovery.

Understanding Truck Accidents in Colorado

The trucking industry employs over 110,000 people in Colorado. In 2017, 13,180 trucking companies called Colorado their home. Most of these trucking companies are small, locally-owned businesses.

These trucking companies carry a variety of goods and products all across the country, often traveling through cities, such as Denver, Lakewood, and the surrounding areas.

While the trucking industry is good for the state’s economy, large commercial trucks pose a danger to everyone on the roads. When operated or maintained improperly, these large vehicles can cause devastating and fatal accidents.

Who Is Liable in a Denver Semi Accident?

Most people assume that the truck driver is to blame after a serious truck accident. While this may be true, the reality is that there are often multiple parties responsible after a truck accident. In some cases, many entities will share liability for the crash and the damages. Some of those liable parties could include:

  • The truck driver. The truck driver may be caught driving under the influence, driving fatigued, or driving distracted. They may have made an error in judgment that resulted in a crash. In many cases, the truck driver will at least share some of the liability for the crash.
  • The truck company. The truck company has a responsibility to ensure the safety of their vehicles. They also have a responsibility to hire and train their drivers. Unfortunately, some truck companies do not take this responsibility seriously. As such, they may skip valuable maintenance or ignore federal regulations in an attempt to save money.
  • The manufacturer. In some cases, the truck could have a defect. If the manufacturer of the truck or trucking component produced a defective or dangerous product, they could be held liable for the crash, and the injuries suffered.
  • The shipping company. The shipping company must load and secure the freight properly. If they do not, the freight can shift around inside of the truck. This could cause the truck driver to lose control of the vehicle. Likewise, an overloaded truck could have difficulty breaking.

Since many parties may share blame for a truck accident, it is important to contact an experienced attorney after a crash. Our Lakewood truck accident attorneys can help determine who is at fault after a truck accident.

Contact Our Lakewood Truck Accident Attorneys

If you or someone you love suffered an injury in a Denver semi accident, it is important to know where you can turn for help. Do not fight the trucking companies alone.  At Dormer Harpring, we fight for our injured clients.

Call our Denver truck accident attorneys today at (303) 747-4404. You can also fill out our confidential contact form for more information. We can review all your legal options with you, so you can choose the one that is best for you and your situation.

Understanding Plaintiff Status Under Colorado’s Premises Liability Act

Categories Premises Liability

Picture of man slip and fall on stairsWhen an individual is injured or killed on another person or entity’s property as a result of an unsafe condition, the controlling law in the state of Colorado is C.R.S. §13-21-115 Actions against Landowners, often referred to as the Colorado Premises Liability Act.

Many elements need to be evaluated in a premises liability case. One of the most important factors in determining liability in a Colorado premises liability case is the plaintiff’s classification in the case. The question concerns the reason that the plaintiff was on the land where he or she became injured.

Under Colorado premises liability laws, a person injured on property falls into one of three categories related to the reason they were on the land in the first place. The injured party can be a “trespasser,” a “licensee,” or an “invitee.” Each category has their own level of duty of care. In addition, each category has different requirements to prove a claim for damages under the Colorado Premises Liability Act.

Invitee

An invitee is a person who enters or remains on a property belonging to another person or entity while transacting business. The person has a mutually beneficial relationship with the property owner. Property owners owe invitees the highest level of duty of care, and invitees generally have the best chance of obtaining compensation for a premises liability claim.

CRS §13-21-115(5)(a) defines an invitee as “a person who enters or remains on the land of another to transact business in which the parties are mutually interested or who enters or remains on such land in response to the landowner’s express or implied representation that the public is requested, expected, or intended to enter or remain.”

Typically, invitees are customers or tenants. For example, when you shop at a grocery store or eat at a restaurant, you are considered an invitee. If you are renting an apartment, you are an invitee of the property owner. If you buy a ticket for a movie at a theater, you are an invitee if you are harmed at the theater.

Under the Premises Liability Act, CRS §13-21-115(3)(c)(I), “an invitee may recover for damages caused by the landowner’s unreasonable failure to exercise reasonable care to protect against dangers of which he actually knew or should have known.”

However, under CRS §13-21-115(3)(c)(2), if you are on land classified as agricultural land or vacant land for tax purposes, even as an invitee, you may only recover “damages caused by a landowner’s unreasonable failure to exercise reasonable care to protect against dangers of which he actually knew.”

Licensee

A licensee is someone who enters or remains on a property with the permission of the property owner. Generally, licensees are social guests. If you were injured as a dinner guest at someone else’s home, you are usually considered a licensee. A property owner owes a licensee a more limited duty of care. These cases can be more difficult to prove legally, so it is important to find a specialist in premises liability cases to help you with your claim.

CRS §13-21-115(5)(b) defines a licensee as “a person who enters or remains on the land of another for the licensee’s own convenience or to advance his own interests, pursuant to the landowner’s permission or consent” and specifically includes “a social guest.”

CRS §13-21-115(3)(b) says that licensees may recover only for damages caused:

  • By the landowner’s unreasonable failure to exercise reasonable care with respect to dangers created by the landowner of which the landowner actually knew; or
  • By the landowner’s unreasonable failure to warn of dangers not created by the landowner which are not ordinarily present on property of the type involved and of which the landowner actually knew.

Invitees and licensees may be eligible for compensation after a premises liability accident, especially if the guest was on the property for a business purpose.

Trespasser

A trespasser is only owed a duty of care when intentional harm is at hand. A trespasser enters or remains on the property of another without the property owner’s consent. It is much more difficult for a trespasser to recover damages for an injury under Colorado premises liability law. The exception to this is if injuries or damages were deliberately caused by the property owner.

CRS §13-21-115(5)(c) defines “trespasser” as “a person who enters or remains on the land of another without the landowner’s consent.” Under the Premises Liability Act, §13-21-115(3)(a), “a trespasser may recover only for damages willfully or deliberately caused by the landowner.”

Contact Our Denver Premises Liability Lawyers

If you have been injured on another person or entity’s property, we recommend that you speak to our Denver premises liability lawyers as soon as possible. Your status under the Colorado Premises Liability Act is crucial to succeeding with a claim.

At Dormer Harpring, we can help you determine your status and ensure your rights are fully protected. For more information contact us at (303) 747-4404 or fill out our confidential contact form.

Sean Dormer Named to Super Lawyers Rising Stars List for 2018

,Categories AwardsTags ,

Rated by Super Lawyers Rising Stars Sean Dormer SuperLawyers.comSean Dormer was just selected to the Super Lawyers Rising Stars list for 2018.

Super Lawyers selects attorneys using a patented multiphase selection process. Peer nominations and evaluations are combined with independent research. Each candidate is evaluated on 12 indicators of peer recognition and professional achievement. Selections are made on an annual, state-by-state basis. The objective is to create a credible, comprehensive and diverse listing of outstanding attorneys that can be used as a resource for attorneys and consumers searching for legal counsel. The Rising Stars list recognizes no more than 2.5 percent of attorneys in each state. To be eligible for inclusion in Rising Stars, a candidate must be either 40 years old or younger, or in practice for 10 years or less.

Congratulations, Sean!

Sean’s profile on the Super Lawyers website can be found here.