Auto and Motorcycle Accidents
With over 200 million licensed drivers in the United States, it’s no wonder that there are over 6 million reported vehicle accidents each year. Sadly, many of these accidents result in severe injuries or death. For victims of these unfortunate accidents, there is often a long road to recovery after the crash. Physical and emotional wounds can stay with victims for years after their accident. While this can be an incredibly difficult time, there are attorneys like Swenson and Shelley who are waiting to help these victims get the justice and compensation they deserve.
Common Causes of Accidents
There is no way to predict when, how, or why an accident will occur. There are, however, many common causes of accidents that can be avoided. By recognizing these hazards and working to avoid them, many vehicle accidents can be avoided altogether. Having this knowledge can make the road safer for all drivers.
Fallen trees, construction site objects, property lost from another vehicle, potholes, and even animals can be considered road hazards. These hazards are very common to encounter while driving, which is why they are responsible for many accidents each year. With road hazards, it is sometimes difficult to prove who is at fault. However, the right attorney can work to get to the bottom of who is to blame for the accident and help the victim receive the compensation they are entitled to.
Speeding drastically increases the likelihood of having an accident. A driver who is speeding will have less time to react to changes on the road such as stopped vehicles, vehicles changing lanes, and road hazards. A vehicle traveling at a high rate of speed can cause much more damage than a vehicle that is going the speed limit. Because of this, accidents caused by speeding are usually very devastating. Victims of vehicle accidents caused by speeding should do all they can, with the help of a knowledgeable attorney, to pursue action against the speeding driver.
Drunk driving continues to be a major problem across the United States. With a limit of just .05%, Utah has the lowest legal alcohol limit of any state in the US. This means that anyone driving a vehicle with a blood alcohol content of over .05% is guilty of driving under the influence. When accidents are caused by drunk drivers, it is the unsuspecting victims they crash into that suffer the most. Victims of drunk drivers should let Swenson and Shelley handle their legal issues, so they can focus on recovering from their accident.
Despite the increasing awareness about the dangers of distracted driving, many accidents are caused by using cell phones and other devices while driving. Texting and driving accounts for nine deaths and over 1,000 injuries every single day in the United States. The victims of distracted drivers will suffer unduly from their uncaring actions and are entitled to compensation as a result.
The Aftermath of an Accident
In the wake of an accident, victims and their families can be subjected to many terrible consequences. Aside from injuries that can take years to begin to heal, there are legal issues that can arise long after the accident occurs. If not handled by a professional, these legal issues can begin to grow and become overwhelming for victims and their families. Though Swenson and Shelley cannot heal physical wounds after an accident, we can ensure that legal troubles won't get in the way of the healing process.
Injuries from an accident are often extensive and life-altering. The healing process can involve a great deal of time spent in the hospital, completing rehab, and relearning how to do basic daily tasks. While it seems obvious that the medical expenses from an accident should never fall on an innocent victim, it happens all too often. That is why it is crucial to call an attorney to represent the victim and their family as soon as possible.
Sometimes emotional damage caused by and accident can be even deeper and slower-healing than physical injuries. Though these wounds cannot be seen, they can be just as devastating as broken bones and scars. Just because these wounds cannot be seen does not mean they do not matter. Compensation for emotional damages is just as important as the compensation for physical ones.
Inability to Work
Physical and emotional wounds can leave victims unable to work, either for a short period of time or permanently. It is not the victim’s fault that they are unable to work and earn money as they did before the accident. Victims should never be penalized and left in financial ruin from an accident they did not cause. Those who are unable to return to their jobs after an accident deserve to have a financially secure future.
Families are Left with Expenses
In the unfortunate event that an accident results in death, sometimes the families of the victim can find themselves struggling to pay final expenses or remaining medical costs. This can be especially difficult if the victim was the main provider for a family. In these cases, the family of the victim is entitled compensation for the insurmountable task of having to learn to live without their loved one.
The Difference Between Motorcycle and Auto Accidents
While vehicle accidents can be extremely devastating, there are many things about motorcycle accidents that make them even worse. The destruction of a crash, the way motorcyclists are treated, both in court and by insurance companies, and public perception about motorcyclists mean they don't always get fair treatment after a crash. This applies even to accidents where only the motorcyclist was involved and no one else was injured. In vehicle accidents without a clear person at fault, motorists are treated much more fairly. These differences in the treatment of motorcycle accidents versus vehicle accidents are one of the many reasons motorcyclists need an unbiased attorney to make sure they're treated fairly.
Motorcycle Accidents are Often More Devastating
Since motorcyclists do not have the protection of a seatbelt or a vehicle surrounding them, they are more likely to be ejected from the motorcycle and suffer blunt force trauma, road burn, or be hit by another vehicle after the crash.
Cards are Stacked Against Motorcyclists
Since motorcyclists are the minority while on the road, many drivers either do not see motorcycles or do not know how to properly drive near them. This makes the drivers of other vehicles one of the biggest threats to motorcyclists on the road.
Insurers are More Likely to Take Advantage of Motorcyclists
Many insurers will try to mitigate their client’s fault in an accident by placing all the blame on the motorcyclist. Also, insurers may try to offer motorcyclists a minimal amount of money to fix or replace their motorcycle in the hopes that the victim settles for a small payment.
Trial by Jury is More Complicated for Motorcyclists
Many people are unfamiliar with motorcycles and some even believe that they should not be allowed on the road. If a motorcycle accident case makes it to a trial by jury, the odds are not usually in the motorcyclist’s favor since the jury may be comprised of people who are unfamiliar with or against motorcycle riders.
Utah Motor Vehicle Laws
The laws for operating a motorcycle or other motor vehicle vary from state to state. It is crucial that every person on the road is aware of and adheres to these important laws. Motorists who are guilty of breaking these laws and have been involved in an accident will have a much more difficult time with legal complications. Every driver should be fully aware of Utah motor vehicle laws before getting on their motorcycle or behind the wheel.
- All drivers must have a valid license
- License must not be suspended
- Vehicles must be registered, inspected, and road worthy
- All vehicles must be insured
- Must have a permit or license specifically for motorcycles
- No passengers, riding between 10:00 pm and 6:00 am, or going over 60 mph in the first two months of obtaining a permit
- Riders and passengers under 18 years old must wear a helmet
- Motorcycle must be approved for use on the road
These are just a few basic laws for operating a motor vehicle in the state of Utah. Refer to the Utah Department of Motor Vehicles for a full list of laws and requirements.
The Importance of a Lawyer for Accident Victims and Their Families
Regardless of who is perceived to be at fault, how minor the accident was, or who was involved in the accident, it is important to have skilled attorneys who specialize in motor vehicle accidents. The right attorney can walk accident victims through the legal process while minimizing legal damages and making the victim feel at ease. There is nothing easy about the aftermath of an accident, but Swenson and Shelley can help to minimize the burden.
Avoid Being Unfairly Penalized
When the cause of an accident isn’t abundantly clear, victims can be forced to prove themselves to be innocent, even if it seems obvious that someone else is to blame. When this happens, victims can get worn out by all the questions and accusations and conclude that pursuing action is more trouble than it’s worth. That is exactly what the person to blame’s insurance company and lawyers want. To avoid being unfairly accused, questioned, and shut out by the person to blame, let the lawyers at Swenson and Shelley handle these questions.
Don’t Settle for Less than Deserved
Many people go into pursuing legal action with the mindset that they will be happy with whatever they receive. Victims should pursue the issue to the fullest extent and never settle for only a fraction of what they deserve. By hiring a reputable lawyer to fight the case, victims will be able to get the most compensations from an accident and put that compensation to good use.
Refuse to Be Bullied by Insurers
It is in an insurer's best interest to reduce or eliminate the amount they must pay when their client is to blame for an accident. They may use tactics to scare, intimidate, and make the victim feel guilty for pursuing action. Victims who hire Swenson and Shelley will never have to be subjected to these harsh scare tactics. Rather, an experienced and aggressive attorney will handle the insurance company.
Hiring a Lawyer After an Accident
No one knows when they are going to be involved in an accident. The unexpected and sometimes brutal nature of accidents can leave victims and their families reeling for a long time. Directly after an accident, one of the most important things to do is to hire a lawyer. Though it may seem like a daunting task, hiring the right attorney to represent accident victims can be done by following a few easy steps. By finding a kind and knowledgeable attorney, the road to recovery from an accident can be much less difficult.
Ask the Right Questions
There are many questions that can be asked of potential attorneys to make sure that they are the right person for the job. The following are a few questions that may be useful in finding a lawyer.
- Have you handled cases like this before?
- Are you familiar with the laws in this state?
- What days and times are you available?
- How far are you willing to pursue this case?
Answer Questions About the Case
A good lawyer will ask in-depth questions about the accident to ensure they have the full picture before giving legal advice. It is a good idea to have some of the case details written down, such as date, time, location, and other pertinent information to make the most of your consultation with an attorney.
Find a Knowledgeable, Trustworthy Attorney
The most important thing when hiring an attorney is to make sure they seem genuinely interested in the case and the victim’s wellbeing. A kind, understanding, and friendly attorney can make all the difference when it comes to getting compensation for an accident.