Month: May 2017

The Benefits of Working With a Criminal Defense Attorney vs. Public Defender

The Benefits of Working With a Criminal Defense Attorney vs. Public Defender

Anyone who has been arrested has the right to an attorney. If the charges that you face carry possible jail time, you will also have the right to a court-appointed attorney, known as a public defender, if you cannot afford a criminal defense attorney. Which is the better option if you have the choice? Here’s a look at the benefits of working with a criminal defense attorney vs. public defender:

Choice

Working with a criminal defense attorney means you will get to choose the attorney that represents you. This means you can look for an attorney who has experience representing clients in cases similar to yours and who has been successful defending the charges that you face. But, if you work with a public defender, you will end up with whoever the court assigns to your case.

Time

Public defenders often cannot spend very much time with each client because of the number of cases they are expected to handle at once. As a result, it may be difficult to get your legal questions answered or explore other legal options because your attorney may not have time to talk about your case. However, a criminal defense attorney will hold your hand throughout the entire legal process. These attorneys aren’t forced to take on more cases than they can handle, so they have much more time to devote to fighting for the best possible outcome in your case.

Plea Deals

Many public defenders don’t have time to take each of their cases to trial, so they may attempt to settle as many as possible through plea deal negotiations with the state. If there is a lot of evidence that can be used against you, it may be wise to take the plea deal. But, many defendants may end up with a better outcome by going to trial. If you want an attorney who will do what’s in your best interests instead of trying to close the case as quickly as possible, you will need a criminal defense attorney instead of a public defender.

Reputation

Criminal defense attorneys will not get hired by other clients if they don’t have a good reputation. Because of this, they will fight tirelessly to achieve a favorable outcome in your case. The better the plea deal or verdict is for you, the better it is for a criminal defense attorney’s reputation as well. However, public defenders do not have to advertise for clients, so the pressure to do well in order to maintain a positive reputation is not there.

Are you ready to hire a criminal defense attorney instead of relying on a public defender? Contact Reisch Law Firm today to discuss your legal options. Our team of criminal defense attorneys will guide you through every step of the legal process and fight tirelessly on your behalf. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.

What Are Your Rights After an Arrest

What Are Your Rights After an Arrest?

If you have been arrested by a police officer, it’s important to protect your rights. What are your rights after an arrest? Here’s what you should know:

The right to know why you are being arrested.

A police officer must have a reason to arrest you, and he must inform you of that reason if you ask for it. If the police officer has a warrant for your arrest, you have the legal right to see the warrant. But, the police officer does not necessarily need to show you the warrant at the time of your arrest. It is your right to see the warrant within a reasonable amount of time after you have been arrested.

The right to remain silent.

The right to remain silent is one of the most important rights that you have, and you should always choose to exercise it if you have been arrested. You cannot be penalized for exercising this right, but you can hurt yourself if you choose not to exercise it. Anything that you say to a police officer or anyone can be used against you to prove your guilt. Even if you think you’re not saying anything incriminating, your statements can be taken out of context and twisted around by law enforcement. For these reasons, any good criminal defense attorney will tell you that you should always remain silent following an arrest.

The right to contact someone.

Everyone who has been arrested has the right to get in touch with someone to let that person know of the arrest. You may have seen on TV or in movies that people only get one phone call, but that is not always true. You are able to make multiple phone calls until you get ahold of someone.

The right to a criminal defense attorney.

If you have been arrested, you have the right to a criminal defense attorney, regardless of the severity of the charges that you face. In cases where jail time is a possible consequence of a conviction, you will have the right to a court-appointed attorney if you cannot afford to hire one on your own. It’s important that you ask for an attorney as soon as possible after you have been arrested. Do not sign anything or make any statements without first consulting with a criminal defense attorney about your case.

If you have been arrested, contact Reisch Law Firm as soon as possible. Our criminal defense attorneys will immediately step in to protect your rights and fight for the best possible outcome in your case. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.

Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents

Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that within the next 24 hours, around 430 people will be taken to the emergency room for injuries sustained in a pedestrian accident. Why are so many pedestrians getting hurt? Here are some of the most common causes of pedestrian accidents:

Left-Hand Turns

Pedestrians are far more likely to get hit by a car that is turning left than by a car that is turning right. This is because the pedestrian is focused solely on walking straight through the intersection, and the driver is focused only on waiting for a break in traffic so he can make the left turn.

Violation of Traffic Signals

Drivers and pedestrians must pay close attention to traffic signals to determine when it is safe to walk or drive. If a driver fails to follow a traffic signal, he could end up hurting a pedestrian. For example, a driver who makes an illegal U-turn at an intersection could end up colliding with a pedestrian who thought it was safe to walk because there was a no U-turn sign.

Poor Visibility

Most fatal pedestrian accidents happen during the late afternoon, evening, or night hours when visibility is greatly reduced. Pedestrians should attempt to make themselves more visible by wearing reflective clothing when they know they will be walking outside after sunset.

Distracted Driving

Drivers who are talking or texting on their cell phones, eating, putting on makeup, or playing with the radio put pedestrians’ lives in danger. These drivers often do not see a pedestrian until it is too late to avoid an collision. It can be difficult to avoid these type of drivers, but not impossible. Pedestrians should always try to get a good look at the driver before crossing an intersection. If he is not looking at the road, you shouldn’t walk in front of him until you have made eye contact and confirmed that he is stopping.

Crossing Outside of an Intersection

If you are walking on the street, it’s strongly recommended that you only cross at marked intersections. Drivers expect to see pedestrians crossing at intersections, but they may not be prepared to see them crossing the street outside of an intersection. As a result, drivers may fail to spot pedestrians when they are crossing the street outside of an intersection.

Have you been injured by a negligent driver? Pedestrians may be able to recover compensation for their injuries, but first they will need to get in touch with a personal injury attorney. Don’t delay any longer—schedule a free consultation with Reisch Law Firm today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.

Safety Tips for Pedestrians

Safety Tips For Pedestrians

Pedestrians do not have anything to protect them if they are struck by a motor vehicle, which means they may suffer serious injuries during an accident. Unfortunately, this happens far too often in the U.S. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that over 4,700 pedestrians are killed every year, and another 156,000 suffer nonfatal injuries. How can you protect yourself while walking on the streets? Follow these safety tips for pedestrians:

Don’t make any assumptions.

Even if a vehicle is supposed to stop to allow you to cross in front of them, you should never assume that the driver will stop. If you notice the driver is beginning to slow down as he approaches the intersection, you shouldn’t assume that he will come to a complete stop. He could be slowing down to prepare to turn or he could be distracted by something such as a cell phone. Protect yourself by never making any of these assumptions when walking.

Stay visible.

Pedestrians should make an effort to stay visible at all times. If you are walking outside during daylight hours, wear brightly colored clothing that will make it easier for drivers to see you. However, if you are out at night, you should wear light colored or reflective clothing that will grab drivers’ attention. Be mindful of where you walk, too. Try to avoid walking in the shadows where a driver may not see you. If you want to confirm that a driver sees you before walking in front of his car, make eye contact with him.

Avoid distractions.

Distracted walking can be just as dangerous as distracted driving, so put away anything that could take your attention off of the road. Even wearing headphones is a bad idea if you want to stay safe while walking. If you are wearing headphones, you may not hear a driver honking at you to warn you to get out of the way or another pedestrian trying to warn you of danger. Stay alert as you walk to protect yourself from harm.

Stay on the sidewalk.

If a sidewalk is available, you should always use it. If there is no sidewalk for you to walk on, then stay as far to the side of the road as possible. Always walk facing traffic so you can quickly react to cars that are coming your way.

Even if you follow all of these safety tips, it’s possible that you will still be involved in a pedestrian accident. If you are injured in a pedestrian accident caused by a negligent driver, contact Reisch Law Firm today to discuss your legal options. Call our law office at 303-291-0555 or fill out this online form to schedule a free consultation regarding your case.

Common Myths About Personal Injury Cases

Common Myths About Personal Injury Cases

If you’ve been injured in an accident, you may begin to research personal injury claims online to learn more about how to file and why you should file. But, don’t believe everything that you read. There are a lot of myths about personal injury cases circulating on the Internet that may mislead you. Learn the truth behind these common myths:

Myth: Compensation is guaranteed.

If you have been injured by another person’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, and lost wages. But, compensation is never guaranteed in any personal injury case. This is one of the reasons why you should work with an experienced personal injury attorney with a history of successfully reaching settlements and winning verdicts for his clients.

Myth: Your case will take years to complete.

A number of factors can influence how long a personal injury case will take, so it’s difficult to predict how long you will have to wait for your case to be resolved. But, it’s a misconception that most personal injury cases take years to complete. In fact, it’s estimated that about 90-95% of personal injury cases are resolved in pre-trial settlement negotiations. These cases can typically be resolved in about eight months to a year, depending on the complexity of the claim and severity of injuries.

Myth: Most personal injury claims are fraudulent.

Insurance companies want you to believe that people often file fraudulent personal injury cases, but that’s simply not the case. A personal injury attorney will not take a case unless he believes the plaintiff was genuinely injured and the defendant’s negligence was to blame. Because most personal injury attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, meaning they don’t get compensated unless they win the case, it would be far too risky to work with someone who is lying about their injuries to scam the insurance company.

Myth: The at-fault party’s insurance company will pay for your medical bills as you incur them.

It’s true that the at-fault party’s insurance company may end up paying for any medical expenses you have incurred as a result of your injuries. However, the insurance company will not pay these expenses as they are incurred. Instead, they will pay you once you have reached a settlement or winning verdict in your case. That means that you will be responsible for paying for your medical bills until your personal injury case has been resolved.

Now that you know the truth behind these common personal injury myths, are you ready to file a claim? If so, contact Reisch Law Firm today to learn how you can recover compensation for your injuries. Call 303-291-0555 or fill out this online form to schedule a free consultation with our law office.

Common DUI Defense Strategies

Common DUI Defense Strategies

Have you been charged with driving under the influence (DUI)? Facing criminal charges can cause a great deal of stress and anxiety in your life. But remember, a charge does not equal an automatic conviction. There are several DUI defense strategies that an attorney may be able to use to fight the charges against you. Here are some of the most common ones:

You were illegally stopped by the police.

Police officers do not have the right to pull over just anyone. In order to stop someone, a police officer must have a reasonable suspicious that the person is engaging in criminal activity. If you were not driving erratically or recklessly at the time you were pulled over, you may be able to challenge whether the police officer had the legal right to stop you. If you can prove that the officer did not have reasonable suspicion, any evidence that he collected during the stop would not be admissible in court.

Voluntary field sobriety test observations were inaccurate.

The police officer who pulls you over may ask you to step out of your vehicle and perform several “voluntary” field sobriety tests. Your performance during these tests could be used against you to prove that you were intoxicated at the time of the traffic stop. Do not agree to perform “voluntary roadside maneuvers. But, it’s possible that a defense attorney could argue that the police officer’s observations were inaccurate. For example, if you were asked to perform a field sobriety test while wearing high heels, you may not perform well because of your shoes. If you stumble or fall, the police officer may believe you are intoxicated instead of taking your footwear into consideration. A defense attorney may be able to poke holes in the police officer’s account of what happened using this strategy.

The breathalyzer test was not administered properly.

It’s common for a defense attorney to challenge the results of the breathalyzer test to challenge DUI charges. Police officers are required to follow certain procedures when administering the breathalyzer to drivers, and if they fail to do, the results of the test could be thrown out of court. For example, police officers are supposed to watch a driver for 20 minutes prior to administering the test to ensure he does not burp, vomit, or consume anything that could affect the results of the test, such as mints or mouthwash. If the police officer does not do this, your attorney may be able to argue that the results were inaccurate.

Are you facing DUI charges? If so, contact Reisch Law Firm today. Our experienced attorneys will thoroughly review the details of your case to determine the best way to defend you against these charges. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.

What Are the Most Common Car Accident Injuries

What Are the Most Common Car Accident Injuries?

The National Safety Council (NSC) released data that shows nearly 4.6 million people in the U.S. required medical treatment following a car accident in 2016, which was a 7% increase over the previous year. These car accident victims may have suffered a number of different injuries that range in severity. Some of the most common car accident injuries include:

Whiplash

If you have been involved in a rear-end collision, you may start to experience symptoms of whiplash after the crash. Whiplash occurs when the impact of the collision causes the muscles in your head and neck to suddenly extend and contract in a back and forth motion that resembles the cracking of a whip. Symptoms of this condition include neck pain, headaches, loss of range of motion in the neck, shoulder pain, and numbness.

Traumatic Brain Injuries

It’s common for drivers and passengers to hit their heads on the dashboard, windows, or steering wheel during a collision. Even if you do not have any visible signs of injury, bumping your head during a car accident could lead to a traumatic brain injury. The severity of this injury will depend on how much damage has been done and what part of your head was hit. It’s important to note that you may not experience any symptoms at all if you have a brain injury, or you may only experience minor symptoms such as a headache and slight confusion. If you have hit your head during a collision, seek medical treatment regardless of how you feel.

Back Injuries

Car accidents can also cause back injuries, including strains, sprains, herniated discs, and spinal cord damage. Similar to brain injuries, the symptoms of a back injury may not be immediately obvious. In fact, you may feel completely fine until the day after the accident, where you start to notice stiffness, pain, and limited mobility.

Internal Injuries

People who have been involved in high-impact car accidents may also sustain internal injuries. For example, it’s common for victims to fracture a rib during a high-impact collision. A fractured rib could cause secondary injuries if it punctures an internal organ such as your lungs. Even if you don’t fracture your ribs, you could still bruise or rupture internal organs during a car accident.

These are just some of the many different injuries that you may sustain during a car accident. If you are ever involved in a car accident, it’s important to seek medical treatment regardless of how minor you think your injuries may be.

If you have sustained any type of injury in a car accident, seek legal representation right away. The attorneys at Reisch Law Firm can help you recover compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.

Steps to Take After a Car Accident

Steps to Take After a Car Accident

The moments following a car accident can be filled with anxiety, fear, and shock. Although you may be feeling a rush of emotions, it’s important to stay calm and in control of the situation. If you have been injured, there are a things you should do after a collision to ensure that you will have the opportunity to recover compensation from the at-fault party. What should you do? Here are the steps to take after a car accident:

Call for help.

Your first priority following an accident should be calling for help. If you and the other people involved in the accident do not need emergency medical treatment, you will just need to call to report the accident and ask for a police officer to come to the scene. It’s imperative that you do this so there is an official police report on file that has documented what happened.

Exchange information.

Of course, you will need to exchange information with people at the scene. But, don’t just stop at the other driver. If there were any witnesses who were not involved in the accident, ask for their contact information, too. Your attorney may want to get in touch with them later on to discuss what they saw leading up to the accident.

Take pictures.

If you can, take pictures at the scene of the accident. What should you photograph? Anything and everything. Make sure you have pictures of property damage, any visible injuries that you have sustained, debris from the collision, and traffic signs or signals that may have played a role in the accident. All of these pictures will help you prove the cause of the accident and what damages and injuries occurred as a result of the accident.

Seek medical treatment.

It’s imperative that you seek medical treatment as soon as possible following the accident—even if you are under the impression that your injuries are minor. Remember, what starts off as a minor injury may develop into something far more serious in the next few hours or days. You will need documentation from a healthcare provider that shows you were experiencing symptoms immediately following the accident. If you don’t have this, you may not be able to prove that the injuries you suffered were sustained in the accident. Hold onto every medical document that shows what injuries you have, how you have been treated, and what you have had to pay for treatment.

Contact an attorney.

The sooner that you contact an attorney after a car accident, the better. An attorney can immediately begin to investigate the cause of the accident, identify the liable parties, and handle the negotiations with the at-fault driver’s insurance company. It’s important that you do not speak to an insurance company until you have contacted an attorney. This is recommended so you don’t end up making statements to the insurance adjuster or accepting an unfair settlement.

Have you been injured in a car accident? Don’t delay any longer—contact Reisch Law Firm today. Our experienced attorneys can help you recover the maximum compensation available for your injuries. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.