Complete vs. Incomplete Spinal Cord Injuries

Complete vs. Incomplete Spinal Cord Injuries

The spinal cord is a bundle of nerves protected by bones that stretches from the brain all the way down to the lower back. Without the spinal cord, it would be impossible for your brain to communicate with the rest of your body. For this reason, any damage to this area of the body can be devastating. Sadly, thousands of people sustain complete and incomplete spinal cord injuries ever year.

Complete Spinal Cord Injuries

A complete spinal cord injury occurs when the spinal cord is totally compressed or severed. After a complete spinal cord injury, the brain is no longer able to communicate with the parts of the body located below the injury site. For example, a complete injury in the lumbar spine, which is located in the lower back, may paralyze the victim from the waist down.

There’s no question that these injuries are serious, and sometimes life-threatening. If the injury occurs high on the spine, the brain may be unable to send signals to the lungs, which means the victim will be unable to breath on his own.

Incomplete Spinal Cord Injuries

An incomplete spinal cord injury occurs when the spinal cord is partially compressed or severed. Because the spinal cord is not completely compressed or severed, communication between the brain and the body is affected, but not completely cut off. Victims that have sustained incomplete spinal cord injuries may still be able to move parts of the body below the injury, but movement may be drastically reduced. Other victims retain some feeling in these parts of the body, but the sensation is not nearly as strong as it once was. It can be hard to determine the extent of the damage caused by an incomplete injury. In fact, many doctors say it can take weeks to understand the severity of the injury.

Being treated by competent, experienced medical professionals makes all the difference for these victims. Incomplete spinal cord injury victims may see some improvements in their condition with the right treatment plan, but of course, this is never a guarantee. On the other hand, an incomplete injury can also become a complete injury if the doctor fails to quickly take action to reduce swelling and prevent further damage.

A spinal cord injury can drastically reduce the quality of your life. If you have been injured as a result of another person’s negligence, seek legal representation right away. The personal injury attorneys at Reisch Law Firm will ensure that you are fairly compensated for your traumatic injuries. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.

What is a Wet Reckless Charge in Colorado?

What is a Wet Reckless Charge in Colorado?

Drivers who are convicted of driving under the influence (DUI) can face serious penalties, including possible jail time, fines, and license suspension. Due to the severity of the consequences, many DUI defendants ask if there’s a chance they will be offered a plea deal. Some defendants are given the opportunity to accept a plea deal known as a “wet reckless.”

A wet reckless is a type of plea bargain offered to DUI defendants. In this deal, the defendant agrees to plead guilty in exchange for the prosecutor reducing his charges to reckless driving. A reckless driving charge is still serious, but not nearly as serious as a DUI charge, which is what makes this deal attractive to defendants. For example, defendants could face up to one year in jail, a suspended license, and up to $1,000 in fines for their first DUI conviction. These penalties are much more severe than the penalties for reckless driving, which include up to 90 days in jail and up to a $300 fine.

Unfortunately, this plea bargain will not be offered to everyone who is charged with DUI. In the state of Colorado, the wet reckless bargain is only offered in cases where the evidence against the defendant is weak. To put it simply, a prosecutor will only offer this deal when he feels as if he does not have enough evidence to convict the defendant of DUI.

Most prosecutors will also only offer this plea bargain to defendants that do not have a prior criminal record. If this is not your first DUI charge, it’s unlikely that you will be offered a deal. You should also consider this deal off of the table if you injured or killed someone as a result of your intoxication.

It’s important to note that you should never accept this plea deal without talking to a criminal defense attorney first. Accepting a plea bargain may seem like the easy way out, but it’s not the best choice for everyone. Make sure that you understand how accepting a plea bargain will affect your criminal record and your future before making this decision.

At Reisch Law Firm, our criminal defense attorneys are dedicated to fighting for your freedom. If you have been charged with DUI, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our team about your case. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.

Where Do Slip and Fall Accidents Occur?

Where Do Slip and Fall Accidents Occur?

A slip and fall accident occurs when a person injures himself after slipping or tripping on something. There are many different hazards that can cause someone to lose his footing, which is why these accidents happen so frequently. But, where do slip and fall accidents occur the most? Here are some of the most common locations:

Private Residences

Most people assume that a slip and fall accident can only occur on a commercial property, but that’s not the case. Slip and fall accidents can also occur in private residences such as a friend or family member’s home. Most of these accidents are covered by homeowners’ insurance, whereas accidents on commercial properties are covered by liability insurance.

In most cases, the homeowner would be responsible for the victim’s injuries. However, if the accident occurred on a rental property, the landlord or the tenants may be responsible, depending on the nature of the hazard that caused the fall.

At Work

Every year, many people are injured in slip and fall accidents while on-the-job. Victims that are injured at work are entitled to compensation, but they must file a workers’ compensation claim as opposed to a personal injury lawsuit.

Hotels and Resorts

Hotels and resorts often have huge properties that are hard to maintain. As a result, many safety hazards may exist on these properties. For instance, the area around the hotel’s pool could become slippery when wet, creating a hazard for guests that are passing through. Guests can also slip and fall on torn carpet, uneven floorboards, or defective stairs at a hotel or resort.

Grocery Stores

It’s no surprise that slip and fall accidents often occur at grocery stores since these businesses tend to see a lot of foot traffic on a regular basis. Grocery store customers could slip on a spill in one of the aisles or they could trip over a product that has fallen off of the shelves. It’s possible that customers could even trip over a pothole in the parking lot when walking into the store. To avoid these accidents, storeowners and employees must work diligently to get rid of any safety hazards on the property.

Slip and fall victims may be able to hold the property owner liable for their injuries. But, proving liability and recovering compensation is incredibly challenging without the help of an experienced personal injury attorney from Reisch Law Firm. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.

How Dram Shop Laws Could Affect Your Personal Injury Case

How Dram Shop Laws Could Affect Your Personal Injury Case

Over 10,000 people were killed in car accidents involving a drunk driver in 2015, and many more sustained serious, non-fatal injuries. These victims are entitled to file a personal injury lawsuit against the negligent, drunk driver that caused them harm. But first, victims should learn how dram shop laws affect their personal injury case.

Colorado’s Dram Shop Laws

Businesses should never serve alcohol to someone who is under the age of 21 or who appears to already be intoxicated. But unfortunately, many businesses do so anyways. Businesses that sell alcohol to minors or individuals that are clearly intoxicated can be held liable in the event that these customers’ injure or kill someone due to their impairment.

For example, let’s say a local bar knowingly serves a minor alcohol. After having a few drinks, the minor drives home and crashes into another vehicle, seriously injuring the driver. In this situation, the bar should have never served the minor alcohol since she is under the legal drinking age. According to the dram shop laws, the bar could be held liable for the victim’s injuries. This means the victim may be able to recover compensation from both the intoxicated driver and the bar that served her.

Colorado’s Social Host Liability Laws

It’s important to note that the dram shop laws only apply to businesses. If the minor in the example above had been drinking at a friend’s house, the dram shop laws would not be relevant, but social host liability laws could be.

A social host is anyone that serves alcohol in a private setting. Social hosts can continue to serve guests that are already intoxicated without facing legal consequences. However, they can be held liable for serving minors alcohol.

Take another look at the example above. Let’s say the underage driver had been consuming alcohol at an adult friend’s house instead of a bar. In this case, the friend could be held liable for the injuries caused by the minor’s intoxication because he shouldn’t have served her alcohol in the first place. Under these circumstances, the victim may be able to recover compensation from both the intoxicated driver and the driver’s friend.

Have you been injured by an intoxicated driver? You may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. But first, contact Reisch Law Firm today to speak with our team of experienced personal injury attorneys about your rights and legal options. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.

Common Mechanical Errors That Lead to Truck Accidents

Common Mechanical Errors That Lead to Truck Accidents

Commercial trucks travel thousands of miles every year, which means they require constant maintenance. These trucks must be inspected on a regular basis to identify and correct issues that could be dangerous. Unfortunately, trucking companies often fail to maintain their trucks, which puts everyone on the road in danger. Here are some of the most common mechanical errors that lead to truck accidents:

Brake Problems

Brake problems can be traced back to either an issue with the design and production of the part or an issue with maintenance. If the brakes were designed or produced poorly, the manufacturer is to blame for any accident that occurs. However, many accidents occur due to the trucking company’s failure to maintain the brakes.

Before hitting the road, drivers are required to inspect their brakes to look for loose or broken components and to listen for air leaks. If these inspections are not done, problems could go unnoticed and the brakes may begin to malfunction. Brake problems can also occur when the weight of the truck’s cargo is not evenly distributed. An uneven distribution of weight can cause the brakes to overheat and malfunction, making it difficult or impossible for the driver to stop the truck.

Tire Problems

Tire problems are another type of mechanical error that could lead to disaster on the road. Similar to issues with the brakes, tire problems can be caused by either defective design or production or inadequate maintenance. During the pre-trip inspection, truck drivers must examine their tires to check the air pressure and look for signs of extreme wear and tear. If the air pressure is way off or the tires are rapidly deteriorating, they could easily blow out once the truck is in motion. A sudden tire blow out can cause the driver to lose control of the truck, meaning it is very likely that a collision with another vehicle will occur.

Tire problems can also occur if the trucking company chooses to use tires that do not match each other or meet the Department of Transportation’s requirements.

Sadly, tire and brake problems often occur together. This is because companies that do not inspect the brakes probably don’t inspect the tires either, and vice versa.

Have you been injured in a truck accident? Get in touch with the personal injury attorneys at Reisch Law Firm today. We will thoroughly review the details of your case to identify the liable parties. Then, we will aggressively pursue the compensation that you deserve. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.

How Defensive Driving Can Help You Avoid Car Accidents

How Defensive Driving Can Help You Avoid Car Accidents

Every year, millions of people are injured in car accidents. Will you be next? You can’t control what other drivers do on the road, but you can reduce your risk of getting into a car accident by practicing defensive driving.

What is Defensive Driving?

Defensive driving is a safe driving technique that you can use to avoid getting into an accident. This technique involves being aware of your surroundings at all times so you can prepare for the unexpected. Defensive drivers don’t just watch the road in front of them, they pay attention to what’s going on all around them, including what other drivers are doing.

Tips For Becoming A Defensive Driver

In order to become a defensive driver, all of your attention must be focused on driving, which means you need to put away anything that could be a distraction. Defensive drivers do not eat, apply makeup, text, or adjust the radio while they are driving. This allows them to stay alert at all times while behind the wheel.

Defensive drivers also understand the importance of making themselves seen. Many drivers assume that if they can see another vehicle, that vehicle’s driver can see them as well. But, that’s not always the case. To make yourself more visible, make sure that you always drive with your lights on while it is raining or dark outside. Always use your turning signals when changing lanes so other drivers on the road know what you are doing. You should also try to avoid lingering in another driver’s blind spot. If you find yourself stuck in a blind spot, either speed up or slow down so you can make yourself visible to the other driver.

It may sound negative, but defensive drivers typically assume the worst in other drivers. This means they never assume that another driver will remember to use his turning signal, check his blind spot before changing lanes, or stop at a stop light. If you assume the worst in other drivers, you can prepare yourself for anything that comes your way.

For instance, let’s say you are approaching a four-way stop at the same time as another vehicle. You have the right-of-way, but don’t assume that the other driver knows this. To avoid an accident, pause for a moment to make sure that the other driver does not plan on going through the intersection first.

Being a defensive driver doesn’t mean that you will never get into a car accident, but it will help you do a better job of protecting yourself on the road.

If you are injured in a car accident caused by a negligent driver, speak to a personal injury attorney at Reisch Law Firm today. We will stop at nothing to help you recover the compensation that you deserve for your injuries. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.

Common Sentencing Alternatives: Fines, Probation, Community Service

Common Sentencing Alternatives: Fines, Probation, Community Service

Defendants don’t always have to spend time behind bars if they are convicted of a crime. There are many sentencing alternatives, including fines, probation, and community service, that you may face after a conviction. Here’s everything that you need to know:

Fines

Some defendants will be ordered to pay a substantial fine as part of their punishment for committing a crime. The amount that you will have to pay will vary depending on the nature of the crime. Serious crimes could carry fines of thousands of dollars, while other minor crimes will cost you hundreds of dollars. For instance, the possession of 1-2 oz. of marijuana carries a $100 fine.

Defendants may have to pay restitution if the crime they committed caused someone financial harm. For instance, people who are convicted of theft may have to reimburse the victim for the property that was stolen.

Probation

You can also be sentenced to probation instead of jail time after a conviction. Defendants that are on probation are allowed to re-enter the community, but they must comply with certain terms established by the judge. For instance, those who are on probation must meet with a probation officer, submit to random drug testing, and obey the law. Some people must also maintain employment or stay in school throughout their probation. If you fail to comply with any of the terms of probation, the judge has the power to revoke your probation and send you to jail.

Probation is typically only given to defendants that do not have a prior criminal record. Defendants will not be given probation if they are considered a risk to the community, meaning the judge thinks that they will get into more trouble or physically harm someone.

Community Service

Another sentencing alternative is community service, which is unpaid work. The judge will specify how many hours of community service need to be completed and when they need to be completed by. Defendants that do not complete their community service hours or do not meet the deadlines set by the judge will face additional penalties.

Community service is often imposed along with other sentencing alternatives, meaning defendants are often sentenced to complete community service and probation or complete community service and pay fines.

Have you been charged with a crime? Contact Reisch Law Firm today to speak with a criminal defense attorney about your case. Our experienced attorneys will fight tirelessly to reach the best possible outcome in your case. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.

When Should You Accept A Plea Deal?

When Should You Accept A Plea Deal?

A plea bargain is a deal made between the prosecutor and defendant where the defendant agrees to plead guilty in exchange for reduced charges or a lighter sentence. Plea deals are fairly common—in fact, it’s estimated that over 90% of criminal cases are settled this way—but, they’re not the best option in every case. When should you accept a plea deal? Here are a few questions to ask yourself before you say “yes”:

Is it really a bargain?

Your attorney will be responsible for negotiating the terms of the plea deal with the prosecutor. Before you accept a deal, it’s important to think about what you are getting out of it. Both sides must be willing to compromise something in order for it to truly be a bargain. Therefore, plea bargains are usually somewhere in the middle between what the prosecutor wants and what the defendant wants. If the terms of the deal seem to be one-sided, it’s not really a bargain and it shouldn’t be accepted.

Do I understand the consequences of pleading guilty?

Every defendant needs to understand what it means to plead guilty as part of a plea bargain. Many defendants think that they can avoid some of the consequences of having a conviction on their record by pleading guilty, but that’s not the case. If you decide to plead guilty as part of a plea bargain, it will show up as a criminal conviction on your record. This means you will face the same challenges as defendants who are found guilty by a jury. Think about how a conviction will affect your future before accepting a plea deal.

What does my attorney think?

Defendants should always speak with an attorney before accepting a plea deal. An attorney will be able to review the details of your case to determine if a plea deal is in your best interest. If your attorney believes that the state has a strong case against you, he may recommend accepting the plea deal instead of risking it by going to trial. However, if he believes that a jury will not find you guilty, then he may suggest going to trial instead of giving in and taking the deal.

If you have been charged with a crime, it’s in your best interest to get in touch with a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. The criminal defense attorneys at Reisch Law Firm will guide you through the legal process and ensure that you are making the best decisions for your future. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.

The Dangers of Unsecured Cargo

The Dangers of Unsecured Cargo

Any cargo that is loaded into a commercial truck must be properly secured before the driver hits the road. During the trip, the truck driver is responsible for checking on the cargo to ensure that it is still securely in place. Why? If the cargo becomes loose, it could cause serious injuries or even fatalities. As a driver, it’s important to understand the dangers of unsecured cargo so you protect yourself as much as possible.

Unsecured cargo is dangerous for several reasons. The first is that loose cargo can easily fly off of the truck and collide with another vehicle on the road. If it hits a windshield, it may be traveling fast enough to crash through the windshield and injure the driver. If it hits another part of the vehicle, it would still cause damage and distract the driver, which could lead to her losing control of the car.

Even if the cargo does not hit a vehicle as it’s flying off of the truck, it will still land in the road. Other drivers will have to quickly swerve out of the way in order to avoid colliding with the cargo, so this puts everyone in danger. Motorcyclists must be especially careful since hitting a piece of cargo on the road could be enough to throw them off of their bikes.

Unsecured cargo can still be dangerous even if it never leaves the truck. Whoever loads the cargo into the back of the truck must ensure that the weight is evenly distributed. If it’s not, the truck will be incredibly difficult to steer. Cargo that is not secured properly will shift from one side to the other as the truck is in motion, thus throwing off the weight distribution. This means one side of the truck will be heavier than the other, which could lead to the truck turning on its side the next time the driver tries to change lanes or turn.

Who is liable if you are injured by unsecured cargo? It depends. You will need to work with a personal injury attorney who knows how to investigate these cases to determine who was responsible for loading the cargo in the truck. The truck driver may also be to blame if he failed to check the cargo to make sure it was secure.

Have you been injured in a truck accident? If so, get in touch with the personal injury attorneys at Reisch Law Firm today. Our team will immediately launch an investigation to determine if unsecured cargo played a role in the accident. Schedule a free consultation by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.

Open vs. Closed Traumatic Brain Injuries

Open vs. Closed Traumatic Brain Injuries

There are two different categories of traumatic brain injuries (TBIs): open and closed. Both of these injuries can be devastating, and many are severe enough to affect the victim for the rest of his life. But, what’s the difference between the two? Here’s a look at open vs. closed TBIs:

Open TBIs

An open TBI is characterized by a broken, penetrated, or fractured skill. This type of injury usually occurs when a foreign object enters the brain by penetrating the skull, but that’s not the only way a victim can sustain an open TBI. In some cases, blunt force trauma can crack the skull, causing a piece of the bone to enter the brain.

Open TBIs are incredibly serious and often result in instant death. This is especially true in cases where the foreign object that penetrates the skull is traveling at a high speed. For instance, a bullet traveling through the brain at a high speed is almost always fatal. Even if the victim does survive, he will experience various symptoms for the rest of his life. Some victims will lose all brain function after an open TBI, which means they will remain in a permanent vegetative state.

Closed TBIs

Closed TBIs are often sustained in car accidents when the victim hits his head against the windshield, steering wheel, dashboard, or window of the vehicle. The skull remains intact in a closed TBI, but this does not mean that the injury should be taken lightly.

The severity of the injury will vary depending on the extent of the brain damage. In minor cases, the victim will experience headaches, nausea, confusion, and dizziness. One of the mildest types of closed brain injuries is a concussion, which is often sustained in car accidents or while playing sports.

In more severe cases, the victim will lose consciousness for hours or even days. When the victim takes a strong blow to the head, the brain will start to swell and press against the skull. This can cause immediate brain damage that cannot be reversed. Some victims will sustain such widespread brain damage that they will never regain consciousness after the injury.

Even though open and closed TBIs are two different types of injuries, they do share many similarities. Every type of brain injury is considered to be extremely serious. That’s why TBI victims must get in touch with a personal injury attorney if they have been injured in an accident caused by another person’s negligence.

Have you suffered a traumatic brain injury? If another person was to blame, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Contact Reisch Law Firm today so our personal injury attorneys can explain your legal options. Schedule a free consultation by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.