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Car accidents are much too common on the roads today, and more and more of these accidents are being caused by one driver being affected by marijuana. If you have been involved in a car accident with another driver who had been smoking or otherwise ingesting marijuana, you may be wondering what options are available to you. If this is the case, you should consider contacting an attorney who can explain to you the options you have and possible outcomes of your specific case. These situations can be overwhelming and stressful, but an experienced car accident attorney may be able help.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident by a driver smoking marijuana, call Zinda Law Group at (800) 863-5312 for a 100% free case evaluation with our Denver car accident attorneys.
Marijuana Laws in Denver
The commercial sale of marijuana began all across the state of Colorado on January 1, 2014. Currently, adults aged 21 or older are legally allowed to possess 1 ounce of marijuana in Colorado. However, they cannot consume of marijuana “openly and publicly.” This is similar to open container laws for drinking alcohol in public.
When trying to understand the marijuana driving laws in Denver, it is important to be aware of DUI (Driving Under the Influence) laws and DWAI (Driving While Ability Impaired) laws. Driving under the influence means the driver is substantially incapable, either mentally or physically, of safely operating a vehicle. In Colorado, a DUI charge is strengthened if there is a showing of 5 nanograms or more of THC per milliliter of blood. Alternatively, driving while ability impaired means driving a vehicle when impaired in “the slightest degree.” This is a much lower standard than that of a DUI.
Dangerous Effects of Marijuana
Marijuana can affect a driver’s ability to react and make decisions. Marijuana can also impair a driver’s coordination and judgment and warp their perception, specifically as it may relate to time and distance. The effect is usually amplified when THC is found at higher levels.
Studies have also shown that driving after smoking marijuana has become more and more common with its legalization. Some people may believe that they have a higher tolerance for marijuana or that marijuana may strengthen their ability to drive a vehicle. However, this is usually not the case and the smartest choice is to never get behind the wheel of a vehicle after smoking or otherwise ingesting marijuana.
What to Do When Hit by a High Driver
Being involved in a car accident can truly be a terrifying and stressful situation. This may only be amplified if it is discovered that the other driver was high at the time of the accident. If you have been involved in a car accident with a driver that was high there are some important steps you should certainly consider taking. Below are just a few steps that may benefit you when it comes time to decide whether or not you want to seek compensation for any injuries or damage you sustained as a result of the accident.
1. Seek Medical Attention
If you are hit by a high driver, your primary concern should be your own health and well-being as well as the health and well-being of anyone else involved in the accident. No matter how minor your injuries may appear at the time, seeking medical attention is always a smart choice. It is possible that you may not be able to correctly determine how the accident has affected you, while an experienced medical professional may be better suited to assess your injuries.
2. Call the Police
Once all necessary medical attention has been received, your next step should be calling the police. When the police arrive on the scene it is common for them to prepare a police report of the accident. This police report may prove to be crucial further down the line when considering whether or not you want to seek compensation.
3. Take Pictures
Whenever you are involved in a car accident, pictures may prove to be your strongest pieces of evidence. When considering this, you should take pictures of any damage your vehicle sustained, the scene itself, and any injuries caused by the accident. If you choose to seek damages, the pictures you take at the scene can strengthen a claim.
4. Exchange Information
Another common step when involved in a car accident is exchanging information with all parties involved. This means you should obtain the name, address, and other contact information of all parties involved in the accident, whether it be drivers or passengers. You should also obtain any insurance information relating to the vehicles involved in the accident itself. You should also speak to any witnesses at the scene and obtain their contact information as they may have information that is important to consider when filing a claim.
4. Contact an Attorney
Car accidents can be terrifying and stressful experiences that may leave you confused as to how to handle them. However, by contacting an experienced car accident attorney you may be able to alleviate some of that stress. An experienced car accident attorney can guide you through the process and explain to you the options that you have. They may also be able to explain to you your likelihood of success and estimates on the compensation you may be able to seek. If you ever find yourself to be confused or overwhelmed, consulting an experienced car accident attorney is always a smart choice.
Filing a Car Accident Claim
If you or a loved one is involved in a car accident, it is important to know the necessary steps to take to file a car accident claim. Below are some important steps you should consider taking.
1. Contact Your Insurance Company
If you or a loved one has been involved in a car accident you should contact your insurance company as soon as possible. From there you can ask your insurance company how to proceed and what information they may require. Be sure to keep a record of any conversation you have with your insurance company and be sure to have all relevant information readily available during your conversations.
2. Keep a Record
Keep a detailed record of any expenses incurred as a result of the accident. This means you should keep any repair receipts for your vehicle or any medical or hospital expenses. If you have to take time off work, you should also make a record of that as well.
3. Consult an Attorney
Dealing with insurance companies can be truly confusing at times. However, by consulting an experienced attorney this confusion can be easily handled. Experienced attorneys who know how to deal with insurance companies can be prepared for what to expect. Don’t let yourself be taken advantage of. Contact an experienced car accident attorney to level the playing field.
Statute of Limitations
When it comes time to decide whether or not you want to seek compensation through legal means, it is important to be aware of the legal time limits that apply to your case. Every state has a different law that governs the legal time limits of different cases and Colorado is no different. These legal time limits are ruled by Colorado’s statute of limitations.
For car accident lawsuits in Colorado, the standard statute of limitations is 3 years. It is important to be aware that this is a longer time limit than that of other personal injury cases where the usual time limit is only 2 years. These time limits are very important to remember is failing to file your lawsuit within them may bar your case from ever being heard.
If you find yourself to be confused as to how the statute of limitations applies to the specific facts of your case, you may want to consider contacting an experienced car accident attorney. An experienced car accident attorney can explain to you how the time limit applies to you. This is not something you want to forget, and an experienced attorney can help.
Seeking Compensation from a Drugged Driver
When it comes time to determine what compensation may be available to you, the laws of Colorado may prove to be rather confusing. Compensation may be available as economic damages, non-economic damages, and punitive damages. If at any point you feel overwhelmed or confused as to what compensation may be available to you, you shouldn’t hesitate in contacting an experienced car accident attorney as soon as possible.
Common areas of damages that you can seek recovery for in car accident claims include:
• Pain and suffering
• Medical expenses
• Lost wages
• Rental car expenses
• Repair expenses
OUR DENVER CAR ACCIDENT LAWYERS CAN HELP
Unfortunately, accidents occur every day due to impaired drivers' negligence. Thankfully, Zinda Law Group is here to help. Our experienced attorneys can negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf and take the proper steps to seek the best possible outcome for your case.
If you were the victim of an impaired driver, call Zinda Law Group today at (888) 659-9392 for a free consultation with an impaired driving attorney. You will pay nothing unless we reach a favorable result in your case.
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