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Denver Colorado Personal Injury Blog

Watch out for estate fights with stepmothers

It is not unusual for a parent in Colorado to remarry after the initial marriage ends. However, when parents remarry, it adds a new party to the list of beneficiaries. This may negatively affect surviving children in the event of their parents’ death. In fact, one attorney writing for Forbes noted that 50% of the cases of inheritance disputes at his firm involved stepmothers.  

Here are some of the many ways that the interests of stepmothers and stepchildren may collide:

  •          Joint-tenancy quarrels or deed revocations
  •          Claims of elderly financial abuse
  •          Life-estate challenges
  •          Probate objections
  •          Will contests

The new tax lay may burden families and retirees

Many people who filed their 2018 tax returns were surprised to receive a lower tax refund than they ever had before. Some people in Colorado may have even received a tax bill from the IRS. While many of the new tax law provisions benefit the wealthy and some benefit the general population, retirees and large families may get hit the hardest.

According to CNN, Colorado estimates that it will receive hundreds of millions of dollars in additional revenue due to the new tax laws until 2025. This is mostly as a result of the elimination of exemptions Colorado residents previously relied on, such as dependent and personal exemptions. Colorado has introduced some bills to offset the loss to families, but it will take some time to see if these laws pass and how they actually work in practice.

What does a medical directive cover?

No matter what age you are, it is important to think about your wishes related to health care and medical treatments. In Colorado, state law allows you to refuse or consent to medical treatments. However, some injuries and sicknesses may make it difficult or impossible for you to communicate your medical preferences to your doctor and/or family members. A medical directive gives your caregivers and medical staff clear directions relating to your care.

According to the Colorado Bar Association, there are several types of advance medical directives. A standard living will allows you to consent to or refuse certain life-sustaining procedures. Some common issues you may cover in a living will include artificial hydration and certain types of surgery. You may also outline your treatment preferences for situations where you are in a persistive vegetative state.

3 types of distractions that impair drivers

Distracted driving is a hot topic because more than 1,000 people are injured each day in this country due to a driver who isn't paying full attention to the road. This is one of the easiest things that drivers can prevent, thus making accidents all the more tragic when due to a driver's choice to splinter attention between the road and other things.

Many people don't realize exactly what happens when a driver is distracted. There are actually three types of distractions that they might encounter when behind the wheel. Each of these is dangerous in its own way.

How can cyclists stay safe on the road?

Cyclists in Denver face a myriad of risks when on the road. While they share the same rights and responsibilities as passenger vehicles, many motorists don't respect cyclists, which can lead to serious and devastating injuries. With May being National Bike Month, the National Safety Council explains what you can do to reduce your risk of injury on the road. 

One of the biggest risks facing cyclists is many drivers fail to recognize their presence. You can increase visibility by wearing the right gear, such as bright colors and reflective materials. This is especially important when riding at night. In this case, be sure your bike is also outfitted with reflectors as well as flashing lights to ensure you're visible as you ride. 

How revocable and irrevocable living trusts differ?

As you begin work on your estate plan, there are a variety of estate planning tools to consider using. One of those tools is a living trust, which is a type of trust you make during your lifetime to help manage your assets while you are alive and distribute your assets after your death.

Living trusts can be further divided into either revocable or irrevocable living trusts. However, people are often confused about the difference between the two. It can be helpful to understand the differences between revocable and irrevocable living trusts to make sure you choose the best type of trust for your situation and goals.

I can't pay my taxes, what now?

Even though tax season has already passed, many taxpayers still remain quite stressed about their financial situation. This is often the case when you owe taxes that you can't pay, which means you'll be faced with the prospect of costly penalties until your taxes are sufficiently paid off. H&R Block explains a few steps you can take if you're unable to remit the taxes you owe. 

First and foremost, never ignore your tax bill. This will only make the problem monumentally worse and will add on to the amount you owe the IRS. If your current financial situation is dire, you can apply for currently not collectible (CNC), which is an option for people facing financial hardships. In this case, the IRS would suspend taxes owed for a certain period until your financial situation improves. This entails a thorough review of your financial standing so that the IRS can determine whether you qualify for CNC status. Once you become financially stable, the IRS will expect you to begin remitting payment. 

After the accident: Written repair bills

Colorado government statistics show January is one of the most dangerous times to be on state roads.

The Colorado Department of Transportation reports that there were 50 traffic fatalities statewide in January 2018. The department further reports that with 3.8 million licensed drivers, one in every 33 Coloradans will be involved in an accident sometime during the year.

4 signs of distracted driving

When it comes to distracted driving, almost everyone is a culprit. You may not be guilty of this safety hazard on a day-to-day basis, but things happen. Often drivers participate in dangerous activities and don't even realize it. The first step to dealing with a problem is recognizing the signs and symptoms

Distracted driving puts everyone at risk

Many Colorado residents know that car accidents often happen when people try to multitask behind the wheel. Texting, eating and manually using a phone are all common causes of accidents. Reducing the number of distracted drivers on Colorado roads may significantly improve the safety of drivers, passengers, pedestrians and bicyclists throughout the state.

Although texting and driving is against Colorado state law, it is still a common problem. The Colorado General Assembly states that it is illegal for people under age 18 to use an electronic device for any purpose while driving. Adult drivers may not use their phones for manual data entry (such as texting and browsing the internet). In both cases, there may be exceptions for emergency calls, such as reporting an accident. Both minor and adult drivers may face fines or lose their licenses due to distracted driving.

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Clifford Lee Beem
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Best Attorneys of America - 2018 member
5280 magazine - Top Attorneys in colorado American board of trial advocates CTLA-colorado trial lawyers association CBA - colorado bar association The National Trial Lawyers

*AV Preeminent and BV Distinguished are certification marks of Reed Elsevier Properties Inc., used in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the confidential opinions of members of the Bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell ratings fall into two categories - legal ability and general ethical standards.

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