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Campbell County personal injury attorney motorcycle accident

In Tennessee, motorcycle crashes rank Campbell County close to the upper half relative to other counties in terms of high frequency. In addition, the state of Tennessee alone has seen spikes in motorcycle accidents and related personal injuries over the last few decades. Many people are aware of the risks involved with riding motorcycles, but there are some important safety laws and other tips that you might want to consider before hopping on that bike this spring.

How to Stay Safe on Your Motorcycle This Spring in Tennessee

With the pandemic figures getting better and improved weather conditions on the way, you might be tempted to ride your motorcycle more. This is a great choice, but you need to be a defensive motorcyclist and stay safe out there by doing the following things in order to avoid major accidents:

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Campbell County criminal defense attorney

It is true that misdemeanors are not as serious, carrying with them less severe penalties, than felonies. With such a major difference between these two types of general criminal classifications, it might be worth considering the differences between misdemeanor court and felony court in Tennessee. While these two courts serve slightly different purposes, the overall courtroom experience for both is entirely different in terms of procedures, as evidenced by their respective definitions and processes. 

Misdemeanor Court, Explained

Misdemeanor court is also referred to as general sessions court. During these proceedings, you as the alleged perpetrator of the crime are given the following choices in court:

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Campbell County criminal defense attorney DUI

If you are ever arrested for driving under the influence (DUI), you need to realize that in Tennessee, a DUI is a very serious criminal offense and not just a minor traffic violation. If you do not realize this, you are not alone—nearly half of Americans across the nation do not consider DUI or DWI charges a criminal charge with criminal consequences under most circumstances. 

This could be for many reasons, one of which is the fact that every state has its own laws about drunk driving—Wisconsin for one has first-time DUI offenses punishable as traffic violations while subsequent DUI charges are considered criminal. In New Jersey, all DUIs are treated as traffic offenses. Even in New York, the law is a bit more lenient with regards to what is considered criminal concerning DUIs--first-offense DUI and second-offense DUI charges are viewed as traffic infractions while third-time DUI introduces criminality into the charges.

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Campbell County personal injury attorney

No one ever wants to think about this happening: Your loved one gets involved in a car accident while driving. It was not your family member’s fault, and the resulting personal injury from the collision caused him or her to become incapacitated, at least temporarily. You may believe that your relative should seek compensation in a court of law, but how? A coma or other mental incapacity could prevent a personal injury case from being initiated. Worse yet, your loved one might eventually die, making you wonder if a wrongful death lawsuit would be necessary on the family’s behalf. Not many people anticipate such dreadful thoughts and scenarios nor do they prepare for them. However, there are some things you can do if faced with such a situation that can help you protect your relative’s rights and obtain a positive outcome.

What to Do Before Pursuing Compensation through a Personal Injury Claim

So you know that your family member’s incapacitating injuries are the other driver’s fault, and you and your attorney agree that a personal injury lawsuit would be very appropriate in such a situation. Do you even have the right to file on your loved one’s behalf? That depends. Before attempting to litigate anything, you should look at your family member’s will, if he or she has one. Here are some things to consider first:

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Campbell County criminal defense attorney DUI

As you may already know, in Tennessee, DUI is so serious that being convicted of it, even for the first time, can result in severe consequences, including jail time, fines, and revocation of your license. Indeed, not even a first-time DUI is considered a small offense in Tennessee. What is more, if you are pulled over for reasons other than drunk-driving and the officer discovers that you are also drunk, you could be faced with compounded charges in which you must defend against more than one offense. This is why probable cause can make or break a DUI case, and really, any criminal defense case for that matter.

What Is Probable Cause to Pull You Over in Tennessee?

Over the years, “probable cause” has become more loosely interpreted in the higher courts, both at the national and state levels. For instance, in Tennessee, pulling someone over even for the slightest presumption of guilt for breaking minor traffic laws is enough probable cause. After that, the police might perceive other things about your person or your property that leads them to suspect other more serious offenses. Like dominoes, the charges could pile up, and you might find yourself dealing with multiple charges, some of which could result from searches of your car or your property that you might have given consent for without even knowing it. 

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Campbell County personal injury attorney car accident

Chain-reaction accidents are usually caused by rear-end collisions. Tennessee has a history of some very serious chain-reaction crashes or pileups of multiple cars, often on the highway, that can lead to fires and even deaths. In fact, 15 people died in such a pileup on a Tennessee highway back in 1990. Last August, more than 30 cars were involved in three different chain-reaction accidents in one day, and just a few days ago, a rear-end collision in Tennessee led to a destructive fire that not only damaged cars and hurt drivers but also destroyed a building in the fire. As suggested, these multi-vehicle accidents are dangerous and consequential. Winter weather conditions, including fog, could lead to these types of crashes occurring even more often. That is why it is imperative to be aware as a motorist and the steps to take if you are involved in this type of crash.

4 Tips to Help You After a Chain-Reaction Accident in Tennessee

If you are involved in a chain-reaction accident, especially if you are injured or your car is damaged, consider the following tips to help you get through this traumatic experience:

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Campbell County criminal law attorney DUI

A first-time DUI (driving under the influence) is a very serious charge even though it is the first offense. Tennessee takes all DUI very seriously; therefore, even first-time DUI carries with it severe consequences, some on par with other similar charges of higher degrees. However, the judicial system can be somewhat forgiving, especially if you have a talented, knowledgeable, and experienced criminal defense lawyer by your side. First, you must realize the consequences, then you can consider what to do if charged so that this never happens again.

Consequences of First-Time DUI in Tennessee

While it might only be your first time receiving a DUI charge, if convicted, you could face relatively severe penalties, including the following punishments:

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Campbell County personal injury attorney car accident

Despite the pandemic putting many of the usual activities of life on pause for the greater part of 2020, the Tennessee legislature did manage to pass a few laws that take effect in January of 2021. One such law took root in House Bill 1593 and Senate Bill 2207. These bills were primarily meant to tax peer-to-peer car-sharing programs, in which a car owner lends his or her car to someone else who will borrow it to drive using the program for a fee. It is the gig economy’s version of a car rental company in much the same way Airbnb is the hotel or timeshare of its age in this “sharing economy.” But what happens if you suffer a personal injury from a car accident involving a driver who is borrowing an automobile through a peer-to-peer car-sharing program? The 2021 peer-to-peer car-sharing program law has a lot to say about the insurance process, but what if the auto insurance policy does not fairly compensate you for your injuries or damages?   

What to Do After a Peer-to-Peer Car Sharing Program Accident in Tennessee

Essentially, as a personal injury victim, you will want to handle a peer-to-peer ride-sharing accident in much the same way you would any other car accident:

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Campbell County personal injury attorney car accident

DUI charges during the winter holidays can be a frequent occurrence and accidents caused by drunk driving are also very common, but there are plenty of other reasons that drivers in Tennessee might be involved in car accidents this winter holiday season. Here is an overview of the data concerning the most common reasons for car accidents in Campbell County. Keep them in mind should you ever be involved in a car accident with personal injuries. Doing so will help you better understand whether you have a strong case, what type of compensation you might be entitled to, and how an experienced attorney can help you with your claim.

Frequent Reasons for Car Accidents in Tennessee

While driving drunk, texting while driving, driving recklessly or aggressively, and countless other reasons for car accidents are common across the nation, they are not nearly as common as the following categories are in Campbell County, TN, at least over the last decade. Each of these reasons for car accidents has resulted in hundreds of times more accidents than most other reasons:

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Campbell County criminal defense attorney DUI

The holidays are here, and even with the pandemic still surging throughout Tennessee and the country, for that matter, there is still an increased likelihood of drunk driving on the roads. This means that the police in Tennessee will be more vigilant about stopping drivers for a wide variety of traffic violations but, most importantly and notably, they are going to be especially focused on pulling people over for DUI. With that in mind, here is a refresher on some tips for what to do should you be pulled over this holiday for DUI to avoid any criminal charges. 

Your Actions During a Traffic Stop Matter

There are several things you could do if pulled over for DUI this holiday that are common sense, but there are other steps to take that you might not even think about doing. Whatever the case might be, here are some tips for what to do if you are pulled over for DUI this holiday:

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Campbell County personal injury attorney motorcycle accident

In Tennessee, in addition to truck accidents, motorcycle accidents often can lead to some of the more devastating personal injuries. This is because by their very nature, motorcycles, especially if not driven with an extra degree of caution, can be dangerous. From the lack of protection with an outer frame and airbags that vehicles offer to a lack of proper protective gear to other motorists on the road not knowing how to drive around motorcyclists, it is no wonder that around 80 percent of all motorcycle accidents end in serious or fatal injuries. Below are several of the most common (and most severe) types of injuries suffered in a motorcycle crash.

Catastrophic Injuries 

Taking a motorcycle out for a ride, especially on the highway, can be a risky endeavor. Never is this more true than if other drivers on the road are not being particularly careful or are driving recklessly. In addition, the importance of wearing a helmet cannot be overstated. The Association of the Advancement of Automotive Medicine estimates that between 10 and 20 percent of all motorcyclists are not wearing a helmet at the time of their crashes. Other data suggests up to 30 or 40 percent of crashes in recent years were the result of a helmet not being worn. Tennessee is one of many states that have laws requiring motorcycle riders and their passengers to wear helmets that meet federal and state safety standards.

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Campbell County DUI license reinstatement lawyerIf you have been convicted of a DUI in Tennessee, then you probably had your driver’s license revoked as a result. Of all the consequences and penalties of drunk driving with which you must cope—from treatment programs and community service to hefty fines and jail time—probably the most overlooked yet comparably difficult challenge to overcome is the loss of your license. After all, without that driver’s license, you will not be able to drive to work, the pharmacy, the grocery store, etc. This may leave you stranded, having to catch rides on someone else’s schedule. This is why getting your driver’s license reinstated is so important. Here are some facts about the driver’s license reinstatement process that you should know:

3 Facts About Driver’s License Reinstatement in Tennessee

While it might seem like an easy thing to do that just takes some paperwork, the truth is, driver’s license reinstatement is a complex and involved process, and it can be especially difficult if you are unfamiliar with the procedures. While it is true that the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security now offers e-services for license reinstatement, there are still many things that you probably will not be able to do effectively on your own without prior knowledge or assistance from a lawyer. What you should know about the process of license reinstatement is that:

  1. Driving is a privilege and not a right. This is true in Tennessee as it is everywhere else across the country. When you disobey the rules of the road, including getting behind the wheel while intoxicated, you are running the risk of having that privilege taken away, among other things.

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Campbell County personal injury attorney

Whether you have been in a vehicle collision, truck accident, motorcycle crash, or any other type of accident and sustained a personal injury as a result, you are probably going to want to seek compensation for your injuries and other damages in court, especially if the costs of medical bills and your own trauma are preventing you from moving forward with your life. However, before you proceed with hiring a personal injury attorney, you should know what to expect from them to ensure they are working in your best interests.   

What to Expect from Your Personal Injury Attorney 

From analyzing your case to determine compensation to filing paperwork and arguing your case in order to expedite its settlement, your personal injury attorney can do many important things for you to make sure everything goes smoothly and you obtain the best possible outcome. Here are a few examples of how your personal injury lawyer can assist you:

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Campbell County personal injury attorney car accident

As the technology for self-driving vehicles continues to improve and such vehicles become more common on the road, especially for commercial purposes, the likelihood of being involved in an accident with a self-driving vehicle increases. While the general argument for using self-driving vehicles is safety since the majority of vehicle accidents are caused by human error, there have been instances over the last five years when pedestrians and other drivers were either injured or killed by self-driving automobiles. Self-driving accidents might include car collisions and truck crashes, and more. Fortunately, Tennessee law has defined self-driving vehicles in order to assist with personal injury cases that result from such accidents.

Self-Driving Vehicles = Automated Driving System (ADS) in Tennessee

In Tennessee, self-driving vehicles are defined under the umbrella of “automated driving systems.” Automated driving systems (ADS) are vehicles with advanced technology installed that have the capability to take full or partial control of a vehicle without intervention or supervision from a human operator. In this sense, the driving of ADS vehicles can be completely automated (self-driving). 

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Campbell County criminal defense attorney DUI

In Tennessee, a first-time driving under the influence (DUI) offense may result in a wide variety of penalties. In other words, even if it is your first time getting charged or convicted with a DUI/DWI, you still will face some challenging and often relatively steep penalties. What is more, depending on the circumstances, the judge may get creative with the sentencing in hopes of reducing recidivism and discouraging you from subsequent DUI arrests. 

First-Offense DUI Punishments in Tennessee

You may already know this, but the penalties for DUI offenses in Tennessee are quite vast. Even the first-time DUI offense may carry with it all or any of the following punishments:

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Campbell County personal injury attorney motorcycle accident

In most personal injury cases, including car accidents, motorcycle accidents, and truck accidents, testimony might be provided by experts for both sides of the case. Professional experts are critical to just about any case, but they are especially important in accident-related cases because they can help provide context and clarify the circumstances of the crash. Combined with the guidance of a qualified personal injury attorney, they may increase your chances of receiving compensation for your pain and suffering as a victim of a collision. Below are a few examples of the types of experts you might encounter in such cases. 

Subject Matter Experts 

In addition to the police, the victim(s), specialists, and other professional experts can be called into personal injury accident cases to bolster an argument. These subject matter experts may include:

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Campbell County criminal defense attorney DUI

Whether it be for driving under the influence (DUI), boating under the influence (BUI), or any other criminal defense case, representing yourself is rarely, if ever, a good idea. The qualified guidance and representation of a professional DUI attorney is a much better idea here in Tennessee if you are looking for the least difficult legal process and the most advantageous outcome. Below are the reasons why it is a good idea to avoid representing yourself in a DUI case.

Why Representing Yourself in a DUI Case Is a Bad Idea

In general, representing your own defense in just about any criminal case is a bad idea, but it is an especially negative prospect in consideration of what is required with a DUI case. Here are five reasons you should not represent yourself when facing DUI charges in Tennessee:

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Campbell County personal injury attorney truck accident

While it is true that truck accidents are not the most common type of vehicular collision, truck crashes are often the most severe in terms of personal injuries sustained. In fact, trucks account for approximately 1 in 10 deaths on the highway. In certain cases, truck accidents can result in fatalities due to the force of the impact. This is why it is so important to be cautious, especially when driving around trucks. These are, after all, thousands of pounds of metal sometimes careening down the road at 70 miles per hour. Victims who suffer injuries or those who lost a loved one in a truck accident may be entitled to compensation if the crash was caused by a negligent truck driver.

9 Common and Serious Truck Accident Injuries

Before discussing specific injuries and other severe repercussions associated with truck accidents, it is worth noting that truck accidents are more likely to result in multiple different types of serious injuries than other types of collisions. The sheer size and velocity of these trucks relative to cars make even the slightest accident that more devastating. Among the most serious injuries sustained from truck accidents are:

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Campbell County criminal defense attorney BUI

While there are many similarities between the penalties for driving under the influence (DUI) and boating under the influence (BUI) according to Tennessee law. While many of these are nearly equal in degrees of severity depending on the offense, there are some minor, subtle differences between the ways that they are penalized. Depending on the details of your case, you might be able to be absolved of the charges or, at the least, receive the lesser of the penalties being considered for that offense. Here are a summary and a comparison of the penalties for DUI and BUI so that you know what to expect if you are charged with any of them in Tennessee.

Tennessee Punishments for DUI and BUI Offenses

Make no mistake: Tennessee authorities will charge you severely for any crimes committed due to drunkenness above the blood alcohol content (BAC) limit, especially when it involves the operation of any type of motorized vehicle. In the cases of driving trucks or cars versus steering boats, the dangers are no less serious. That is why the penalties are severe for both, but there are some minor differences:

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Campbell County criminal defense attorney DUI

Ridesharing with companies like Lyft and Uber have been known to curb cases of DUI in many locations across the states, which is great for those pub-crawlers and bar-hoppers (and, in many cases during these pandemic days, house party-goers as well) looking for an affordable way to get home after having one-too-many drinks, but what happens if your rideshare driver gets pulled over for drunk driving while you are in the car? Are you at all responsible if you do not report it as soon as you notice something amiss in your driver’s behavior and driving? What will the police do? Does this even happen that often? Here is the scoop on rideshare DUIs.

Zero Tolerance

First of all, you should know that both Lyft and Uber have “zero tolerance” policies for drunk driving, meaning they will take swift action against the driver in question. Unfortunately, unless the police actually pull over the driver for suspected drunk driving and charge that driver for it, many passengers can just accuse drivers of drunk driving to get a refund, triggering consequences including possibly innocent drivers losing their jobs with the rideshare company being prohibited from providing services temporarily.  

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