Mark A. Simon - Past Case Summaries

On-the-Job Seizures and Filing Workers’ Compensation in Denver Claim


February 13, 2019

Seizures are terrifying. You can go from normal life to losing consciousness in a matter of a second. Imagine how dangerous they can be for those driving, operating machinery or more in the workplace. Then if you have a seizure, how will that change your work situation? It is essential to know your rights as an employee when it comes to on-the-job seizures and if you can file a workers’ compensation in Denver claim using a top attorney at law. 

Types of Seizures

Just because a person has a seizure does not mean they have epilepsy. What exactly is a seizure? They occur when there are changes in electrical activity in the brain. They can change a person’s quality of life and can be downright scary. There are four types of seizures a person can have: 

Generalized: A variety of seizures that occur on both sides of the brain, causing a loss of consciousness, jerking, reduction in muscle movement or drooping. 
Infantile Spasms: Occurring in babies up to a year old, these are spasms that only last a couple seconds in increments. During these seizures, a baby will have spasms in their limbs or rolling eyes. 
Partial or focal: Seizure that occurs on half of one side. A person can be aware or unconscious. 
Non-epileptic: Caused by stress, a person can experience a psychogenic seizure without having epilepsy. They mirror symptoms of a focal seizure. A person can also suffer a seizure due to withdrawals from alcohol or medications such as benzodiazepines (i.e., Xanax) or barbiturates.

Seizures in the Workplace

Those with seizures, whether they know they have a condition that causes them or not, can be serious and dangerous in the workplace. If a seizure hits while operating a vehicle or piece of machinery, it can be deadly to all parties involved. Or, those that work in isolated environments can have a seizure and no assistance. 

Employee Rights

Epilepsy is a disability, and those who suffer from it have protections from the Americans with Disabilities Act. This law means a person cannot be discriminated against because of their disability. Also, a person is granted accommodations, permissions and tools/resources needed to accomplish their job. If you have seizures, it is best to know your legal rights

Filing a Claim

Injured workers that get hurt on the job while with epilepsy or non-epileptic seizures may wonder how workers compensation comes into play. Can you file a claim? This is where your local attorney can help. They will review your situation with you and let you know if you have a case. A majority of the claims that are taken on by employees that had a seizure due to work activities. If it is a personal issue not relating to the job, you will most likely have to handle it on your own.  

If you are unsure if you are eligible for a claim, contact Mark A. Simon, the premier Denver workers’ compensation attorney. Mark will review your case and share your options with you. As your go-to attorney, the office will do all the work so that you can worry less. Schedule your free consultation at 303-321-4878.
 
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On-the-Job Seizures and Filing Workers’ Compensation in Denver Claim


February 13, 2019

Seizures are terrifying. You can go from normal life to losing consciousness in a matter of a second. Imagine how dangerous they can be for those driving, operating machinery or more in the workplace. Then if you have a seizure, how will that change your work situation? It is essential to know your rights as an employee when it comes to on-the-job seizures and if you can file a workers’ compensation in Denver claim using a top attorney at law. 

Types of Seizures

Just because a person has a seizure does not mean they have epilepsy. What exactly is a seizure? They occur when there are changes in electrical activity in the brain. They can change a person’s quality of life and can be downright scary. There are four types of seizures a person can have: 

Generalized: A variety of seizures that occur on both sides of the brain, causing a loss of consciousness, jerking, reduction in muscle movement or drooping. 
Infantile Spasms: Occurring in babies up to a year old, these are spasms that only last a couple seconds in increments. During these seizures, a baby will have spasms in their limbs or rolling eyes. 
Partial or focal: Seizure that occurs on half of one side. A person can be aware or unconscious. 
Non-epileptic: Caused by stress, a person can experience a psychogenic seizure without having epilepsy. They mirror symptoms of a focal seizure. A person can also suffer a seizure due to withdrawals from alcohol or medications such as benzodiazepines (i.e., Xanax) or barbiturates.

Seizures in the Workplace

Those with seizures, whether they know they have a condition that causes them or not, can be serious and dangerous in the workplace. If a seizure hits while operating a vehicle or piece of machinery, it can be deadly to all parties involved. Or, those that work in isolated environments can have a seizure and no assistance. 

Employee Rights

Epilepsy is a disability, and those who suffer from it have protections from the Americans with Disabilities Act. This law means a person cannot be discriminated against because of their disability. Also, a person is granted accommodations, permissions and tools/resources needed to accomplish their job. If you have seizures, it is best to know your legal rights

Filing a Claim

Injured workers that get hurt on the job while with epilepsy or non-epileptic seizures may wonder how workers compensation comes into play. Can you file a claim? This is where your local attorney can help. They will review your situation with you and let you know if you have a case. A majority of the claims that are taken on by employees that had a seizure due to work activities. If it is a personal issue not relating to the job, you will most likely have to handle it on your own.  

If you are unsure if you are eligible for a claim, contact Mark A. Simon, the premier Denver workers’ compensation attorney. Mark will review your case and share your options with you. As your go-to attorney, the office will do all the work so that you can worry less. Schedule your free consultation at 303-321-4878.
 
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Top Auto Accident in Denver Facts and Stats


February 6, 2019

With Colorado ranking near the top for fatal accidents, it is crucial for all drivers to do their part to keep the roads safe. The state, Denver in particular, is a busy place. With challenging roads and weather conditions throughout the year, all drivers to be more aware. Learn about the top car wreck statistics and ways to prevent an auto accident in Denver from your local attorney. 

Distracted Driving
Nearly 90 percent of Denver drivers admit having driven with distractions. While just over half note it was talking on a cell phone and a quarter texting, distracted driving is much more. In today’s society, many factors affect our day to day, which is important to remember for those on the road. In fact, adults from 21 to 40 are some of the largest culprits of distracted driving. 

Several more factors can keep your eyes and mind off the road. Common distractions include: 

Adjusting music, GPS, settings or other features in the car
Loud passengers
Stress and emotions
Eating or drinking
Pets
Fixing clothing or makeup
Texting
Taking calls 

Marijuana Use
In Colorado, those driving with five or more nanograms of THC in their system could be charged with a DUI (driving under the influence). With five years of legalization under its belt, Colorado has seen mixed stats on how it has impacted accident rates. The number of fatal accidents has risen approximately 10 percent over the last five years. However, in other studies, rates are decreasing. As the state learns more about how marijuana impairs drivers, it is best for all users to stay off the roads after smoking. 

DUIs and DWIs
Often confused for one another, DUI and DWI are different. 

DUI (Driving Under the Influence): A person in Colorado can be charged with a DUI when operating a motor vehicle after consuming drugs and/or alcohol. Those who receive a DUI in Colorado can have their license revoked for nine months, fines up to $1,000, serve 96 hours of community service and attend alcohol education courses. Those who have their license revoked can ask about an ignition interlock advice which allows a person with a DUI the opportunity to use the device before driving to ensure there is no drugs or alcohol in one’s system. This is something to discuss with a lawyer. 
DWI (Driving While Impaired): A lesser charge, those in Colorado can be charged with a DWI when driving under the influence of a substance—even if they are below the legal limit. On the first offense, a person with a DUI in Colorado can receive eight points on their license, up to 180 days in jail, fines up to $500 and even community service requirements up to 48 hours. For second and third offenses, penalties can be up to $1500, time in jail or prison is introduced, and community service is required.

While marijuana tickets and arrests may be lowering, those being charged with a DUI or DWI is on the rise in Colorado. This has unfortunately increased the number of fatal accidents in the state. 

Trucks and Semis
Interstate 70, commonly known as I-70, stretches from Maryland on the east coast all the way to Utah on the west coast. Denver is one of the many cities it runs through, making it a popular route for trucks and semi drivers. While the logistics industry is booming, higher demand also puts more strains on drivers. Many drivers get tired and fall asleep at the wheel, while others can become distracted. Also, drivers around semis do not always realize their driving habits could lead to accidents. Thousands are injured or killed each year, making it crucial to be mindful to avoid a personal injury in Denver by staying out of trucks’ blindspots.  

Motorcycles
Accidents involving a motorcycle are on the rise in Denver. Nearly 50 percent of those accidents include injuries due to not wearing a helmet or other protective gear. Another problem in Colorado is the number of motorcyclists without proper license to operate. As with semis, motorcycles and vehicles need to work together to protect each other on the road. In Colorado, cyclists must get the motorcycle approval for their license and take motorcycle training. 

Electric Scooters
In 2018, the city of Denver was introduced to one of the latest crazes in public transportation: dockless electric scooters. Scooters were brought in without any regulations in the town, there was a period when all was up in the air. According to e-scooter accidents, injuries on the rise across Denver, FOX 31 reports roughly 20 injuries per week, from fractures to road rash, due to accidents involving scooters. Some riders don’t follow basic rules while others do not wear the recommended helmet. 

Since launching in Spring 2018, laws have been implemented and enforced to reduce injuries, including mandatory use in bike lanes if lanes are available. Electric scooter riders can use sidewalks on streets that do not have a bike lane and must go six miles per hour or slower to avoid injuring pedestrians. For riders sharing the road with vehicles, they must stay as far to the right as possible and obey all other traffic laws as if they were in a car or truck. For downtown Denver, scooters are not permitted in any way on the 16th Street Mall. For those looking to ride with a friend, that is also banned. Only one person is allowed on scooters. In addition, companies that provide scooters must have proper lights and reflectors for safety. 

When it comes to representation due to a car accident, Mark A. Simon attorney at law will help you with your case. With more than 20 years of experience in the field, this premier team will work hard to ensure you get the justice and service you deserve. From motorcycle incidents and trucking accidents to wrongful death and drunk driving, the Mark A. Simon law office is your go-to to handle your case. Delivering you the quality service you need, schedule your consultation at 303-321-HURT to get started. 
 
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Lazar v. Riggs, 79 P.3d 106, (Colo. 2003)

Colorado Supreme Court

Mr. Simon has practiced personal injury law in the highest State Court possible, the Colorado Supreme Court. Not only did Mr. Simon practice and win at the Colorado Supreme Court level, he also set extremely important precedent in the scope of disclosure requirements for insurance companies. Mr. Simon completed these achievements not for personal recognition, but because they were the only way to ensure that his client, Ms. Judy Lazar, received the compensation that she deserved.

Ms. Lazar’s injury resulted from an automobile accident caused by Patrick Riggs, for failure to exercise reasonable care. Mr. Riggs was further cited at the accident for driving under the influence of alcohol, driving with excessive alcohol content, and careless driving.

After Ms. Lazar brought suit nine months later, Mr. Riggs admitted during his discovery the existence of a recorded statement in the possession of his insurance company. However, Mr. Riggs objected and refused to produce the document through a claim of protection of the document as work produced in anticipation of litigation. Without specified reasoning, hearings, or findings of fact, the District Court denied Mr. Simon’s motion to obtain the document and held that the written statement was in anticipation of litigation (even though it was taken roughly nine months before the suit commenced). 

Mr. Simon, concerned with the injustice of the district court decision and current controlling law, petitioned for a review of the district court’s interlocutory decision to refuse to compel the disclosure of the statement. The Supreme Court of Colorado (the Court) granted review.

The Court reviewed the standards of Rule 26 which differentiates materials prepared in anticipation for litigation, which are not required to be disclosed, from materials prepared in the course of ordinary business, which must be disclosed. The Court further explained that a substantial part of an insurance companies business is to investigate accidents, it is presumed that the investigations are done in the course of ordinary business, and not in anticipation for litigation. Therefore, the Court opined that insurance companies hold the burden of demonstrating that the document was prepared to defend the specific claim which has already arisen.

After a discussion of other relevant legal standards of insurance companies, such as their duty to investigate and defend claims under their own policy and the potential to third party claims, the Court decided Ms. Lazar’s case. The Court concluded that the statement taken by the insurance company was taken well before the lawsuit initiated, so it was not possible that it had been produced in anticipation for litigation. The Court remanded the case to district court with instructions to disclose Mr. Riggs statement.

This case is a clear illustration of the experience and will of Mr. Simon to serve his clients. The District Court ruling in Ms. Lazar’s situation was unjust, so Mr. Simon took the problem to court with a power great enough to change the unjust ruling.    
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Ortega v. Indust. Claim Appeals Office, 207 P.3d 895, (Colo. App. 2009)

Court of Appeals of Colorado

Mr. Simon is always willing to go the extra mile to fight for the rights and compensation his clients deserve. This tenacity was on display when Mr. Robert Ortega hired Mr. Simon. 

At an administrative hearing before an administrative law judge (ALJ), Mr. Simon moved for a continuance so that an essential physician report that obtained a week before the hearing could be timely entered. The administrative law judge, strictly and unnecessarily, denied Mr. Simon’s continuance on the ground that C.R.S. 8-43-210 required reports to be submitted twenty days before the administrative hearing to be timely. The ALJ then went on to deny the entrance of the physician report at the hearing, and ultimately denied benefits for Mr. Ortega.

Mr. Simon appealed the decision to the Industrial Claim Appeals Office (the Panel) to explain that the physician report was not in his possession before the deadline, and so could not have been admitted. Further, Mr. Simon asserted that the ALJ abused its power in denying the continuance and violated Mr. Ortega’s due process rights by excluding the physician report. The Panel affirmed the decision of the ALJ.

Unfazed, Mr. Simon appealed the decision of the Panel to the Court of Appeals of Colorado. The Court of Appeals found that the ALJ’s strict interpretation of the twenty day rule was unwarranted. However, the Court of Appeals ruling that the ALJ’s denials of the continuance and physician report were not abuses of discretion, and the denial of Mr. Ortega’s benefits were upheld. Incredibly, even though a vital piece of evidence was denied entry into the administrative hearing and its denial was ruled by the Court of Appeals as unwarranted, the Court of Appeals found that the ALJ’s decision did not violate Mr. Ortega’s due process rights.

Though the case did not turn in the client’s favor, Mr. Simon took every step within his reach to fight for Mr. Ortega’s worker compensation benefits. Due to the determination to continue to appeal the unfair decisions directed to Mr. Ortega, Mr. Simon set a new standard for a more relaxed twenty day admission rule, which continues to benefit workers compensation beneficiaries today.
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