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Amid the rapid progression of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and the disruptions it has caused, HIP Law Firm is committed to continue providing the essential legal services necessary to protect the interests of our clients and community and will remain open for business. Please note, however, some staff will be working from home from time to time. Accordingly, there may be slight delays completing some projects and in responding to your communications, but we promise to be as diligent as ever in meeting your legal needs. Urgent in person appointments are available, however, non-essential client meetings will be conducted over the phone or via video conferencing. Client payments can be made on our website at
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King County Full Service Law Firm Blog

How to rebuild life following family law proceeding of divorce

The process of getting divorced in Washington is a lot like going on a wild roller coaster ride. Unfortunately, this type of family law proceeding can leave a person feeling helpless and as though his or her life is spinning out of control. However, a couple of tips may help a divorcing individual to more quickly rebuild his or her life following divorce.

First, people who are going through a divorce may feel large holes in their lives -- holes where their families, partnerships and marriages once were. During this time, it is wise for divorcing individuals to start mentally embracing the unexpected. Grief can show up in anticipated ways, and the more ready they are for this, the less likely they are to be dominated by their feelings.

DUI suspected in 2-vehicle crash causing fatal personal injury

Unfortunately, anyone's life can end in a split second, and sometimes all it takes is one person who has made inappropriate choices before driving or uses poor judgment while behind the wheel to cause a tragedy. When such an event happens, the person responsible may initially panic and try to escape from the horrific situation, and this is usually how hit-and-run accidents happen. In a recent example, a Washington resident suffered fatal personal injury when the vehicle in which he was riding was hit by another vehicle. The driver who appears to be responsible has been arrested for several criminal offenses.

The fatal accident happened on a Saturday evening on Old Highway 99 in Olympia. The Washington State Patrol said the victim's car was traveling north on the highway when the other vehicle, also northbound, crashed into it. Both occupants of the car that was hit suffered injuries. Sadly, the 54-year-old male passenger died at the crash site, while the 51-year-old woman driving the car was taken to a local hospital.

Family law: Protecting a business in the event of divorce

When a couple marries, neither spouse thinks divorce will ever happen to them. Unfortunately, many couples do find themselves dealing with the end of their relationship at some point and turn to a family law attorney to help them with the difficult process of untangling all aspects of their marriage. Divorcing Washington couples who own or co-own a business have even more to think about while they work through the divorce process. While divorce can negatively impact a business in many ways, married business owners can protect their business by understanding these impacts and preparing as much as possible.

Many divorcing business owners find their and their employees' day-to-day business operations are disrupted. They often must find time for court appearances, deal with correspondence with lawyers and business appraisers and comply with requests for documentation. Business owners may also need to consider how interest in the business will be divided in the event of divorce and the potential impact this division will have on partners and/or employees. Sometimes, divorcing business owners agree or are forced to dissolve the business, or the disruption to their business leads to bad press that damages their brand reputation.

Seattle bicyclist hit by car suffers serious personal injury

While cycling can be a great way to get outside and enjoy the summer, with the added benefit of providing some exercise, cyclists who share roads with motorized (and larger) vehicles, unfortunately, are putting themselves in a somewhat vulnerable position. Likely, some Washington residents have experienced feelings of trepidation while cycling on the side of a roadway while traffic whizzes by, sometimes only inches away. Unfortunately, a cyclist was seriously injured recently when a woman driving a car hit him. He may now have cause to pursue a personal injury lawsuit.

According to the Washington State Patrol, the incident happened early on a Tuesday afternoon when a bicyclist was traveling south on State Highway 525 north of Freeland, and a woman driving a car drifted onto the shoulder and struck the bicyclist. The bicycle and the vehicle ended up in a nearby ditch. The bicyclist, a 24-year-old man, was airlifted to a hospital in Everett. Reportedly, he had suffered a broken leg in the crash, and according to a hospital spokesperson, he was listed in critical condition. Police have said the driver who hit the bicycle, a 26-year-old woman, was taken to the same hospital after she complained of abdominal pain, but she was later released.

Driver struck in head-on crash suffers serious personal injury

Any person who holds a driver's licence knows that driving requires a person's full attention as well as quick reaction time should anything unexpected happen. A driver whose attention wanders, whose reflexes are not as sharp as they need to be and/or who makes an error in judgment can cause a great deal of damage. These types of dangerous situations may result from distractions such as cellphone use, unexpected health conditions or simply weak driving skills. Certainly, any one of these things may have caused a head-on crash that resulted in serious personal injury for a Washington woman.

The collision happened at approximately 5 p.m. on a recent Thursday in Rochester. According to the Thurston County Sheriff's Office, a pickup truck traveling northwest on Old Highway 9 crossed the center line and struck a southeast-bound minivan head-on. The crash sent the minivan into an embankment.

Driver hits jogger on sidewalk, causing fatal personal injury

Many Washington residents include jogging as part of their daily routine, as it provides exercise and contributes to a healthy lifestyle. While some people who participate in this type of activity take to off-road trails when doing so, many people jog near vehicle traffic, either on the sides of roads or on sidewalks. Unfortunately, when car accidents happen involving joggers and pedestrians, the outcome can be deadly. Such was the case recently in a Spokane incident that resulted in fatal personal injury for a high school teacher.

According to the Spokane Police Department, the 83-year-old woman was running her usual route on a recent Friday afternoon. She was traveling on a sidewalk, which, apparently, is approximately six inches higher than the road. For as yet unknown reasons, a man driving a vehicle drove onto the sidewalk and struck the jogger.

Cyclist hit by tow truck suffers serious personal injury

Many Washington residents enjoy cycling, especially during the warmer months. Some people use a bicycle as their primary mode of transportation, while others enjoy it as a leisure activity as it provides them exercise and a chance to see off-road sites they would not see while traveling in a car. Sometimes, however, cyclists travel on the same roadways as larger, motorized vehicles. Unfortunately, when collisions happen, most often, the person on the bicycle does not fare well. Such was the case when, recently, a bicyclist suffered serious personal injury when she was hit by a tow truck.

Reportedly, the 65-year-old woman was cycling on a roadway near Mead early one Friday morning. She was nearing an intersection when she was struck by the tow truck. Apparently, she was wearing a helmet. A Washington State Patrol spokesperson has said the victim suffered serious injuries and was transported via helicopter to a hospital in Spokane.

More seniors going through family law proceeding of divorce

The process of getting divorced can happen to adults of all ages in Washington. However, research shows that divorce is becoming even more prevalent among older couples versus younger people. Senior citizens are increasingly choosing to go to family law court to end their marriages for a couple of reasons.

For starters, people today are living much longer than they did decades ago. In addition, women in particular are earning the types of incomes that they typically did not earn for themselves decades ago. As a result, older individuals are looking to lead fuller and more liberating lives and are sometimes willing to end their marriages to make this happen.

Failure to stop at intersection causes fatal personal injury

Any Washington resident with a driver's licence knows that safe operation of a motor vehicle requires a driver to be fully focused on his or her surroundings at all times. Of course, car accidents can happen for a number of reasons, but they are often the result of a driver who has failed to fully concentrate on the task of driving. This may have been what happened recently when it appears a driver blew through a stop sign, resulting in fatal personal injury for another driver and seriously injuring himself.

The incident happened on a Thursday evening near Deer Park. No one witnessed the crash. However, according to the gathered evidence, a man traveling west in a pickup truck failed to stop at a stop sign. His vehicle collided with another vehicle traveling south through the intersection. Reportedly, both drivers suffered severe injuries from the crash, and passersby had already begun lifesaving efforts when responders arrived.

Family law: Protecting assets in the event of divorce

Most Washington couples in the process of dissolving their marriage, and people who have been through the divorce process, know that the division of assets often contributes to the stress felt at this time. It seems more and more married couples, particularly millennials, are choosing to keep their finances separate. However, according to divorce experts, married people who maintain separate accounts to avoid complications in the event of divorce are operating under a common misconception. A family law attorney can explain specific state laws, but essentially, people should never assume they will retain their own assets during divorce.

Couples who maintain separate bank accounts, perhaps along with a joint account for some expenses, may be making a solid practical decision, but the benefit of such a system is mostly psychological. From a legal standpoint, in a community property state, such as Washington, any asset -- with some exceptions -- acquired during the marriage is considered marital property, regardless of whose name is attached to it. However, those who have kept some separate resources may find it eases cash flow in the event of an acrimonious divorce, even if they do have to factor the funds into the settlement at some point.