We’re sorry to hear that you or a loved one has been in an auto accident. At Serling and Abramson, P.C. We want to make sure you understand your legal rights after an auto accident. Our firm is here to assist you every step of the way and ensure you receive all the benefits to which you are entitled.
In the unfortunate event of sustaining injuries in an auto accident, it is important that you seek legal help to obtain all the benefits and compensation available under the law. Insurance law in Michigan is a complex system. Without the guidance of an experienced lawyer, you could inadvertently miss out on No-Fault benefits after your accident.
Timing is important when it comes to Michigan law. Our state requires that any accident involving personal injury or loss of $1000 or greater due to vehicular damage must immediately be reported to the authorities. Most insurance companies will require you to give prompt written notice of the auto accident in order to seek out personal protection benefits. This often means doing it within a matter of days or weeks at most.
Beyond that, there is a strict three-year limit on suing for pain and suffering and medical benefits. If you do not pursue all of this in due time, you may actually forfeit your rights to compensation. The same goes for submitting and paying medical bills in a timely manner, typically within a year of receipt.
No Fault Insurance Law
Michigan’s No-Fault Insurance Law provides benefits to injured persons without regard to which party was at fault.
No-Fault benefits include payment for all reasonable charges for necessary products, services and accommodations for an injured person’s care, recovery or rehabilitation. These include hospital bills, doctor visits, medical tests, physical therapy, prescriptions, transportation, wheel chairs, home remodeling and home or residential care.
No-Fault insurance may be purchased for full medical coverage or for coordinated coverage, under which a party must first use health care insurance first and the No-Fault insurer will pay for what is not covered under that policy.
No-Fault benefits also include payments for wage loss up to three years from the date of the accident. Wage loss is payable up to 85% of a person’s lost income or $4,000 per month, whichever is less.
The No-Fault law also provides for payment of replacement services of up to $20 per day, for up to three years following the injury. These services include house cleaning, yard work, babysitting, transportation. Family members may provide these services and receive the statutory compensation.
The statute provides for PIP benefits (“personal injury protection”), as described above, and an injured party may sue the No-Fault carrier for payment of benefits which the insurer has either failed to pay stopped paying sooner than required by law. Lawsuits to collect these benefits must be filed no later than one following the date of the accident.
Lawsuits against the negligent driver must be brought within three years from the date of the accident.
A third-party lawsuit can only be brought for compensation where the accident resulted in death, permanent, serious disfigurement, the serious impairment of body function or long term income loss. Specific, objective evidence is required to demonstrate an injury that affects an important body part and affects normal daily living.
What to do After You Have Been Involved in an Accident
If you have been involved in a traffic accident, the first step is to ensure the safety of yourself and those around you. Assess the immediate damage done, and call 911. Even if you are uninjured, the authorities need to be present in order to make record of the accident. Ask the police officer who records the incident to let you know where you can obtain a copy of the records.
Exchange information with the driver of the other vehicle to enable swift insurance claims. Try not to discuss who may or may not be at fault in-depth - don’t let emotions get the better of you, just stay safe and civil.
You may also wish to take pictures of the scene of the accident and any damages that were done, as this can help enhance your case alongside the police records.
If there are any witnesses to the accident, ask them to provide their contact details as well. Witnesses can be hard to come by in traffic accident cases, but they are immensely helpful when it comes to determining fault and pursuing compensation.
Once any injuries have been addressed, contact your insurance company to begin the process of making claims. Remember, the sooner the better. Finally, contact a reputable car, truck or motorcycle accident attorney who can help you through this stressful time and ensure as favorable an outcome as possible.
Experienced Michigan Automobile Accident Lawyers
As experienced Michigan automobile accident lawyers, Serling & Abramson can protect your legal rights and assist you in navigating Michigan’s laws regarding automobile, truck, and motorcycle accidents.
The insurance industry’s data shows that individuals who are represented by an experienced lawyer recover significantly more compared to those who do not have a lawyer on their side. Serling & Abramson can ensure you that we will guide you to the economic compensation you deserve.
Serling & Abramson will guarantee you that there will be no fee unless you recover damages. Receive your free case evaluation today.