The state of Michigan has a no-fault insurance law. Here are your four legal options for obtaining compensation if you are involved in a car accident in the state of Michigan. Talk with a Michigan auto accident attorney to figure out what option is the best for you to pursue.
#1 No-Fault Benefits
As a no-fault insurance carrier, you are entitled to certain benefits under Michigan's No-Fault Insurance law. Your insurance provider is obligated to pay for your medical expenses and the fall-out from your injuries, regardless of whether the accident was your fault or was the fault of another driver. Your insurance provider has to pay for any at-home attendant care you need as well as any modifications you need to be done to your home or vehicle due to your injuries. You should also be compensated for any wages or income that you lost due to the accident; you are entitled to receive up to 85% of the pre-tax wages you would have been getting had you not been injured, and you can receive lost-wage benefits for up to three years following a debilitating auto accident.
Although your insurance provider is supposed to provide all of these benefits to you under Michigan's No-Fault insurance law, they will often try to fight and low-ball the coverage that they provide you with. If you are seriously injured in a car accident, it is a good idea to have an attorney negotiate with your insurance in order to ensure that you get the compensation that you deserve.
#2 Third Party Benefits
If you suffered serious injuries due to a car accident that impacted or changed the quality of your life, you may quality to sue the driver of the vehicle who caused the accident. When your injuries are significant, and you are able to prove that, the state of Michigan generally allows you to sue for non-economic losses. Non-economic losses generally include things such as pain and suffering. An experienced Michigan auto attorney would be able to tell you if your injuries and situation would allow you to pursue third-party benefits
The mini-tort law allows you to get back a small amount of money if your vehicle was damaged in the accident and some of the repairs, such as the deductible, were not covered by your insurance. Mini-tort claims are capped at $1,000 and can only be applied towards the cost of repairing a vehicle damaged in an accident.Generally, the amount that you'll get from pursuing a mini-tort accident is just enough to cover whatever your deductible was for getting your vehicle fixed up.
The other driver will be held responsible for your out-of-pocket expenses up to the percentage the court rules that they were responsible for the accident. For example, if you had to pay $500 in out-of-pocket expenses to repair your vehicle, and the other driver was ruled 75% responsible for the accident, they would have to pay $375 in damages.
An attorney can advise you if this is a good avenue for you to pursue.
#4 Wrongful Death
If one of your family members was killed in the accident, you may be able to file a wrongful death claim. This is a way to receive compensation for the financial losses that you suffered due to the passing of your loved one as well as compensation for your pain and suffering. You have three years from the date that your loved one was killed to file a wrongful death claim in the state of Michigan.
The laws of your specific location are going to influence the kind of compensation you can seek after a car accident, whether you're in Michigan or somewhere else. For the best results, you'll always want to hire an experienced personal injury attorney from a firm like J D'Agostino & Associates, P.C. who will be familiar with the laws that apply to your situation.