Auto Accidents in Detroit, Southfield and Westland Michigan
More claims are filed each year for auto accidents than any other type of personal injury. Over 6 million Americans are involved in car accidents every year, and every 14 seconds someone in the U.S. suffers an injury as a result of an auto accident.
If you are injured in an accident involving a motor vehicle, regardless of fault, you may have a legal right to be compensated for injury and damages.
In our opinion, insurance companies routinely attempt to pay as little as possible on an auto accident claim. We believe many insurance companies adhere to the decades old “deny, delay, don’t pay” method of handling No-Fault claims because it ultimately saves them money when claimants are frustrated and/or simply give up. We routinely turn this practice on its head by taking a proactive stance to the processing of a No-Fault claim and holding the insurance carrier accountable at every step of the claims process. Our attorneys at the Michigan Legal Team have years of experience dealing with insurance companies and our senior trial attorney worked as an attorney for insurance companies for years before coming to our firm. We customize our representation through knowledge of how particular insurance companies handle claims and our understanding of the complexities surrounding traffic laws and proving liability. A degree of finesse is required in knowing when to negotiate a settlement and when taking a case to trial will serve a client’s best interests. We also employ a network of professionals, including experts in accident reconstruction, private investigators, and other expert witnesses (such as physicians and other specialists) when needed to leverage a favorable outcome.
Michigan Auto Accident Preparation
An auto accident is a very serious and emotional experience. No one foresees being involved in a car accident yet there are millions of auto accidents in the United States each and every year. Even the most cautious drivers cannot avoid a car accident. It is important to remember that you have many legal rights and you should immediately contact an attorney at The Michigan Legal Team before you ever speak with the insurance company of the person at fault, or even your own insurance company. Of course, the last thing you should do is sign any paperwork before discussing the matter with an experienced attorney. Perhaps most importantly, there are certain time limitations in which an injured Michigan auto accident victim has to take action. Your legal rights and the rights of the injured person begin to run from the date of the accident thus work needs to be started right away. Please see our video page for explanation on what to do after an auto accident.
Guidelines to Help You in The Event of a Michigan Car Accident:
1. Be calm, relax, and never leave the scene of a car accident.
2. Call the police and if anyone is injured immediately ask that an ambulance be sent to the scene.
3. Immediately seek medical attention because sometimes even the most serious injuries are not readily apparent.
4. Obtain any witness accounts of the auto accident and get their names, telephone numbers and any important information that they may have.
5. Immediately notify your own insurance company that you were in an auto accident. We recommend that you allow us to do this for you as insurance companies often record these initial calls and use what you tell them against you later. Ask that you have a personal injury protection file opened and ask the insurance company for a claim number thus making sure that all of your legal rights are preserved.
6. If you are struck by an unidentified vehicle (or a hit and run vehicle) immediately make a police report and report it to your own insurance company. Be sure to not any information you can remember about the other vehicle.
7. There are very important time restraints in these types of cases (some as short as 30 days) and the sooner you act the more likely it is that you will preserve any claim that you might have.
8. Call the Michigan Legal Team, P.C. immediately. This is a complex area of the law and you need a team of attorneys on your side who will fight for you and protect you against anyone who does not have your best interests at heart.
Michigan No-Fault Basics
Imagine suddenly jumping into the shoes of someone else and being expected to perform their job as well as they do. Of course we all know that it would be impossible for you know the ins and outs of your job better than anyone. The same rules apply when dealing with the Michigan No-Fault Act. The statute itself is very complex and there are many, many pitfalls that one can run into if not completely and totally familiar with the nuances of this statute.
In Michigan with every automobile accident there are several potential claims that may accrue. However, the most common are:
· A First-Party (PIP) No-Fault claim
· A Third-Party (Tort/Negligence) No-Fault Claim
· Also, depending on your insurance coverage, you may have a claim for Uninsured or Under Insured motorist coverage.
Michigan PIP and/or First Party Benefits:
The Michigan No-Fault Act provides that benefits are payable anyone who suffers an injury arising out of the ownership, operation, maintenance or use of the motor vehicle as a motor vehicle (with some exceptions).
Outlined below are a few basic concepts for a First-Party (PIP) No-Fault Claim. However, in order for a more expansive and more detailed explanation please contact our office at (248) 353-3600. It is important to remember that there are several different potential insurers one can recover from in making a first party claim including but not limited to your own insurer, someone else’s insurer and/or the State of Michigan. The specific benefits that one may be entitled to under the Michigan No-Fault Act include the following:
Medical Bills for Life
Under our laws medical coverage continues for life as long as the injuries related to the accident be reasonable and actually incurred.
The Michigan No-Fault Act allows an individual who was working at the time of the accident or temporarily unemployed to obtain 85% of his or her lost wages and this benefit continues for three years from the date of loss and there is a set maximum amount that one can recover and this amount changes on a yearly basis.
The Michigan No-Fault Act requires no-fault insurance companies to provide and/or pay for nursing type care. This can include supervision and/or assistance from injuries even while one recovers in their own home.
The Michigan No-Fault Act provides for a three-year term of essential or replacement type services. These services are paid to help an individual that would have done such activities as cooking, cleaning, vacuuming, changing bed linens, laundry, etc. at a maximum rate of $20.00 per day.
Under the Michigan No-Fault Act when one is transported to or from medical appointments the Michigan No-Fault insurer must pay certain monies for mileage and/or provide transportation to the injured person.
For all of these benefits outlined above, serious and complicated issues can arise in each case. To make sure that each benefit is maximized completely and fully, it is important to speak with an attorney regarding all of the above immediately following an accident. Again, there is NO FEE for the initial consultation so do not hesitate to pick up the phone and call us.
Third Party Negligence Recovery
As indicated above, Third-Party (Tort/Negligence) No-Fault benefits are payable to someone for their pain and suffering. One can file a Third-Party claim against the driver who was negligent, however recovering in Michigan is extremely difficult. Therefore, it is important that you talk to our attorneys earlier rather than later. To briefly set out what is needed to obtain compensation against a negligent person one must meet the ‘‘Michigan No-Fault Threshold Injury.’’ This is defined as a serious impairment of an important body function, serious disfigurement or scarring, or death. Most often the insurance company who may defend the negligent driver may claim that the injury is not a ‘‘serious impairment of an important body function.’’ Of course this is why you will contact The Michigan Legal Team, P.C., and we will fight to make sure that the negligent person or their insurance company understand fully and completely that you have been seriously injured.
There are several time limitations (some as short as 30 days) that one must be made aware of as we often say at our firm, ‘‘It is better to seek legal advice too early rather than too late.’’
If you or someone you care deeply about has been injured in a serious truck wreck or car accident, it is important you seek legal advice immediately. Please call our office at (248) 353-3600 or contact a skilled auto accident lawyer at The Michigan Legal Team, P.C., to obtain more information.