Do I Need a Lawyer After a Car Accident in Southfield, MI?
In 2021, there were 282,640 traffic accidents in Michigan, of which 229,906 resulted in property damage alone. In these cases, those involved could likely sort out payment for damage to their vehicles and other property through their insurance companies. However, accidents resulting in injuries or fatalities are often more complex, and insurance companies are less likely to want to pay for the damages. Furthermore, the damages may exceed policy limits.
If you sustained injuries or lost a loved one in a traffic accident in Southfield, MI, you may benefit from obtaining the services of a Mike Morse Law Firm car accident lawyer. We offer a free case review, assessing your case and informing you of your options. You determine how you wish to proceed. An attorney may be able to help, whether you are dealing with insurance companies or filing a legal claim.
Why You Need a Lawyer To Deal With the Insurance Companies
As a Michigan resident, you must carry minimum insurance coverage for any vehicle you own and operate. State law requires you to have personal injury protection to cover you when you get hurt in a car accident. Your benefits are not dependent on fault.
Your insurance company is supposed to pay for all medically necessary treatments, procedures and equipment. There is no maximum limit, which means that if your injuries require life-long treatment, you shouldn’t ever have to pay for it. Your insurance also pays a percentage of your wages (up to a maximum monthly amount) for up to three years. You may also be eligible to receive up to $20 daily in replacement services if you can’t perform the household duties you took care of before the accident.
However, if you’ve ever had to deal with an insurance company before, you will probably not be surprised to learn that receiving the benefits of a policy you pay for is not usually an easy process. The insurance companies are reluctant to part with their money, even though you pay a yearly premium for this legally mandated service. Their representatives are skilled at finding ways to reduce or deny claims, including asking customers leading questions to get them to say something that the insurer can use against them.
How Does a Lawyer Help?
A Mike Morse Law Firm attorney can deal with the insurance company, so you don’t have to. We know how they operate, and we also understand what their legal obligations are. Our attorneys can protect your rights and ensure you don’t walk into a verbal or written trap during communications with the insurance representatives.
We help you gather the information you need to complete an accurate insurance claim that accounts for all your expenses, including any likely to occur in the future. We’ll handle all the communications with the insurance company.
Our firm also holds the insurance company accountable for your due benefits. You may receive a settlement offer before you can understand the full extent of your injuries. It may seem appealing, but their initial offers are rarely enough to cover the damages. We can negotiate a fair settlement, and if they’re unwilling to pay you what you deserve, we can pursue a legal claim on your behalf if you wish to go that route.
Why You Need a Lawyer To Pursue a Legal Car Accident Claim
We understand that deciding to sue after a car accident is difficult. However, sometimes it’s the only way to receive the compensation you deserve. You may need to sue the insurance company if it doesn’t pay out the benefits you have a right to receive under Michigan’s no-fault auto insurance laws. Additionally, if another driver’s negligence caused the accident that resulted in your injuries, you may be able to file a lawsuit to collect non-economic damages.
When Can You File a Lawsuit for Non-Economic Damages?
If you sustained serious injuries in a car accident, and another driver’s actions or inactions contributed to the accident, you may have a basis for a legal claim. Michigan law stipulates that the no-fault accident insurance requirements do not bar car accident victims from pursuing compensation for non-economic damages using the legal system. However, to do so, you must meet the following stipulations:
- Your injuries qualify as severe physical impairment of body function or serious permanent disfigurement.
- There is no factual dispute as to the nature or extent of your injuries.
- Your contribution to the accident does not surpass the 50% comparative negligence fault bar.
You also must ensure you file a lawsuit before the statute of limitations is up. The statute of limitations is a legally defined hard deadline for taking legal action. Michigan’s deadline for personal injury cases is three years.
What Is the 50% Comparative Negligence Fault Bar?
Often, more than one driver bears responsibility for a car crash. Michigan’s laws recognize that those pursuing lawsuits may have liability in the accident they are seeking compensation for. The state follows what’s known as a comparative negligence rule. When deciding the outcome of a case, the courts must consider the plaintiff’s role in the collision and adjust compensation accordingly.
If you are no more than half to blame, you can still receive compensation, but your percentage of fault will reduce your damage award. If you are 30% responsible, and the total award is $100,000, you receive $70,000. However, once you cross the 50% fault bar, you lose your right to receive compensation in a legal claim.
What Can a Southfield, MI, Lawyer Do for You in a Legal Claim?
Mike Morse Law Firm’s car accident lawyers help their clients navigate the legal process from the initial case review to the day they settle their claims. Our lawyers help you understand the laws and your options. They protect your rights and look out for your best interests. They also manage every aspect of your case, including the following:
- Gathering evidence to support your case
- Building a solid case using the evidence and supplemental testimonies and statements from relevant experts and professionals
- Calculate your economic and non-economic damages
- Complete and file your legal documents
- Communicate and negotiate with the defense
They understand the evidence needed to prove another driver’s negligence. Our attorneys also have the resources to build your case and pursue fair compensation for you. They have experience with car accident cases and understand defense lawyers’ tactics to paint a negative view of your role in the collision. They aren’t afraid to stand up to the other side’s unfair manipulations of the law.
Our lawyers won’t back down from obtaining a fair settlement. While most personal injury cases settle out of court, Mike Morse Law Firm attorneys won’t back down in the name of a quick end to your lawsuit. If the other side is unwilling to reach an agreement, we won’t hesitate to take your claim to the courtroom.
How To Get Started With an Experienced Southfield, MI, Car Accident Lawyer
We know how trying this time is for you. Our goal is to make your journey back to a full life as easy as possible. Mike Morse Law Firm’s car accident lawyers will walk you through every step of the process. While we handle the details, we ensure you remain informed throughout the process, whether dealing with the insurance companies or pursuing a legal claim. Contact us today to schedule a free case review.