Unsafe Lane Changes Accident Lawyer

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Among the most common reasons why car and truck accidents happen is a lack of attention on the roads. Drivers can get too comfortable behind the wheel and think they do not have to use their blinkers or check blind spots before switching lanes. When this happens, the drivers of those vehicles can lose control, run off the road, and slam into guardrails or other cars. 

If you have been seriously hurt by a driver who made an unsafe lane change, contact Mike Morse Law Firm today. Our team of experienced personal injury attorneys can help you understand your rights regarding your injuries. We have been representing the people of Michigan and the entire nation for over 25 years and have helped them claim over $1 billion in money damages. You can reach us 24/7 at (855) MIKE-WINS for a free consultation on your case.

Michigan Lane-Change Laws

Section 257.642 of the Michigan Vehicle Code lists specific requirements on how to handle lane changes. These rules are for all vehicles when driving down a roadway divided into 2 or more clearly marked lanes. 

These regulations include:

  • Maintaining a single lane until you can determine it is fully safe to move
  • Staying in the right-hand lane except when it is necessary to pass another vehicle
  • Staying in that right lane unless traffic control devices direct otherwise
  • Obeying all traffic control devices
  • Reserving all HOV lanes for the periods of exclusive use marked by signs
  • Receiving a civil infraction for violating these laws

These rules make it expressly clear that switching lanes without first checking if it is safe to do so is against the law. Aggressive driving in this manner shows blatant disregard for other drivers and increases the chances of causing an accident.

Causes of Lane Change Accidents

Lane change accidents are among the most common types of accidents in the country. One study revealed that sudden lane changes caused 17 percent of severe collisions nationwide between 2010 and 2017. The main cause of these types of accidents is drivers who attempt to multitask while driving. They talk on the phone, change the radio stations, handle their children, or even eat a meal.

Drivers who are comfortable behind the wheel may believe they are in control when they are not. To be fully in control would be to avoid all distractions and focus on what is going on around you. 

The best way to prevent lane change accidents from happening is to understand what causes them in the first place, such as:

  • Failing to signal when making a lane change
  • Driving too fast for conditions
  • Being so distracted that you are forced to swerve to avoid an obstacle
  • Beginning your lane change before signaling
  • Making a lane change while driving over a solid road line rather than a dashed line.
  • Failing to stick to a lane or driving in the middle of the lane

The good news is that lane change problems are often preventable. As technology continues to advance, there is a real chance we can reduce these types of accidents. Developments like lane-change assist and warning systems that alert drivers to cars in their blind spots are a move in the right direction.

Determining Who is At Fault After a Lane Change Accident

Most lane change incidents involve one driver who is moving in a straight and steady pace while another moves into the same lane. In this instance, deciding who is at fault will be easy. The negligent driver will probably be the one who maneuvered out of his or her lane in an unsafe manner. An investigation will be conducted to determine why this happened in the first place. Was the other party on the phone? Was he or she driving aggressively?

It is possible that both drivers are responsible for causing the crash. They did not even have to be directly next to each other for it to happen. For example, two drivers can be on opposite sides of a three-lane highway and decide to merge into the middle lane at the same time. In this situation, proving fault may be difficult. Both drivers might ultimately be found to be at fault, leaving it up to a jury to make the final determination.

If the car next to you decides to drift into your lane and crashes into you or forces you off the road, you can sue the driver for compensation. Since Michigan is a no-fault insurance state, this is incredibly difficult to do. Usually, an accident victim will make a claim to their own insurance company to cover the cost of the accident. Michigan drivers are required to carry PIP insurance, which covers the medical bills after an injury takes place.

If the injuries are severe or the accident resulted in death or dismemberment, you may be able to sue for additional compensation. Michigan does not cap the amount of compensation you can receive. This means you can potentially receive benefits for the rest of your life, but you must meet the eligibility requirements. A personal injury attorney will be able to explain to you whether or not you meet the criteria.

Compensation for Victims of Lane Change Accidents

If you are the victim of a lane change accident, you may want to seek compensation for your injuries. Proving who is at fault for the accident and whether you can sue the other party is only part of the problem. The other part is finding out what kind of compensation you can receive. There are two different types of money damages an accident victim can claim: economic and non-economic damages.

Economic damages include any type of compensation you can easily put a number on in terms of loss. Medical expenses, lost wages, and other costs can be calculated to determine what is owed to you. 

What is more difficult to determine are non-economic damages. To get you these damages, your lawyer will consider your pain and suffering, mental anguish, emotional distress, and diminished quality of life.

Injuries after a bad car accident can last the rest of your life. Insurance companies are not your friend and will not act on your behalf. In fact, they will likely send a lowball offer in an attempt to prey on your desperation. While it might seem like a lot of money at the time, it is rarely enough to cover all the medical expenses and lost wages you will experience. This is why you need to hire Mike Morse Law Firm.

We know how to negotiate with Michigan insurance companies and have the resources to spar with them, with over 40 of the leading expert personal injury attorneys in the state on our team. We will not rest until you are taken care of, even if that means we have to take the insurance company to court to make them pay up. 

We do not charge a fee unless you win your case, so feel free call Mike Morse Injury Law Firm at (855) MIKE-WINS. We would love to talk with you about your case.

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