With temperatures rapidly dropping and inclement weather soon to follow, Michigan’s winter is almost here, which unfortunately means an increase in auto accidents are soon to follow.
Although we’d like to believe that auto accidents only happen to those people we see out of our windows as we rubberneck past the wreckage, the reality is that auto accidents can happen to anyone, at any time. Having dealt with countless auto accident victims, there seems to be one common theme: none of them planned on being involved in an accident. Without having the opportunity to plan ahead, auto accident victims are often overwhelmed by an abundance of questions:
- What should I do first?
- Who’s going to pay my medical bills?
- What if I’m unable to work?
- Who’s going to pay to fix my vehicle?
- Does it matter who caused the accident?
- What else am I entitled to?
- I’ve paid for an auto policy, but what does it do for me?
To assist with these overwhelming uncertainties, an auto accident victim’s first step after an accident should always be to contact an attorney who specializes in Michigan auto accidents, especially before talking to any insurance company — even your own. Navigating the Michigan No-Fault System can be extremely challenging. You’ve just been involved in an accident, your vehicle is totaled, you’ve been injured, and now you’re faced with the daunting task of trying to sort it all out on your own. Let an auto accident attorney worry about the burdens of the No-Fault System, while you focus on your recovery. Don’t think you can afford an attorney — think again. Auto accident cases are generally handled on a contingency fee, meaning you pay no attorney fees unless you receive a recovery.
The fortunate news for any Michigander injured in an auto accident, regardless of fault (hence the name “No-Fault”), is that they are entitled to recover certain benefits, commonly referred to as PIP benefits. In very general terms, PIP benefits include: expenses related to your care, recovery, and rehabilitation (most importantly, your medical bills), wage loss, and replacement services.
In addition to the PIP benefits outlined above, which are recoverable regardless of fault, a person involved in an auto accident may be entitled to a significant monetary recovery for non-economic damages. Unlike PIP benefits, non-economic damages are not automatic. There are certain hurdles an injured person must overcome in order to be entitled to non-economic damages, making it even more important to contact an auto accident attorney early.
This overview is a very generalized analysis of how the No-Fault System works. In reality, each auto accident has very unique fact that can drastically impact the general analysis stated above. Which brings me back to step #1 if you’ve been involved in an auto accident: call 616.608.3061 for a free consultation with an auto accident attorney.