Even though Michigan’s no-fault insurance laws have been in place for years, there is still a great deal of confusion about how they work after you have been in a car accident. If you or a loved one has been involved in an auto accident, the best thing to do as soon as possible is to consult with an auto accident lawyer.
Once you have legal representation, your attorney can help you determine which kind of auto accident claim you should file to have the best chance of correctly characterizing your case and therefore getting the compensation you deserve.
1. First Party or No-Fault Insurance Claim
The type of claim most commonly filed in Michigan is designed to help recover any expenses that were required because of your automobile crash. If you and your legal counsel successfully win this claim, it means you become entitled to coverage of medical expenses, any services of a medical attendant, loss of wages, any home modifications that need to be done due to injuries sustained in the accident, and any expenses involving extraneous transportation that needs to be taken due to injuries.
Because of the way insurance laws in Michigan work, to receive these payments, you will be suing your insurance company for this compensation.
A first party claim like the one described here may not pay for any repairs to your vehicle if it has been significantly damaged in the crash. Attempting to receive compensation for that will need to be completed through the filing of a Notice of Claim or Notice of Accident with your car insurance company.
2. Third Party Claim or Personal Injury Damages
This claim is also quite common among claims filed after auto accidents in Michigan, but it is usually much harder to win. Michigan’s No-fault law makes acquiring first party benefits easier, but it does this at the cost of making third party benefits much harder to obtain. Unless you have suffered severe bodily impairment, permanent disfigurement, significant scarring, loss of enjoyment of life, and other forms of severe pain and suffering, the chances you will win this case are slim.
This also refers to the possibility of filing a wrongful death claim against the liable party or driver if a loved one has passed away due to complications from an auto accident.
3. Property Damage Claims
This form of claim is designed to help you recoup the expenses needed to repair your automobile after the accident as well as replace any faulty parts that were damaged during the crash.
Additional collision coverage can also be purchased if you are very worried about property damage to your car. The amount of collision coverage in your policy is the largest determiner of how much your payout would be after filing a claim of this type.
4. Uninsured Motorist Claims
When you are injured due to the actions and negligence of a driver who holds no form of auto insurance whatsoever, if you already have uninsured motorist claims built into your insurance policy, you can often collect compensation for any injuries caused. However, this is only relevant if your policy includes coverage for damages from uninsured motorists.
It may be worth talking with your insurance agency and closely reading over your policy to make sure this is something you are covered for if being injured by an uninsured motorist is something you are concerned about.
5. Underinsured Motorist Claims
This form of claim is similar to a claim for an uninsured motorist, but in this case, concerns people whose insurance policies will not cover the full spectrum of expenses you need covered to pay for your injuries. Again, this provision is something you will need to already have as part of your existing policy, so it might be worth consulting with your insurance agent if this is a worry of yours.
If you are trying to determine which type of claim you should be filing, book a consultation with a skilled and experienced auto accident lawyer today.
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