Michigan governor Rick Snyder recently signed a bill that would increase the state’s no-fault insurance “minitort” limits from $500 to $1,000, according to a recent article in Michigan Lawyers’ Weekly.
Under Michigan no-fault insurance law, most people injured in car accidents must settle their claims with insurers and not in court, unless they are killed or suffer certain severe injuries. However, the law has long contained a “minitort” provision that allowed drivers to recover up to $500 in damages for property damage in an accident.
The new law doubles the previous minitort limit, allowing motorists to collect up to $1,000 for property damage in a Michigan no-fault car accident case. The law also prohibits drivers from collecting minitort damages, however, if they were driving without the required minimum no-fault insurance at the time.
Michigan’s comparative fault rule applies to minitort claims just like other personal injury claims. If a driver seeking minitort damages is found to be 50 percent or more at fault for the accident, that driver will not be allowed to collect damages from any other party.
Michigan’s no-fault insurance procedures can feel overwhelming, especially when you’re also trying to deal with all the problems an accident causes. At Lipton Law, our experienced southeast Michigan no-fault benefit claim lawyers are dedicated to helping people with every step of the no-fault insurance process, including seeking “minitort” damages or even going to court if needed. To learn more, call us today at (248) 557-1688 for a free case evaluation.
Michigan no-fault auto insurance law is one of the most comprehensive laws in the nation. Although Michigan no-fault coverage is often assumed to cost drivers more up front, it also provides coverage in nearly all auto accidents, even if you are severely injured or lose a loved one.
A basic Michigan no-fault policy has three parts:
- Personal Injury Protection. Known as “PIP” benefits, personal injury protection pays for your medical bills and related costs, as well as those of the passengers in your car if they are children or don’t have an auto insurance policy of their own. As of 2010, the maximum PIP benefit was $4,929 per month.
- Property Damage. Property damage benefits pay for damage your car does to someone else’s property during a Michigan auto accident. For instance, if your car is hit by another driver and pushed into someone’s front yard, your property damage benefits pay to fix any damage to that person’s front yard. These benefits do not, however, pay for damage to your own vehicle.
- Residual Liability. Residual liability has two parts: bodily injury and property damage. The bodily injury portion goes toward paying the medical expenses of others involved in a crash if they do not have a policy that offers PIP benefits; for instance, if they are from out of state. The property damage portion protects you if you are sued under Michigan’s “mini-tort” provision, which can add up to $500 for damages not covered by insurance.
At Lipton Law, our experienced Michigan no-fault auto insurance attorneys can help you with every step of the post-accident process, from filing your no-fault insurance claim to seeking compensation from any negligent parties in court. We’ll guide you through the complex no-fault process so you and your family can focus on recovery. For a free consultation, call us today at (248) 557-1688.
In order to help drivers in Michigan understand their no-fault insurance policies better, Lipton Law is providing blog readers with a five-part series on Michigan no-fault insurance benefits. This post, part three of the series, focuses on who may claim benefits, what benefits are available, and how insureds can make certain they receive all the benefits their premiums have paid for.
Michigan “no-fault” auto insurance has this name because, if a driver is in a vehicle accident, the insurer must pay benefits regardless of who caused the accident. The benefits a Michigan driver or vehicle passenger can receive vary depending on the terms of the no-fault policies that may cover each person involved in a crash. Common benefits paid by no-fault insurance include medical bills, prescription drug, and medical equipment bills, costs for home healthcare, and replacement funds for lost wages or incomes.
A no-fault policy covers every member of the driver’s immediate family, even if they are a passenger in another car or are struck by a vehicle while walking or biking. It also covers injury costs of other drivers or passengers in any other vehicle involved in an accident if their own no-fault insurance does not cover them or they have no insurance.
In order to help ensure you receive all the no-fault policy benefits to which you are entitled after a car accident in Michigan, it’s important to file a claim with your insurance company within one year of the accident or injury. Completing paperwork on time is a crucial part of this process. If you are overwhelmed by this process, need help filing a claim, or suspect you are not getting all the benefits to which you are entitled to from your insurance company, seek help from an experienced Michigan no-fault benefits attorney, such as those at Lipton Law. To discuss your case with us, call 248-577-1688 today for a free consultation.