Common Personal Injury Lawsuit Myths in Michigan
There are many common myths regarding personal injury lawsuits. Our legal team routinely debunks these myths. The following are some common myths:
Myth #1: You can only obtain a settlement or verdict that does not exceed the Defendant’s insurance policy limits.
You may think that the most money you could collect in a personal injury case is the amount of the Defendant’s insurance policy limits, but this is not true. Even though a Defendant has liability insurance, they are always personally responsible for settlements or verdicts in excess of their insurance policy limits. Our personal injury attorneys, on multiple occasions, have collected a monetary recovery for our clients in excess of a Defendant’s insurance policy limits. Also, there may be other insurance policies covering your injury such as an excess, umbrella, or non-owned vehicle coverage just to name a few examples.
Myth #2: You have to be seriously injured in an auto accident to collect a settlement.
While it is true that you can only file a claim for non-economic damages such as pain and suffering if you have serious injuries in an auto accident, you do not need to be seriously injured to collect a settlement from either your insurance company or even the at fault driver. Regardless of the seriousness of your injuries, your insurance company may owe you benefits such as replacement services, household chores, medical expenses, mileage to doctors and attendant care. You also do not need to be seriously injured to collect from the at fault driver for economic damages such as excess wage loss
Myth #3: You cannot collect from an at fault driver if you are operating a vehicle without insurance.
This is not true. Although Michigan’s no-fault law does preclude claims by owners of vehicles who are operating their own uninsured vehicle at the time of the accident, it does not preclude a claim if the owner of a vehicle is a passenger in the vehicle that they own. Michigan’s no-fault law also does not preclude a claim if someone is operating an uninsured vehicle which they do not own.
Myth #4: You can file a lawsuit whenever you want
If you want to file a personal injury claim, you may think you have all the time in the world. However, Michigan has a statute of limitations that only allows for the filing of a lawsuit for a specific time period after the injuries were sustained. Different claims have different statutes of limitation, but they are generally two to three years. It is very important to retain a personal injury specialist as soon as possible after an injury accident so necessary evidence can be preserved, such as necessary photos and witness statements.
Please feel free to call Attorney John T. Alexander at 1-248-290-5600 to discuss these or any other personal injury matters that you may have.