Can I Sue for Paining and Suffering? Understanding Michigan’s No-Fault Law

Can I Sue for Paining and Suffering? Understanding Michigan’s No-Fault Law

Posted on:
March 22, 2016
Auto Accident
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Michigan’s law on suing for pain and suffering after an accident is complex. Most car accidents are addressed under Michigan’s no-fault laws. Michigan’s no fault laws are a series of laws that address the type of benefits you may be entitled to after a car accident. The law also determines which insurance carriers will be responsible for paying no-fault benefits and the amount of time you are able to receive benefits after an accident. Most importantly, Michigan’s no-fault law determines when an injured accident victim may file a lawsuit to seek compensation for injuries.

Proof Required to Receive Compensation for Pain and Suffering

Michigan law requires accident victims prove several critical issues before receiving compensation for pain and suffering:

  • The Other Motorist was 50% Responsible: as a car accident victim, you will need to be able to prove that the other car driver was at least 50% at fault for causing the accident. If the other driver is at least 50% responsible for the accident, then your claim will be able to proceed. It is important to note that if you are more than 50% responsible for the accident then you will not able to able to file a claim for pain and suffering. The percentage of responsibility is almost always a fact decided by a jury.
  • Injuries resulted from the Accident: you will want to be able to show that you sustained an injury in the accident. If you are not able to show that you were injured in the accident, it will be difficult to demonstrate that you are entitled to compensation for pain and suffering.
  • The Injuries were caused by the Accident: if you are an accident victim you will need to show that the accident, not something else, caused your injuries. It is key that your treating doctors understand you were in an accident and state in your medical records that the injuries were caused by the accident.
  • You Have a Threshold Injury: Michigan law will only allow compensation for accident victims if the injury sustained resulted in death, serious disability or disfigurement. If your injury is not a threshold injury, then you will not be able to seek compensation for non-economic harm after an accident.

Proving a Threshold Injury

The most challenging part of seeking compensation after under Michigan’s no-fault laws is demonstrating you have a threshold injury. Demonstrating you have a serious disability, or impairment of body function, is not simple and straightforward. The law does not provide juries or judges with guidelines on this issue. While there are no guidelines, courts and juries will examine factors that include:

  • How much you have worked since the accident;
  • Any physical restrictions you doctor has ordered;
  • Any activities you have had to give up;
  • Household chores you are not able to complete’ and
  • Any permanent restrictions you may face in the future.

Let us Help You Seek Compensation

Recovering after an accident can be difficult. You may be able to use your own insurance to cover some medical expenses and insurance may even cover lost wages. However, insurance may not be enough to cover other non economic losses you may suffer. When this happens you should contact a personal injury attorney at Nickola Law. We can help you submit a claim for pain and suffering. Contact us today to schedule an initial consultation


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