How Are Damages Assessed After an Automobile Accident
Legally Reviewed and Edited by: Terry Cochran
After a motor vehicle accident, you may feel overwhelmed by the extent of your losses. It may be difficult for you to figure out how much money you should receive in compensation to account for all your injuries and other financial damages.
As an injury victim, you might not even realize that you may recover certain types of expenses related to your accident, such as medical bills or lost wages from missed work. An experienced personal injury attorney at Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. can help assess the full extent of the damages you can recover from an automobile accident.
Types of Damages You Can Receive from a Car Accident
There are specific restrictions on how to submit your no-fault insurance claims. You have one year to file a car accident claim for no-fault Personal Protection Insurance (PIP) coverage. You have three years from the date of the accident to sue the at-fault driver’s insurance company to recover damages for pain and suffering, medical bills, and other losses if you have been injured in a Michigan automobile accident.
Several types of damages may be recovered in a personal injury case after an automobile accident. Your lawyer can assess the damages based on various documents, including your medical records and expenses incurred due to your injuries.
In Michigan, drivers protected by no-fault insurance regulations can choose up to the maximum amount of $1 million in coverage for damages. However, if you are deemed at fault and do not have collision insurance, you cannot recover any property damage.
It is critical to keep all receipts, repair bills, replacement bills, and documents for any additional property damage while waiting on your vehicle for repairs. These help prove the magnitude of losses so you can get maximum compensation for property damage.
When you are injured in a car accident, your medical expenses can be extensive. You may have to be admitted to the hospital and receive numerous diagnostic tests resulting in exorbitant treatment fees. Your medication costs will also likely increase, and any equipment, like crutches or wheelchairs needed for recovery, can also be expensive.
To ensure your lawyer calculates the full amount of damages owed, keep track of all medical receipts and bills, including:
- Doctors’ notes
- Medical treatments and appointment bills
- Receipts for medications
- Records of your diagnosis
- Therapy bills
If you require hospitalization, you may be eligible to recoup lost wages if you can prove that the accident caused you to miss work. The no-fault laws in Michigan require reasonable proof of lost income resulting from an automobile accident for you to be compensated promptly.
You can receive help for lost wages if you provide proof of income loss from not attending work, such as your previous W-2s or pay stubs from your workplace dated two months before your accident. You also need a work disability certificate from the doctor and a wage verification form from your employer.
If you were actively looking for a job at the time of your accident, you can provide copies of recent applications to employers to prove it. The insurance company may contact the employers to verify they received your applications.
Lost of Consortium or Companionship
Spouses might seek compensation for loss of consortium or compassion because of a severe injury of a loved one. Factors to calculate this claim include:
- how long they’ve been married
- how it’s affected them emotionally and financially
Spouses must show that the spouse injured in a car accident has had serious impairment to their body functions. This means the victim was injured to the extent that it impeded them from providing the same love, care, attention, sexual relations, or society as before the accident, and that this lack of affection impacted their spouse’s quality of life.
Pain and Suffering
Pain and suffering damages in car accidents can be difficult to quantify, which is why courts and insurance companies consider the extent of their injuries. Asides from your medical receipts and bills, you can detail the injuries you have sustained from a car accident, how they’ve affected your quality of life.
Family members and coworkers may testify about how they observed your injuries and their impact on your life. A doctor’s sworn testimony could be used in court to explain the nature of an injury, what treatments are required for it, and how this would affect your life to further bolster your claim for compensation for pain and suffering.
Recover Compensation with the Help of a Personal injury Lawyer
When you’re looking for assistance with your Michigan no-fault insurance claim, it’s crucial to speak with a lawyer who has experience in cases with accident victims. A qualified attorney can help gather the necessary documents and information needed when filing a personal injury suit.
At Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C., we can help at any step of the process, so call us today for a free consultation or chat with us via our hotline at 1-866-MICH-LAW .
Who is responsible for no-fault PIP benefits?
If you are injured, the insurance company for your automobile will cover no-fault benefits. If you don’t have this coverage, the auto insurance policy of your spouse or family member living with you may contribute your benefits.
What if my no-fault insurance company refuses to pay my benefits?
In Michigan, no-fault insurance companies must pay benefits within 30 days after receiving reasonable proof from the applicant. It may be necessary for the insurance company to pay penalty interest and attorney fees if they do not provide benefits.
In case of wrongful death, how do the auto no-fault laws apply?
Michigan no-fault laws offer survivor’s loss benefits that are given to the surviving family members of a fatal car accident. These benefits give some coverage for economic losses caused by the sudden death of a loved one.
Disclaimer : The information provided is general and not for legal advice. The blogs are not intended to provide legal counsel and no attorney-client relationship is created nor intended.