What Is The Statute Of Limitations For A Michigan Car Accident Case?

Legally Reviewed and Edited by: Terry Cochran

The quick answer is three years — but it’s never that simple. If you’re asking the question, you may need a lawyer, too.

Have You Been Injured?

If two Michigan drivers are in an accident and are injured, Michigan law says that each driver should first file a claim with their own insurance company. It doesn’t matter who the at-fault driver may be. Your insurance company covers you, your family members, and others with Michigan No-fault Personal Injury Protection (PIP).

This coverage should start immediately. Benefits include your medical costs, a percentage of lost wages for up to three years, and some other costs related to your care and recovery.

In most cases, this coverage is sufficient. But sometimes it’s not.

Meeting with an attorney from Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. for a free consultation can help to clarify your situation, answer your questions about filing a lawsuit, time limits for filing, and the potential for success in your personal injury case. If we decide to work together, it will be a contingency fee agreement. This means we don’t get paid until you get your settlement or jury award.

The Limitations of PIP

If you’ve been seriously injured and facing long-term or permanent disability and/or disfigurement, your medical bills and other costs may exceed the limits of your PIP coverage. And your losses also include nonmedical considerations that are not addressed by PIP coverage at all.

Filing a personal injury lawsuit may be your only option, and this filing must happen within three years of the date of the accident.

If the injuries sustained in a car accident lead to a person’s death, the family of the deceased individual may decide to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the at-fault driver, including out-of-state and uninsured motorists. The statute of limitations for a wrongful death lawsuit is three years from the death of the individual involved in the accident.

Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. is a group of personal injury lawyers recognized as one of the best and fastest-growing law firms in Michigan, and we have a strong track record of success helping individuals and families receive the settlement they need and deserve after a car, motorcycle, truck, or boat accident, medical malpractice or product liability situation, or other civil matters where an individual has been injured or killed through the negligence of another.

Understanding Your Settlement Options

Sometimes before a claim is even filed, the potential defendant — or more likely the insurance company representing the defendant — will approach you, the potential plaintiff, with a settlement offer. We strongly recommend caution before signing anything presented to you by an insurance company. Always remember that insurance companies want to settle for as little as possible. In complex cases, and if your injuries are serious, settlement discussions can take place multiple times, as different compensation scenarios are proposed and evaluated by both sides.

The skilled Michigan auto accident attorneys at Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. are prepared to be at your side during any contact with an insurance company, explaining to you in clear terms what it means to sign your name to any document, and being a trusted advocate helping you understand the pros and cons of different settlement scenarios.

Exceptions To The Statute

Michigan law allows for certain exceptions to the standard three-year statute of limitations for filing a personal injury lawsuit.

  • When the injured party has a severe mental health diagnosis, and therefore unable to understand their rights.
  • If the injured party was under the age of 18 at the time of the accident. The statute of limitations for minors begins when they turn 18, and they have one year to file their claim.
  • If the liable party leaves the state. If the at-fault party leaves the state after the accident, but before the claim is filed in court, there are some legal complexities involved in determining when, exactly, the statute of limitations begins.

Getting legal assistance early in your claims process — particularly if your injuries are serious — can make a significant and positive difference in the outcome.

Call us toll-free (24 hours) at (866)-755-9502 or use our convenient online contact form.

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.

Mark is a freelance writer living near Concord, New Hampshire. He works with a range of businesses and professional associations in their strategic messaging and content development projects. He also provides content development services to nonprofits and government agencies, helping them distill complex topics and make information more accessible across multiple platforms. When he's not writing, he enjoys working outside and finds mowing his fields on a warm sunny day to be a peak experience.

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