Automobile accidents are a frequent occurrence throughout the State of Michigan, and even more so in the Metro Area. Odds are, either yourself or a loved one has been involved in an automobile accident in their lifetime. As a result of these accidents, it is common for serious injuries to occur as well. The Law Firm of Elia & Ponto represents clients that have sustained injuries that include broken bones, traumatic brain injuries, back and neck injuries, knee injuries, shoulder injuries, lacerations, and all other serious injuries.
Current Michigan law requires three things before an injured person may be entitled to compensation for injuries sustained (“pain and suffering”) in an automobile accident. First, the person seeking compensation must not be at fault for the accident. Second, the injured person must sustain an injury that is “objectively manifested”. In more simple terms, the person must sustain an injury that will show up on a medical diagnostic test (MRI, X- Ray, CAT Scan, EEG, etc.). Lastly, the injury must cause a “serious impairment”. Basically, the injured party’s lifestyle must be effected due to the accident and the injuries sustained for a period of time.
A person must take legal action within three years from the date of the accident or they will not be able to pursue a claim for their “pain and suffering” against the at fault driver. Failure to initiate a lawsuit within that three years may result in your claim being forever barred.
Again, each individual’s claim is different. If you were injured in an automobile accident, call the Law Firm of Elia & Ponto and let us help you today!
Michigan is a unique State in that it is one of the few in the Country that employs a “No-Fault Insurance” policy. Every owner and driver of a vehicle is required by law to have No Fault Automobile Insurance on the vehicle that they own. While No-Fault Insurance laws are complex and fact specific, you are most likely entitled to Michigan No-Fault Insurance benefits if you were injured in a car accident, motorcycle accident or truck accident. Furthermore, if you were hit by an automobile as a passenger in a vehicle, riding a bicycle or as a pedestrian, you will be entitled to Michigan No- Fault Benefits. It is important to note that you may be entitled to these benefits even if you were at fault for the accident.
Insurance adjusters in Michigan are notorious for giving claimants the run-around or pre-maturely denying claimants benefits. If this happens to you or a loved one, call the Law Firm of Elia & Ponto so that we may expediently recover the benefits so wrongly denied.
Michigan No Fault Insurance Benefits include several different types of benefits which are of great importance to the recovery and aid to an injured person. The different types of benefits include:
Medical Expenses: For injuries caused by, or aggravated in, an automobile accident, an accident victim is entitled to payment of lifetime medical expenses, rehabilitation expenses and doctor bills.
Attendant Care Services: When injuries are sustained that require a victim to have assistance caring for their person (change bandages, get dressed, use the restroom, supervision, shower, etc.), payments to a family member, friend or agency to provide certain skilled or unskilled care must be paid during the period of recovery. In some instances, where the injuries are so severe, this benefit may be paid over the remained of the injured victims life.
Wage Loss Reimbursement: For accident victims that were employed, “temporarily unemployed" or "actively seeking employment” and unable to return to their employment due to the injuries they sustained in an automobile accident are entitled to reimbursement up to 85% of their gross loss income for up to three years from the date of the loss, or until they are physically able to return to work.
Household Chores: If due to your injuries you are unable to do certain chores around your home (cook, wash dishes, vacuum, cut grass, take out the garbage, etc.) payment for these services must be made for up to three years from the date of the loss, or until you are able to return to completing these chores yourself. Payment will be made in an amount up to $20.00 per day.
Medical Mileage / Prescription Reimbursement: Payment for travel expenses to and from medical appointments, hospital visits, and physical therapy appointments will be made at a rate determined by fair market value at that time. Payment for reimbursement of out of pocket expenses used to obtain prescriptions are also made.
Case Management Services: In severe injury cases, payment for the services of a nurse case manager to assist the accident victim with medical coordination and needs should be made following the accident.
Home / Vehicle Modification: In severe injury cases, payment should be made to have an existing home/ vehicle modified, or to have a new home built, or vehicle purchased, to accommodate the needs of the injured person.
Survivor’s Loss Benefits: Family members of a deceased automobile accident victim may be entitled to payment of funeral expenses, lost wages and replacement services.
Time is always of the importance in Michigan No-Fault claims. One must properly put the proper insurance company on notice of their claim within one- year from the date of the loss. If this is not done, your claim will legally be barred and you will be unable to obtain Michigan No-Fault Benefits.
Furthermore, if a benefit goes unpaid, one must initiate a lawsuit within one year from the date that benefits is accrued, or you will be barred from recovering that benefit. If you believe you may have some outstanding no-fault benefits, call the Law Firm of E & P and let us help you….
The law in Michigan surrounding dog bites is very clear. The owners and keepers of dogs in Michigan are strictly liable for dog bites and attacks. What this means is that the victim of the dog bite does not have to prove that the owner and keeper of the dog was negligence, only that they were bitten and/or attacked. So long as the victim did not legally “provoke” the dog that attacked them, the owner and keeper of the dog is legally liable.
A victim of a dog bite or attack can recover for their pain and suffering, disfigurement as a result of scarring, or any infection caused secondary to the bite and emotional distress. A victim of a dog bite or attack in Michigan has three years from the date of the incident to take legal action against the proper owner and keeper of the dog, or their claim will be forever barred.
Michigan law is constantly evolving surrounding this area of personal injury law. However, what remains constant is that the owner or possessor of property owes certain duties to make their property reasonably safe to those allowed on its properties. The failure of the owner or possessor to either warn of the dangerous condition, or to remedy the dangerous condition, makes the owner or possessor of the property liable under Michigan law. Unfortunately, currently there are a number of defenses provided to property owners under current Michigan law that leads to most claims being denied. If you were injured as a result of a slip and fall, or another dangerous condition on another’s property, call The Law Firm of Elia & Ponto and let us help you.
Common causes of injuries on another’s property arise out of slip and falls. In general, most victims fall as a result of ice and snow, “black ice” and liquid(s) on the floor, However, there are plenty of other reasons as to how one may be injured on the property of another such as falling merchandise, defective walkways, poor/inadequate lighting, and fires. If you have been the victim of any of these circumstances, call The Law Firm of Elia & Ponto.
Current Michigan law affords certain rights to tenants. Under current Michigan law, landlords must keep common areas of a rental property “fit for their intended purpose” and all other areas in “reasonable repair.” If you are a tenant injured on the premises of your rental property, you may be entitled to compensation for the injuries you sustained as a result of the landlord’s negligence. Examples include snow and/or ice covered sidewalks, broken or uneven sidewalks, defective stairways, broken or missing stair rails and defective carpeting.
In Michigan, a person injured in a premises claim must generally file a lawsuit within three years from the date of the accident. Failure to do so bars the victim from legally pursuing their claim for monetary compensation. If your injury occurs on public property, contact E&P immediately as more strict time restraints may apply.