Detroit Car Accident Attorneys
Cars are a huge part of Detroit’s history. Unfortunately, that does not prevent local motorists from getting into auto accidents. Depending on the seriousness of the crash, injuries and property damage can be catastrophic.
What to Do After an Accident in Detroit
If you are involved in a motor vehicle accident, you should:
- Call for help. Check to be sure everyone involved is out of immediate danger and call 911 immediately if anyone is injured. A police officer will come to the scene and file a report.
- Document the scene. Someone who is not injured should take pictures of the area around the collision and any damage caused. Photograph the conditions that may have led to the accident, such as road or weather conditions. Get names and contact information for any witnesses and make notes of your memories of the crash. This information may be valuable in a later lawsuit.
- Protect yourself. Never leave the scene of an accident. Doing so may result in criminal charges brought against you. If you are clearly not at fault in the accident, provide the police with whatever information they seek. If you might be at fault in the accident, you do not have to talk to the police other than providing them with your driver’s license, registration for the vehicle, and proof of insurance. If you choose to talk to the police, accurately describe what occurred, but do not admit fault to anyone, even if you fear your actions contributed to the crash.
- Seek medical attention. Sometimes the full extent of an injury is not felt immediately. The police investigating the accident will ask you if you are injured. If you are in any pain, let them know where you are experiencing pain. Even if you do not think you are injured, you should still see a doctor. Even injuries you think are not serious should be evaluated by a doctor, because minor injuries can become serious. Getting medical care right away can assist in your recovery from the injuries and help verify that the accident caused the injuries. Keep all receipts from doctor visits and other treatment.
- Report the accident. Call your insurance company right away to report the crash.
- Consult an experienced Detroit accident attorney. Obtaining compensation for damages stemming from the accident can be challenging. Insurance companies, especially those insuring another driver, are not on your side and will likely be reluctant to pay fair compensation for your injuries. That is why you need a personal injury lawyer like the attorneys at Sommers Schwartz to represent you and fight for your rights.
Accidents on the Rise
In 2017, there were 24,687 car accidents in the Detroit area, part of an upward trend over the years. But the statistics do not show the effect that crashes have on people and their families.
The potential damages from a car accident can be short-term, long-term, or lifelong. Common injuries in a car collision are anything from a few bruises to a permanent disability. In the most severe cases, an accident may be fatal. The financial impact can be equally devastating due to the costs of medical care, vehicle repair and replacement, lost wages, and other burdens.
An experienced personal injury attorney can assist you to recoup losses sustained in the crash and help you get the compensation you deserve.
Michigan Auto Law
Michigan is one of a handful of “no-fault” car insurance states, meaning that your insurance company is supposed to compensate you for medical bills, lost wages, or other out-of-pocket costs, regardless of who was at fault for the collision. Personal Injury Protection (PIP) first-party benefits cover you and any passengers in your vehicle (unless they have their own coverage). Determining which insurance company is responsible for paying the benefits can be tricky. Sometimes, you can recover pain and suffering damages from the at-fault driver through his or her insurance (third-party benefits) or your own insurance company if you have uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage.
Under Michigan’s statute of limitations, an injured person has three years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit related to the crash against the at-fault driver. The statute of limitations for an underinsured or uninsured motorist claim may be less depending on the terms of your policy. To recover pain and suffering damages caused by the negligent actions of another driver from the other driver or under your uninsured or underinsured benefits, you must prove the accident caused death, permanent serious disfigurement, or serious impairment of body function.
Getting Fair Compensation
Michigan’s no-fault insurance laws are complicated, more so after the introduction of specific statutory changes enacted in 2019 and many of which go into effect this year. On top of that, insurance companies are notoriously unfair and difficult. The company can dispute or deny claims, and they have a vested interest in doing so to protect their bottom line.
Do not risk going it alone. You need an attorney familiar with the tactics insurance companies use to avoid paying and how to overcome them. Statistics show that people who go up against huge insurance companies in court without a lawyer often have smaller payouts.
Insurance companies do not care about what it will take for you to heal from your accident and get your life back, but the team at Sommers Schwartz does.
Car Accident Frequently Asked Questions
Experienced Detroit Car Accident Attorneys
The last thing you need as you heal from a motor vehicle accident is more stress. The attorneys at Sommers Schwartz are ready to fight for what you deserve. In the last 40 years, we have helped our clients recover sums of money in the courtroom and through out-of-court settlements.
Contact us today for a free consultation. The phone call is free, and because we work on a contingency fee basis, there’s no fee until we win.