Motor vehicle accident victims are often left to deal with serious injuries and unpaid medical bills after a personal injury accident. Insurance companies do not have your best interests in mind when handling such claims.
If you or a family member are seriously injured in a car or truck accident, it is important to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney to learn your legal rights. Initial consultations are normally free.
IMMEDIATE STEPS TO TAKE AFTER A CAR ACCIDENT
• Call 911 – Call 911 and report your accident, which helps both police officials and emergency medical personnel get to the scene of the accident.
• Evidence – Preserving evidence can be done easily with smartphones. Take photographs of license plates, vehicle damage, scene evidence, intersections and any other important information that could help you establish fault.
• Contact a Lawyer – Insurance companies will seek to reduce their financial exposure by offering accident victims a low settlement offer. An investigator may also attempt to get a recorded statement from you which could be detrimental to your claim and it is recommended you avoid giving a recorded statement without legal representation.
WHAT IS THE STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS?
In the State of Michigan, car accident victims have three years from the date of the accident to file an auto negligence lawsuit. A claim for no-fault benefits must be filed within one year of the accident or your claim for medical and wage benefits may be forever barred. The one-year-back rule may be tolled in some circumstances under Michigan Law. MCL 500.3145. There are also mandatory notice provisions that may apply when dealing with governmental defendants in negligence cases.
WHEN TO CALL A LAWYER AFTER YOU ARE IN A CAR ACCIDENT
Not everyone who has been involved in a car accident will need to seek legal representation. If you suffered minor injuries in an accident, you probably do not need to retain an attorney. However, if your accident was severe or complex, then it is necessary to call a lawyer as soon as possible, so they can preserve evidence that may be lost or obtain witness statements immediately.
- Any accident that causes significant injury to you or someone else
- Any accident where fault is not clearly established
- Any crash involving an underinsured or uninsured driver
- Anytime insurance companies contact you to make an unsolicited settlement offer.
REASONS TO RETAIN A PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY
• Taking on the Insurance Company – Your lawyer should ensure that the insurance company treats you or family members fairly.
• Filing Necessary Paperwork – Filing a car accident claim or a personal injury lawsuit
involves complicated paperwork and forms. These forms must be filed properly and on-time to ensure that you obtain a favorable outcome.
• Not Missing Deadlines – A car accident attorney will make certain that you do not miss any critical deadlines, such as the statute of limitations, or mandatory notice filing dates that are frequently required to be filed before a lawsuit is pursued.
• Increased Compensation – Those who call a lawyer receive more compensation than those who do not.
• Contingency Fees – Most car accident lawyers work on a contingency basis. This means that you owe them nothing unless they win or settle your case.
• Preserving Evidence – Attorneys have extensive experience investigating car accidents. They can preserve black box evidence if hired quickly after the accident because this data can be downloaded by forensic experts. If not requested immediately after an accident, it will likely be destroyed.
Logeman, Iafrate & Logeman, P.C., Personal Injury Attorneys in Ann Arbor have been helping seriously injured accident victims throughout Michigan recover the compensation they need and deserve for over 45 years. Our commitment to service is absolute and welcome the opportunity to fight for your rights. If you need advice or help with your personal injury claim please contact us at 866-992-0200 toll free, for a Free Consultation.