By Dan Makled on October 18th, 2022 in
How is Fault Determined in My Dearborn Personal Injury Claim?
The primary thing your Dearborn personal injury claim will rely on is the determination of fault. Keep in mind that Michigan is a no-fault state where auto accident personal injuries are concerned. This means that in general, when you have been injured as the result of another’s negligence in an auto accident, your own insurance (PIP) will pay for your medical expenses and any lost wages you might have. This is true unless your injuries rise to the level of “serious impairment of body function.” You can also sue the at-fault driver for pain and suffering, along with reimbursement for damages to your vehicle.
For other personal injury claims, negligence must be proven in order for the victim to qualify for damages. The primary method used by Michigan courts to determine negligence and liability is based on the four elements of negligence along with the standard known as “reasonably prudent person.” The first question is whether the defendant owed a duty of care to the plaintiff. As an example, when we get behind the wheel, we owe other drivers a duty of care to drive safely and obey all traffic laws and rules. If we own property and invite others onto our property, we owe them a duty of care to keep the property safe and free from hazards.
The second question is whether the defendant’s action breached the duty of care. If we have known hazards on our property, or we allow our dog to roam the neighborhood knowing it has a propensity to bite, then we have breached our duty of care. The third question is whether the actions of the defendant caused injuries to the plaintiff and if the answer to that question is “yes,” then the final question is whether the plaintiff deserves compensation for those damages.
The courts will use the standard that asks whether a reasonably prudent person would have acted in the same way as the defendant, given similar circumstances. If the defendant left a four ft. hole on his or her property without posting hazard signs, and a person fell into the hole and received injuries, the question would be whether a reasonably prudent person could have anticipated such an accident.
How is Compensation Determined in a Michigan Personal Injury Case?
The worth of each personal injury claim will depend on the unique facts and circumstances surrounding the accident. Economic damages are those that are easy to quantify because they have a specific dollar figure associated with them. Medical expenses and lost wages fall under economic damages, sometimes known as special damages. Economic damages can also include the loss or damage to your personal property, future lost earning potential, caregiving expenses, assistive devices, and even the costs of going to and from medical appointments in some cases.
Non-economic damages are much more difficult to quantify because they are considered subjective. Pain and suffering expenses are non-economic damages because they don’t come with a specific price tag. As an example, if you were involved in a particularly traumatic truck accident that caused catastrophic injuries, you might also have experienced mental anguish, depression, and PTSD symptoms associated with the accident. You may have chronic physical pain from your injuries, as well as mental and emotional pain. These may affect your ability to return to your normal life and your day-to-day activities, yet because these damages are more subjective, they are sometimes more difficult to prove. Your personal injury claim attorney, Dan Makled, will help you prove that your damages have prevented you from returning to the life you had prior to the accident, and will determine the value of those damages.
When Can I Expect Payment Following the Settlement?
Once your personal injury claim attorney is onboard, there will be an assessment of your damages—both current, and those you will have as a result of the accident in the future. Negotiations will then begin between your personal injury claim attorney and the insurer for the at-fault party. If negotiations are successful, then you can expect a check approximately six weeks from the time you agree to a settlement. If the insurance company balks at a fair settlement, your attorney will file a lawsuit. Your personal injury claim could be settled at any time, up until the jury returns a verdict. If it is not settled, then from the time the jury reaches a verdict you can expect to wait about six weeks for your settlement check.
How Important is My Choice of Personal Injury Claim Attorney?
Your choice of personal injury claim attorney is extremely important. Your attorney will take a number of steps to protect your best interests. Some of those steps include:
- Conducting a thorough investigation to determine the extent of your injuries, as well as proving liability for your accident and resulting injuries
- Identifying all liable parties, particularly in a truck accident when there can be multiple defendants
- Negotiating your claim with the insurance company, handling all communications involving the insurer
- Retaining professionals when necessary, including investigators and accident reconstructionists
- Calculating a fair value for your personal injury claim and negotiating a settlement for that value
- Preparing and filing a personal injury lawsuit when a settlement cannot be reached.
Once you’ve hired an experienced personal injury claim attorney to negotiate on your behalf, you will have the time you need to heal—both physically and emotionally—from your injuries without worrying about receiving a fair settlement. Insurance adjusters are highly trained, experienced professionals whose goal will be to pay you the lowest settlement possible. Your attorney will ensure that does not happen. When you hire the Dan Makled Law Firm, you can rest easy, knowing your best interests are being looked out for at every turn.
How Attorney Dan Makled Can Help
You have been injured as a result of the negligence of another person. Your injuries may require medical interventions for a very long time to come—which means more expenses for you. You may be unable to return to work for weeks, months, or even longer—which means you may not be able to pay your normal monthly expenses. None of these adverse effects is your fault, and you do not deserve to suffer any more than you already have. This is the premise attorney Dan Makled follows with every personal injury case he takes. Dan is committed to protecting you and your interests, understanding the lengths many insurance companies will go to in order to avoid paying you what your claim is worth.
Dan began his legal career working at an insurance defense firm which gives him a unique knowledge of the industry. He knows how insurance companies think, and the methods they use. This knowledge allows him to be your advocate in the most knowledgeable way. While other law firms may settle cases for lower value because they fear a trial against a big insurance company, this is where the Dan Makled Law Firm thrives. Don’t wait—contact the Dan Makled Law Firm today for your Dearborn personal injury claim.