Damages in a Personal Injury Case
When you have been injured through no fault of your own in an accident, you may be entitled to seek compensation from those responsible for your damages, including:
- Past and future medical costs, including hospital stays, doctor’s office visits, surgeries, physical or occupational therapy, prescription medication or mobility and medical equipment
- Long-term care expenses, if your injuries make you partially or fully disabled
- Lost wages for the time you missed from work
- Lost earning potential, if your injuries prevent you from earning the same level of income you earned before your injury
- Lost enjoyment or quality of life
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium, which compensates your spouse for the loss of your companionship
Time Limit for Filing a Personal Injury Claim
If you have a personal injury claim in Detroit, you have limited time to file a lawsuit. The time limit is called the statute of limitations. Under Michigan law, a personal injury claim must be filed within three years from the date of your injury. The limitations period may be extended, or tolled, under very limited circumstances. For instance, the time limit can be extended if the injured party is a minor. If you don’t file your lawsuit before the statute of limitations expires, the court can permanently dismiss your lawsuit.
In addition to the statute of limitations, if you have a personal injury claim against the government you must provide the government with notice of your claim before you can even file a lawsuit. This notice period is typically much shorter than the statute of limitations. The notice period may be as short several weeks to several months, depending on the government department that harmed you.
What to Do after an Accident to Protect Your Rights
If you’ve been the victim of an accident in Detroit, be sure to take these steps after your accident. Doing so can help protect your rights when you seek compensation for your injuries and damages:
- Report your accident and injuries. Report your accident to the police if you’ve suffered a motor vehicle accident. Notify a property or store owner if you are injured on their property.
- Get contact and insurance information. With that information, you and your attorney will know who to contact when you seek compensation for your injuries and damages.
- Document the accident scene and your visible injuries. If possible, take photographs or videos of the accident scene and any visible injuries you’ve suffered.
- Follow up with your doctor or other medical provider. The shock of an accident may prevent you from realizing the extent of your injuries. A doctor or other health care provider may be able to identify those injuries during an examination. Promptly identifying all of your injuries will allow you to build a stronger claim for compensation.
- Speak to a knowledgeable personal injury attorney. A Detroit personal injury lawyer at Christensen Law can advise you of your legal rights and options. A lawyer can begin the process of pursuing a claim for compensation. Do not delay starting your claim. If you do, you may end up losing out on important rights or full compensation.
Common Types of Catastrophic Injuries
Common kinds of catastrophic injuries that our Detroit personal injury lawyers see include:
Detroit Personal Injury FAQs
If you have a personal injury claim in Detroit, you may have questions about your claim. Following are answers to common questions that our personal injury lawyers often hear.
Yes. Michigan law follows a modified comparative negligence rule. That rule allows an injury victim to recover compensation for pain and suffering damages as long as his or her share of the fault does not exceed 50 percent. If the victim shares in the fault for the accident, the compensation will be reduced by the percentage of his or her fault. If the victim was 20 percent at fault for the accident and was awarded $100,000 at trial, the total the victim will receive is $80,000.
The length of any personal injury case depends on multiple factors, including the severity of your injuries, the amount of your damages, and whether fault can be clearly established for your accident and injuries. If liability isn’t at issue and damages can be easily established, it may be possible to negotiate a settlement in as little as a few months. However, if the other party contests liability or damages or if you have ongoing treatment, it can take longer to reach a settlement. If it becomes necessary to take your case to court, it can take up to two years to reach a verdict at trial.
Having to go to court can seem daunting to people who don’t have experiences with the justice system. The reality is that most personal injury cases settle long before the case goes to trial. Most personal injury claims are resolved through a negotiated settlement. In a settlement, the injured party accepts a sum of money as compensation for his or her injuries and damage. The other party is released from any legal claim arising from those injuries and damages. A settlement allows both parties to avoid the expense, time and uncertainty of a trial.
Michigan has a three-year statute of limitations on most personal injury claims. This time limit begins on the date you were injured. If you file your claim after the time limit has passed, your case will be dismissed.
Yes. You can seek compensation from the government for causing an accident. Michigan has special procedures and reduced time limits that must be observed. You must file notice of your injury claim against a state agency within 120 days after the accident if the accident involved bad highway upkeep or a public building.
Michigan allows certain relatives of a deceased victim to file what is called a wrongful death claim. A wrongful death claim is much like a personal injury one. It allows you to seek damages on behalf of your deceased loved one, as well as for the loss your family has suffered.
Get Help from a Personal Injury Lawyer in Detroit Now
If you or a loved one have been injured through no fault of your own in Detroit, you deserve to seek compensation from those who caused your accident and injuries. Don’t leave the financial compensation you need and deserve to chance. Contact an experienced Detroit personal injury lawyer at Christensen Law today. We will schedule a free, no-obligation consultation to discuss your case. You will learn more about your legal rights and your options for pursuing compensation for your injuries and damages.