As a driver in the state of Michigan, you’re probably already familiar with our state’s no-fault auto insurance system. Under this system, all motor vehicle operators are required to have insurance, which means they are then able to receive benefits after a property damage or injury crash without needing to go to court.
In effect, the insurance you buy covers your own claims and contributes to a larger pool that guarantees care for those who suffer serious injuries in crashes: Michigan is unique even among no-fault states for providing unlimited lifetime medical benefits to those who need them.
But what about commercial vehicles? Are they handled the same way under the no-fault system?
Trucks, Buses, and Others
The simple answer is “yes.” Most of us think of the Michigan system as no-fault auto insurance, but the law was written to cover any motor vehicle that uses public roads (with a few exceptions, including many farm vehicles and most motorcycles).
That means that most commercial vehicles (delivery trucks, buses, semi-trucks, taxis, and so on) also have no-fault coverage. In some cases, these vehicles have significantly more coverage than passenger cars.
For example, any truck licensed for interstate freight must meet a federal insurance requirement of $750,000 of coverage (possibly more depending on the kind of cargo), while interstate buses usually carry $5 million in liability coverage.
Reliable System for Car Drivers
The fact that both kinds of vehicles (personal and commercial) operate under the same minimum set of rules is a good thing for all drivers. When an accident happens, drivers (and other vehicle occupants) are covered by the same kind of liability rules, and all occupants have access to the same personal injury protection (PIP) benefits.
In some cases, which insurer must pay a claim can vary. For instance, the claims of bus and taxi passengers who suffer injury are paid by the operator’s insurer, not the injured person’s. Workers compensation benefits might also be involved or overlap if someone is injured while on the job in a company vehicle. But these exceptions are intended to shift the burden to the responsible party—not to reduce benefits.
Detroit Car Accident Lawyer
Despite the benefits of no-fault coverage, determining what an injured person is entitled to (and who pays for it) is still not always simple. That’s why it’s important that you seek help from an experienced Detroit car accident attorney when you’ve been injured in a car crash, especially in the case of serious injuries.
The team at Christensen Law has helped hundreds of clients with their Detroit-area car accidents. Give us a call today at 248-213-4900 or contact us online through the form below to schedule a free consultation to find out how we can help you.