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No-Fault Explained: Expenses and Work Loss

Auto accidents are expensive. After a car crash, injured motorists face medical expenses and related costs, all while being told they shouldn’t work by their doctors. These costs can add up to one big headache when your auto insurance denies your claim. You need to know what’s covered by Michigan no-fault law before you take the insurance company’s word that it doesn’t have to pay.

MCL 500.3107 outlines all the benefits you are entitled to after a motor vehicle accident, called “Expenses and Work Loss.” No matter who your no-fault insurance provider is, or what your policy says, you are always entitled to these benefits.

Medical Expenses

After an auto accident, your insurance provider must pay “all reasonable charges incurred for reasonably necessary products, services and accommodations for an injured person’s care, recovery, or rehabilitation.” Reasonable is the key word. Often, an insurance provider will deny your claim because it believes your doctor is charging too much or ordered tests, procedures, or treatments that more than necessary to treat your injuries.

Medical treatment decisions should always be between you and your doctor. A good auto accident attorney will work with your doctor to demonstrate that the care you received was necessary and charged at a reasonable rate.

There are only two exceptions to medical expenses covered by the statute:

  1. Private hospital rooms (unless the patient needs special or intensive care), and
  2. Funeral and burial expenses beyond policy limits.

You are entitled to benefits to pay for all other reasonable and necessary medical expenses.

Work Loss

If you are medically unable to work after an accident, your no-fault auto insurer is legally required to pay for up to three years of lost wages. Your gross salary will be reduced by 15% to accommodate for taxes that are not withheld from your benefits payment.

If your medical condition limits how long or how often you can work, you can still be compensated for the difference. However, your part-time income plus your benefits will be limited to around $6,000 per month, so it is in your best interest to focus on your recovery and get back on the job as quickly as your doctor will allow.

Replacement Services

After an accident, there may be things that you will have to pay someone to do for you like yard maintenance, cleaning, laundry, or child care. The Michigan No-Fault Act entitles you to up to $20 per day in benefits for these services for up to three years after the accident. These benefits are payable even if someone in your family is the one providing the services. Your no-fault attorney will help you create logs to document these services and make sure you get the benefits allowed under the law.

The Michigan no-fault act makes sure you are covered for a lot more than just hospital bills. Talk to the auto accident attorneys at Christensen Law today to make sure you are getting the full benefit of your auto insurance policy.