What Counts as Attendant Care?
Your auto accident attorney has told you that you may be entitled to receive benefits for attendant care costs. But what does that mean?
What is Attendant Care?
The Michigan No-Fault Act says that you can be compensated for all “reasonably necessary products, services and accommodations” for your “care, recovery, or rehabilitation.” The law is written broadly because every person’s injuries and recovery needs are different. Typically, attendant care may include supervision, protection, and help with day to day activities, like personal hygiene, grooming, and medication schedules.
For attendant care no-fault benefits to kick in the services must be reasonably necessary to address your auto-accident-related injuries. That means you will generally need to demonstrate that the attendant care is prescribed by a doctor to address a particular diagnosed injury.
Once the need is demonstrated, the Michigan No-Fault Act requires your insurance provider to pay the full professional market rate for any reasonably necessary care. Whether you need medical supervision for a week, or for years, the law ensures the cost will be covered.
Attendant Care vs Replacement Services
Seriously injured motorists often need more help than fits within the umbrella of attendant care. In addition to personal care, many families need replacement services to help fill the gaps the auto accident victim’s injuries leave behind, like child care, landscaping, or housekeeping.
There are no-fault benefits for replacement services, they don’t count as attendant care. Instead, accident victims are entitled to a set amount of money each day to cover replacement services for up to 3 years.
Who Can Provide Attendant Care?
While some injured motorists need the professional services of an adult foster care facility or assisted living home, others can get the help they need from family and friends. The Michigan No-Fault Act allows your loved ones to be compensated for their time spent as a caregiver. If your spouse, cousin, or neighbor takes time out of their schedule to help with your personal care needs, the law requires your insurance company to pay them the customary professional rate for that time.
Documenting Attendant Care Costs
When attendant care is provided by a facility or a home health care company, documenting the cost is easy. The company will send invoices, either to you or the insurance company. But when a relative or friend is the one providing services, documentation can get more difficult. You and your care providers should create a log where each day they list the activities they did for you and the time they spent doing it. Your auto accident attorneys will be able to use that log to advocate for your continuing attendant care no-fault benefits.
At Christensen Law, we know how important it is for our clients to receive ongoing attendant care services after an auto accident. If you need help collecting the benefits you need, contact Christensen Law to schedule a free initial consultation.