Understanding Your No-Fault Pleadings

After an auto accident, you may feel in over your head. Dealing with police, insurance adjusters, and auto insurance attorneys can be tough. But there’s no need for legalese or unusual-looking documents to add to your stress. Before they file your first no-fault pleadings, the attorneys at Christensen Law will take the time to make sure you understand what you are reading.

The Caption

The top of every court filing has a section called the “Caption.” This is how the court identifies which case each document goes with. The caption includes a lot of information:

  • The court
  • The case number
  • The judge assigned to the case
  • The parties; and
  • Contact information for each party or attorney on the case.

The Title

Each no-fault pleading filed with the court will have a title, identifying what it is. For motions, the title will identify what you want the court to do, and may name the law under which the court is able to do. For example “Motion for Summary Disposition pursuant to MCR 2.116(C)(10).”

The Case Disclosure

On your no-fault complaint, the next section is a disclosure of whether any other cases exist between the parties. Usually, on your First Party case, this disclosure will say “There is no other pending or resolved civil action arising out of the transaction or occurrence alleged in the complaint.” But a medical provider lawsuit or Third Party lawsuit will need be included if they exist.

The Allegations

The body of every no-fault pleading is the allegations. These are the things you say are true including the date and place of the accident, insurance policy details, and your injuries. Each allegation will have its own numbered paragraph. That way the other party can respond to each paragraph individually.

The Legal Basis for the Request

Any time you ask the court to do something, you need to tell the judge what law lets him or her do it. The legal basis for your request will be a statute (which looks like MCL 500.1001), court rule (MCR 2.116), or a previous case (Doe v Auto Insurance Co, 123 Mich App 456 (2015)). Your attorney may also include a “Brief in Support” to supplement the legal explanation for your request.

The Request for Relief

Every no-fault pleading ends with a request for relief. This section often starts with the phrase “WHEREFORE, the Plaintiff requests that this court. . . .” Then it describes what you want the court to do.

The Signatures

No no-fault pleading is complete without a signature. If there are a lot of facts involved, like in your complaint, you may need to sign the document yourself. But in other pleadings, your attorney can sign on your behalf.

The auto accident attorneys at Christensen Law want to make sure you understand every no-fault pleading filed in your case. If you are ever confused, contact Christensen Law to speak to a team member and get an explanation.