Pain and Suffering Claim (Third party) – Three years
You have three years to file a lawsuit against the driver that caused your injuries in Michigan. This period of time is known as the statute of limitations and is governed by MCL 600.5805(2). This means that you have three years from the date of the car accident to file a lawsuit.
There are couple of exceptions to this rule. The first is if you are under the age on 18 when the accident occurred. If this is the case you may be able to bring the claim 1 year from the date of the person’s 18th birthday. Moreover, there is a possibility of this time being extended if a mental impairment is at issue. However, these types of exceptions do not always apply. Consequently, it is extremely important to consult attorney well before the three-year period to make sure you do not give up your rights to receive compensation from the at-fault driver.
There are also several situations where you might have less time to bring a lawsuit. This includes cases against government actors, and or public transportation. In bus accidents you must send notice to the company within 60 days! It is also may include a lawsuit for under-insured or uninsured motorist benefits. Because the later are contract issues, depending on the wording in your own insurance policy you may have less than three years to bring your pain and suffering lawsuit.
As you can see the statute of limitations can be a tricky issue. These questions can’t be answered with a one sentence answer. To make matters worse, you don’t want to wait to find out as It is something that can’t be cut close. Missing the statute of limitations period will completely bar you from bringing a lawsuit and receiving payment for your injuries. It is also important to make sure that you don’t wait so long that evidence in your case is lost or the passing of time has created adverse effects in the strength of your lawsuit. Time is always of the essence and speaking with an attorney right after the accident will make sure that you have the strongest possible case and best outcome.
Time Limit to Receive PIP or No-fault Benefits (First party Benefits.) One Year
No fault benefits or personal protection benefits are separate from a lawsuit against the at fault party (third party suit for pain and suffering). Under Michigan law, these PIP benefits are called first party benefits because they are paid by your own insurance company. These benefits include:
- Payment of all reasonable and necessary medical bills that are related to your injuries.
- Wage Loss. You can receive up to 85% percent of your lost wages for the first three years after the accident as long as the reason you can’t go back to work is because of your injuries caused in the accident.
- Attendant Care, at home “nursing” services, such as help getting dressed, administering medical care, and help getting around the house safely.
- Replacement services. Reimbursement of up to 20 dollars a day for things you can no long due because of your injuries. Examples are yard work, house chores, and taking care of children.
- Medical Mileage. You can receive compensation for driving to and from doctors and medical appointments that you are required to attend due to your injuries.
Because these benefits are separate from a pain and suffering lawsuit, there is a different statute of limitations. The statute of limitations for no-fault benefits is one year. Any medical bill, wage loss, attendant care, replacement services, or attendant care performed, cannot be recovered if it was incurred over a year ago. On top of this, if you fail to notify your auto insurance company of your claim within 1 year, it doesn’t matter how old the bill is, the law will prevent you from recovering anything.
The Michigan Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court have been uncompromising in this rule. Consequently, it is extremely important to make sure that you contact an attorney regarding your PIP benefits. If you even suspect that you are not being fully compensated or that your insurance company is not paying your bills, wage loss or other benefits, you have no time to lose. Contact a personal injury attorney right away to protect your rights and make sure that you don’t lose your chance forever.
Property Damage Statute of Limitations – Three years
If you have property damage such and vehicle repair costs, unfortunately in Michigan you can only receive up to $1,000 from the at fault party unless your situation falls into an exception like the parked car exception. To bring this type of action you have three years from the date of the accident.