Under Michigan law, you can sue the driver that caused the accident for pain and suffering compensation as well as other non-economic damages.
This is called a negligence claim or in Michigan, a third-party claim. In a Michigan negligence lawsuit, you are seeking compensation because of the negligence, or fault, of another driver or vehicle owner.
From Whom Can I Get Pain and Suffering Compensation?
Typically, you can get pain and suffering compensation from either the car insurance company for the driver that caused the accident, or even the owner of the vehicle under the Michigan Owner’s Liability Statute. However, you must prove the other driver was at least 50% at fault for causing the accident.
How Injured Must I Be To Receive Pain and Suffering?
To receive pain and suffering compensation under Michigan law, you must have sustained what’s called a “threshold injury.” The three categories for threshold injury in Michigan are (1) death, (2) permanent serious disfigurement, and (3) serious impairment of body function.
Most Michigan car accident and Michigan truck accident cases involve the last category – serious impairment of body function. The meaning of this phrase has changed numerous times over the years, but the currently accepted definition says a Michigan car accident victim or Michigan truck accident victim must show an objectively manifested impairment of an important body function that affects his or her ability to lead a normal life.
What Other Benefits Can I Get in a Michigan Negligence Case?
In addition to pain and suffering, negligent drivers are also responsible for paying excess wage loss, even if you have not sustained a “threshold injury.”
This means even if you have not sustained a serious impairment of body function, you can still recover lost wages that exceed the statutory maximum amount available under first-party claims. Lost wages that extend beyond the 3 years paid by the no-fault insurance company are paid by the negligent driver’s insurance company.
Proving a threshold injury or winning lost wages beyond three years is not easy and usually entails the professional help of an attorney. The Law Offices of Lee Steinberg has been helping Michigan car accident victims for over 40 years obtain the pain and suffering compensation they deserve. Our experienced team of Michigan car accident lawyers and Michigan truck accident lawyers are experts.
Call our office today. You pay nothing unless we win your Michigan car accident case. Let us help you by calling 1-800-LEE-FREE (1-800-533-3733).
Ask Lee Free
Q:In personal injury cases, what amount of compensation is typically awarded for pain and suffering?
This depends on a lot of factors, including the amount of insurance coverage available, the severity of injuries
and how long the injuries and impairments last. In Michigan, there are strict rules in getting money for pain and suffering so it’s important to contact a Michigan car accident lawyer if you have been injured in an accident.