Golf Cart Accident Attorneys - Lee Steinberg Law Firm

I'll Be Right There

Request Free Consultation

Michigan Golf Cart Accident Attorneys

golf cart accident attorneys

Golf cart accidents have occurred since these machines were first invented. However, the use of golf carts now extends far beyond the golf course. Nowadays, many communities, condominiums, homeowners’ associations and even townships allow golf carts to be used on streets and roadways.

In 2014, Michigan passed a law that permitted communities to adopt an ordinance allowing the use of golf carts on community roadways. This law led to a dramatic increase in golf cart use for families as a means of transportation. Unfortunately, this has also led to an increase in the amount of golf cart injuries.

A person injured due to a golf cart accident can hold the responsible person accountable, just like an auto accident. However, golf cart injury cases are very fact specific. They require the experience of a Michigan golf cart accident attorney to ensure the correct defendant(s) are included and the correct claims are made. 

Golf Car Accidents on Roadways

Golf cart accidents on roadways are not rare. In fact, they have been increasing as the number of golf carts used by Michigan residents have increased. Although they are not the same thing as a car, a golf cart operator must follow the same rules.

The driver must proper due care and caution when driving. The driver must stop for all pedestrian traffic and other traffic that has the right of way. Failing to do can result in a citation.

There are special rules for golf cart drivers and when they can be operated. First, a golf cart can be operated on a street if the population of the village or city is less than 30,000. However, that city, township or village must approve the use of golf carts on its streets. So a person cannot just drive a golf cart wherever they want. In addition, the city may require the golf carts and their drivers be recorded on a list.

Further, a golf cart driver must be at least 16 years-old and have a driver’s license. The driver can only drive during daylight hours and may not go faster than 15 mph or operate the golf cart on a roadway that has a speed limit greater than 30 mph.

A golf cart driver can be held responsible for the injuries he or she causes to a pedestrian or another person. On the other hand, the operator or a car or truck can also be held responsible for crashing into a golf cart if they are at-fault for the accident.

Golf Cart Accidents on a Golf Course

Golf course accidents that result in injury are viable cases. If a person is driving a golf cart without proper care, and the driver injures a passenger or other golfer, the driver can be held liable for the injuries that occur. This is true if the injury takes place on the course, on the cart path, on a sidewalk or near the pro shop.

Typically, the homeowners’ insurance carrier for the at-fault golf cart driver will pay the claim. But these cases are very fact specific. And an injury that occurs from the normal course of driving may not result in compensation. It is best to contact a Michigan golf cart accident attorney to find out your rights.

It depends. First, under the law to get first-party no-fault PIP benefits a motor vehicle must be involved in the accident. A golf cart is not a motor vehicle under the law. In fact, under the Insurance Code a golf cart is specifically excluded as a motor vehicle. MCL 500.31013(i)(v).

The only way a person injured in a golf cart accident can receive personal injury protection benefits is if the golf cart was involved in an accident with a motor vehicle. If this occurs, both the driver and any passengers can apply for first-party benefits. These benefits include the payment of hospital bills, doctors’ bills, lost wages, out-of-pocket costs, replacement services and other benefits.

Yes, a person can sue an operator of a golf cart, but only if they were negligent in driving the vehicle. This includes golfers, pedestrians or even other motorists. It also includes other individuals using a golf cart on a course or on a roadway.

Golf cart crashes are handled much the same way as standard car accidents. The plaintiff must prove the golf cart driver was operating the vehicle in an unreasonable manner that was unsafe. Golf cart drivers have an obligation to obey the rules of the road.

Because golf carts are not motor vehicles, auto insurance does not cover these incidents. Instead, typically the golf cart owner’s homeowners’ insurance is responsible. But coverage can be an issue in golf cart crash accidents. If the golf cart owner did not tell their homeowners’ insurance company about a new golf cart they purchased, then the carrier may not cover an accident caused by the homeowner or one of his or her residents.   

Sometimes the condominium association or homeowners’ association (HOA) is responsible for the golf cart coverage. But it depends on where the crash occurred and who was driving the golf cart. In these situations, a detailed look at the insurance policies of everyone and every entity involved is required.

An experienced Michigan golf cart accident lawyer can help you find the correct defendants and the correct insurance coverage.

More than 20 communities have adopted a golf cart ordinance allowing them to be driven on a street. It is best to check with your own community to see if you are allowed to drive a golf cart on a city of street in your town.

The following is not an exhaustive list, but these communities do allow golf cart operation on its streets and roadways: Albion, Algonac, Birmingham, Burton, Coloma, Elsie, Gibraltar, Harrison, Homer, Lake Isabella, Ludington, Marine City, Memphis, Milford, Millington, Morenci, New Baltimore, North Muskegon, Orchard Lake, Owosso, Perry, Pewamo, Richmond, Sebewaing, Sturgis, Swartz Creek and Watervliet.

Golf Cart Drinking and Driving

Just like a person operating a car, a person may not operate a golf cart while legally intoxicated. In fact, the driver can be arrested just like a standard drunk driver. If the drunk driver causes injuries to passengers on the golf cart, the driver and owner of the cart can he held responsible for compensation.

Our team of Michigan golf cart accident attorneys have handled cases involving alcohol and golf cart crashes. These cases are very fact specific. Special attention must be given to proving liability because police reports are not always made. It is vital to collect witness statements and photographic evidence of the crash and injuries.

Golf Cart Injury Statistics

One of the biggest dangers for golf carts is the number of injuries sustained by children from them every year. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, more than 6,500 children are injured from golf carts every year. During a 10-year study, researchers found a total of 63,501 injuries to children under the age of 18 due to golf carts. Further, according to the study more males were injured than females and the most common injury involved the head and neck.

In total, roughly 15,000 people are injured by a golf cart every year. From 2007-2017, data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System showed that an estimated 156,040 people received emergency room treatment for golf cart-related injuries.

Golf Cart Accident Lawyers Ready to Help You

The Lee Steinberg Law Firm has been aggressively fighting for our clients for close to 50 years. Our team of Michigan personal injury lawyers handle all types of cases, including golf cart crashes. Let us answer your questions and get started helping you today.

There is a never a fee or any costs until we win your case. Call us at 1-800-LEE-FREE (1-800-533-3733).