Protect your legal rights after a motorcycle accident in Michigan

An injured of a motorcycle accident may undergo terrifically severe injuries, which may need admission to a hospital, surgery and medical treatment for long time. Commonly, persons injured by motorcycle accidents never fully get back their ability to come back to school or work or to carry on previous personal activities. If you or any of your family members encounter a motorcycle accident as an operator or rider of a motorcycle, you should protect your legal rights. Contact an experienced Michigan motorcycle accident attorney before you speak to the insurance company. If you sign inaccurate papers, chances are that you will forego all your legal claims or settle for far less than you actually deserve. Therefore, consult with an experienced Michigan motorcycle accident lawyer to protect your legal rights. Michigan motorcycle accident attorneys can also explain the relevant laws to you.

Motorcycle helmet law of Michigan

As per the new motorcycle helmet law of Michigan, motorcycle operators or riders, who are twenty one years of age or above, and meet specified conditions, can lawfully ride in Michigan without wearing a helmet. Under the motorcycle helmet law, motorcycle operators are required to purchase $20,000 in No-Fault PIP coverage in case of a motorcycle crash. If a motorcycle operator fails to wear a motorcycle helmet, it will not disqualify a motorcycle operator injured in a motorcycle accident from filing a lawsuit. However, failure to wear a helmet may decrease the amount of money recovered in a personal injury lawsuit under Michigan law, if it is proved that the absence of a helmet made the injuries worse.

Negligence lawsuit for a motorcycle accident

If a motorcycle operator is at fault for an accident and is sued in a negligence lawsuit for personal injuries, he/she will usually be legally liable for all of the damages he caused. The title-owner of the motorcycle will also be liable if the operator is not the owner of the motorcycle. If a motorcycle operator or rider is killed in a motorcycle accident, compensation for wrongful death is regulated by the Michigan Wrongful Death Act. A Michigan motorcycle accident victim may need to file an uninsured motorist (UM) claim if the car or truck driver who caused the accident cannot be identified.

First-party claim

First-party claim, which is also known as a no-fault or personal injury protection (PIP) claim, is between the motorcycle accident victim and the insurance company that provides no-fault benefits. These benefits include wage loss for the first three years after the accident, medical expenses connected to the motorcycle accident, payment for mileage to and from medical appointments and attendant care and household replacement services. A first-party claim will have to be made within one year from the date of the motorcycle accident as per the provisions of statute of limitations.

Third-party claim

Third-party claim is also known as a negligence claim or a tort claim. A third-party claim is a lawsuit which is filed against the negligent driver guilty for causing the motorcycle accident. The damages available under a third-party claim after a motorcycle accident include damages for pain and suffering and excess economic losses. A third-party claim is to make within three years from the date of the motorcycle accident as per the provisions of statute of limitations.

Determining no-fault benefits after a motorcycle crash

To determine whether Michigan no-fault benefits will apply, types of motorcycle accidents are considered. Motorcycle collisions can be with an automobile which is not parked. In this type of accident, the motorcycle operator will qualify for no fault benefits. However, if the motorcycle operator is the title owner of the motorcycle, he/she must have motorcycle insurance of his/her motorcycle; otherwise, he/she will be not be qualified for the benefits. For all other situations including crashes with parked automobiles, the motorcycle does not meet the criteria for usual auto no-fault benefits.

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