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Auto Accidents Attorney in Grand Rapids, Michigan

West Michigan Uninsured Motorist Personal Injury Lawyer

Have You or Someone You Know Been Involved in an Accident with an Uninsured Motorist?

Uninsured Motorist (UM) in Michigan

Uninsured Motorist coverage protects drivers against hit and run drivers and uninsured drivers for bodily injuries caused in an accident. More and more in these economic times, you will see people that obtain car insurance on the internet only to license the car and then quit paying their insurance. If you are injured by an uninsured motorist with no assets, how do you recover for your pain and suffering? The answer is that you have the right to make your claim under the uninsured portion of your policy. So, make sure you have adequate policy limits so you are not left out in the cold by someone else's negligent driving.

Underinsured Motorist (UIM) Coverage in Michigan

Underinsured Motorist coverage is like uninsured except the negligent party does have insurance, but with only minimum policy limits of coverage. For instance, if you are severely injured by a driver with only $20,000.00 policy limits and you have underinsured motorist coverage of $250,000.00, you would be able to make a claim against your policy for the difference of $230,000.00.

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Grand Rapids Premier Truck and Auto Accident Lawyer

West Michigan Auto Accident Attorney

Michigan Auto Accidents claims are made under the rules and statutes called The Michigan No-fault Act

Why is the Law called No-Fault?

No-fault basically means that both parties involved in a car accident or truck accident are entitled to benefits from their own insurance company, no matter who caused the accident. These benefits are referred to as 1st party benefits. However, you may be entitled to non-economic damages for pain and suffering from the at-fault party. These benefits are called 3rd party benefits. Gerald R Stahl is a Grand Rapids personal injury attorney who helps people recover money damages for their pain and suffering after a serious car crash injury.

Payment of Medical Bills and Expenses

When someone is injured in an auto accident in Michigan, they will need to have their medical bills covered by insurance. Consequently, they will file a claim for the first party benefits with their own no-fault insurance company. If they do not have their own coverage, then they will file a claim with the insurance company that insures the vehicle in which they were traveling. Remember, every car in Michigan is required to have insurance.

First party benefits are commonly referred to as personal injury protection benefits. If you are injured and have a valid insurance policy on your vehicle, your insurance company will be required to pay your medical costs and expenses for treatment. You will also be entitled to lost income for a period of up to three years. Of course, your lost income will have to be documented by tax returns and other methods of verification.

In addition, you will also be reimbursed for the necessary services performed for your personal or household benefit. You are even entitled to mileage reimbursement for travel necessary for seeking medical care and rehabilitation. Of course, like any request for benefits, you must document your travel expenses with specificity.

Priority in Personal Injury Protection Benefits Under Michigan No-Fault Law

Under Michigan No-Fault law, MCLA Section 500.3114(1), there is an order of priority regarding how Personal Injury Protection benefits are paid on behalf of a person suffering accidental bodily injury arising out of a motor vehicle accident. The order of priority is listed below:

  1. If you own an insured auto, your carrier has the highest order of priority. The claim should be submitted to your insurance carrier for consideration; if none, then to your spouse's auto insurance carrier.

  2. If you do not own an insured auto, but live with a relative who does, that person could be considered a resident relative and benefits would be applied under their auto policy.

  3. The next priority is the insurer of the owner or registrant of the vehicle occupied.

  4. The next priority is the insurer of the operator of the vehicle.

  5. If there is no other policy, a claim should be made with the Michigan Assigned Claims Facility.

  6. In Michigan, all injured persons fall back on their own automobile insurance policies, or in the order listed above, for motor vehicle accidents. It is recommended that you pursue the availability of coverage from the proper carrier, as outlined above. You have one year from the date of loss to file a claim with the appropriate automobile insurance company.

Michigan Third-Party Benefits (Monetary Damages for Pain and Suffering)

The question in Michigan is when can I sue the person that injured me in an auto accident or caused an auto accident death. After a car crash, you are entitled to recover pain and suffering if you sustained a serious impairment of an important bodily function and the other party was more than 50% at fault. If the other party to the accident was negligent and you were seriously injured you an experienced car crash lawyer. Even if you are seriously injured as a passenger, and the driver of your vehicle was negligent, you need an experienced auto injury lawyer.

In the event that you are seriously injured in an auto accident, you should consult an auto accident lawyer. Gerald R Stahl is an experienced auto accident attorney. Gerald R Stahl will be able to analyze your No-Fault case in order to determine whether you have a good claim for pain and suffering after an auto accident. Gerald R Stahl has been helping accident victims and auto crash victims recover money damages in Western Michigan since 1982.

What is Considered Negligence in Michigan?

Among the factors that may be considered negligence in an auto or truck accident are:

  • The Driver is speeding or driving too fast for conditions.

  • Drunk Driving

  • Failure to yield right of way

  • Failure to observe traffic ordinances such as stop signs, red traffic lights, and other traffic signs

  • Reckless or careless driving

  • Failure to use headlights, brakes or other mechanical failures

  • Text messaging or talking on the cell phone

In Michigan no-fault 3rd party cases, Gerald R Stahl does not charge an attorney fee unless the client recovers money damages.

For the best personal injury representation call Attorney Gerald R. Stahl in Grand Rapids. Call for a free case evaluation.

Also, if you are a passenger in a car where the driver is at fault, you may also have a claim for pain and suffering. Gerald R Stahl is a Grand Rapids Auto and Truck Accident Attorney that aids clients to recover money and put their life back in order after a serious injury accident.

Serious Impairment of Bodily Function

After a car crash in order to recover non-economic damage for pain and suffering in Michigan, you must have threshold injuries. Threshold injuries are death, serious impairment of bodily function or permanent serious disfigurement. By law, the serious impairment of bodily function must be objectively manifested. That means you will need evidence such as doctors to document that the injuries are serious. As part of the Michigan case law, the injury must affect your ability to live a normal life. Some injuries such as closed head injuries are subject to different rules and standards under the law. The law regarding threshold injuries is constantly changing and being discussed by the Supreme Court of the State of Michigan.

Gerald R Stahl is an experienced auto accident attorney in Grand Rapids that aggressively represents clients injured after an auto accident. Gerald R Stahl has recovered millions of dollars for clients wrongfully injured by negligent drivers. Gerald R Stahl will help take the stress out of your Michigan No-Fault claim.

Michigan Case Law in Auto Accidents

The Michigan Supreme Court recently ruled in favor of victims who seek compensation for injuries for pain and suffering after a car accident. The new case decided in August of 2010 is McCormick v Carrier. In McCormick v Carrier, the Supreme Court allows recovery for persons who suffer a serious impairment of bodily function if the injuries affect his or her normal life.

The importance of this case is to allow victims of car crashes and semi crashes to recover non-economic damages or pain and suffering as a result of their injuries if their normal life is affected by their injuries. Under the old case law prior to the McCormick decision, the injury would have to completely alter an accident victim's life before they were entitled to recovery. Under the Michigan No-Fault Act, a person is entitled to recover non-economic damages for pain and suffering so long as they sustain a serious impairment of bodily function or what is commonly referred to as threshold injuries.

The first requirement in making a recovery is that the accident victim is not more than 50% at fault in causing the accident. Secondly, the court should determine if the victim sustained a serious impairment of bodily function. In order to determine a serious impairment of bodily function, the injuries must be objectively manifested, and they must affect an important bodily function that finally affects a victim’s general ability to lead his or her normal life. Gerald R Stahl is a highly skilled auto accident attorney that will fight for the most money damages for your injuries.

As an auto accident attorney with over 30 years of experience, Gerald R Stahl recommends you always seek medical treatment for your injuries after a car or truck accident in Michigan.

Receiving medical treatment should be a top priority after an auto or truck accident in Michigan. Better safe than sorry. Injuries are not always readily apparent to a person that is startled or traumatized by a serious accident. If you do not seek medical attention the insurance may claim that your injuries are not a result of the car or truck accident.

Services We Perform for Clients

  • Identify responsible parties including owners and drivers of all vehicles

  • Investigate & photograph the accident scene

  • Use accident reconstruction experts

  • File necessary claim forms

  • Obtain medical documents & reviews by medical experts

  • Draft Settlement Proposals or litigate if necessary

  • Keep the client informed of case progress

The Law Offices of Gerald R Stahl serve Kent County Auto Accidents, Allegan County Auto Accidents, and Ottawa County Auto Accidents

How We Help Our Clients With Serious Injury

We do hospital visits, help fill out claim forms, and always keep clients informed. If there is anything we can do to make our clients recovery easier we do it. At the Law Offices of Gerald R Stahl, we take pride in our service to the injured victim after an auto accident in Michigan.

The Law Offices of Gerald R. Stahl has handled numerous cases involving car or semi-truck accidents in Western Michigan and recovered millions of dollars in claims for victims in these types of cases. He routinely represents the seriously injured victim of auto crashes. Gerald R Stahl handles auto accidents in all West Michigan Counties, including Kent, Allegan, Barry, and Ottawa.

“Better Call Stahl” Grand Rapids Personal Injury Lawyer

If you have been seriously injured in an automobile accident or semi-truck accident in Michigan, call Gerald R Stahl. There is no attorney fee unless the client recovers money damages. Gerald R Stahl is a Grand Rapids Auto and Truck Accident Attorney that will fight for the best money recovery for your injuries.

The law offices of Gerald R.Stahl have handled automobile accident cases in Grand Rapids and surrounding Western Michigan Counties since 1982. We have the experience to fight big insurance companies and maximize the amount of money you receive for your injuries. If you are looking for an auto accident lawyer in Grand Rapids, MI please contact Gerald R Stahl today! Gerald R Stahl is conveniently located on Grand Rapids on East Beltline near Knapp’s corner and the 63rd District Court.