Our car accident lawyers in Grand Rapids have seen time and time again how car accidents wrack the nerves of our clients. The process to recover compensation for property damage and medical bills, however, doesn’t have to be nerve-wrecking. In Michigan, as a no-fault state, you first file a claim with your own auto insurance company and not the other driver’s insurance carrier. That would seem easy enough. But is it?
Generally speaking, when damages are minimal and injuries are straightforward and insignificant, the process tends to go smoothly if you know what you are doing. But when injuries are more extensive and complex or materialize days or weeks after the accident, your own insurance company may try to deny or reduce coverage. That’s a problem. To prevent this headache and to ensure you get the compensation owed to you, a Grand Rapids car accident attorney is your best option.
Our Grand Rapids car accident attorneys at Goodman Acker use our combined 150+ years of legal experience, insight, and resources to achieve a 99% success rate.
At Goodman Acker, we are not just any old personal injury law firm in Grand Rapids. Our diverse team of highly skilled car accident attorneys treat each client as though they are family. We have been representing our community members in and outside of Grand Rapids for decades, so in many ways, you are family.
But there’s more to know about us that distinguishes our car accident lawyers in Grand Rapids from the rest.
Our reputation is backed by awards and recognition, like inclusion on the Super Lawyers list, an AV Martindale-Hubbell Rating, and a spot on the list of Top 100 Trial Lawyers.
Get an honest review of your car accident case with our committed car accident lawyers in Grand Rapids. Then, get started on the path to recovery and the compensation you deserve. Call us at (248) 306-8729 to talk to our team today.
Unlike most states, which follow the theory of fault liability, Michigan has joined a handful of states that adhere to the theory of no-fault liability for automobile accidents. Claims are handled through personal injury protection (PIP). In simple terms, this means you file an insurance claim with your own auto insurer––even if you were not at fault for the accident.
In at-fault states, the responsibility for covering car accident damages falls on the driver who caused the collision and their respective insurance company. To recover damages, a demand letter is sent to the at-fault party’s auto insurer. The auto insurance company will do all it can to attribute fault to the injured party/victim. It’s the company’s way of reducing or denying claims. The process can, to say the least, become a real hassle when an injured person is trying to recover and pay bills.
It would seem on the face of it that no-fault liability is better. Without the need to prove liability, the claims process often does not involve negotiation with the other parties. However, the policyholder may still have to prove their case. Coverage is not guaranteed. Also, insurance companies prioritize profit regardless of whether they are in Michigan or a fault-based state. As such, they will still try to deny or reduce benefits to injured parties in Grand Rapids.
One way insurance companies deny or reduce benefits is the same here as in fault-based states: they try to attribute fault to the injured party. Michigan follows a modified comparative negligence policy. This policy holds that if you contributed to an accident and were 51% or more at fault, you won’t recover anything. If you were at fault for anything under 50 percent, you can recover, but the value of compensation will be reduced accordingly.
For example, if your auto insurer accuses you of being 25% at fault for the collision, your coverage can be reduced by 25%.
Just because we are a no-fault state, this does not guarantee just and fair compensation for auto accident victims in Grand Rapids.
To ensure you get that compensation, you need an aggressive car accident attorney in Grand Rapids with a 99% success rate and 150+ years of experience from which to draw insight. Call us at (248) 306-8729 for your free consultation.
Under Michigan’s no-fault policy, lawsuits against the at-fault party are rare. If negotiated by a talented Grand Rapids auto accident lawyer, auto insurance companies will adequately compensate their own insureds for:
Your auto insurance company, however, will not pay you for excess economic damages (e.g., loss of earned income, future or ongoing medical treatment, etc.) or non-economic damages for pain and suffering. When you have a valid claim for these damages, you can sue the at-fault party.
But so many injured people fail to understand that they have a claim. The no-fault policy in Michigan adds to this confusion––victims think they can only recover for what their own insurance company will settle.
So, if you have been in a car collision and were injured, it is in your best interests to, at a minimum, speak with us. We offer a free, no-obligation consultation. Plus, you don’t pay anything unless we win.
With a 99% success rate at Goodman Acker, your odds of winning your case are good if our Grand Rapids car accident attorney takes your case.
According to Michigan’s Traffic Crash Reporting System, upwards to 20,000 auto crashes occur in Kent County in any given year. Of that number, one-fifth involve injuries and, to a very limited extent, fatalities. The injuries that are most likely to post challenges to your first-party insurance claim are complex, extensive, or delayed injuries.
For example, if you have an existing health condition and that condition exacerbated the injury, the insurance company may try to argue against full compensation. The same is true if, as another example, you suffered whiplash, but the symptoms do not appear until a few days after the accident. In this example, the insurance company may argue that the whiplash is related to another matter and not necessarily the car accident.
Insurers will also not compensate for pain and suffering or emotional distress caused by extensive bodily injury like:
At Goodman Acker, we are committed to you. We do not settle unless it’s in your best interests. We take on these challenges and pursue whatever course is necessary. And we do it with determination and the strength of our shared 150+ years of experience.
Car insurance claims in Grand Rapids can be tricky and confusing, especially since the no-fault policy is rather new in Michigan. Here, we try to answer some of the most common questions we get daily about car accident claims.
What Should I Do after a Car Accident in Michigan?
There are several things you should do if you’re in a car accident.
After the accident but once the immediate steps are taken, you should request an Application for No-Fault Insurance Benefits from your insurance agent and schedule a consultation with Goodman Acker. Via a free initial consultation, we will discuss the specifics of your auto accident and make sure you know your rights.
How Long Do I Have to File a Car Accident Claim in Grand Rapids?
In Michigan, you have one year to file a claim with your insurance company. In some cases, you may have three years for a personal injury lawsuit stemming from the car accident.
What Types of Accidents Fall under Michigan’s No-Fault law?
All accidents involving automobiles fall under Michigan’s No-Fault law. So, if you were involved in a truck accident or even a motorcycle accident in Grand Rapids, you probably have an insurance claim to file and benefits to request.
How is a Car Accident Settlement Amount Determined in Michigan?
Several factors are taken into consideration when determining a settlement for a Grand Rapids car accident personal injury claim. There is no single answer or set formula to determine the amount. Some factors include:
For a personalized answer, contact our Grand Rapids car accident attorneys at Goodman Acker.
How Can a Grand Rapids Car Accident Lawyer Help Me?
Our team of car accident attorneys in Grand Rapids understands the laws and policies surrounding auto collisions in Michigan. We will take the following steps, at a minimum, to maximize your chances of receiving fair and adequate compensation:
With over 150 years of combined experience, you can rest assured that we will give 100% of our skills and resources to ensure that you get the maximum of what the law allows.
If you’ve been injured in a car accident, reach out to Goodman Acker today. Our team of experienced Grand Rapids car accident attorneys provides clients with the representation and results they deserve. Our focus is always on you.
There’s always a light on at our Grand Rapids office. We are ready to sit down and listen to you. Call us at (248) 306-8729 or use our contact form to schedule your free consultation.
Goodman Acker. Good decision.
We have been helping accident injury victims in Michigan win the maximum settlement for their injuries for 25+ years.
Take a look at what some of our previous clients have to say about the high caliber of the services we provide.
If you have been wrongly injured, we would be happy to review the specific details of your case to determine how we can help.