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Michigan Car Accidents & No-Fault Law

If you're in a car accident in Michigan, there are some important things you need to keep in mind in order to protect your rights. You might be wondering what steps you need to take with regard to your insurance company after a car accident. Generally speaking, one of the first steps you should consider is notifying your auto insurance company following the crash. In some circumstances, failing to timely notify your car insurance company may limit your right to recover for injuries sustained in the accident.

First Party Auto Insurance Claims in Michigan

In Michigan, the rules related to notifying your insurance company are fairly strict. Usually, a one-year time limit applies for you to both notify your own No-Fault insurance company, as well as, to submit an application for benefits under your no-fault insurance policy. This is more commonly called a "first-party" claim.

Third-Party Auto Insurance Claims in Michigan

You should also know that there is a three-year time limit to file a lawsuit against the car insurance company of driver who caused the accident for pain and suffering. This is more commonly called a "third-party" claim.

Michigan is a No-Fault State

At some point, you many have heard that Michigan is a “no-fault state”. The idea behind no-fault is that both parties in a Michigan car accident are entitled to benefits from their insurance companies, regardless of who is responsible for the collision. As you may have already experienced, no-fault laws in Michigan can be quite complicated to understand.

Different insurance policies, workers compensation, and the strict Michigan personal injury threshold law, can all make your claim for benefits more difficult to understand. When you’re injured in a car accident in Michigan, it's always best to speak with an attorney who has experience and knowledge of the law in this area.


  1. Gravatar for aloysious

    "The first thing we must recognize is that crashes are not accidents."

    -Ricardo Martinez, M.D., NHTSA Administrator, 1997

  2. Of course I agree entirely with you. Handling auto accident cases for nearly 20 years, I can say there are almost no true "sudden emergency" accidents or "Acts of God" accidents. The overwhelming majority of crashes are preventable and due to driver's not doing something that they should have, such as braking in time, or doing something that they shouldn't have done, such as driving distracted, texting, and slamming into the rear of another car. However, the word "accident" has entered the popular vernacular, and living in a midwestern state, almost no one in Michigan refers to these as crashes, as they do in some of the southern states. Therefore, to only use the word accident would make this a very lonely blog indeed as very few in Michigan would ever find it to read it if I used words that people didn't in everyday life. But the fight to change the way people refer to these is ongoing. Again, astute observation and thank you for your comment.

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