Michigan car accident victims claiming injury must file a timely written notice of injury or a No-Fault application. This notice of injury filing is what starts the victims’ legal rights to claim needed personal protection insurance benefits to pay for medical bills, household replacement services, and wage loss, which you will need to recover from your injuries and start your road to recovery. What is a No Fault Insurance Application? The No-Fault application is a standardized official form required in the legal process you must take to make a proper claim for PIP benefits after being injured in a car accident. It is also commonly referred to as an “application for No-Fault benefits” or a “written notice of injury.” The statutory benefits you may be entitled to as a result of the timely filing of your No-Fault application include: • Medical Expenses – Your car accident related medical expenses and bills will be covered up to the dollar amount of the PIP medical benefits coverage limit selected in the auto insurance policy when the policy was purchased. • Wage Loss – If your car accident related injuries have disabled you from going to work after your car accident, then your PIP benefits will pay your wages for the time you can’t work. • Household Replacement Services – PIP benefits also will pay up to $20 per day during the first 3 years after your car accident to reimburse whoever helps you with “ordinary and necessary services” that you can no longer do for yourself or the benefit of your family because of injuries in the car accident. • Personal Attendant Care – If your car accident related injuries disable you from personal care like bathing yourself, putting on your clothes, showering, etc., you can have attendant care benefits for up to 24 hours per day and 7 days per week. However, the new no fault reform law limits family and friends provided attendant care to 56 hours per week maximum. However, you can get unlimited hours and days of care from an agency up to the medical coverage limit on the applicable policy.
• Medical Mileage – PIP benefits cover your medical transportation expenses for travel to and from your medical appointments at doctors’ offices, hospitals and rehabilitation and therapy clinics. These covered expenses include your mileage reimbursement, bus fare, taxicab fare or transportation network (Uber or Lyft) charges in the event that you are unable to drive. Where do I file a No-Fault application for benefits? After being injured in an auto accident, you will file an application for benefits with the auto insurance company that provides insurance coverage for you, which is determined by looking at the Michigan laws of “priority” rules. Normally, a car accident injured person will file with his or her own car insurance company. However, if you don’t have your own auto insurance then with the auto insurance company of a resident relative. If there is no household relative with auto insurance, then the car accident claimant victim will file with the application for benefits with Michigan Assigned Claims Plan. The Michigan Assigned Claims Plan will investigate priority and then assign car insurance company to promptly pay your claim for benefits. The rules can be complicated, which is why you need to consult an auto accident insurance law firm immediately. The law has priority rules for every circumstance about which insurance company is responsible to pay no-fault benefits while riding in a bus, taxi, Uber or Lyft, motorcycle, or in a commercial vehicle provided by your employer. Each rule determines which insurance company pays your No-Fault benefits. Sometimes, injury victims or their lawyer make the mistake of filing with the wrong car insurance company. This can easily become a serious problem barring your right to benefits if the time limit lapses for filing a written notice of claim. What information do I include in Written Notice of Injury or the No-Fault application? In either the written notice of injury or the no fault application, a car accident claimant must include his or her name and address and must “indicate in ordinary language . . . the time, place, and nature of the person’s injury.” See MCL 500.3145(4). There are several limitations contained in the no fault statute which must be followed. In Dillon v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company, the Michigan Supreme Court made clear what information a car accident claimant victim must provide in the PIP application for benefits to satisfy the “nature of the person’s injury” requirement: “Taken together, MCL 500.3145(1) requires only the kind of notice that an ordinary layperson can provide. A description of symptoms that are traceable to a diagnosed injury is sufficient to constitute such notice. The statute does not require a claimant to provide a precise medical diagnosis, as this would not constitute ‘ordinary language’. In the present case, after being involved in a motor vehicle accident, the claimant provided timely notice of injuries causing pain to her left shoulder and lower back. Years later, the claimant sought treatment for an injury to her left hip that, according to the jury, was caused by the same accident.” You do not need to state the diagnosis in the application for benefits, but rather the general location of the injury or the symptoms in some plain language, like my neck hurts, my back hurts, headaches, numbness and tingling, etc., would be “ordinary language”. Don't sit on your rights to no-fault insurance benefits. Know your rights to no-fault insurance benefits by speaking to an experienced auto accident attorney today for a free initial consultation. Where do I get a No-Fault application for benefits? Generally, your own car insurance company must provide you the form after you make the claim for injury through your agent or insurance company on the phone. You will need to fill out the no fault benefits application and return it back to the insurance company within 1 year of your auto accident. Get the application for benefits by asking the insurance company for one. However, if your claim is with the Michigan Assigned Claims Plan because you did not have household auto insurance at the time of the accident, the MAIPF has its own claim form for you to complete within the 1 year anniversary of your accident. The Michigan Assigned Claims Plan’s application for benefits can be found here.
What is the deadline for filing an application? Your written notice of injury or No-Fault application for benefits must be given to your car insurance company within one year from the date of your motor vehicle car accident. The statute, you must give your auto insurance company written notice “within 1 year after the accident.” (MCL 500.3145(1). If you fail to give written notice on-time, within one year, from the date of your car accident, then you will forever foreclose your right to claim any no-fault benefits. Your insurance company will hope you don’t know your legal rights, so you blow this 1 year statute of limitation. What happens if I don’t file a timely application for PIP No-Fault benefits? Filing a timely application for benefits is required. If you file after the 1 year deadline, then you will be disqualified from receiving any no fault benefits. You will be time barred. All of your legal rights to claim PIP benefits will end and your legal right to sue any auto insurance for personal insurance protection benefits will end. In Michigan, the auto insurance company is not obligated to pay you any benefits nor can you sue for non-payment if the auto accident victim has failed to file an “application for benefits” with the auto insurance company or somehow provide proper “written notice of injury” to the insurer within one year of the day the car accident happened. You need to file a written notice or apply for no fault benefits WITHIN ONE YEAR of the car accident: This 1 year statute of limitations is critical to the no fault claimant. An all too common scenario, you were involved in a car accident and thought you were going to be ok, but your symptoms got worse over time. You then went to get expensive medical treatment like neck surgery for you thought was a whiplash, which then requires you to be off work. Because failed to submit an application for benefits to the correct car insurance company within one year, you are too late and there is nothing any lawyer can do to help you. You must help yourself within the 1 year statute of limitation for filing a no fault PIP claim. Injured In Accident? Call Michigan Auto Law Attorneys If you or a family member or friend have been injured in a car accident and you have questions about your legal rights to Michigan PIP benefits, you can call toll free at (866) 447-3563 to get your free consultation with one of our experienced auto accident lawyers. We can also provide you with help from an experienced accident lawyer by visiting our contact page.
The Joseph Dedvukaj Firm, P.C. is located in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan and serves the entire State of Michigan. Past results are not a guarantee of future results, and the outcome of your particular case or matter cannot be predicted using a lawyer’s or law firm’s past results. Contacting us through our website does not create an attorney-client privilege. This website is attorney advertising.
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