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Moss & Colella

Michigan Auto Accident Lawyers

Michigan Auto Accident Lawyers

Dedicated to Serving You

Motorcycle Accidents

Motorcycle accidents in Michigan can present special challenges for crash victims and their lawyers: Under Michigan’s No-Fault insurance laws, a motorcycle is not considered a motor vehicle. Still, there are exceptions that allow a person injured in a motorcycle accident to recover No-Fault insurance benefits and compensation for pain and suffering. Our motorcycle accident lawyers can help you.

Auto Accident

If you’ve been injured in a car accident in Michigan, you may be asking yourself, “Do I even need a lawyer in my situation?” Having the right car accident lawyer makes an enormous difference, not only in higher settlements, but in protecting your legal rights. Know the clock is ticking after a car accident. Michigan has a very strict one-year time limit for auto accident victims to recover important No-Fault insurance benefits like medical bills and wage loss.

Truck Accident

The state of Michigan has minimal load restrictions for semi-trucks. For this reason, truck drivers and trucking companies take every opportunity to pass through our state. They leave torn up highways in their path. Even worse, when they fail to follow the proper safety precautions, they can cause serious accidents. We are committed to holding them accountable for their negligence. When you choose Moss & Colella to handle your case you are choosing a top law firm to handle your case.

Michigan Auto Accident Facts

Dedicated to Serving You

Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Benefits/No Fault

Under Michigan law, if you are injured as a result of a motor vehicle accident, whether you are a driver or passenger, you are entitled to make a claim for Personal Injury Protection (“PIP”) benefits.  MCL 500.3114. In most cases, PIP benefits are paid by your own automobile insurance company regardless of who may be “at fault” for the accident.   Under this “No Fault” law, the injured person may be entitled to the following PIP benefits:

  1. Any and all reasonable and necessary medical expenses (which are not paid by a primary health care provider);
  1. Wage loss (85% of your gross weekly wage);
  1. Household replacement services (up to $20.00 per day);
  1. Attendant Care (reimbursement for skilled nursing care);
  1. Mileage (transportation to and from your medical visits only; and
  2. Home modification (if necessary).

In order to obtain your PIP benefits, you must file an “Application For No Fault Benefits” with your automobile insurance carrier within one (1) year of the date of the accident.  If you do not file your claim within the one year time period, you could lose your rights to certain benefits.

Once the claim has been made, your auto insurance company has 30 days to pay benefits.  If the insurance company fails to pay the benefits as required, it may become liable to you for interest (12% per year) and attorney fees.  As a practical matter, insurance companies usually do not start payment of benefits until between 60 and 90 days of the accident. After the benefits begin, pending any suspension or termination of the benefits, you can expect to receive your benefit payments on a 30 day basis.

In the event that the insurance company fails, neglects, or refuses to pay your PIP benefits, you should retain a lawyer immediately to assist you.  While there are certainly instances where a person can be ineligible for benefits, i.e., operating an automobile without the requisite insurance coverage required under Michigan law [MCL 500.3101], often times, the insurance company is simply trying to save money by denying your claim.  If you have questions about the legitimacy of a denial of benefits, you need to call the experts at Moss & Colella, P.C.!   We will quickly analyze your case and provide you with the answers and representation you need to obtain the benefits you are rightfully entitled to.  

Negligence – “Pain and Suffering”

In addition to PIP benefits, a person injured as a result of a motor vehicle accident may also be entitled to compensation for “pain and suffering.”  To obtain money damages for “pain and suffering” the injured person must make a claim against the driver(s) responsible for causing the accident. This is typically referred to as a  “third-party” or “negligence” claim. A negligence claim is one that is asserted against the at fault driver and their insurance company. To recover money for “pain and suffering,” the injured person must establish the following:

 

  1. Negligence on the part of the other driver(s);
  2. Injury;
  3. The injuries were a direct result or consequence of the accident (and not attributable to some other factor such as age, disease, prior injury etc.);
  4. The injuries have been objectively diagnosed (i.e., Ct -Scan, MRI, X ray or some other diagnostic medical testing); and
  5. The injuries sustained in the accident constitute a “serious impairment of important body function” and/or “serious permanent disfigurement.
  6. Damages (losses, out of pocket expenses, excess economic damages, pain and suffering and other non-economic harms resulting from the accident).

Under current Michigan Supreme Court case of  Kreiner v Fischer, 471 Mich 106 (2004), in order for an injury to be considered a “serious impairment,” it must contain these factors: 1) an objective manifestation of injury, i.e, diagnosed by objective medical testing, 2) effecting an  important body function, 3) substantially impairing the persons ability to lead his or her normal life. Today, these factors are decided by the Court, however, this case is under Supreme Court review and the criteria for “serious impairment” may be amended.

It is important to note that insurance companies do not deal fairly with unrepresented individuals.  Therefore, it is very important to hire an experienced trial law firm to represent you. Often times, automobile accident cases can produce very substantial money settlements and verdicts, however, if you choose the wrong lawyer, the results can be disappointing.  

Moss & Colella P.C. has been representing victims of car accidents in Wayne, Oakland, Macomb County as well as across the state of Michigan for over 3 decades.  We are experienced, knowledgeable and tough trial lawyers who will fight hard and win for you! So if losing is not an option and you can’t afford to lose, please call us at 1-1800-MUST WIN (1-800-687-8946) to schedule a FREE consultation today.  The phone call is free and the advice is free – and you will not pay a fee unless we WIN your case.

III. Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Benefits

Uninsured Motorist (UM) Claim

In some cases, a person may become injured in an automobile accident, by another driver who does not have automobile insurance on his/her vehicle.  In that case, if your automobile insurance policy includes Uninsured Motorist (UM) coverage, you may bring a claim against your own insurance company to recover money for your “pain and suffering.”  This is referred to as a UM claim. In order to recover money under the UM provision of your policy, the following requirements must be met:

(1) Your automobile policy includes UM coverage;

(2) The driver responsible for the accident did not have insurance at the time of the accident (uninsured);

(3) The uninsured driver was negligent;

(4) You were injured;

(5) Your injuries were caused ( or aggravated) by the accident;

(6) The injuries constitute a “serious impairment of an important body function” and/or “permanent serious disfigurement”;

(7) Damages (losses, out of pocket expenses, excess economic damages, pain and suffering and other non-economic harms resulting from the accident).

While there are a number of factors that can bear on the value of a UM claim, the amount of UM coverage is a primary consideration.  Most individual automobile insurance agents will recommend UM coverages starting from $20,000.00 up to $500,000.00. However, if you pay a slightly higher premium, you may obtain UM coverage in upwards of a million (1,000,000.00) dollars.  Our firm strongly suggests that UM coverage be purchased in an amount no less than $100,000.00 to adequately insure you and your family, if you are involved in a serious accident.

In many policies, the period for which to make a claim for UM benefits is shortened to 1 year (and in some cases 6 months).  Currently, our firm has been granted leave to the Michigan Supreme Court to challenge these “shortened” limitations periods. Idalski v State Farm

However, until the Idalski case is heard and decided by the Supreme Court, it is important to recognize that you may have a limited time to file your claim.  If you have any questions about your policy, coverage, or limitations, please call our office to schedule a free consultation.  We are experienced, knowledgeable and tough trial lawyers who will fight hard and win for you!  So if losing is not an option and you can’t afford to lose, please call us at 1-1800-MUST WIN (1-800-687-8946) to schedule a FREE consultation today.  The phone call is free and the advice is free – and you will not pay a fee unless we WIN your case.

Underinsured Motorist (UIM) Benefits

In some cases, a negligent driver may be underinsured.  A driver is underinsured if his bodily injury liability coverage is inadequate to cover the nature and extent of the injuries caused by his or her negligent or careless driving.  Under Michigan law, a driver is not required to carry more than $20,000.00 in bodily injury coverage. Therefore, if a driver who is carrying the minimum insurance coverage causes an accident that results in serious injury or death, the maximum amount the injured party could receive from threat driver’s insurance company would be $20,000.00.  

However, many automobile insurance companies offer Underinsured Motorist (“UIM”) benefits.  Under a UIM policy, a person who sustains a serious injury due to the negligence of an underinsured driver, may make a claim to his own automobile insurance company to recover the difference.  For example, if a person is seriously injured in an automobile accident with a driver who is covered under the minimum insurance limits of $20,000.00 and the injured person has $100,000.00 in UIM coverage, the injured person can collect the $20,000.00 from the negligent driver’s insurance company and up to $80,000.00 from his/her own automobile insurance company.

Like Uninsured Motorist (UM) claims, many auto insurance companies require the policy holder to provide “notice” of a UIM claim.  Some policies require notice within 1 year of an accident or less. Moreover, many prominent auto insurance companies in the State of Michigan attempt to contractually shorten the 3 year limitations period on these claims.   While our firm is fighting to change this law, it remains in effect today. Therefore, it is crucial to review your policy and consult an attorney as soon after an accident as possible.

Michigan Auto Accident Facts

Dedicated to Serving You

Damages Recoverable for an Injured Client

If you are injured in a auto accident, you are entitled to make a claim for non-economic damages commonly referred to as “pain and suffering.” But recovering money for your pain, suffering and injuries is not the only compensation you may be entitled to. The negligent driver may also be responsible for excess economic loss. In cases involving death, the estate of the auto accident victim can pursue a wrongful death claim against the at fault motor vehicle driver. Injured auto accident victims must be very careful in how they approach a potential liability claim because, in most situations, the insurer of the motor vehicle involved in the accident will be “wearing two hats.” In other words, the insurer will be responsible for payment of no-fault PIP benefits to the injured auto accident victim and will also be the insurer defending the auto accident victim’s liability claim. In these situations, the auto accident victims must exercise extreme caution in his or her dealings with the motor vehicle insurer. Hiring our firm immediately following an accident will prevent a costly mistake which could jeopardize the value of your case.

Damage to your Car

If a car is physically damaged as a result of being struck by another car, truck or other motor vehicle as defined in the Michigan No-Fault Law and that motor vehicle is insured with Michigan No-Fault insurance, the vehicle owner will not be able to recover any compensation for collision damage to the vehicle – not even so called “mini-tort” damages that are available to automobiles. However, if the motor vehicle causing the damage to the car did not carry the required Michigan No-Fault insurance coverage, then the owner and/or operator of the uninsured motor vehicle is personally liable for the damage to the car.

In situations where a automobile was “reasonably parked” at the time the collision damage was sustained, the vehicle owner would be entitled to make a claim for “property protection insurance benefits” from the insurer of the motor vehicle causing the damage to the parked car. These property protection insurance benefits consist of the repair costs or replacement value of the car, less depreciation, plus the value of loss of use of the car. 

Our Attorneys

Dedicated to Serving You
Senior Partner and Principal Shareholder and Co-Founder
A. Vince Colella
Founding Partner
Ryan Piekarski
Associate Attorney
Victor Balta
Associate Attorney
Associate Attorney
Dedicated To Serving You

Detroit Auto Accident Law Firm

For more information about what an experienced auto accident attorney can do for you, e-mail us or call us at 1-800-MUSTWIN (1-800-687-8946). Our law firm provides strong representation in auto accident injury and wrongful death cases for people in Detroit, throughout Michigan, and in selected cases across the country. We will immerse ourselves in your case. Our team consists of investigators and experts experienced in serious automobile accidents. Moss & Colella has obtained millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements for our automobile accident clients. We will do what it takes to obtain the compensation you are owed. If you or a loved one has been in a motor vehicle accident that resulted in serious personal injury, we are here for you. If you have lost a loved one in a fatal car accident, we are ready to stand by your side.

We Know How to Win Car Accident Cases

We know what it takes to get results.

Our record for success is the reason other attorneys turn to us when they need help. They send their clients to us because they know that we are not afraid to go to trial. We have the energy, the knowledge and the creativity to win even complex automobile accident cases.
If other lawyers trust us enough to handle their cases, shouldn’t you?

Contact us today to tell us about your car accident case and find out what we can do to help.

Verdicts & Settlements

Dedicated to Serving You

Police Shooting

Officers were called to the home of a man suspected of an overdose. The man refused medical care and allegedly attempted to kick one of the officers, resulting in an officer firing his weapon. His weapon struck.The defense offered: $5,000.00 prior to trial. The Jury Verdict was:

 $495,000

Michigan Sexual Harassment Lawyer

Sexual Harassment

At a national restaurant chain, a female kitchen staff employee was a victim of sexual harassment. This harassment ultimately forced her to quit her job when the employer failed to take the necessary measures to stop the harassment. The verdict was:

 

 $100,000

 

Jail Death

When discussing the criminal justice system, death and negligence should never be in the same sentence. In this case, failure to properly house a mentally ill inmate resulted in inmate- on- inmate assault, ultimately leading to an inmate death. The settlement was:

 

 $600,000

 

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Client Testimonials

  • “Words can not express how grateful I am for the outcome of this case. It was truly a blessing to have this resolved sooner than expected. But without your help and my faith in your firm along with my faith on God, this may not have been possible. I appreciate everything you have done in orchestrating everything to this resolve, for your time and effort meant the world to me. I thank my friend for putting me in touch with such a talented group of people. You will always be considered my attorneys of choice for anything that comes up in the future that would render your services. This year has definitely been many blessings so far and I welcome many more to come. Thank you again for everything and may you continue to be blessed.”

    Janene
    Mother of Client
  • “I am very relieved and very happy with the outcome. I appreciate everything you and your firm did to see this through and I will be grateful for that always. You all came highly recommended and now I see why based on what you did in helping my son through a very challenging moment in his life. We will always be your fans:) Thank you again and may you always be Blessed…”

    Client
    Mother of Client
  • I do not only count on you as one bad ass lawyer, but also a friend. None of this would be possible without you. My deepest gratitude to you, Vic and all of the Moss & Colella team.

    Actual Client
  • I just wanted to thank you for putting your time and effort into my case. You did a wonderful job last Thursday. You are what people say you are, a wonderful lawyer.

    Adam
  • Very few people on this earth impress me. You are one of the very few. My family and I thank you for all you did. You are a good man!

    Jason
  • Other law firms would not take my case, they said it was too complicated. But David Moss took my case and got the result I was looking for in almost no time at all. I’m glad I didn’t listen to those other lawyers.

    Actual Client

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