Insurance policies are often purchased once and never looked at again until they’re needed after an accident occurs. But with many different options available for car insurance, it can be unclear what you need and what you don’t need. An experienced personal injury attorney can assist you in reviewing your insurance policy to ensure that when an accident occurs, you’re covered in all the ways that matter most. Our team of experienced Michigan car accident lawyers at Fieger Law is ready to assist you – contact us today.
No-Fault Auto Insurance in Michigan
Michigan is a “no-fault” insurance state, meaning that every driver’s insurance generally pays for their own damages, and claims are filed with a driver’s own insurance company. Exceptions apply to the “no-fault” rules, including when an accident causes serious injuries to another person and the person’s own insurance doesn’t provide enough coverage to pay for their injuries.
But in general, Michigan law requires drivers to carry insurance policies on their vehicles that include all the following: personal injury protection (PIP), property protection insurance (PPI), and residual coverage for bodily injuries and property damage. While these coverages can be confusing, with assistance from a car accident lawyer, Michigan residents can ensure that their insurance policies are fully compliant and protective.
Personal Injury Protection (PIP)
Personal injury protection insurance, commonly known as PIP, covers your own expenses if you are involved in a car accident. Depending on your specific plan, PIP can cover medical expenses, lost wages, replacement services, and in-home healthcare up to a certain amount set by your plan. Notably, PIP coverage does not apply to another person’s injuries.
Some insurance plans provide unlimited PIP coverage, while others provide lesser amounts. In Michigan, most drivers are required to have plans which cover at least $250,000 of PIP coverage per person per accident, but lesser amounts can be purchased by drivers who meet certain conditions set by law. PIP coverage is important because it ensures that an accident doesn’t have devastating financial effects.
Property Protection Insurance (PPI)
Property protection insurance, otherwise known as PPI, covers damage that your car does to another person’s property, including vehicles, buildings, and fences, but only in Michigan. PPI coverage does not apply to your own vehicle, and Michigan law requires that every driver carries $1 million in PPI coverage.
Residual Coverage for Bodily Injury and Property Damage
Residual coverage accounts for damages that you may be liable to pay but which aren’t covered by other parts of your insurance policy, such as injuries to another person or additional property damage outside Michigan. In general, “no fault” insurance is designed to minimize personal injury lawsuits stemming from car accidents, but residual coverage recognizes that sometimes, liability can arise from accidents which cause serious injuries to another person or another person’s property.
Michigan law sets “default” residual coverage amounts at $250,000 per injured person, $500,000 for total injuries per accident, and $10,000 per accident for property damages. However, the law doesn’t require that drivers purchase these “default” amounts, and drivers can purchase coverage with lower coverages after asking their insurance agencies to do so.
Our car accident attorneys in Michigan know this all too well, as in many of the car accident cases we take, the defendant driver does not have sufficient residual insurance coverage. If you find yourself dealing with serious injuries caused by a driver with insufficient coverage, contact us today to set up a consultation on the possibility of filing a lawsuit.
To avoid personal liability on your own part, it is not a good idea to purchase lower coverages than the “default” amounts, and you may want to consider purchasing more coverage than the “default” amounts. In many states such as neighboring Ohio, drivers who are deemed to be at fault in an accident are responsible for covering all the costs associated with the accident. Because Michigan “no fault” policies account mostly for a driver’s own injuries, residual coverage can be a lifesaver if a driver causes an accident in another state.
Additionally, Michigan drivers can add on optional coverages which may enhance an insurance policy’s coverage and limits. Optional coverages include collision insurance, which covers damages to your own car in an accident, comprehensive insurance, which covers damages to your own car when it is parked, and uninsured motorist coverage, which accounts for instances in which another driver may not have sufficient coverage.
Contact a Michigan Car Accident Attorney Today
Our team of attorneys at Fieger Law has been representing individuals and families involved in car accidents for decades. We’ve won more than $500 million in verdicts and settlements on behalf of car accident victims alone, and because of that experience, we’re well versed in Michigan car insurance policies.
Even though Michigan’s “no-fault” insurance rules attempt to minimize the impact of personal injury lawsuits, there are still numerous circumstances that can give rise to a lawsuit, including when a driver does not carry sufficient insurance coverage.
To ensure that you are adequately protecting yourself and your family, having an experienced personal injury lawyer examine your insurance policy can provide you with peace of mind. We’re ready to assist you today in looking over your insurance policy, and if an accident occurs, we’re equally ready to help you protect your rights. Contact us today to set up an appointment.