Being in a car accident is stressful to say the least. When it’s your fault though, you may wonder what happens next. What should you do? At the end of the day, the details really do depend on the coverage you have, how much you’re at fault and where you live.
What Happens if the Accident Was Your Fault?
There are two fault states. If you live in an at-fault state and you cause an accident then you will be liable for any damages and you will also need to pay for the medical bills for anyone who is injured in the accident. If you live in a no-fault state, then each person’s car insurance will most likely cover the damages. Most states are at-fault states, but Michigan is a no-fault state, meaning you are expected to claim through your personal insurance policy.
What’s a No-Fault Accident?
The term no-fault accident ultimately means that both sides are able to claim benefits from their insurance provider regardless of who caused the crash. The Michigan- No Fault law can be very complicated as you have a lot of different issues which can affect the end outcome. This can include different policies, personal injury thresholds and even worker’s compensation as well. If you are involved in an accident then you need to try and work with an attorney as they can help you to gain the knowledge you need to really make the most out of your situation.
The First Steps you Need to Take
There really are so many things that you need to think about after you have been in a car accident. If you are involved in a no-fault accident, then the first step you need to take would be for you to notify your auto insurance company right after. You then need to file for no-fault benefits.
In the state of Michigan, you have one year to notify your insurance company of the crash and to claim your benefits. This is known as being a first-party accident case. There’s a three-year limit against the other driver for pain and suffering, but if you are at fault then you wouldn’t normally claim this.
If you have been in an accident then never give a statement to an insurance adjuster or sign a release to allow anyone to look at the damage without your lawyer being present. Why is this? It’s because claims adjusters will normally try and get a statement from you so that your pain and suffering can be minimized at a later date. When there’s not a huge amount of damage to either car, the adjuster can claim that nobody has been seriously injured in the crash and therefore a claim is not substantiated. If you’re at-fault in an accident then again, you probably won’t be making claims for things like this but at the end of the day, it’s still a good idea for you to follow the same process so you don’t end up compromising a possible case at a later date.