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Personal Injury Law in Michigan

Negligence in Michigan

Most personal injury cases involve an analysis of the State law regarding torts and negligence. Michigan is no exception. In fact, Michigan has its own way of viewing negligence cases. Due to the unique complications, it is important to hire an experienced Michigan personal injury lawyer to help analyze your claim. The basic idea, however, is that if a person does not show a required standard of care, and their actions cause your injury, they might be liable for any resulting damages. One aspect of law in Michigan is a comparative negligence framework. The idea is that your damages would potentially be reduced in some ratio of your own negligence that also contributed to the injury. Due to this, it is important for your injury attorney to make sure you aren’t being blamed for causing the injury if that is not borne out by the facts of your case. As with most other states, Michigan law also requires a showing of duty, breach, causation and damages in negligence cases. For more specific rules, see MCL Section 600.2959.

No-Fault Auto Insurance

If your personal injury case involves an automobile accident in Michigan, it probably also involves Michigan’s no-fault system of auto insurance. Michigan drivers are required to have a no-fault insurance policy which is designed to cover the cost of necessary medical bills to treat injuries from a car accident. Whether or not you are covered if you’re in an accident is a complicated legal question that requires the assistance of a Michigan car accident lawyer. If you are seriously injured in a car accident in Michigan, your case may even fall outside the no-fault system to some degree and involve a third-party case against the tortfeasor’s insurance company. 

Damage Caps In Michigan

There are limitations to damages in some personal injury cases in Michigan although the analysis is too fact specific to apply a general blanket rule applying to all circumstances. One example is medical malpractice cases. There are also caps on product liability cases in certain instances. For more specific rules regarding potential damage caps in Michigan, see MCL 600.1483 and 500.3135.

Dog Bites in Michigan

The state of Michigan recognizes tort liability in certain cases against an owner of a dog that bites another and injures them. Under MCL Section 287.351, so long as there is no provocation and the injured person is on public property or private property lawfully, there’s probably going strict liability imposed on the owner of the dog responsible for the Michigan dog bite. This same liability might apply if the person is on the owner’s property performing any duty imposed on them by the law or if the person is an invitee or licensee of the person in possession of the property. Strict liability essentially means there are a limited number of defenses. Those defenses, however, do usually include cases where the injured party provoked the dog or where the injured party was trespassing. For more about the defenses to a dog bite in Michigan, see the Lorenz case. 

Medical Malpractice in Michigan

Claims for medical malpractice against doctors or medical professionals usually occur when a mistake is made which results in serious injuries. From a legal standpoint, these cases involve reasonable standards of care and proof that a defendant failed to comply. Due to the complexity of medical malpractice cases, there’s a number of other very important factors established both by Michigan case law and Michigan statute. For example, the burden of proof in medical malpractice cases in Michigan is established by MCL Section 600.2912a. There are many other considerations set forth in the sections to follow governing many other aspects of medical malpractice cases. Due to this complex statutory landscape, you should always consult a medical malpractice lawyer in Michigan if you believe you’ve been injured by the malpractice of a doctor or medical professional. 

Personal Injury Statute of Limitations in Michigan

MCL 600.5805

A statute of limitations is a law that governs the timeframe during which a certain lawsuit must be brought. For lawsuits involving injury or death in the State of Michigan, the applicable statute of limitations depends on the type of injury. There are many other factors that complicate this analysis as well. While the statute provides a listed timeframe, it is imperative that you consult with a Michigan Personal Injury lawyer regarding the specific facts of your injury case rather than relying simply on the listed timeframe. This is because of tolling/accrual rules that might differ depending on the nature of your injury and facts of your case. Sawan & Sawan is a Michigan Personal Injury law firm offering free consultations. Call 419-900-0955 if you have a question about your case. 

Michigan Law SectionStatute of LimitationsType of Injury
MCL 600.5805(2)3 years after the time of the death or injuryall actions to recover damages for the death of a person or for injury to a person or property.
MCL 600.5805(3)2 yearsactions charging assault, battery, or false imprisonment.
MCL 600.5805(4)5 yearsaction charging assault or battery brought by a person who has been assaulted or battered by his or her spouse or former spouse, an individual with whom he or she has had a child in common, or a person with whom he or she resides or formerly resided.
MCL 600.5805(5)5 yearsaction charging assault and battery brought by a person who has been assaulted or battered by an individual with whom he or she has or has had a dating relationship.
MCL 600.5805(6)10 yearsaction to recover damages sustained because of criminal sexual conduct.
MCL 600.5805(7)2 yearsaction charging malicious prosecution.
MCL 600.5805(8)2 yearsaction charging malpractice.
MCL 600.5805(9)2 yearsaction against a sheriff charging misconduct or neglect of office by the sheriff or the sheriff’s deputies
MCL 600.5805(10)2 years after the expiration of the year for which a constable was electedactions based on the constable’s negligence or misconduct as constable.
MCL 600.5805(11)1 yearaction charging libel or slander.
MCL 600.5805(12)3 yearsProducts liability action, howeverfor a product that has been in use for not less than 10 years, the plaintiff, in proving a prima facie case, must do so without the benefit of any presumption.
MCL 600.5805(13)2 yearsAn action against a state licensed architect or professional engineer or licensed professional surveyor arising from professional services rendered is an action charging malpractice
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