Peterson Paletta Balice

How to Win Compensation After a Motorcycle Accident in Michigan

Grand Rapids & Ionia Attorneys

Motorcycle Accident Attorneys Grand Rapids Ionia Michigan

Riding a motorcycle can give you an adrenaline rush that makes you feel invigorated and alive. But it can also end in tragedy. In 2019, motorcyclists were about 29 times more likely to die in auto accidents than passenger vehicle occupants. They were also four times more likely to be injured.

Motorcycles can be difficult to see because they don’t take up as much space as a car or truck. They’re also more likely to slip into a driver’s blind spot or have other vehicles block them from view. In a collision, motorcyclists don’t have the benefit of airbags, seatbelts, or the metal frame of a car to protect them.

If you were injured in a motorcycle accident, you may be eligible for compensation. As such, we recommend that you contact a law firm that specializes in personal injury cases, such as Peterson Paletta Balice.

One of our motorcycle accident attorneys will be able to help you win compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

Please choose the option that best describes your situation.

  • My accident involved a motor vehicle with PIP coverage. → Option 1
  • My accident involved a motor vehicle without PIP coverage. → Option 2
  • My accident did NOT involve a motor vehicle. → Option 3
  • I’m seeking compensation for non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering. → Option 4

Option 1: Seek PIP Benefits from the Insurer of the Motor Vehicle

Motorcycles are not considered a “motor vehicle” under Michigan’s no-fault law. This means that you are NOT entitled to your own automobile no-fault insurance if you get in a motorcycle accident. But you may seek benefits from the insurer of a motor vehicle involved in the accident.

The only problem with this is that you’re dependent on what someone else has chosen for Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage. In the past, all Michigan drivers were required to have unlimited PIP coverage. But now drivers can choose different limits for their policies. This makes PIP coverage for motorcyclists unpredictable.

PIP coverage includes payments for medical bills, wage loss, and replacement services up to the limit of the policy regardless of who was at fault for the accident.

Option 2: File a Claim with the Michigan Assigned Claims Plan

Did your accident involve a motor vehicle that didn’t have PIP coverage? If so, you may be eligible for up to $250,000 in PIP benefits from the Michigan Assigned Claims Plan (MACP). The MACP is a statutorily created organization that helps injured people when there is no auto insurance coverage available.

If a motor vehicle was not involved in your accident, you won’t be eligible for PIP benefits through the MACP.

Option 3: Use Your Motorcycle Medical Benefits or Health Insurance

If a motor vehicle was NOT involved in your accident, you’ll need to use either your health insurance or the medical benefits you purchased with your motorcycle insurance.

If you ride your motorcycle without a helmet, Michigan law requires you to have at least $20,000 in first-party medical benefits. If you wear a helmet, these benefits are optional.

If you have no medical benefits through your motorcycle insurance, you’ll need to turn to your health insurance.

Option 4: Sue for Non-Economic Damages

Michigan uses “comparative negligence” to determine how much you’re able to receive in a settlement for non-economic damages. These damages may include pain and suffering, as well as emotional trauma and distress.

Under this system, your potential settlement will decrease by the percentage you’re found to be at-fault for the accident. For example, a settlement of $100,000 will decrease to $80,000 if you’re found to be 20% at fault for the accident.

Motorcyclists in Michigan can choose not to wear a helmet if they meet certain requirements. But not wearing a helmet will decrease how much you’re able to win for non-economic damages such as pain and suffering.

If you wish to not wear a helmet, you must:

  • Be at least 21 years old
  • Have a minimum of $20,000 in first-party medical benefits
  • Have held a motorcycle endorsement for at least two years, or have passed an approved motorcycle safety course

Motorcycle insurance law can be confusing to understand on your own. That’s why we encourage you to reach out to our motorcycle accident lawyers as soon as possible. They can help you receive the compensation you deserve.

Call Our Motorcycle Accident Attorneys Today

Don’t get caught off guard. The sooner you contact one of our attorneys, the closer you’ll be to getting the compensation you deserve after a motorcycle accident. You have a limited window of time to file your claim, so it’s important that you don’t procrastinate.

Our motorcycle accident attorneys are proud to serve Grand Rapids, Ionia, and surrounding areas. To request a legal consultation, please call the law firm of Peterson Paletta Balice. You may also fill out our online contact form and someone from our legal team will reach out to you soon to discuss your next steps.

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