What is The Average Timeline for an Auto Accident Claim in Michigan?

car-accident-attorney-michigan

Car crashes a.k.a auto accidents can result in personal injury claims which can be settled either in and out of court. Oftentimes, many claims can be settled between both parties even before a lawsuit is filed. However, each case is unique so how the claim proceeds depends on the specifics of the case.

With that said, below is an average timeline anyone can expect to see when dealing with an auto accident claim in the state of Michigan as well as the statute of limitations for personal injury claims.

Statute of Limitations

In Michigan, the statute of limitations for personal injury claims is 3 years from the date of the accident. An individual has until this period to file a claim in court and the clock typically starts from the date of the injury or accident. Once this period has lapsed, you will lose your ability to claim the injury in court and to ask the court to award damages for your injury. There are only a few exceptions to this rule which grants an additional year to file a claim.

First Step: Accident

The first notch in the timeline consists of the accident – in this case – a car accident. Two individuals are involved in an accident and now either one or both of them have suffered injuries. They will both likely seek medical attention for their injuries and one or both of them might need to have surgery or therapy to recover from their injuries. They will also likely get their insurance companies involved and local law enforcement will put in a report of the accident.

Second Step: Consultation

More than likely, one or both individuals will seek an auto accident attorney in order to recover damages as a result of the accident. They will likely be placing blame on the other for the accident and will seek compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and vehicle damages. At this point, one or both individuals will secure a personal injury lawyer. If for any reason, a settlement can not be made beforehand, a lawsuit will likely be filed as a next step in this process.

Third Step: Settlement

During the settlement phase, the insurance company of the party in question will be contacted and a request for a settlement for their client’s damages will be made. This can be done informally or formally through letters. If the settlement request is successful, then a settlement agreement will be drafted and signed by both parties including the lawyers and insurance companies. If the settlement phase is unsuccessful, then a lawsuit will likely be filed and the case would then proceed to civil court.

Fourth Step: Civil Court

Papers will be filed by both parties through the courts and the court process will proceed while settlement negotiations will still try to be made. If needed, dispute resolutions like mediation will be used to come to an agreement. While most auto accident lawsuits will eventually be resolved with a settlement, sometimes, a civil trial might be necessary which would result in the normal trial process where the jury would decide if the alleged party is liable and if damages should be awarded.

Final Thoughts

Being involved in a car accident, and having injuries as a result no less, can be stressful, painful, and frustrating. In this situation, one would want to seek damages from the other party for their pain and suffering. At Marko Law, we’ve handled many personal injury and car crash claims and are quite knowledgeable of the process with the Michigan court system. You can be assured that we will do everything possible to ensure that you get the best possible outcome for your case and receive the compensation you deserve.

 

Advertisements

How Do I Choose A Criminal Defense Lawyer in Michigan?

Have you been arrested or are being accused of a crime? In either of these cases, it would be a wise decision to secure a criminal defense lawyer as quickly as possible. If you wait or believe you don’t need a lawyer, then you’ll likely face the possibility of extensive fines, jail time, and/or a fresh criminal record.

But, wait. If I need a lawyer, how do I go about choosing a lawyer? I don’t want to just call anyone. What if they screw up and I don’t win my case?

Don’t fret. We are here to help. Take a look at some of our sound advice on finding and choosing the right criminal defense attorney for your case.

Do I Even Need a Criminal Attorney?

No matter what the circumstances or how serious, if you are being charged with a crime in Michigan, you should seek the expertise of a criminal lawyer –– especially if you are unsure of what exactly you have been charged with.

A criminal defense lawyer can offer you a consultation, most often for free, where they would discuss what kind of charges you are dealing with, what are the recommended courses of action to consider, and how they can assist you. Even if you decide not to secure a lawyer (at your own risk, of course) at least consult with one instead.

What You Should Look For

Just as you would with any other professional, there are certain things that you should look for in a criminal attorney. Some of these include:

  • Experience: This one is a given. You want to find a lawyer who has ample experience dealing with similar cases to yours. They should have substantial courtroom experience and knowledge of the Michigan court system. Court can be expensive so you want an attorney who will make the experience as quick and smooth as possible.
  • Reputation: You obviously want a lawyer with a good reputation. They should have good references, reviews, and testimonials from past clients that they served. You would also want to check if they belong to any bar associations, professional organizations, or have received awards in their field.  
  • Personality: Look for someone who is easy to work with, who will answer your questions plainly and simple, and who is available when you need them. As an added bonus, find someone who has a passion for the areas of law they practice and is confident in their ability to defend you even when the going gets tough.

What Types of Questions Should I Ask?

When you do find a few potential lawyers, make sure to ask questions like:

  • How do you charge for legal fees? Are you hourly or do you charge a flat fee? Are you on a contingency basis? Do you require a retainer fee? Are there any additional fees I should know about?
  • What types of legal options do I have? How would the court process be for me? What could go wrong with my case? What legal strategies would work in my favor?
  • Where did you go to law school? How many years have you practiced law? How much experience do you have working with similar cases to mine? Do you often have to go to trial for your clients?
  • Will I only work with you? How often are you available to answer questions? Who else will be involved with my case? How can I contact you? Do I need to make an appointment every time I see you?

Choosing The Right Detroit Criminal Lawyer

If you’ve been charged with a crime, you should definitely reach out to a criminal defense attorney in Michigan, not only for the peace of mind, but so you can get the best possible outcome for your case.

At Marko Law, we not only have the expertise but the results to back up our success with clients who needed criminal defense. We are not easily intimidated, are passionate about Michigan law in and out of the courtroom, and go above and beyond for each and every one of our clients. If you need a criminal lawyer, you don’t need to look any further than us.

 

Michigan’s One Fair Wage Proposal Becomes a Public Act –– What This Means For Michigan Workers…

Michigan-fair-wage-attorney

Michigan-fair-wage-attorney

For starters, we hope the title didn’t give off the wrong impression –– this should definitely be seen as a good thing.

All over the country, Americans have been fighting to be paid a fair wage within their respective states and, they have a right to do so. I mean, after all, cost of living in individual states keeps rising and it isn’t keeping up with the minimum wage standard in the United States. Just to give you a peek, this list cultivated based off of the 2017 Annual Average Cost of Living Index ranked states like Hawaii, New York, Alaska, and Oregon as some of the top 10 states that are expensive to live in (thankfully, Michigan didn’t make the list).

So, it’s only fair that, to offset these costs, states provide their residents with liveable wages, right? Certainly, and Michigan has made some bold moves towards doing just that –– with the passing of the Michigan One Fair Wage.

The Michigan One Fair Wage proposal, as so duly noted on its official support site, seeks to raise the minimum wage to $12 by the year 2022 which would include servers, bartenders, and and whomever else works for below the minimum wage plus tips. According to their site, they feel that “All working people should get the guarantee of a minimum wage that allows them to make ends meet and increases their spending power. When working people make more money, they spend it locally, which helps drive the economy forward.”

Thankfully, the proposed bill, Senate Bill 1171, became a public act last year in December which will start raising the minimum wage starting in April of this year. Right now, the current minimum wage in Michigan is $9.25 and will increase to $9.45 in April of this year. By 2030, the minimum wage will be up to $12.05. For tipped wage, it is currently at $3.52 and will increase to $3.59 in April.

Obtaining Legal Counsel for Your Wages Case

Now, surely, this isn’t the icing on the cake when it comes to minimum wage and more should be done by legislation not only in Michigan but all across the country to ensure that citizens are able to take care of themselves and their families by getting paid a fair wage. That aside, this doesn’t mean that discrimination and injustice will not cease in the workplace.

If you have suffered an injustice, been discriminated against, had your wages withheld, or have a wage-related grievance with your current job, don’t wait around and try to resolve it on your own. Call Marko Law and we will be more than happy to handle the situation. We are certainly not intimidated by business owners, big or small, let alone the court system –– our domain. We take care of our clients and do our best to get the best possible result for your case.

 

Don’t Be A Bully! New Michigan Law Makes Cyberbullying Illegal

personal-injury-cyberbullying-michigan-attorney

personal-injury-cyberbullying-michigan-attorney

Prior to leaving the office in December 2018, former Michigan Governor Rick Snyder passed into law a new measure, known as House Bill 5017, that will make cyberbullying illegal starting in March of this year.  

According to Public Act 457, cyberbullying includes “posting a message or statement in a public media forum about any other person if…the message or statement is intended to place a person in fear of bodily harm or death and expresses an intent to commit violence against the person…The message or statement is posted with the intent to communicate a threat or with knowledge that it will be viewed as a threat.”

Those who violate this law can experience fines up to $10,000 and jail time of up to 10 years depending on the severity of the bullying.

According to Bullying Statistics:

  1. Over half of teens have been bullied online and about the same number have engaged in cyberbullying.
  2. Girls are more likely to be cyberbullied than boys.
  3. Victims of cyberbullying are more likely to experience low self-esteem and commit suicide.
  4. Over half of teens don’t tell their parents about cyberbullying.

Preventing Cyberbullying

As parents (and good friends), there are ways that we can prevent our children (and ourselves) from becoming victims of cyberbullying. How? By following some of these guidelines like:

  • Make sure that you talk to your children about cyberbullying and explain to them the impact it can have on others and the consequences of engaging in cyberbullying. Tell them what behavior is and isn’t allowed and expectations that you have.
  • Encourage them to open up if they have been victimized by a cyberbully and that they will not be punished and that it is not ok.
  • Teach them not to share information, messages, pictures, or videos on social media, to friends, strangers, etc. that they would otherwise not want to have go public and not to trust anyone other than their parents with sensitive information like passwords, phone numbers, or email addresses.  

What To Do If You Are A Victim of Cyberbullying

Not all crime victims experience physical trauma. Some, like in personal injury cases (i.e., cyberbullying), victims can experience psychological trauma as well. Aside from contacting a lawyer, here is what you should do if you or your loved one is a victim of a cyberbully.

You should keep any and all messages that were exchanged between you and the cyberbully(s) to use as proof that the cyberbullying occurred. This can usually be done via screenshots from your phone or computer. These can be given to police and to your lawyer to help with your case especially if they are violent or sexual in nature.

If you or a loved one are a victim of cyberbullying, you need to wait no longer and contact a personal injury attorney who has experience with these kinds of cases. You need a lawyer who will fight for your rights and who will not be intimidated by your harassers or the Michigan court system. At Marko Law, we understand our clients and do our best to achieve the best possible results for our clients’ cases. Give us a call today and schedule your free consultation.  

 

New Bills Could Change How Michigan’s Law Enforcement Seize Civil Property

civil-rights-michigan-attorney

civil-rights-michigan-attorney

We are sure that everyone here is well aware of the Fourth Amendment and how it works regarding search and seizure of a citizen’s home and property.

However, in our great state of Michigan, police are allowed to sometimes seize property for a person even without a charge placed against them or a judge formally registering a conviction against them.

But, some new bills being introduced by the House are trying to set in motion some changes to this long-standing controversial issue in Michigan –– with House bills 4001 and 4002.

 

  • Bill 4001 –  will require a criminal conviction to be conducted prior to law enforcement proceeding with any criminal procedure, forfeiture, or asset forfeiture.
  • Bill 4002 –  “To establish procedures, deadlines, burden of proof requirements for civil asset forfeiture legal proceedings in which a government agency (usually police) seek to take ownership of property that has been seized because it is suspected of being the proceeds or an “instrumentality” of a suspected drug-related crime. Among other things the bill establishes procedures allowing an innocent person who has an ownership interest in the suspected property (like the issuer of a vehicle loan) to get the property returned.”

Back in 2017, it was reported by state law enforcement agencies that $13.1 million of property and cash were confiscated from citizens through means of civil asset forfeiture. However, in some of those cases, either they were found not guilty and still had to forfeit over their property or in others, charges were never filed against them.

While some deeply support this move by the Legislature, it can be agreed that it should be tweaked. While this would still allow law enforcement the ability to seize property through probable cause, they must obtain a criminal conviction prior to selling or using the forfeited property.

Hiring A Motivated, Experienced Attorney for Your Civil Case

It can be agreed that this bill will certainly provide some added protections for citizens’ civil liberties, however, this isn’t the end of the story. While the Legislature does their best to implement laws to protect Michigan citizens, they are not completely safe from the downsides of the law –– which is where we come in.

When your civil rights have been violated and you have endured police misconduct, you need to contact a civil lawyer who is not intimidated by Michigan law enforcement or the court system. At Marko Law, we are reliable, professional, experienced, and motivated to protect your rights and ensure that you receive the best possible outcome from your case. We value all of our clients and do our best to sympathize with their situations. After all, everyone should be able to enjoy their civil rights without persecution or wrongdoing on the part of others. So, give us a call today and schedule your free consultation.