Visitor Question

No Pain and Suffering Compensation in Michigan?

Submitted By: Janice (Washington, MI USA)

We had Florida auto insurance and we were in an accident in Michigan. My husband was on the freeway when a car stopped in front of him due to a garbage can in the freeway. He rammed into the back of her vehicle. Nobody got a ticket however, he swears he never saw brake lights.

My auto insurance company helped out with our medical bills he accumulated, however she said if it had happened in Florida, she could have given him something for pain in suffering, but since it happened in Michigan she can’t since the state does not allow that. This happened on 4/3/2010 and he now has bad back problems, along with arthritis in his neck.

Is there anything we can do at this point? Thanks.

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.


Dear Janice,

Either your insurance claims adjuster doesn’t have her facts straight, or you misunderstood her. The States of Florida and Michigan are both “No-Fault” insurance states. This means each party in a vehicular collision must turn to their own insurance company for compensation. As such, there are rarely any substantial amounts paid for “pain and suffering”.

In addition, whether there was a garbage can in the freeway or not, your husband is most likely the at-fault party in the collision. In almost all rear end vehicular collisions the vehicle following is the vehicle liable for the collision. The theory behind that is the rule that for every 10 miles per hour a vehicle is traveling, the vehicle behind should remain at least one car length behind.

Inasmuch as both vehicles were traveling on a freeway it wouldn’t be a leap of faith to presume the lead vehicle was traveling at a rate of a minimum of 55 miles per hour. At that speed your husband would have had to be at least 5 1/2 car lengths behind. At that distance he should have had plenty of time to avoid the collision.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here , or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Published: November 14, 2011

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