The “serious impairment” law that applies to any car accident in Michigan contains an important exception (MCL 500.3152(2)(a)(ii)) for people who have suffered traumatic brain injury. Often called the “closed-head injury exception,” the statute states that a doctor’s affidavit is sufficient to protect a TBI case from summary judgment in Michigan courts under Michigan’s difficult auto accident threshold laws. But some automobile accident attorneys have found that’s not always the case.
Michigan courts have dismissed claims because an affidavit lacked specific details about the traumatic brain injury (McDonald v. Vaughn), because the doctor only spent 5 percent of his practice diagnosing head injuries (Block v. Pawluk), and because a diagnosis of TBI alone does not meet the “serious” requirement (Churchman v. Rickerson).
So it’s imperative to keep in mind a number of traps that defense attorneys can spring when defending a traumatic brain injury case in Michigan. Failure to pay strict attention to the exact wording of the closed-head injury exception could result in denying a brain injury victim her day in court.
Using Michigan Auto Law’s advice on handling Michigan traumatic brain injury cases, Michigan accident attorneys can better anticipate and prepare for these traps.
Michigan Auto Law partner Steven Gursten is a member of the American Association for Justice Traumatic Brain Injury Group and lectures on traumatic brain injuries throughout the country. If you are an attorney and would like to refer a Michigan traumatic brain injury case, please contact Michigan Auto Law.
If you or someone you know has suffered a traumatic brain injury as a result of a car or truck accident in Michigan, our TBI attorneys can guide you through the complicated requirements of Michigan’s closed-head injury exception and help obtain the insurance benefits and pain and suffering compensation you need. Because our lawyers have been handling traumatic brain injury cases for more than 50 years, we understand the physical, emotional and psychological hardships that TBI victims experience from auto accidents. Please call Michigan Auto Law at (800) 777-0028 for a case evaluation with no fee or obligation, or fill out our free consultation form.
Did our Michigan traumatic brain injury lawyers answer all of your questions about defense attorney traps in TBI cases? If not, please contact us and we can help.