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Attorney Tom James to speak on catastrophic injury benefits for car accident victims

April 23, 2016 by Steven M. Gursten

Tom will present at ICLE 3rd Annual No Fault Summit April 28, 2016


Attorney Tom James to speak on catastrophic injury No Fault benefits for car accident victims

Tom James will be presenting on how to secure Michigan PIP benefits for catastrophically injured car accident victims during ICLE’s Annual No Fault Summit. The Summit is set for April 28 at the Inn at St. John’s in Plymouth. For more information, or to register for the event, click here.


Catastrophic injuries are “consequences of an injury that permanently prevent an individual from performing any gainful work.” Such injuries have serious, long-term effects on car accident victims and their families. They include:

  • Head trauma
  • Brain injury
  • Accidental amputation
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Severe burns
  • Multiple bone fractures
  • Eye injury
  • Shoulder injury
  • Foot injury
  • Back injury
  • Neck injury
  • Organ damage.

So, who covers injuries for catastrophically injured accident victims in Michigan? Usually, they would turn to the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association, according MCL 500.3014.

The Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association (MCCA) is an unincorporated, nonprofit association that compensates auto insurance companies for No Fault personal protection insurance (PIP) benefits paid to catastrophically injured motor vehicle accident victims. However, the MCCA’s duty to reimburse doesn’t kick in until its member-insurers’ payouts have exceeded a statutorily prescribed dollar amount, which is set at $545,000.

The Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association’s members include all automobile insurance companies that are authorized to do business in Michigan. They are bound by the association’s “plan of operation.”

ICLE is the Institute of Continuing Legal Education for lawyers. The organization provides training and education to Michigan lawyers.

During the ICLE No Fault seminar, attorneys can expect to gain practical help delivering the results that No Fault clients demand. Diverse experts including trial court judges, insurance professionals, and plaintiff and defense lawyers will share their knowledge, with the goal of helping lawyers improve their skills in fighting fraudulent PIP claims, medical record review and electronic discovery. The experts will share their insights on the following:

  • Appling Bahri to your case with analysis of how it’s best used to both dismiss fraudulent PIP claims and thwart insurance company arguments of fraud.
  • Reviewing medical records with insight on where to glean evidence, explanation of common medical terms, and identification of the key components of any record.
  • Using tech tools to track the digital footprint of your client, witness, or opposing party, and learning strategies to get the evidence into trial.
  • Applying expert tactics in your next cross-examination or deposition.

Tom is a trial attorney at Michigan Auto Law, and has spent the last 12 years focusing his entire practice on serious truck and car collision cases.   Tom continues to be awarded the distinction as a Michigan Super Lawyer. He was recognized as an Up & Coming Lawyer by Michigan Lawyers Weekly and received the Pacesetter distinction by the Michigan Association for Justice, for his work representing people seriously injured in truck and car collisions.

Tom frequently speaks at educational seminars throughout the country on topics dealing with trucking and car collision trial strategies and the No Fault law.

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