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Can I Get No-fault Benefits if I Am Injured While Working on My Car?

Written by Steven Matz on . Posted in .

Yes, the No-Fault Law says that PIP benefits are available for injuries that occur during the maintenance of a vehicle. It is not necessary that the vehicle is in motion to bring this provision into effect. For example, in one case, a man had his car up on a jack so that he could replace his shock absorbers. It slipped off the jack and landed on him. At first, the car insurance did not want to pay his medical expenses, claiming that the car wasn’t running, or even being used as a motor vehicle at the time, meaning that no-fault benefits should be denied.

But the appeals court said that the No-Fault Law makes it clear that “maintenance” of a vehicle is an activity that is covered by benefits if someone is injured while working on an insured vehicle. Replacing shock absorbers is certainly maintenance. Benefits were ordered to be paid to the injured person.

Other cases have said that “maintenance” covers such activities as hooking up your car to be towed, or to looking under the hood to see why the car won’t start. Even though the cars weren’t running at the time the person was injured doing those things, the courts have said that these activities are covered by no-fault insurance.

Remember: like all the postings in this series, these situations reflect Michigan law, not necessarily the way things work in other states.

Final Thoughts

To speak with a lawyer about no-fault laws and regulations in Michigan, contact us today.

Source: MCL 500.3105; 157 Mich App 711

Steven Matz

Written By Steven Matz

Steven Matz
Steven J. Matz is a founding shareholder of Matz Injury Law. The firm’s concentration is on personal injury litigation, with an emphasis on traumatic brain injury. Mr. Matz earned a Bachelor of Arts degree with high distinction and highest honors in 1974 from the University of Michigan and a Juris Doctor degree in 1977 from The George Washington University National Law Center. Mr. Matz lectures and publishes in a number of areas, including ethics, marketing, trial tactics, and head injury. Mr. Matz has served on the Michigan Association for Justice Executive Board and currently serves the Michigan Attorney Discipline Board as a Hearing Panel Chairman and Master. He is also a member of the State Bar Committee for Character and Fitness.
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