Third party statute of limitations

Written by Steven Matz on . Posted in .

“I was in a Michigan auto accident more than three years ago, but didn’t sue the other driver. I just learned that I have injuries from the accident that I didn’t know about before. Can I still sue the other driver?”

There is no “discovery rule” in Michigan auto cases that you can use to extend the statute of limitations against the other driver for your pain and suffering claims. If you don’t file suit within 3 years from the date of the incident, you can’t come back after that and say you only recently “discovered” that you are hurt. Remember, we are talking about your claims against the other driver (for pain and suffering, and for excess economic loss), not your no-fault benefits such as medical claims, work loss for the first three years, and so on. Other, much shorter time limits apply to your no-fault claims.

Over the years, the laws covering automobile injury cases in Michigan have gone more and more in the direction of limiting the rights of injured people, and toward narrowing the responsibilities of insurance companies. This issue is just one example. If you find yourself in this situation, call a lawyer who is experienced in automobile negligence law to see if an exception to the rule might be available to you.

Source: 180 Mich App 62

Written By 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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The maximum contingency fee permitted by law is actually 33 1/3%. Michigan court rules require that the attorney fee be computed on the net sum recovered after deducting all disbursements properly chargeable to the enforcement of the claim.

What does 22not33 mean, exactly?

We can charge 22% while virtually all other injury attorneys charge 33 1/3% because we are very, very, good at obtaining results for our clients. 

We do not spend millions of dollars on television ads; instead, we offer a lower fee to all our clients.  We do not have dozens of lower paid associates handling our work. All our clients are represented by Steven and Jared Matz. Steven Matz started the firm in 1977 and since then has dedicated his life to representing injury victims.  Jared joined the firm in 2016 but grew up listening to stories, discussing theories, and generally learning at the dinner table about how to effectively and compassionately represent injury victims. Jared Matz was literally born to represent individuals involved in motor vehicle crashes.

All of our cases are handled on a contingency fee and all our cases are handled at 22%. Whether the case settles or goes through trial, the fee does not change. While our competitors make excuses as to why they charge so much, we are obtaining results for our clients at a lower fee.

At a typical television advertising law firm, your first call will be handled by a receptionist, who may refer you to an intake person, who will discuss your claim with an intake manager, who then discusses your claim with an associate, who may then report to a partner. You may never speak with the person whose name is at the top of the letterhead. At Matz Injury Law you will always speak with either Steven Matz or Jared Matz.

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