Protecting The Rights Of Auto Accident Injury Victims

Every day millions of Minnesotans use their cars to commute to work or run errands, going about their daily business without much cause for concern. But according to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, over 200 accidents occur per day resulting in an average one fatality and 81 injuries. On a national scale the problem is even more pervasive with serious accidents occurring every 14 seconds and a fatality every 16 minutes.

As distracted driving and other reckless behaviors increase, even the most attentive and careful drivers may not be able to avoid a collision. If you were injured in a car accident, the attorneys at The Cody Law Group can help you with the recovery process.

An Accident Can Permanently Change Your Life

While not every accident results in a wrongful death fatality, a collision can leave an injury victim permanently disabled or disfigured. A serious accident can cause severe burns, back and neck injuries, amputations, multiple fractures and traumatic brain injuries. After the accident, you may no longer be able to work or perform simple acts to care for yourself. Recovering compensation after an accident can help you deal with your increased needs and unplanned expenses. You may be eligible for:

  • Reimbursement for medical expenses
  • Payment for damaged property
  • Lost wages, both past and future
  • Compensation for pain and suffering

Understanding No-Fault Insurance

The No-Fault Act provides for $40,000 of coverage for basic economic loss benefits, with $20,000 being allocated for medical expenses and $20,000 for other no-fault benefits, including income loss, replacement services, funeral expense loss, survivor's economic loss, and survivor's replacement services loss arising out of the injury to any one person.

Medical expense benefits include all reasonable expenses for necessary medical, surgical, X-ray, optical, dental and rehabilitation services. The Minnesota No-Fault Act specifically provides for inclusion of chiropractic care and treatment.

Obviously the care and treatment sought must be causally related to the motor vehicle accident.

The decision as to the form of medical care is left entirely to the injured person. The insurance company does not have any right to make a choice as to your treating physician.

As long as the treatments are reasonable and necessary to cure of relieve from the effects of the automobile accident, the insurance company remains responsible for payment up to the statutory maximum of $20,000.

In addition to the actual cost of treatment, the insured is entitled to the reasonable cost of transportation to and from treatment, transportation costs include medical mileage which is typically reimbursed in the area of 56 cents per mile, cab fare, bus fare or other costs of transportation.

Disability And Income Loss

Disability and income loss benefits shall provide compensation for 85% of the injured person's loss of present and future gross income from inability to work proximately caused by the injury subject to a maximum of $500.00 per week. Loss of income includes the cost incurred by a self-employed person to hire substitute employees to perform tasks which are necessary to maintain the income of the injured person which are normally performed by the injured person and which cannot be performed because of the injury.

Inability to work is defined by the No-Fault Act as:

Disability which prevents the injured person from engaging in any substantial gainful occupation or employment on a regular basis.

A partially disabled person who is unable to work full-time or return to the same type of work he or she performed prior to the injury has an inability to work within the meaning of the statute. If the injured person returns to employment and is unable by reason of the injury to work continuously, compensation for loss of income shall be reduced by the income received while the injured person is actually able to work. Income Loss Benefits are payable for loss of time from work while receiving reasonable and necessary chiropractic or medical treatment.

Replacement Services

Replacement service loss shall reimburse expenses reasonably incurred by or on behalf of the injured person in obtaining usual and necessary substitute services in lieu of those that had the injured person not been injured the injured person would have performed not for income but for direct personal benefit or for the benefit of the injured person's household.

If the injured person normally, as a full-time responsibility, provides care and maintenance of a home with or without children and by reason of the injury is unable to perform such services, then such person is entitled to the reasonable expenses incurred in obtaining substitute care and maintenance of the home.

These benefits are subject to a maximum of $200.00 per week. All replacement service loss incurred on the date of the injury and the first 7 days after the injury are excluded in calculating the replacement service loss.

Let Us Prioritize Your Recovery

The statute of limitations for recovery after a car accident in Minnesota is six years, but you should seek legal help right away to preserve evidence and properly document your claim. Our firm will provide personalized service at every step of the claim process. To learn more about how to file an injury claim, please contact us online or call our Vadnais Heights offices at 651-294-0994 to speak with a lawyer.