Personal Injury, Medical Malpractice & Wrongful Death

When you or a loved one is injured, no amount of money in the world can compensate for the loss of health, security or abilities that were wrongfully robbed by the negligent or intentional misconduct which caused it. You will find unparalleled empathy and devotion to such causes where emotion runs high and insurance companies, hospitals and corporations do everything in their power to perpetuate injustice. We fight for our clients in the face of bureaucratic arrogance to make our clients whole. Here are some examples of cases we handle:

Dog Bite

  • Michigan law recognizes three potential causes of action arising out of a dog bite incident:  statutory, common-law strict liability, and common-law negligence.
  • The dog bite statute creates almost strict liability for owners
  • Statutory action
    • The plaintiff was injured or sustained damages from a dog bite.
    • The plaintiff was in a public place, lawfully on the property of the owner, or lawfully on the property of one in lawful possession.
    • The biting was without provocation.
    • The defendant was the owner of the dog.
  • Common-law strict liability action
    • The plaintiff was injured or sustained damages from a dog bite.
    • The plaintiff was on or in a public place, lawfully on the property of the owner or keeper, or lawfully on the property of one in lawful possession.
    • The defendant was the owner or keeper of the dog.
    • The defendant knew or should have known of the dog’s dangerous propensities.
  • Common-law negligence action
    • The plaintiff was on or in a public place, lawfully on the property of the owner, or lawfully on the property of one in lawful possession.
    • The owner, keeper, or possessor (temporary caretaker) had prior knowledge of a propensity to attack or injure; had had the animal long enough to be chargeable with notice of its dangerous habits; or was negligent under the circumstances, that is, breached a duty to the plaintiff.
    • The dog attacked or bit the plaintiff.
    • Damages were sustained.

Slip and Fall / Premises Liability

  • Owners and/or possessors of land, premises, or a place of business are responsible for maintaining the premises in a reasonably safe condition.  If an individual falls, slips or trips upon a condition which is considered to be dangerous, that individual is entitled to recover compensation for injures as well as other damages suffered because of the accident.
  • A premises liability claim might arise against not only commercial property owners, but also private residences, vacant lots, and many other types of properties.

Wrongful Death

  • Statutory action allowing claims that arose before or at death to survive.  The wrongful death act also sets forth a detailed procedure for maintaining wrongful death actions.
  • Wrongful death is not an action in and of itself.  It is a set of rules that allows an action to go forward despite the previous common-law rule that a claim died with the plaintiff.  The elements are thus the same as the underlying action. (For example, for negligence they would be duty, breach, proximate cause, and damages.)

Dram Shop Act Violations

  • Statutory action for personal injury and/or property damage arising out of the furnishing of alcohol by the liquor licensee to a minor or visibly intoxicated person. Only licensees, or persons or entities who have failed to obtain or maintain the required license, are liable under the Michigan Liquor Control Code.
  • Elements :
    • property damage or personal injury caused by a minor (under age 21) or visibly intoxicated person
    • unlawful selling, giving, or furnishing of alcoholic liquor to the minor or visibly intoxicated person
    • proximate causation between the unlawful furnishing and the injury or damages

Medical Malpractice

  • This is a negligence action for injuries or damages caused by licensed health care professionals, facilities, or agencies (including but not limited to doctors, hospitals, HMOs, nurses, chiropractors, therapists) when providing professional services.  The malpractice is the deviation from the standard of care or the failure to act as a reasonably prudent medical professional of similar training would have acted under the same or similar circumstances.
  • Failure to Diagnose (cancer, heart disease /attack, stroke, etc.)

Nursing Home Malpractice and/or Negligence

  • Malpractice
    • An action against a nursing home, home for the aged, assisted living facility, or adult foster care facility is most often a claim for medical malpractice, because these homes are considered to be health facilities or agencies under MCL 333.20106(1).
    • Direct liability: Nursing homes and other health care facilities owe a duty to their residents to provide them with protection and ensure that they receive quality care. A facility may be held directly liable for breaching this duty if it fails to supervise and monitor the medical care it provides to its residents.
    • Vicarious liability: A nursing home or other facility may be found liable on a vicarious liability theory (principal liable for its agent) only when the negligence of specific employees or agents is shown, based on the standard of care applicable to each employee or agent. A health facility may not be vicariously liable for the alleged negligence of one of its “units.”
    • Some residents enter a facility under the care of their own physician, who continues to provide their care. For those who do not, nursing homes and other facilities may have attending physicians, medical directors, or both who are responsible for evaluating patients on admission and periodically during the resident’s stay. Unless the patient had a preexisting relationship with the attending physician in the facility, it is assumed that the patient looked to the facility to provide a physician. Under these circumstances, the facility is generally vicariously liable for the negligence of the physician it provides.
  • Negligence
    • An action for ordinary negligence arising out of an injury sustained in a nursing home or other health facility may also be available. The determining factor is whether the act of negligence occurred within the course of a professional relationship and involved the exercise of medical or nursing judgment or skill.
    • An ordinary negligence action may also be brought against a facility that does not meet the definition of health facility or health agency under MCL 333.20106(1), such as an adult foster care family home, or a group home. The critical inquiry is whether or not the injury arises out of the exercise of medical judgment beyond the realm of common knowledge and experience.

Auto Negligence:

  •  Michigan is a no-fault state, which means when a person sustains accidental bodily injury arising out of the ownership, operation, maintenance or use of a motor vehicle, no matter whose fault the accident was, an insurance company is responsible for paying the following economic benefits:
    • Medical and rehabilitative expenses
    • Wage loss
    • Replacement services (expenses for services done in place of the injured person)
    • Attendant Care services (expenses for services rendered to the injured person)
    • Death Benefits (including funeral expenses)
  • The other type of claim available to an individual sustaining bodily injury in an automobile accident is when the accident is caused because of the defendant's negligent operation of the motor vehicle, otherwise known as third party liability.  When this is the case, the injured person is entitled to compensation for all non-economic losses suffered (including but not limited to pain and suffering, disability or physical impairment, loss of enjoyment of life).

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