Entries by Tim Smith

Medical Service Providers’ Coordination of Primary Health v. No-fault Coverages

Medical service providers must carefully adhere to the procedures and administrative guidelines set forth in participating provider agreements with primary health insurers.  Failure to do so will prove fatal to any secondary no-fault claim.  That is exactly what happened to a medical provider in a recent ruling issued by the Michigan Court of Appeals, entitled Farm […]

A Person Who Is Injured While Occupying An Uninsured Vehicle That Is Not Operable May Recover No-Fault PIP Benefits

The Michigan Court of Appeals recently published a case that holds that a person who is injured while occupying an uninsured vehicle that is not operable may recover no-fault PIP benefits.  The case is Shinn v State of Michigan Assigned Claims Facility, ___ Mich App ___ (Docket No. 324227, dated March 29, 2016).  In Shinn, the injured plaintiff was […]

Increasing The Speed Limit Raises Safety Questions for Michigan Motorists

The Michigan Legislature is, again, debating a proposal to raise the speed limits for state and county roadways.  The package of bills (HB 4423  thru 4427) have been passed by the House Transportation Committee (Chaired by Republican, Peter Pettalia, District 106) and will now be considered and debated by the full House.  A comprehensive legislative analysis of the bills and “the […]

Drunk Snowmobiling Can Be Fatal

Winter has finally arrived with piles of fresh powder.  And for snowmobilers across the State of Michigan, the trails of northern Michigan are increasingly becoming more populated.  In Michigan, it is illegal to operate a snowmobile with a blood alcohol level equal or greater than .08.  The newly revised law took effect on December 30, 2014.  And while common sense […]

Winter Road Conditions Mandate Slowing Down

It may seem obvious.  It may seem an unnecessary public service caution to express.  Especially for us northern Michiganders.  But for whatever the reason, once winter returns the local news is ripe with car crashes occurring in our area, most often because a driver was driving too fast for conditions.  The posted speed limit is […]

Highway Liability Back Before The Michigan Supreme Court

Smith & Johnson’s partner, L. Page Graves, argued a case of first impression regarding liability against the MDOT for failing to maintain parallel parking spaces in reasonable repair for the safety of pedestrians exiting their motor vehicle, before the Michigan Supreme Court, dated December 9, 2015; see the entire oral argument at: http://www.michbar.org/courts/virtualcourt… A published […]

Skiing/Snowboarding Helmets Increase Safety

Several ski resorts in Northern Michigan have already opened and several more have announced their season will begin this weekend.  With that in mind, it is time to re-check and make sure your and your child’s ski or snowboarding helmet fits properly and is not cracked or damaged, necessitating immediate replacement.  A helpful guide indicating when to replace […]

Avoiding Unsuspected Snow-Blower Injuries When Engine Is Off

It’s time to dust off the snow-blower and move it to the front of the garage for regular use.  And it is time to learn that even the most cautious person can still sustain catastrophic injury while exercising extreme care.  No logical person would think of dislodging clogged ice and snow while the machine is operating.   […]