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In The News

Monday, September 29, 2014

Can An Injured Person Recover Money Damages When An Injury Or Death Results?

By Michael Nichols
Categories: Wendy M. Schiller-Nichols, Personal Injury, Wrongful Death

Attorney Wendy Schiller-Nichols is a personal injury lawyer who practices in the areas of automobile accidents and wrongful death.  A question usually presented by the insurance company whether an injured person can recover money (or damages) when there is an injury or death as a result of an accident…and when alcohol is involved.  MCL 600.2955a(1) provides:  “It is an absolute defense in an action for the death of an individual or for injury to a person…that the individual upon whose death or injury is based had an impaired ability to function due to the influence of intoxicating liquor or a controlled substance, and as a result of that impaired ability, the individual was 50% or more the cause of the accident or event that resulted in the death or injury.”  Any time you have an intoxicated driver and intoxicated passenger that are in an automobile accident, you must have an attorney who knows the personal injury statutes and case law to determine whether the injured person can get money from the insurance company of the at-fault driver for their injuries or death under the Michigan No-Fault statute.  Just because the injured person (passenger) was intoxicated and the driver was also intoxicated does not mean that the injured passenger can’t get money from the drunk driver’s insurance company.  The injured passenger did not “participate” or “cause” the accident and did not cause his/her own injuries or death and, therefore, coverage should be available.  Of course, all accidents are different and it is very important to contact an attorney who has experience with these types of cases. 

Attorney Wendy Schiller-Nichols is compassionate, experienced, and will fight for what you or a loved one is entitled to receive. You can reach her at (517) 432-9000 or



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Peer Recognition

Mike Nichols is a national leader in drunk driving defense. He is a member of the Forensic Committee and Michigan delegate to the National College for DUI Defense. He is also a Sustaining Member of the College. Nichols is also a founding member of the Michigan Association of OWI Attorneys; a member of the American Chemical Society; an associate member of he American Academy of Forensic Science, Adjunct Professor of Forensic Evidence in Criminal Law and OWI Law and Practice at Cooley Law School. He is also author of the West OWI Practice book and several chapters in other books on science and the law.

Mike Nichols is recognized by his peers in Michigan as a “SuperLawyer” in DUI/Criminal Defense. Nichols has also been asked to speak at conferences by groups such as the NCDD; Various Bar Associations in other states.