Pedestrians Are At Higher Risk Of Fatalities

Michigan is ranked the 19th most dangerous state in the country for pedestrians, according to Dangerous By Design’s 2019 report. In the Midwest, Michigan is the most dangerous state for pedestrians, with a total of 1,409 pedestrian fatalities being reported between 2008-2017.

Detroit Pedestrian Car Crash Lawyer

More specifically, the Detroit, Warren, and Dearborn metro area is ranked at 18 out of 20 metropolitan areas in the United States with the highest pedestrian fatalities, with 757 pedestrian fatalities between the years of 2008-2017. Also, since 2008, the number of pedestrian deaths increased by 35%, and according to another report analyzed by USA Today, the Governors Highway Safety Administration (GHSA) reported that 6,227 pedestrian deaths occurred in 2018.

One of the reasons for the increase in pedestrian deaths could be linked to an increase in the number of SUVs on the road. There are a few factors which play a role in SUV pedestrian deaths. The Detroit Free Press studied data from a July 2018 investigation and, “counted vehicles that struck and killed pedestrians rather than the number of people killed,” and noticed a 69% increase in SUV pedestrian deaths. The study also mentions that, “SUV front ends are taller, so they strike pedestrians higher on their bodies.” That means, an SUV is more likely to kill a pedestrian, whereas a smaller car such as a sedan would strike a person's leg and still injure them, but likely not kill them.

The time of day is also a significant factor in pedestrian car accidents. The Michigan State Police (MSP) found that, “most pedestrian fatalities occur between 6:00 PM and midnight.” So, pedestrians may not be able to choose the type of vehicle that hits them, but they can certainly take steps to avoid walking during the most dangerous time of day for pedestrian car crashes. And pedestrians should always be aware of how they can stay safe when walking, no matter the time of day. The MSP offers pedestrians safety precautions they can follow while walking, in hopes of preventing a pedestrian car accident.

Pedestrian Walking Safety Tips

Detroit Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
  • Use sidewalks whenever available.

  • Obey traffic signals.

  • Never cross mid-block.

  • Cross streets at a corner, using traffic signals and crosswalks whenever possible.

  • Always stop at the edge of a parked car, curb, or vehicle before walking out into traffic.

  • Look left-right-left before crossing a street and continue looking while crossing.

  • Make eye contact with drivers prior to crossing in front of them.

  • Never assume the vehicle driver can see you.

  • Walk facing traffic as far to the left as possible when walking along the roadway.

  • Wear reflective clothing and carry a flashlight when walking at night or in the early morning.

  • Never allow children under age 10 to cross the streets alone. Young children do not have the skills to accurately judge traffic risks.

  • Allow for enough time to safely cross the street.

A pedestrian becoming injured or even struck and killed by a vehicle is very tragic. Pedestrians and drivers in Michigan should be more aware of safety laws and driving speeds so they aren’t injured or killed in a pedestrian car accident, especially since Michigan has been ranked the 19th most dangerous state for pedestrians in the United States.


Even if a person is lucky enough to survive the impact of a car traveling 25 mph or more, depending on the road, they are usually severely injured in the car crash. Broken bones may heal but pedestrians often suffer traumatic brain injuries that alter their lives forever. The injury attorneys at The Michigan Law Firm, PC’s fight to seek justice for pedestrians who are injured in automobile accidents. Call 844.4MI.FIRM for a free legal consultation.

DUIs Cost More Than Money

Detroit DUI Lawyer

According to the National Highway Traffic Control Safety Administration (NHTSA), “in 2017, 10,874 deaths were caused from drunk driving crashes.” And despite the fact that it’s illegal to drive in the US, Michigan included, with a BAC of .08% or higher, The Michigan State Police (MSP) says that, “tens of thousands of people are arrested annually in Michigan for alcohol-related driving offenses.” But if this large number of car accident deaths caused by drunk drivers doesn’t make them feel guilty enough to stop driving under the influence of alcohol, maybe the financial and legal punishments will.

Fighting the cost and consequences of a drunk driving conviction can be like fighting for the Iron Throne in Game of Thrones. The MSP discusses what they are.

Costs And Consequences Of A Drunk Driving Conviction

If BAC is below .17 and this is a first offense:

  • Up to $500 fine.

  • Up to 93 days in jail.

  • Up to 360 hours of community service.

  • Up to 180 days license suspension.

  • 6 points on a driver's license.

If BAC is .17 or higher and this is a first offense:

Detroit Drunk Driving Lawyer
  • Up to $700 fine.

  • Up to 180 days in jail.

  • Up to 360 hours of community service.

  • Up to one year license suspension.

  • 6 points on a driver's license.

  • Mandatory completion of an alcohol treatment program.

  • Ignition interlock use and compliance after 45 days license suspension is required to receive a restricted driver's license. Convicted drunk drivers have limited driving privileges, are prohibited from operating a vehicle without an approved and properly installed ignition interlock device, and are responsible for all installation and upkeep costs for the device.

Jay-walking may lead to a slap on the wrist and littering may lead to a small fine, but drunk driving can ruin lives. The irony is that drunk driving car crashes are 100% avoidable. Car accidents happen all the time. Drivers can’t 100% stop their cars from slipping on black ice or crashing into a deer that came out of nowhere. But, avoiding drunk driving car crashes is as simple as not driving after drinking alcohol.


Drunk drivers put the lives of everyone on the road at risk when they make the dangerous decision to get behind the wheel after drinking. DUI attorneys may be able to get the drunk driver out of trouble, but the guilt of causing avoidable injuries to innocent people can never be erased. The drunk driving car crash attorneys at The Michigan Law Firm, PC help drunk driving victims seek justice for their injuries. Call us at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free legal consultation.

April 7-13 Is Dog Bite Prevention Week!

According to The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), dogs bite more than 4.5 million people each year. Most dog bite victims are unfortunately senior citizens and children, but surprisingly to some, mail carriers are also frequently bitten by dogs.

In fact, just last month, a video of a dog attacking a mailman in Detroit went viral on Oneil Colley's Facebook page. In just 4 hours, the video was shared 60,000 times and was commented on 22,000 times! The Detroit Free Press described the 6-minute video as follows: “The video, apparently shot from inside a vehicle, shows a dog biting and pulling on the foot and ankle area of the postal carrier. Several people try to intervene and beat the dog with various objects, including a broom, a trash receptacle and what appears to be metal tools in an effort to stop the attack. The dog lets go of the carrier off-screen. A man gets a leash on it and starts to walk away, trying to keep the dog at a distance, but the dog charges toward him. He drops the leash. The animal at one point collapses, apparently injured. The video ends with the dog running after another person.”

Even with several people attempting to stop the assault, the dog still won the fight. While it’s not known why the dog attacked the mailman, it’s likely that the dog felt threatened and attacked in order to defend itself. The AVMA warns people against engaging in risky situations with dogs so that people can stay clear of dog bite injuries. And since this week, April, 7-13 is National Dog Bite Prevention Week, people should learn about what some of these risky dog bite situations are and how to avoid them.

Risky Dog Bite Situations To Avoid

Avoid petting a dog in these scenarios:

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  • If the dog is with its owner but the owner does not give permission to pet the dog.

  • If the dog is on the other side of the fence – don't reach through or over a fence to pet a dog.

  • If a dog is sleeping or eating.

  • If a dog is sick or injured.

  • If a dog is playing with a toy.

  • If a dog is growling or barking.

  • If a dog appears to be hiding or seeking time alone.

Even the cutest, fluffiest, marshmallow-come-to-life dogs pack a mean bite when they feel threatened. Mail carriers have to deliver mail to every address and can’t always avoid running into dogs. However, the average citizen should keep their eyes open when they see a dog and should remember how to avoid risky dog bite situations. The American Veterinary Medical Association encourages individuals to use their hashtag, #preventdogbites to share dog bite prevention information on social media.


Dog bites are painful. Not only do they cause physical pain, but dog bite injuries can rack up ER and medical bills and legal fees. The dog bite lawyers at The Michigan Law Firm, PC fight to help victims of dog bite injuries identify and receive compensation for their attack. Please call us at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free legal consultation with a dog bite attorney.

Ready Or Not, Here Teens Come

In July 2018, a teen passenger was killed in a rollover crash while teaching another teen how to drive. MLive reported that neither of the teens were wearing seat belts when the driver, who was going too fast, lost control of the vehicle and it rolled. In another recent teenage car accident, The Detroit Free Press reported that a van full of 10 teenagers were driving on 1-75 and when the driver attempted to switch spots with another passenger as the van was still in motion, causing the van to roll. Two of the three passengers were ejected from the van. If these teen car crashes are anything to go by, it seems like teenagers are not the safest or most cautious drivers. In fact, The National Highway Safety Traffic Administration (NHTSA) recently stated on Instagram that, “teen drivers were 2.5 times more likely to engage in 1 or more potentially risky behaviors when driving with 1 teenage peer, compared to when driving alone.” Also, “the likelihood of teen drivers engaging in 1 or more risky behaviors when traveling with multiple passengers increased to 3 times compared to when driving alone.”

Teenage License Eligibility

Just because a teenager and their friends are bored on a Friday night and they find their parents’ car keys on the kitchen counter, doesn’t mean they can go for a joyride through the Taco Bell drive-thru. There are rules on who can drive!

According to Michigan’s Secretary of State (SOS), “if an individual is 14 years and 9 months and has successfully completed Segment 1 of an approved driver education program they may be eligible for a Level 1 Learner’s License. Level 2’s intermediate license can be earned if a driver is at least 16 years old, had a Level 1 Learner’s License for at least 6 months, and has successfully completed Segment 2 of an approved driver education program. Drivers should also have a parent, legal guardian, or responsible adult sign the application to certify the 50 hours behind-the-wheel driving experience. To be eligible for a Level 2 Full License, applicants must be 17 years old, have Level 2 License for at least 6 months, and completed 12 consecutive months without a moving violation, a crash in which a moving violation resulted, a crash, a license suspension, or a violation of the graduated license restrictions. These requirements end for all teens once they turn 18-years-old.”

However, just because teens are eligible to drive at 14 years and 9 months doesn’t mean they can just hit the road whenever they want. Michigan’s Secretary of State office has restrictions for Level 1 and Level 2 drivers.

Michigan Graduated Drivers License Restrictions

A Level 1 licensed driver:

1. May only drive with a licensed parent/guardian or designated licensed adult age 21 or older.

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A Level 2 licensed driver:

1. Shall not operate a motor vehicle between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. except when:

  • Driving to or from or in the course of employment;

  • Driving to or from an authorized activity; or

  • Accompanied by a parent or legal guardian or a licensed driver 21 years of age or older designated by the parent or legal guardian.

2. Shall not operate a motor vehicle at any time with more than one passenger in the vehicle who is younger than 21 years of age except:

  • When the additional passengers are immediate family members;

  • When driving to or from, or in the course of employment;

  • While going to or from an authorized activity; or

  • When accompanied by a parent or legal guardian, or a licensed driver 21 years of age or older designated by the parent or legal guardian.

So, the teen driver who was teaching the other teen how to drive before they crashed, exhibited behavior that is illegal because according to the SOS rules, they are probably Level 1 drivers, and therefore must be accompanied by a parent, legal guardian, or a licensed driver 21 years of age or older. Also, in Michigan, it is illegal for Level 2 drivers to operate a motor vehicle with more than 1 passenger in the vehicle who is younger than 21-years-old, which means the driver with 10 passengers was also driving illegally!

Forget keeping hands at 10 and 2 on the steering wheel! Teens seem more likely to have their hands in the air taking a selfie behind the wheel, rather than holding the wheel. Since teen drivers take so many road risks, it’s important for parents to speak to their kids about these dangers. The Michigan Law Firm, PC blog recently discussed some driving discussion tips for parents who have driving age teens. It always important to remind teens, and everyone, that driving is a privilege, not a right.


Seeing teenagers behind the wheel can be a scary sight for other drivers on the road. Risky behaviors can lead to car accidents and severe accident injuries. Teens who get into car crashes are scared to call their parents, but those parents may be terrified of dealing with car accident insurance claims. The car crash lawyers at The Michigan Law Firm, PC make the insurance process easier for car crash victims and their families, and work hard to recover car insurance benefits even when crash victims have been denied. Contact us at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free legal consultation.




Mild Traumatic Brain Injuries May Lead To PTSD and Depression, According To A New Study

Two months ago, you were pumping gas when your stomach started to rumble. You decided to run into the convenience store for a convenient meal. You were craving sushi and there was a tuna roll that looked good. Chopsticks in hand, you dove right in. But after eating only a few pieces, you instantly experienced the worst stomach ache imaginable and ran straight for the bathroom.

Brain Injury

That food poisoning incident now lives inside your head and even the sight of sushi kind makes you want to vomit! Sure, never eating sushi again for the rest of your life might seem like a tragedy but imagine if this horrible experience that scarred you for life was a bad car crash instead. Let’s say you were driving down Woodward when suddenly, you got t-boned by another car and found yourself waking up in a hospital room surrounded by nurses and doctors examining your broken leg, herniated discs, and a mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI). You were disoriented and didn’t know where you were, and the pain from the injuries and the pain from remembering what happened hit you all at once. The ER did what they could to patch you up and discharged you with a long list of doctors to follow up with. Now you’re getting wheeled out to wait for the car to pull around to take you home when anxiety hits you. You’re about to get into a car after being injured in a car accident. You panic! What if it happens again?! You suck it up and get in, but the accident replays in your head the entire way home.

Then a few weeks pass. You’re on the road to physical recovery, but you’re frustrated. You couldn’t remember the capital of Canada on Jeopardy even though you took a trip to Toronto last year, you keep forgetting to take your medication and skipped a dose of a painkiller which then caused you agony for a few hours, and you’re cranky from the loss of sleep because you’re replaying the car accident in your dreams every night and jerking awake when the car t-bones you. On top of all that, your social life is suffering because you can’t build up the courage to leave the house and get into a car to meet your friends, not that you feel up to hanging out or that you can drive with a broken leg anyway. So, you are tired, in constant, severe pain, frustrated at your memory loss, and lonely.

What you’re experiencing here may be PTSD and depression possibly caused by a traumatic brain injury.

The American Psychological Association (APA) defines post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as, “an anxiety problem that develops in some people after extremely traumatic events, such as combat, crime, an accident or natural disaster.” An example of such a traumatic event can also be a car accident. Also, according to the APA, “people with depression may experience a lack of interest and pleasure in daily activities, significant weight loss or gain, insomnia or excessive sleeping, lack of energy, inability to concentrate, feelings of worthlessness or excessive guilt and recurrent thoughts of death or suicide.”

Detroit Car Crash TBI Lawyer

A new study published in the medical journal JAMA Psychiatry, found that, “among hospital patients, 21.2% of those with mild traumatic brain injuries experienced PTSD or depression up to six months after injury, compared with 12.1% of those with non-head injuries.” According to the Center For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a traumatic brain injury is, “a disruption in the normal function of the brain that can be caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head, or penetrating head injury.” The JAMA study, which was published January 30, 2019, measured 1,155 patients with mild traumatic brain injuries and 230 with non-head injuries from 11 hospitals with trauma centers across the United States, between 2014 and 2016. CNN analyzed the JAMA study and reported that, “researchers found that patients with mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) were more likely to report PTSD or major depressive symptoms at three and six months after injury. At three months. The researchers also found that having a mental health problem before a traumatic brain injury was "an exceptionally strong risk factor" for having PTSD or major depressive disorder afterward.” The study also discovered that, “61.8% of the mild traumatic brain injuries were caused by motor vehicle collision!” “29.2% were the result of a fall or other unintentional injury, 6.1% were caused by violence or assault, and 3% were from an unspecified cause.”

Broken bones can heal but the brain may never recover from a traumatic injury. According to The Model Systems Knowledge Translation Center (MSKTC), recovering from a TBI varies for different people and, “improvements slow down substantially after two years but may still occur many years after injury.” Therefore, it’s important to take precautions and try to avoid head injuries. Since the JAMA Psychiatry study found that 61.8% of the mTBI’s in their study were caused by motor vehicle accidents, it’s been proven that car accidents are one of the most common ways to incur a head injury.

The symptoms of a traumatic brain injury may not manifest right away. Therefore, it’s important to understand TBIs and to know to seek treatment right away if a head injury occurs. March is Brain Injury Awareness Month and The Michigan Law Firm, PC, as a member of the Brain Injury Association of Michigan, encourages readers to join the #ChangeYourMind campaign to spread awareness on brain injuries.


Gross, gas station sushi can cause psychological trauma, but a car crash may lead to a traumatic brain injury which may then cause depression and PTSD. The Michigan Law Firm, PC handles the legal obstacles that arise out of car accident cases for TBI victims so that they can focus on the difficult journey to recovery. Call us at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free legal consultation.

Oberon Day Is Here!

The characters on HBO’s Game of Thrones may be saying, “Winter is here,” but in Michigan, many are saying, “Oberon Day is here!”

That’s right, the summer staple, Oberon Ale is making its return on March 25, 2019!

On March 25, 2019, Oberon Ale will be distributed across the US, and many Michiganders will be swapping out their snow shovels for an ice cold Oberon. Lots of people even wait all year for Oberon to show up on their store shelves and fill their shopping carts to last them all summer. While Michiganders are proud of this Michigan brewed beer and love the citrusy taste, they should also remember to drink Oberon responsibly.

In every state, Michigan included, it is illegal to drive with a BAC of .08% or higher, “yet, 1 person was killed in a drunk driving car crash every 48 minutes in the United States in 2017,” mentioned by The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA.) People should remember that buzzed driving is drunk driving too. In other words, even having one beer, may impair a person enough that they wouldn’t be safe to drive.

The Michigan State Police (MSP) offers drivers who drink, some safer, legal alternatives than drinking and driving.

Drunk Driving Alternatives

  • Designate a sober driver before drinking alcohol.

  • Call a friend, cab, ride service, walk, or take the bus.

  • Stay overnight.

Detroit DUI Lawyer

Oberon Day is a chance for all Michigan beer lovers to kick off their winter boots and to slip on sandals and sunglasses all while dreaming of the cool breeze of spring and the heat of summer after dealing with the long, frigid, Michigan winter. On the other hand, there is nothing cool about drunk driving, and it’s certainly not a breeze if a driver is pulled over for driving while intoxicated. Whether a group of friends are heading to their local bar to fuel up on Oberon Ale, or even stop at their local grocery store to pick up a 24-pack, they will need to figure out how to get home safely. Drinking and driving may result in a DUI arrest, paying a mountain of fines, and dealing with astronomical legal fees. And they definitely don’t have Oberon in jail!


Drunk driving is never ok. And causing a drunk driving car crash is worse. Drivers who fail to follow the law are putting themselves and everyone else on the road, at risk. The Michigan Law Firm, PC attorneys are available to help victims injured in drunk driving car accidents. Call us at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free legal consultation.

Girl Dies Falling Out Of Car Window

Detroit Car Crash Lawyer

Going to Miami for spring break should involve sunshine, sandy beaches, multiple pairs of sunglasses, and aside from a bad sunburn an overall a safe trip..

Mariah Michelle Logans’ Spring Break trip to Miami checked everything on this list, right up until she got in her car to drive home to Chicago. She and her friends were driving on State Road 112 on the way to the Miami International Airport at 4:43 am on March 17, 2019. According to the Miami Herald, Logan, 23, was “hanging out” of the right rear passenger window of a rented Hyundai, trying to capture every last moment of her memorable trip and yelled, “Bye, Miami,” out the window.. In these few seconds, Mariah fell out of the window and landed on the road. A Range Rover was driving behind the Hyundai and was in the process of merging into the lane to the right when Mariah fell out of her car and he crushed her to death. The driver of the Range Rover stopped when he ran over Mariah but then drove off.

Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) investigators are looking into whether or not alcohol was involved in this hit-and-run car crash. Unfortunately, highway surveillance cameras are making the investigation difficult because they only live-stream. The FHP also won’t say if there are any other witnesses other than the three other passengers in the Hyundai.

Mariah’s friends and family are understandably reeling from the loss. Her boyfriend, Ray Olden spoke to The Miami Herald saying, “She was just being silly. She loved life...She brought energy and life. She never looked at the bad.”

Car crash deaths are very unfortunate events. Car accidents are not 100% preventable. However, there are precautions that every passenger in a vehicle can take to help lessen the chance of getting into a car crash or to avoid serious car crash injuries. One such car accident prevention tactic is that passengers in a moving vehicle should never stick their bodies out of a vehicle window and should always stay seated with a seat belt strapped on. According to the The National Highways Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), “seat belt use in passenger vehicles saved an estimated 14,668 lives in 2016.”

It seems as though passengers do know the importance of wearing a seat belt since the NHTSA reported that the national use rate for seat belts is at 90.1%. However, like Mariah Logan, nearly 27.5 million people still don’t wear their seat belts and put their lives at risk. The NHTSA also mentions that, if passengers wear a seat belt, they may reduce their risk of fatal injuries by 45%. So, remember, seat belts save lives!


Wearing a seat belt can help keep passengers secure inside a moving vehicle. Neglecting to wear a seat belt can result in being ejected from the vehicle during a car crash accident, which may further lead to broken bones, traumatic brain injuries, and even death. The Michigan Law Firm, PC attorneys fight to seek justice and compensation for car crash injury victims.all us at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free legal consultation.

CBD Is Legal In Michigan!

A new law will keep CBD oil from being regulated under Michigan’s Medical Marijuana Laws.

Detroit Marijuana Lawyer

If residents of Michigan don’t already know, the recreational use of marijuana was legalized a few months ago! While there still some kinks to work out in the law, The Michigan Law Firm, PC’s blog discussed these new Michigan recreational marijuana laws.

With the interest in marijuana growing every day, many consumers are becoming more curious about what is and isn’t marijuana and the various forms it comes in. These include cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), two natural compounds found in plants for the Cannabis genus. CBD is found in extractions from the hemp plant and is non-intoxicating while THC is the psychoactive compound that gives users the high sensation.

On December 28, 2018, Public Act 642, which clarifies that CBD oil and other products extracted from hemp fall under the scope of industrial hemp, not marijuana, was passed into law. Rep. Steven Johnson who sponsored the legislation stated, “CBD oil derived from hemp doesn’t get you high...It contains no more than 0.3 percent Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). But the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs decided last summer to start classifying it the same way they do marijuana, which contains 5 to 35 percent THC.”

The Detroit Free Press informs readers that in a few weeks, effective March 28, 2019, CBD oils will be able to be used by Michiganders recreationally and buyers will not require a medical marijuana card! Now that they can buy it, people may be wondering what they can do with CBD. Well, CBD has recently found its way into many products such as pills, creams, oils, edibles, and even drinks. CBD oils are also commonly used by individuals for health benefits and pain relief. According to Medical News Today, “people take or apply CBD to treat a variety of symptoms,” including, reducing inflammation, preventing acne, and as an antidepressant. Ale Mary’s in Royal Oak, Michigan even served a CBD drink on the menu last month.

Detroit Weed Lawyer

However, just because CBD doesn’t cause people to get high, doesn’t mean it can’t harm people in other ways. Major health agencies like the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), have stated that additional CBD testing and research is necessary. CBD might counteract or negatively react to certain medications or some people might just be allergic to it! A study conducted by the National Library of Medicine National Institute of Health (NCBI) published a study detailing the side effects of CBD oils. Some of these side effects include tiredness, diarrhea, and changes in appetite, and weight. Another study published by NCBI states that, “Without independent testing (e.g. USP certification) of CBD products for content and purity, as well as bioavailability testing of specific products, uncertainty surrounds the use of available CBD products in routine clinical settings.”

So, people should talk to their doctor or do some research before ordering that CBD drink on the bar menu or buying the CBD lotion on display at Sephora!


Hit Backspace On Bullying

Michigan Cyberbullying Lawyer

Many know the saying, “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.” That’s not the case in the 21st century. With the rise of technology came social media platforms where young teens, and even adults propel words at victims to cause them pain just as powerful as a punch to the stomach can. “You’re stupid,” “you’re dumb,” “get a life loser!” “UGLY!” are just a few tame examples of how hurtful a cyberbully can be in the comments section of many YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook posts.

Some people may be wondering what the differences are between traditional bullying and cyberbullying. Cyberbullying occurs when insults are directed at a victim through a virtual screen. As defined by stopbullying.gov, cyberbullying is, “bullying that takes place over digital devices like cell phones, computers, and tablets. Cyberbullying can occur through SMS, Text, and apps, or online in social media, forums, or gaming where people can view, participate in, or share content. Cyberbullying includes sending, posting, or sharing negative, harmful, false, or mean content about someone else. It can include sharing personal or private information about someone else causing embarrassment or humiliation. Some cyberbullying crosses the line into unlawful or criminal behavior.” Traditional bullying involves face to face insults and physical harm. Stopbullying.com further breaks down the differences between cyberbullying and traditional bullying.

Differences Between

Cyberbullying and Traditional Bullying

  • Anonymity: While victims usually know who their bully is, online bullies may be able to hide their identities online. The anonymity of the internet can lead to crueler or harsher abuses from the bully, all while the victim has no means of discovering who his or her harasser is.

  • Relentless: Bullying typically ends once the victim is removed from the negative social situation. However, smartphones, laptops, and other devices have made it possible for people to communicate with each other at all hours and from nearly any location. Cyberbullies may be able to torment their victim twenty-four hours per day, seven days per week, making it difficult for the victim to escape it by going home or even changing schools.

  • Public: With traditional bullying, often only people that interact with those involved will know of the abuse. However, when content is posted or shared online, it’s possible that anyone may see it. This opens up the victim to more potential ridicule or pain from strangers. This is compounded by the anonymity afforded by virtual spaces: while bullying in person may be done covertly or out of view to avoid punishment, cyberbullies need not fear being witnessed in the act if their identities are not known.

  • Permanent: Because online content is impossible to delete entirely, cyberbullying may damage the victim’s, or possibly the bully’s, reputation permanently. Even if the content is removed or deleted from the original site, someone may find it posted elsewhere later. This may negatively impact future employment, college admissions, or relationships for victim and bully alike.

  • Easy to Overlook: Cyberbullying may be harder for teachers, administrators, and parents to discover, because they may not have access to students’ online activities. They may not be able to overhear or see the abuse taking place. Unless someone comes forward, parents and teachers may never know that bullying is taking place.

Detroit Cyberbullying Lawyer

The Michigan Law Firm, PC’s blog recently discussed how the effects of cyberbullying lead a young, 13-year-old girl, Zoe Johnson to commit suicide after a classmate tagged her name in a vulgar Facebook post. Unfortunately, while cyberbullying is on the rise, traditional bullying is still here too. On January 25, 2019 a 13-year-old, Michael Martin, took his own life after constant harassment and traditional bullying from kids at his school. Michael was constantly teased about his appearance and was even slammed against a wall in the school lunchroom, as reported by the Lansing State Journal.

Sticks, stones, and even words have major negative effects on the lives of people who are continuously being bullied. Under Michigan’s new cyberbullying law, perpetrators of cyberbullying will face major consequences for carrying out this harmful behavior. Bullying is bullying, whether its face to face or through the internet, and it’s always wrong.


Bullying hurts. Words should not cause such irreparable harm that a person chooses to end their life. Attorneys at The Michigan Law Firm, PC understand the emotional damage that traditional bullying and cyberbullying can have on a person, and happy to help cyberbullying victims find justice under the new cyberbullying law. Call us at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free legal consultation.

A DUI Could Cost You A Pot Of Gold This St. Patrick's Day!

Detroit DUI Lawyer

Time to break out the “Kiss me I'm Irish” t-shirts, green beer, and your great-grandma Brigid’s secret corned beef recipe! Whether you plan on celebrating St. Patrick’s day by drinking copious amounts of Guinness and shots of Jameson during a pub crawl or by taking the family down to Corktown, everyone should plan how to get home safely, before they start to party.

St. Patrick's Day is one of the deadliest holidays due to the number of drunk drivers on the road. According to The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the St. Patrick's Day holiday period from 2012 to 2016 saw the loss of 269 lives due to drunk driving crashes. “In 2016 alone, 60 people, 39% of all crash fatalities, were killed in drunk driving crashes over the St. Patrick's Day holiday.” Also, on March 18, 2016, the day after St. Patrick’s Day, the NHTSA reported that 69% of crash fatalities nationwide involved a drunk driver.

It’s clear that St. Patrick’s Day is turning into a holiday where most people tend to celebrate who can drink the most and care less about the cultural and religious aspects of it all. These people should take safety precautions before they take part in this year’s festivities. And they don’t need to rely on the luck of the Irish to stay safe, because the NHTSA offers partygoers several tips on how to stay safe this St. Patrick’s Day.

St. Patrick’s Day Drunk Driving Safety Tips

NHTSA encourages everyone to take the following safety precautions:

  • Designate a sober driver or have an alternate transportation plan before the party begins.

  • If you don't have a designated driver, you can use NHTSA’s SaferRide app to call a taxi or a friend. The app is available for Android devices on Google Play, and Apple devices on the iTunes store.

  • Never let a friend drive drunk. Arrange a safe way for them to get home.

  • Don't ride in a vehicle with an intoxicated driver.

  • Always buckle up. It's your best defense against drunk drivers.

Michigan DUI Lawyer

If you’re hosting a party:

  • Make sure all your guests designate their sober drivers in advance.

  • Serve plenty of food and non-alcoholic beverages at the party.

  • Stop serving alcohol a few hours before the end of the party and keep serving non-alcohol drinks and food.

  • Take the keys away from anyone who is thinking of driving after drinking and get them a ride home.

  • Remember, you can be held liable and prosecuted if someone you served alcohol to ends up in a drunk-driving crash.

Every year, The Michigan State Police (MSP) warn drivers that extra police will be on patrol, looking for impaired and aggressive drivers. Last year on St. Patrick’s Day, the MSP participated in an international traffic safety initiative known as Operation C.A.R.E., which stands for “Crash Awareness and Reduction Efforts.” Michigan State Police director Kriste Kibbey Etue stated, “the department encourages safe driving and won’t tolerate drivers under the influence of alcohol or drugs.” The initiative was put in place for police to team up to reduce traffic fatalities and injuries resulting from dangerous driving behaviors during holiday festivities.

So, drunk drivers may have a better chance at finding a four-leaf clover than they do getting away with drunk driving this St. Patrick’s Day! But in the interest of the safety of everyone on the road, and so that no one’s fun gets spoiled, St. Patrick’s Day celebrators should plan their safe passage home before they start to drink.


Since St. Patrick’s Day is one of the drunkest holidays, drunk driving car crashes are very likely to occur. Drunk driving car crashes are completely preventable but unfortunately, they still happen. The car crash lawyers at The Michigan Law Firm, PC help people handle the legal aftermath of drunk driving car crashes so that victims can focus on healing from their accident injuries. Call us at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free legal consultation.

The Parents' Guide To Safe Teen Driving

For a parent, a teenager finally getting their driver's license can be a double-edged sword. It’s a celebration since parents no longer have to pick up and drop off their teens from their high school sports and club events and they can now make their teens run endless errands on Sunday mornings! On the downside, parents may fall into the eternal pit of worrying about their teens’ safety on the road. After all, according to the Center For Disease and Control (CDC), more than 2,400 teens died due to car crashes, the main cause of these car accidents being driver inexperience, in 2016!

Detroit Teen Car Crash

Most teens beg for a car for their Sweet Sixteen, but Michigan parents worry more than other parents around the country because in Michigan, “if an individual is 14 years and 9 months and has successfully completed Segment 1 of an approved driver education program they may be eligible for a Level 1 Learner’s License.” Before parents start panicking that their teen is driving just after graduating from Middle School, parents should make sure that their teen is qualified and ready to drive on their own.

The Michigan Secretary of State (SOS) offers parents a few tips on how to coach a teen in driving.

How To Coach Teen Drivers

  • Model Safe Driving- Teens learn what they observe. Be a good role model and follow the rules of the road.

  • Practice a lot- Practice as much as possible. You and your teen should be the only people in the vehicle.

  • Plan your routes ahead of time - While your teen is driving, be able to communicate your intentions clearly before your teen executes any of your requests. For example, "turn right" is a bad request. "Turn right at the next corner" is a better request.

  • Start simple- Learning to drive can be overwhelming - for your teen and for you. Begin with the basics, such as turning, parking and backing up. When you both feel comfortable, consider progressing to more advanced skills such as merging, changing lanes and parallel parking.

  • Start sunny- Begin practicing during the day, in good weather. As your teen improves, gradually start driving during different driving conditions, including a variety of times of day, weather and types of roads.

  • Don't rush into rush hour- Start with safe, low-risk driving conditions, such as empty parking lots and quiet rural roads. Gradually make progress to neighborhood streets with little traffic, then busier roads and highways.

  • Talk with your teen- Keep the lines of communication open so your teen feels comfortable talking with you. This builds trust and respect.

  • Take deep breaths- Remember, new drivers need a lot of practice. Making mistakes is part of learning. Remain calm and focused. Teens will show the greatest improvement in the first 1,000 miles to 5,000 miles of driving.

Of course, a few coaching tips won’t cover the wide range of environments and challenges a driver may face while on the road. So, it is very important for parents to monitor their teens’ driving and educate them on how distractions can be dangerous when driving.

The Michigan State Police (MSP) mention 3 main types of distracted driving which may affect a teen driver:

  1. Visual: taking your eyes off the road.

  2. Manual: taking your hands off the wheel.

  3. Cognitive: taking your mind off what you are doing.

Taking a Snapchat video, passing the aux cord, typing in a location on Google maps, texting a friend, or even drinking water or eating while driving, are all actions categorized as distracted driving. According to The National Highway Traffic Administration (NHTSA), 391,000 drivers were injured by distracted driving in 2016. What is even more terrifying is that, according to the National Safety Council, “cell phone use is now estimated to be involved in 26% of all motor vehicle crashes.”

Detroit Distracted Driving Car Crash Lawyer

Nobody, especially not a teen driver, wants to deal with traffic fines for distracted driving because they had to check the notification that popped on their phone. Fines may raise car insurance rates and can even eventually lead to license suspension. And cell phone usage while driving isn’t even legal for some teens, because according to Michigan Secretary of State (SOS), Michigan law prohibits drivers who are Level 1 and Level 2 license holders under the Graduated Driver Licensing program from using a cell phone while driving. “Violations are a civil infraction and fees may be up to $240.” And no teen wants to suffer through the consequence of getting their keys taken away by their parents just before prom!

So, to avoid fines, car accidents, and to give parents peace of mind, parents should ensure that their teens are properly taught how to drive before they let them on the road by themselves. Parents can teach their teens themselves or enroll their teens into driving courses. Parents and their teens should also discuss the dangers of distracted driving as well as the seriousness of car crashes to ensure that teens understand what can go wrong if they neglect to drive with caution and full attention on the road.


While parents may face the same car accident risks and obstacles each time they get behind the wheel, they have the experience to handle road dangers that many teen drivers do not. A teen driving car crash can cause serious damage to vehicles, to the teen drivers, and to others on the road. However, The Michigan Law Firm, PC understands that teen drivers aren’t always at fault in their first car accident. Our accident attorneys handle all types of motor vehicle accident cases. Call us at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free legal consultation.

Move Over Or Face The Consequences

On February 12, 2019 a Michigan State Police trooper was hit not once, but twice while stopped on southbound I-75 as he was attending to a disabled vehicle. The officer reported he had his lights on and was stopped in the left and center lanes. The officer was taken to the hospital with neck and back pains, according to a report by MLive.

Accidents like this are why Michigan and several other states have the Move Over Law. The Move Over Law, “requires motorists to slow down and move over for stationary emergency vehicles with their lights activated.” However, the growing trend of stopped emergency vehicles getting hit by an oncoming driver in the next lane has clearly caused many collisions resulting in injuries and fatalities, which may be why Michigan has expanded the Move Over Law.

The expanded Move Over Law, which went into effect on February 13, 2019, protects emergency vehicles such as, police, fire, ambulance, rescue, road service, road maintenance, utility service, solid waste hauler, and tow trucks.

Expanded Move Over Law

  • When approaching a stationary emergency vehicle with its emergency lights activated, carefully slow down to at least 10 mph below the posted speed limit and fully move over into an open lane.

  • If this is not possible due to traffic, weather, or road conditions, slow down to at least 10 mph below the posted speed limit, and pass with caution allowing the emergency vehicle as much space as possible.

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Drivers who fail to move over or slow down for stopped emergency vehicles could end up with 2 points on their driver’s license and a fine of $400, according to the new law. Also, “a driver could face felony charges and face up to 15 years in prison and/or a $7,500 fine if the violation causes death to a police officer, firefighter, or other emergency response personnel.”

For the safety of everyone on the road, drivers should move over when they see a stationary emergency vehicle with its lights on. Why pay fines and risk points on a license, when obeying the law is as simple as changing lanes?!


Changing lanes can be a lot like playing a game of chess; drivers must consider all of the pieces, or in this case, other vehicles in play. One missed blind spot or emergency vehicle and it could be checkmate and a car crash can occur. And remember, in the real world, there are no pawns to sacrifice on the road; every piece is a queen. The Michigan Law Firm, PC represents victims who have been injured in serious car crashes. Call us at 844.4MI.Firm for a free legal consultation with a Michigan accident attorney.

#ChangeYourMind This March

March is brain injury awareness month! It’s time to #ChangeYourMind and spread awareness on brain injuries!

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Detroit Brain Injury Lawyer

#ChangeYourMind is a public awareness campaign presented by The Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA), an organization which, “provides a platform for educating the general public about the incidence of brain injury and the needs of people with brain injuries and their families.”

The Brain Injury Association of Michigan (BIAMI) defines a brain injury, such as a traumatic brain injury (TBI) as, “a disruption in the normal function of the brain that can be caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head, rotational force, sudden acceleration and deceleration, shock from an explosive blast, or a penetrating head injury.”

A traumatic brain injury is a very serious injury that affects many people. The human brain is the most complex and remarkable organ in the human body and is responsible for all of an individual's actions and drives their senses. A brain injury can affect who an individual is, the way they think, act, and feel. In Michigan alone, 58,500 people will sustain a traumatic brain injury each year, according to BIAMI. In the United States, 153 people die from injuries that include an injury to the brain every day, according to The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Brain injuries can be very mild and even go undiagnosed, which can lead to permanent damage or possibly even death.

Most people aren’t aware of brain injuries and their common causes. BIAMI mentions that some of the most common causes of TBIs are:

Common Causes of Traumatic Brain Injuries

  • Falls

  • Athletic and recreational activity

  • Assaults, including domestic abuse and shaken baby syndrome

  • Motor vehicle and bicycle accidents

  • Military blast injuries

It’s very well known that car accidents may lead to TBIs, but most people don’t consider bicycle accident TBIs. Bicycle accidents are very common and just as life-threatening as motor vehicle accidents. According to CDC, “in 2010 in the U.S., 800 bicyclists were killed and an estimated 515,000 sustained bicycle-related injuries that required emergency department care.” 26,000 of these bicycle-related injuries resulted in TBIs. The CDC urges bicyclists that practicing helmet safety can play a major role in preventing bicycle related injuries, saying, “any bicyclist who does not wear a bicycle helmet is at increased risk of head injury...a bike helmet can help protect your child or teen from a serious brain or head injury.”

While our hearts can be replaced, there is no such thing as a brain transplant, yet. Coping with and trying to heal from a traumatic brain injury can be one of the most grueling challenges an individual can go through. Since March is brain injury awareness month, people should discuss the seriousness of brain injuries so that everyone can be educated on TBIs and how to prevent them and treat them.


Brain injuries are very common and can be caused in many ways including motor vehicle accidents, falls, and even bicycle accidents. As BIAMI members, the attorneys at The Michigan Law Firm, PC are armed with up-to-date traumatic brain injury knowledge so they can better help car accident TBI victims. If you or someone you know has suffered a TBI due to a car accident, call 844.4MI.FIRM for a free legal consultation.

Winter Driving Safety Tips

From sledding down the most prestigious hill in the neighborhood in a dark blue, plastic sled, to skating on the ice rink at Campus Martius in Detroit, winter in Michigan can be the most joyous time of year! However, winter in Michigan isn’t all hot chocolate and toasty fireplaces. Unfortunately, the same snow and freezing cold temperatures that allow Michiganders to have winter fun can also lead to car crashes and serious injuries.

Michigan Snow Car Crash Lawyer

Drivers unlucky enough to have experienced Michigan winters know that winter drives are unpredictable and can make drivers feel like they’re participating in a Winter Olympics event! Visible road conditions in the morning might allow drivers to feel as confident as Bode Miller swishing and swooshing down a freshly groomed mountaintop. But by the drive home, heavy snowfall and terrible road conditions may create so many hurdles, that drivers feel like they not only missed the podium but placed last in the Olympic qualifier event. In fact, driving in the snow is such a gruesome task that over 1,300 people are killed and more than 116,800 people are injured in vehicle crashes on snowy, slushy, or icy pavements annually, according to the Federal Highway Administration (FHA). So many of these winter weather car accidents are caused by drivers who don’t know how to respond to the treacherous winter weather conditions or how to navigate their vehicles over ice and snow. Since driving in the snow can be a very daunting task, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has published the following winter driving tips:

Winter Driving Tips

  1. Stay Alert

  • Keep your gas tank close to full, even with a hybrid-electric vehicle. If you get stuck in a traffic jam or in snow, you might need more fuel than you anticipated to get home or to keep warm.

  • If road conditions are hazardous, avoid driving if possible. Wait until road and weather conditions improve before venturing out in your vehicle.

  • On longer trips, plan enough time to stop to stretch, get something to eat, return calls or text messages, and change drivers or rest if you feel drowsy.

2. Avoid Risky Driving Behaviors

  • Do not text or engage in any activities that may distract you while driving.

  • Obey all posted speed limits, but drive even slower if necessary for weather conditions.

  • Drive sober. Alcohol and drugs impair perception, judgment, motor skills, and memory – the skills critical for safe and responsible driving.

3. Driving in Winter Conditions

  • Drive slowly. It’s harder to control or stop your vehicle on a slick or snow-covered surface. On the road, increase your following distance enough so that you’ll have plenty of time to stop for vehicles ahead of you.

  • Know whether your vehicle has an antilock brake system and learn how to use it properly. Antilock brake systems prevent your wheels from locking up during braking. If you have antilock brakes, apply firm, continuous pressure to the brake pedal. If you don’t have antilock brakes, you may need to pump your brakes if you feel your wheels starting to lock up.

4. Navigating Around Snow Plows

  • Don’t crowd a snow plow or travel beside it. Snow plows travel slowly, make wide turns, stop often, overlap lanes, and exit the road frequently.

  • The road behind an active snow plow is safer to drive on. If you find yourself behind a snow plow, stay behind it or use caution when passing.

  • When you are driving behind a snow plow, don’t follow or stop too closely. A snow plow operator’s field-of-vision is limited; if you can't see the mirrors, the driver can't see you. Also, materials used to de-ice the road could hit your vehicle.

  • Snow plows can throw up a cloud of snow that can reduce your visibility to zero in less time than you can react. Never drive into a snow cloud – it can conceal vehicles or hazards.

What To Do In A Winter Emergency

If you are stopped or stalled in wintry weather, follow these safety rules:

  1. Stay with your car and don’t overexert yourself.

  2. Put bright markers on the antenna or windows and keep the interior dome light turned on.

  3. To avoid asphyxiation from carbon monoxide poisoning, don’t run your car for long periods of time with the windows up or in an enclosed space. If you must run your vehicle, clear the exhaust pipe of any snow and run it only sporadically — just long enough to stay warm.

Folks in Michigan have plenty to do in the winter, like skiing, snowboarding, ice skating, building snowmen, and so much more. Unfortunately, extreme winter weather can also cause many hazards, especially when traveling in snow and ice. While people may cheer on a winter storm for freezing a lake well enough to skate on, they also boo at it for causing pile-ups on the freeway. Since we can’t manipulate Michigan’s weather to be more like Florida’s, Michigan drivers have no choice but to learn how to safely navigate their vehicles in snow, slush, and ice. Hopefully, by following the aforementioned winter driving safety tips, drivers can learn to endure the next snowstorm as Olympic gold medalists and not ER patients!


Winter weather may have it’s up and downs, so it’s important for drivers to stay cautious in order to avoid car crashes. If you or someone you know has been injured in a car accident caused by snowy or icy driving conditions, please contact The Michigan Law Firm, PC at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free consultation.

Get A Date, Not A DUI, This Valentine's Day

Being handcuffed and placed into the backseat of a police car for drunk driving can kill the romance of a Valentine’s Day date in a second.

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Picking out the most attractive outfit, spraying the most fragrant perfume, and finding the perfect dozen red roses are, of course, important parts of preparing for the perfect Valentine’s Day date. But the plan that matters most is how to get home safely after drinking a bottle of bubbly or a few Valentine-themed cocktails.

In 2014, a BACtrack report found that, “14 of the 15 biggest drinking days of the year, all of which have an average BAC of 0.08% or higher, fall between December and March.” Of these holidays, Valentine’s Day is the 3rd drunkest holiday! What is even more astonishing is that, “the day after Valentine’s Day had a high of 0.092% BAC.” So, while some people are venturing out to Meijer for 50% off Valentine’s Day candies like heart-shaped Reese’s cups and chocolate covered strawberries, others may be hitting the road after a few glasses of red wine left over from the night before.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2017 there were 10,847 deaths caused by drunk driving, and, “in every State, it’s illegal to drive with a BAC of .08 or higher, yet one person was killed in a drunk-driving crash every 48 minutes in the United States in 2017.” With Valentine’s Day falling on a Thursday this year, many individuals may want to drive home after their night of celebrating so they can wake up early and drive to work the next morning. These potential drunk drivers should know that not only are they putting themselves and others at risk of drunk driving car crashes, but they may also be endangering their driving record. The Michigan State Police (MSP) found that “annually, tens of thousands of drivers are arrested in Michigan for alcohol-related offenses.”

The MSP has a few suggestions on how to avoid drunk driving car crashes. People enjoying Valentine's Day festivities can adapt these tips to their plans to stay safe this tomorrow. After all, the police station drunk tank isn’t the ideal venue for a intimate date and you don’t want to blow your date budget on bail money!

How To Avoid A Valentine’s Day Drunk Driving

  • Designate a sober driver before drinking alcohol. An Uber driver, particularly an Uber Black driver, is technically a chauffeur right? And chauffeurs instantly make a date feel classier and allow couples to converse in the back seat instead of having to focus on the road.

  • Call a friend, cab, ride service, walk, or take the bus. Aren’t midnight strolls in the moonlight the height of romanticism? So, picking a restaurant near the house will give couples the chance to pick out constellations on the walk home after dining and drinking.

  • Stay overnight. Similar to bringing over a sleeping bag to a friend’s house to crash after a rager, one way to safely drink without limitations on Valentine’s Day, is by staying the night at a hotel. Some upscale hotels even have 5-star restaurants located inside, so the only drunk traveling to worry about is walking to the nearest elevator. Take the Shinola Hotel in Downtown Detroit for example. Inside the hotel is the San Morello restaurant, but if you don’t want Italian, there are dozens of other dining options in walking distance!

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Of course, the easiest way to avoid drunk driving on Valentine’s Day, is to just not drink! Isn’t the sugar high from the candy hearts, smarties necklaces, and the decadent dessert from dinner enough to keep people hyper?! Drunk driving car crashes can occur just as quickly as it takes Cupid to shoot an arrow. So, stop and smell the roses (bouquet) on Valentine’s Day by having a drink or two, but don’t let drunk driving become a thorn in your side!


Choosing a piece of chocolate from a newly opened, heart-shaped box of Russell Stover’s chocolate may be a difficult task, but choosing a law firm to represent a drunk driving accident victim can be very easy. The Michigan Law Firm, PC helps those who have been injured in car crashes identify and receive any benefits they may be entitled to under Michigan law. Contact us a 844.4MI.Firm for a free legal consultation.

Medical or Not, Marijuana May Impair Drivers

In Michigan, more than half of medical marijuana users have admitted to having driven under the influence of marijuana within two hours of using it.

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This information was found in a study conducted by the University of Michigan Addiction Center and published in the Drug & Alcohol Dependence Journal. Researchers noted that roughly 270,000 people have state approval to use medical marijuana for pain, nausea, epilepsy, Alzheimer's disease, and for other medical reasons in the State of Michigan. 790 medical cannabis users in Michigan were surveyed and it was found that 56% reported driving within two hours of using cannabis and 51% reported driving while, "a little high" and 21% reported driving while, "very high." 1 in 5 individuals even admitted that they have operated a vehicle while being under the influence of marijuana once in the past six months.

Why is driving under the influence of marijuana a bad thing? After all, it’s prescribed by doctors for suffering patients! Well, according to the Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI), “marijuana dulls the perceptual and cognitive abilities required for safely operating a motor vehicle.” Also, according to the Center for Disease and Control and Prevention (CDC), “driving while impaired by any substance, including marijuana, is dangerous. Marijuana, like alcohol, negatively affects a number of skills required for safe driving.”

In July 2018, WWMT Kalamazoo reported that 2 newlywed Michiganders were killed in a car crash when a driver sped through a stop sign and crashed into their vehicle, pushing into another lane, causing them to be struck by a third vehicle. 2 of the 3 occupants of the vehicle involved in the car accident had medical marijuana prescriptions. This doesn’t mean that the at-fault driver was under the influence of marijuana but, “Investigators said the medical marijuana cards found at the scene of the crash complicate their case and the charges the at-fault driver will face.” Allegan County Sheriff Capt. Chris Kuhn, believes investigations can become very puzzling for law enforcement and the establishment of testing procedures or blood levels to suspect the impairment of a driver. “Even with a medical marijuana card, it is illegal to drive with active levels of the psychoactive chemical found in marijuana in your system, but there is no legal limit to say what’s considered, high,” Kuhn said.

No tests currently exist for law enforcement to measure marijuana impairment of drivers, so field sobriety tests have been adapted from their use in detecting alcohol-impaired drivers. Research conducted in the HLDI study suggests however that field sobriety tests designed to assess alcohol-impaired drivers are only moderately successful at detecting impairment from marijuana.. The study also suggests that, “this ineffective enforcement may encourage drivers to engage in driving under the influence of marijuana, because they think they can get away with it.”

While the presence of marijuana initially complicated the investigation of the fatal newlyweds car crash, toxicology reports later uncovered that the at-fault driver had both alcohol and marijuana in his system while operating his vehicle.

Detroit Marijuana Lawyer

Over 50% of Michigan drivers have been driving while under the influence of prescribed medical marijuana, according to the University of Michigan Addiction Center. Although the causal link between marijuana use and car crash risk remains unproven, the consistent pattern of findings in the CDC’s research suggests that car crash rates do increase when drivers use marijuana. Driving in Michigan is dangerous enough with all the potholes and poor road conditions causing car accidents, so adding drugs into the driving mix makes car crashes even more likely to occur. Just as people know they shouldn’t drink and drive, they should know not to smoke and drive, even if they’re using marijuana for medical purposes.


Medical marijuana has been prescribed to over 270,000 individuals in the State of Michigan, and now, as of January 2019, Michigan has become the first state in the Midwest to legalize marijuana for recreational use for individuals 21 and older. While many citizens are overjoyed at this new legislation, the legalization of marijuana may lead to more impaired drivers and more car crashes. The Michigan Law Firm, PC, helps victims who have been injured in a medical marijuana car crashes, and help to identify and receive any compensation they may be entitled to under Michigan law. Contact us at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free legal consultation regarding your car crash.

Vehicle App Downloads Increase As Temperatures Decrease

Grandpa may not understand how to use Facebook but he sure wasn’t going to go out in -50°F windchill to start up his car! The polar vortex brought many troubles, challenges, and delays to Michigan drivers. The bone-chilling wind and subzero temperatures were horrifying enough that even technophobic people downloaded and used mobile connected apps to self start their vehicle engines.

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On January 30, 2019, self-starting apps were used more than 59 million times, which is a 70% increase from an average day in January, according to General Motors. These apps include myChevrolet, myBuick, myGMC, and myCadillac.

Santiago Chamorro, GM’s Vice President for Global Connected Customer Experience said, “With access to an app that connects directly to the vehicle, our customers are able remote start their vehicle from anywhere, and avoid spending extra time outside during unpleasant weather conditions."

GM stated that Michigan, Illinois, New York, Ohio, Minnesota were the states with the most users hitting “start” on their phones to warm up their vehicles.

According to USA Today, the GM vehicle self-starting app was introduced 9 years ago and was the auto industry’s first connected mobile app. In addition to starting up their engines, GM owners of Chevrolet, Buick, Cadillac, and GMC vehicles can also check their vehicle's oil life, tire pressure, and fuel level. The app can even help drivers locate the car if it’s ever lost.

Other automotive brands have also jumped at the vehicle app trend. For example, Chrysler vehicles such as Jeep, Dodge, Ram, and FIAT have Uconnect, Toyota has Toyota Owners, and the Ford Motor Company has FordPass. All of these apps allow drivers to start their vehicle engines, check their vehicle's oil life, tire pressure, fuel level, locates the car in a crowded parking lot, and some even allow users to sound the vehicle's horn and flash the headlights. Though connected car apps used to only be a feature in luxury vehicles, like BMW’s BMW Connected Drive, this technology has become widely available for most newer model vehicles regardless of their price tag.

There is nothing like stepping into a toasty car on a frosty morning, and thanks to automakers’ mobile connected apps, many people can start off their morning drive without worrying about their hands freezing and sticking to the steering wheel! However, there are dangers to letting a car warm up. The Michigan Law Firm, PC blog recently informed readers of some bad habits drivers carry out that can hurt their vehicles. One such bad habit is letting the engine idle too long in an effort to warm up the car. According to AutoBlog, “idling for too long causes buildup on the spark plugs, rendering them less efficient. This may be bad news for your wallet, too, as it wastes gas.”


Mobile connected apps have made winter driving a bit more tolerable for Michigan drivers. However, the winter driving dangers of icy roads, vision-impairing snowfall, and other car accident causing winter driving threats still exist. Car accidents may lead to serious injuries and seriously expensive medical bills. Like a snow plow clearing the road, the car accident attorneys at The Michigan Law Firm, PC help clear up the legal process for victims of car crashes. For a free legal consultation with a Michigan accident attorney, call 844.4MI.FIRM.

Caution: Don't Slip Into Spring

Finally! A glimmer of hope at the end of a polar vortex! Spring is coming early!

On Saturday, February 2, 2019, Americans were crossing their fingers and waiting on bated breath for Punxsutawney Phil to make his annual Groundhog Day prediction. As tradition dictates, if the groundhog sees his shadow and goes back into his burrow, there will be 6 more weeks of winter. But, if he doesn’t see his shadow and stays outside, spring will come early. And if you haven’t already heard, Phil did not see his shadow!

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Punxsutawney Phil might just be the best meteorologist in America because Michiganders have been enjoying warm temperatures this week. Monday reached a high of 54 °F, which after the subzero temperatures the day before, made it feel like a heatwave hit Metro Detroit! But just because spring is coming early, doesn’t mean winter is over just yet. There may not be a blizzard on the horizon, but Metro Detroit is experiencing an ice storm. According to The National Weather Service (NWS), “Freezing rain develops as falling snow encounters a layer of warm air deep enough for the snow to completely melt and become rain. As the rain continues to fall, it passes through a thin layer of cold air just above the surface and cools to a temperature below freezing. However, the drops themselves do not freeze, a phenomenon called supercooling (or forming "supercooled drops"). When the supercooled drops strike the frozen ground (power lines, or tree branches), they instantly freeze, forming a thin film of ice, hence freezing rain... Ice storms result from the accumulation of freezing rain.”

The NWS also mentions that, “Ice storms can be the most devastating of winter weather phenomena and are often the cause of automobile accidents, power outages and personal injury.” In 2014, The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that 42,480 work injuries involved ice, sleet, or snow. 2,040 of them were Michigan work injuries. The report also indicates that the injuries resulted from, “falls, slips or trips; overexertion and bodily reaction; transportation incidents; and contact with objects and equipment.”

Icy sidewalks, driveways, and even roads may cause disasters and lead to a higher risk of slips, falls, and even car accidents. Don’t slip into spring; walk and drive slowly.


Slip and falls and car accidents caused by ice may lead to minor injuries such as twisted ankles and scraped knees and to serious injuries like broken bones and even traumatic brain injuries, leaving victims in the hospital for days and out of work for weeks. The Michigan Law Firm, PC provides legal services to those who have been injured in slip and fall accidents and icy car crashes. Call us at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free legal consultation.

Is Uber the New 9-1-1?

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In November 2015, a Grand Rapids, Michigan man was shot and was bleeding heavily. Instead of calling 911, he called an Uber.

Slow ambulance response times and the astronomical service fees that follow, have many individuals taking matters into their own hands, or phones actually. Individuals in need of emergency care are now picking up their smartphones, opening their favorite ridesharing app, and instead of adding their local bar as their destination, users are requesting to be dropped off at the nearest emergency room. Uber, in particular, has responded to this trend by creating a non-emergency transportation application to help healthcare providers, Uber Health.

Distressed people find themselves waiting long periods of time for an emergency vehicle to arrive. These slow response times have caused life-threatening obstacles for many individuals. In 2013, “the city of Detroit had fewer than 10 working ambulances. A 911 caller with a medical emergency was likely to wait 20 minutes or more for help to arrive,” according to the Altarum Institute. In 2014, Detroit had seen some of its worst response times in decades. In January 2014, the average response time of Detroit's Emergency Medical Services (EMS) was 18 minutes, as mentioned by, The Motor City Muckraker. But, the article also mentions that in 2015, The City of Detroit saw an increase from 12 to 25 EMS vehicles after Mayor Mike Duggan took office, and started an initiative to improve Detroit’s ambulance response time. The article also mentions that the initiative, which began in April 2015, saw response times surpassing the national average, dropping 10 minutes to 8 minutes and 30 seconds.

But even with improved emergency service response times, many individuals are still choosing ridesharing services over calling 9-1-1. Why? Ambulance rides are expensive! A deciding factor in choosing transportation for many individuals is how much it will cost them. People love Uber for the simple reasons that they can arrive at a destination quickly and without breaking their wallets. And when the price of an ambulance ride to the hospital can range from $600 to $1,000, according to the Department of Health and Human Services, it’s no wonder people prefer an Uber! According to the University of Kansas, “the use of Uber in cities across the country has reduced per capita ambulance volume by at least 7%,” likely because patients want to avoid the expensive ambulance ride with paramedics. The study looked at ambulance rates in 766 U.S. cities across 43 states from the time Uber was made available in the area from 2013-2015.

Although taking an Uber to the hospital may be much cheaper and at times faster, it might not be a medically sound decision to rule out an ambulance. A 5-star uber driver may provide bottled water and your choice of music but ambulances come equipped with trained professionals who provide life-saving care! Also, an emergency vehicle can legally impede traffic to race an individual to an emergency room, where ridesharing services cannot.

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While Uber does not encourage using their services in place of emergency care, they have recognized the need for more efficient and easy to use transportation in the medical sector, and have introduced Uber Health. According to Uber, “Uber health is a technology solution for healthcare organizations that leverages the ride hailing power of Uber platform... the app allows hospitals and other healthcare professionals to request, manage, and pay for rides for others, at a scale.” Healthcare organizations use Uber Health to allow patients to request or schedule a ride to and from their place or treatment, and for staff to get to and from work, 24/7. Uber Health is currently available in the United States everywhere Uber is already available. According to The National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), “services like Uber Health could help patients avoid missing appointments because of lack of affordable transportation.”

But it should be stressed again that Uber Health is not an alternative to calling 911, but rather an aid for healthcare providers to arrange higher quality transportation services for patients. Requesting ridesharing services instead of emergency vehicles because of slow EMS response times or hefty medical bills may put injured victims at a higher risk of not getting proper medical attention.


Calling an Uber to go to the ER for a paper cut is a better idea than calling an ambulance. But, taking an Uber to the ER after experiencing a heart attack may not be the best medical decision. No one likes going to the hospital or dealing with piling medical bills. The personal injury attorneys at The Michigan Law Firm, PC understand the frustration that injured victims feel and help them so they can focus on their recovery. Contact us at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free consultation.

A Play by Play To A Safe Super Bowl Party

Is everyone ready to see the New England Patriots and the Los Angeles Rams duke it out this Sunday, during the Super Bowl?! What should go on a Super Bowl Sunday checklist? Chips? Check. Dip? Check. Designated driver? Check!

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According to a study conducted by BACtrack, Super Bowl Sunday is the 2nd drunkest American holiday! To many Americans, football is a religion and the Super Bowl is the holiest holiday. And one of the ways to worship during the Super Bowl is by consuming copious amounts of alcohol. Celebrations involve red solo cups filled with alcoholic mixed drinks, bottles of Bud Light wrapped in a lucky koozie, fancy craft brews in snifter glasses, and even carafes of wine. And if you need to calm the fire in your mouth after eating a hot wing, there are jello shots. Plus with drinking games in which everyone takes a shot when there’s a touchdown or when an announcer says a specific word, there is a lot of alcohol being consumed during a Super Bowl party!

Unfortunately, the buzz from the thrill of the Big Game can wear off long before the buzz of the alcohol. After all, the game is on Sunday evening and people have to work the next day. And especially if your favorite team loses, you may want to get home as soon as possible. But Super Bowl partygoers need to remember that, “drunk driving kills.”

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports, “In 2016, there were 10,497 fatalities in motor vehicle traffic crashes involving drunk drivers.” Since the Super Bowl is the 2nd drunkest holiday of the year, many drunk driving car crashes are likely to occur. In order to prevent drunk driving car accidents, the NHTSA offers drivers a play by play on how to drive safely on Super Bowl Sunday.

How To Avoid Super Bowl Drunk Driving

  • Known the Rules: It’s illegal to drive with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 or higher. When it comes to drinking and driving, law enforcement doesn’t throw a yellow flag; they throw the book at you. You’ll get pulled over, arrested, and prosecuted. Your wallet takes a big hit, too: the average DUI court case cost approximately $10,000.

  • Play It Safe: Defenses win championships; your best defense is to plan a safe ride. From buses and trains to car services and designated drivers, connect with the option that will get you home safely. NHTSA even has an app for the-SaferRide-which is available for Apple and Android devices and can connect you to a local cab company or with a friend who can come pick you up.

  • Be a Party MVP: Volunteer to be a designated driver. Let your squad know that you’ll be there for them when the party’s over with a safe, sober ride home. (You can even tweet their names to @NHTSAgov to make them part of the NHTSA’s Wall of Fame. Use the hashtag #designateddriver.)

  • If You’ve Been Drinking, You’re Benched: Buzzed Driving Is Drunk Driving. There’s no place on the road for anyone who has been drinking. If someone tries to drive after drinking, tell them to ride the bench until you help them find a sober ride home. If you’re hosting the party, you’re the head coach. Make the right call: take their keys before they drink and drive.

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The Super Bowl will end with one team winning it all, but by not engaging in drunk driving, everyone can win. Sure, a shiny trophy signifying a football season full of hard work and dedication is nice, but drivers should avoid the shiny prize of handcuffs signifying a night of bad drunk driving decisions. People planning to celebrate this year’s Super Bowl should sober up before leaving the party, celebrate at home, find a designated driver, or call an Uber or Lyft. Drunk driving car crashes are 100% avoidable. Drunk driving car accidents ruin the lives of the drunk driver and anyone they injure in a car crash. Drunk driving attorneys at The Michigan Law Firm, PC, seek to help victims injured in drunk driving car crashes identify and collect benefits and compensation they may be entitled to under Michigan law. For a free legal consultation with a Michigan drunk driving lawyer, call 844.4MI.FIRM.