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Call Us Today!
(248) 266-2374
Call Us Today!
(248) 266-2374
Services
Workers' Compensation
Michigan’s Workers’ Compensation law is a no-fault system established to pay benefits to individuals who are disabled by an injury or occupational illness arising out of or in the course of employment.
 
After a work-related disability causes a worker to miss 8 days in a row, he or she may be entitled to wage-loss benefits. On the 8th day benefits become payable. If the worker is off for at least (15) consecutive days, benefits become payable for the first 7 days.
 
In addition to wage loss benefits, injured workers are entitled to medical care for their injury as well
as vocational rehabilitation.

 
Workers’ Compensation insurance carriers will often deny a worker’s rightful claim, making life very hard on an injured person. All legal work is on a contingent fee basis, with attorney fees being set by state statue. 
 
Automobile Accidents
The proper handling of your rights for injuries and property damage from an automobile accident is crucial. When you have been injured in an automobile accident, you have potentially two claims under the No-Fault law. The first claim is for Personal Insurance Protection (“PIP”) benefits, which include lost wages, medical expenses, attendant care, and replacement services. Generally, this claim is made against your own insurance company, the car in which you were a passenger, family members who live with you, or from the insurer of the other automobile in the collision. 
 
Time is of the essence because the insurance company is often looking for a loophole that will allow it to deny you fair benefits. An Application for No-Fault Benefits form must be submitted before the insurance company will pay “PIP" benefits. This form must be returned to the insurance company promptly, and no later than (1) year from the date of the accident. When you incur any medical or other expenses, these bills should be promptly sent to the insurance company. The insurance company can deny coverage if they are not sent the bills within (1) year of your receiving the service. It is important for you to keep a diary of the doctors and hospitals where you receive medical care.
 
The second claim is for “pain and suffering” against the driver and vehicle owner who caused your injuries. In Michigan, under the No-Fault Law, an injured person must prove a “death, serious impairments of a bodily function or permanent, serious disfigurement.” These are legal standards that have changed over the years. Generally, they do require a serious injury with medical care over several months. Uninsured and under-insured coverages must be closely reviewed to ensure that you receive all of the benefits that you have paid for.
 
Please call if you have any questions about your rights, or if the insurance company cuts off your benefits. Keep in mind that an insurance company’s decision to end your benefits may not be correct, and you have the right to bring a lawsuit to protect your No-Fault rights.
 
You may call for your free consultation as soon as you are able. House calls are available.
 
Dog Bites
In Michigan, a dog owner is responsible for personal injury caused by an attack by his / her dog. The Dog Bite Statues (MCLA 287.351) provides:
 
“If a dog bites a person, without provocation while the person is on public property, or lawful property, including the property of the owner of the dog, the owner of the dog shall be liable for damages suffered by the person bitten, regardless of the former viciousness of the dog or knowledge of such viciousness.”
 
Prompt action is required to pin down the facts and the ownership of the animal. Often, psychological trauma is suffered in addition to the physical injuries. Permanent scarring is a significant factor in dog bite claims. 
 
Premises Liability
Premises Liability claims are generally brought as a result of unsafe conditions on property that cause personal injury. Many cases involve a “slip and fall” or “trip and fall.” Some premises liability claims result from defective stairs and railings, and violations of building codes. In Michigan, it is crucial to obtain witness statements and photographs of the scene because the defendant will use the concept of “open and obvious,” in which the courts hold that despite a defective or dangerous condition of the land, no duty arises on the part of the landowner if the injured persons should have seen and avoided the condition. There are certain exceptions to this judicially created rule and lack of duty. Each case has its own facts and requires individual and timely review.
 
Small Business
If you are in business or considering starting a business, it is important to consider incorporation for protection of your personal assets and protection against business liability. The incorporation process can be provided
quickly if time demands.

 
The sale or purchase of a business is a complex transaction. The Agreement of Sale is the framework for the future dealings of the parties. The establishment of specific terms that are clear and understood by all is a necessity.
 
Real Estate
The sale and purchase of real estate is a complex matter that people rarely deal with in their lifetimes. It is crucial to consult an attorney before the Contract for Sale is signed. The Contract establishes the terms for the sale. Once signed by all parties, it is a binding agreement that is legally enforceable.
 
Real estate matters must be placed in writing to be enforceable under the Michigan Statue of Frauds.
 
Probate
Every person should have a Will, Health Care Power of Attorney, and Durable Power of Attorney. These documents are crucial to guide your loved ones as to your wishes and needs.
 
Property in which you can designate a beneficiary or jointly title can avoid probate proceedings. However, there can be complications with jointly titled assets that must be explored so the full ramifications can be understood.
 
Michigan has supervised and unsupervised probate proceedings. Generally, once a petition and the many other documents are filed with the court, there is a hearing for the appointment of a personal representative and admission of a Will, if any. The law requires a Claims Notice be published. 
 
Bankruptcy
When a person is confronted with a loss of job or illness, he / she is often unable to pay his / her bills. The federal bankruptcy law allows people a legal avenue to obtain relief from the overwhelming problems of financial hardship.
 
The bankruptcy law has requirements to qualify for relief in Chapter 7 (debt liquidation) and Chapter 13 (debt reorganization). The bankruptcy law allows the retention by the debtor of certain assets under the federal or
​state exemption statutes.

 
Chapter 7
Chapter 7 of the Bankruptcy Code covers liquidation of debts by individuals and businesses. With the filing of a Chapter 7 bankruptcy petition, the court issues an “automatic stay” that puts a halt to most collection activity against the debtor. Generally, there is one hearing at which the Trustee is appointed, reviews the debtor’s assets for non-exempt property, and determines if there is property to be distributed to creditors.
 
With the issuance of a Discharge several months after the hearing, the case is concluded. The debtor is no longer responsible for most debts, but some debts are non-dischargeable and continue, including alimony, child support, and intentional torts.
 
Often, a debtor will choose to reaffirm the debt on a home, a car, or furniture in order to retain the property for future use. This process is available. 
 
 
For each chapter, we charge reasonable fees. Each case receives personal attention. 
 
Social Security / Disability Appeals
If you have suffered a serious illness or injury, you may be entitled to Social Security benefits for yourself and your family. The Social Security law requires timely application for benefits, qualification of insured status for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) claims. To successfully apply for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) claims, prior work history is not required, and medical proof of disability must be shown.
 
To qualify for SSDI, you must be considered “disabled” by proof of the following:
 
1. Worked in jobs covered by Social Security.
2. Have a medical condition that meets the Social Security definition of disability.
3. Have a disability that is expected to last at least 1 year, or to result in death.
 
The initial disability claim is reviewed by an examiner who has specific requirements to consider. In the event that a claim is denied, you have (60) days to request a reconsideration. It is extremely important that medical records are provided to Social Security. You will be sent for a medical evaluation by the Social Security Administration (SSA).
 
Unfortunately, many valid disability claims are denied and a timely appeal is necessary within 60 days. At any stage in the process, it is a good idea to contact an attorney for legal advice. If an appeal is required, there is often a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge, at which time the claimant presents his / her testimony and additional medical records. It is crucial to be prepared for this hearing and questions that the judge or vocational expert may ask.
 
Attorney fees, by federal law, are limited and only awarded if the appeal is successful.
 
Divorce
Confronting a divorce and other family legal matters is a difficult occurrence in a person’s life. It is important to have professional people with experience in this area to assist you. Richard Goodman has, for over 43 years, handled divorce, custody, child support, spousal support, and parenting time cases.
 
Under the Michigan No-Fault divorce law, the breakdown of the marriage relationship without reasonable likelihood that the marriage can be preserved is grounds for granting a divorce by a Circuit Court Judge. The issue of fault may be a factor in determining spousal support, property division, and custody by a judge.
 
In Michigan, there is a 2-month waiting period for cases without children before the court can issue a final judgment. When a couple has children, the statutory waiting period is 6 months to conclude a divorce case. If all issues have been settled or a case is uncontested, the court will often allow testimony to be received and a judgment granted before 6 months to deal properly with the custody, alimony, and / or property division issues.
 
Though the legal system can be difficult and complex, most cases are resolved without trial.
 
Criminal Defense
When you or a family member has been arrested, the legal process can be overwhelming and not easily understood. Prompt consultation with an attorney is a must.
 
Richard S. Goodman, PC has handled both felonies and misdemeanors in the tri-county area for over 43 years. Give our office a call today for a free consultation.

Call Us Today At ♦ (248) 266-2374

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RICHARD GOODMAN
17333 W 10 Mile Rd Suite D Southfield MI 48075
Phone (248) 266-2374
In Business Since 1971

Business Hours

Mon: 09:00 AM - 05:30 PM
Tue: 09:00 AM - 05:30 PM
Wed: 09:00 AM - 05:30 PM
Thu: 09:00 AM - 05:30 PM
Fri: 09:00 AM - 05:30 PM
Sat: 09:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Sun: Closed