Court dismisses excess wage loss claim, reinstates "serious impairment" claim
The Court of Appeals this week reinstated part of a Macomb County car accident claim. The case is Bassett v. Chrysler, LLC, and James P. Brown. The lower court judge hadd dismissed Bassett's claims of head and neck injury, finding no serious impairment and no loss of income. The Court of Appeals held that the lower court applied the wrong legal standard to the "serious impairment" claim and reversed that part of the lower court decision. As to wage loss, however, the appellate court ruled that Bassett had failed to meet his burden of showing that he suffered an actual wage loss. The Court pointed out that Bassett was unemployed at the time of the collision and that after the collision he was fired from his only job not because he was unable to do the work, but rather because he was "lazy" and "incompetent." He did not meet the requirements of 3107 or 3107a of the no fault act and was suggesting recovery should result from a loss of earning "capacity." Loss of earning capacity is not recoverable under no fault.