LANSING, Mich. — State Senator Margaret O’Brien, R-Portage, issued the following statement after the Senate approved legislation on Thursday to reform auto no-fault insurance:
“Over the last eight years, I have voted six times to reform our auto insurance and make it affordable for hardworking families. This is an important first step in fighting medical fraud and lowering auto insurance rates,” O’Brien said. “Auto no-fault reform has been a priority of the people of Kalamazoo County. I hope the House will act soon so we can lower the rates of auto insurance.”
Senate Bill 1014 would create the Michigan Automobile Insurance Fraud Authority within the attorney general’s office to help investigate and reduce auto insurance fraud. The Insurance Institute of Michigan indicates auto insurance fraud in Michigan is estimated at $400 million per year.
Additionally, in Michigan, when drivers turn age 65 and go on Medicare, their auto insurance rates go up because Medicare does not coordinate with Michigan auto insurance. Michigan’s auto insurance law includes unlimited coverage for catastrophic injuries with no cap. Under Senate Bill 787, seniors age 65 and older could have could have a choice to remain in the unlimited coverage system or opt-out and request a cap on their auto insurance. They also would not have to pay fully into the catastrophic fund. This would bring Michigan in line with all other states, and provide a more affordable option for this vulnerable population.
The bills now advance to the House of Representatives for consideration.