Sen. MacDonald supports reform to reduce auto insurance rates

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Michael D. MacDonald on Tuesday voted to support legislation to reduce auto insurance rates in Michigan by providing drivers more coverage choices, cracking down on fraud and lawsuit abuse, and addressing medical costs.

“Car insurance rates in Michigan are the most expensive in the country and are among the most common issues I hear about from Macomb County families,” said MacDonald, R-Macomb Township. “I am proud we made tackling this problem as our top Senate priority and that we have now passed serious reform to reduce car insurance rates and ensure families in an accident will receive the medical care they need.”

According to an October 2018 report, Michigan drivers pay the highest auto insurance rates in the country — 83% higher than the national average. A recent University of Michigan study also said that auto insurance rates are unaffordable in 97% of the state’s ZIP codes.

Senate Bill 1 would require auto insurers to offer Michigan drivers at least three new personal injury protection (PIP) coverage options, including the ability of drivers with qualified medical coverage — such as health insurance, Medicare or Medicaid — to opt out of PIP coverage since they already have medical coverage for injuries.

“This current auto insurance system is failing Michigan families — many of whom struggle to pay outrageous rates and many more who simply cannot afford insurance and risk driving to work without it,” MacDonald said. “By giving drivers the ability to choose the insurance coverage that fits them, we can provide substantial savings for all Michigan drivers and reduce the number of uninsured motorists on our roads.

“We are one step closer to finally enacting a real solution that reduces the burdensome car insurance costs facing Michigan families.”

SB 1 would also reduce fraud and conflicts of interest in the auto insurance system and reduce the announced $220 annual Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association (MCCA) fee by 80%.

People already receiving care through the MCCA will continue to get lifetime care under their current unlimited benefit policy as promised.