House Speeds Auto Insurance Reform in Friday Session

The Michigan State House of Representatives rarely meets on a Friday afternoon, especially a Friday headed into a three-day holiday weekend like Memorial Day, so when they do conduct such a session, you know they mean business. Fortunately for long-fatigued drivers in Michigan, the reason they conducted a rare Friday session was so they could respond to the deal arrived at by the Governor and legislative leaders to finally lower the highest insurance costs in the nation for Michigan Drivers.

State Rep. Pauline Wendzel helped pave the way, voting with the overwhelming majority of her colleagues in the State House to pass today’s long overdue bipartisan auto-insurance reform plan.

Wendzel says it will deliver significant rate relief for drivers across the state, by giving you and I more choice on personal injury protection coverage, prohibiting the use of non-driving factors in rate setting, and combating fraudulent claims to help lower costs. The plan should soon be headed to Governor Whitmer for her expected signature.

The bipartisan solution is designed to end Michigan’s long tenure as the state with the most expensive car insurance rates in the nation.

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State Rep. Wendzel says, “After weeks of negotiations and meetings, I am pleased we were able to come up with a bipartisan compromise to deliver for the people of Southwest Michigan,” adding, “For decades, special interests have profited off of our broken insurance system while Michiganders have had their wallets drained.  Today, that finally ends.”

Michigan’s costs have been high largely because we’re the only state mandating unlimited lifetime health care coverage through car insurance. The bipartisan reform plan allows those currently using the coverage to keep it, and those who want it in the future to continue buying it – while providing more affordable options.

State Rep. Beth Griffin also voted for that historic bipartisan plan, saying, “We are on the verge of fixing a broken system that has been draining Michigan family finances for decades.” The State Rep. from Mattawan, adds, “This plan has all the elements necessary for real relief – providing choice in coverage levels, preventing medical over-billing, and fighting fraud. Now it’s time for the Senate and governor to finish the job and get these reforms into law — providing long overdue savings for Southwest Michigan families.”

The legislation is Senate Bill 1.

State Rep. Brad Paquette from Niles also joined colleagues in approving the plan saying, “The people of our region continue to be tempted to move to Indiana to escape ridiculous auto insurance costs,” and concluding, “Michigan drivers deserve to make choices about their coverage and select what’s best for them – that’s why I support this plan today.”

By clicking the link below, you can see what the plan includes as passed by the State House today: