Michigan House Democrats Tee Up 40-Percent Auto Insurance Rate Reduction Plan

Working to find a way to get everybody off the dime and on to a workable solution for Michigan's highest in the nation auto insurance rates, State House Democrats outlined their proposal today for a plan to reduce rates by 40-percent without reducing accident coverage.

Calling their auto insurance reform plan The DRIVE Plan, House Democrats say it delivers the first holistic approach to Michigan’s auto insurance system by Delivering Reduced Insurance Rates and Value to Every Michigander. Michigan’s auto insurance industry is one of the least regulated in the nation, with Michigan drivers paying nearly twice what drivers anywhere else in the nation pay, according to a University of Michigan study. Democrats’ DRIVE Plan tackles those rates head on by requiring a forty-percent rate reduction on the total bill, increasing consumer protections and ending discriminatory rate-setting practices like red-lining.

State House Democratic Leader Christine Greig from Farmington Hills says, “Like most Michiganders, I don’t want to cross my fingers and hope that insurance companies actually reduce my rates, I want a guarantee.” She adds, “That’s why we are here today. House Democrats know we can do better than the plans passed by the House and the Senate. Our DRIVE Plan will put Michiganders back in the driver’s seat by guaranteeing rates go down by at least 40-percent while ensuring no insured driver is left behind with zero coverage when the unthinkable happens.”

The DRIVE Plan would:

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  • Lower Rates by 40-percent – Guaranteed rate reduction for all drivers by requiring insurance companies reduce rates by 40-percent off the total bill.
  • Base Rates Only on Driving Factors – End red-lining and the use of discriminatory non-driving factors. Prohibit insurance companies from using zip code, marital status, education level, home ownership status, gender or credit score from being used to set rates.
  • End Insurance Fraud – Create a consumer protection fraud authority that can take on fraud within the system and hold perpetrators accountable.
  • Keep Strong Health Care Coverage – Maintain full Personal Injury Protection accident coverage for all drivers.
  • Reduce Lawsuits – Extend the amount of time claimants have to file a claim from one to three years.
  • Lower Rates for Seniors – Recognize Medicaid and other lifetime retirement health care as an alternative to PIP coverage as long as the alternative includes long-term care coverage.
  • Increase Transparency – Hold a microscope to the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association so drivers know how rates are set.
  • Lower Medical Costs – Give drivers a discount for coordinating their auto insurance with their health care.

State Rep Sherry Gay-Dagnogo from Detroit says, “Detroiters know better than most how high Michigan’s auto insurance rates are,” and contends, “Our DRIVE Auto Insurance Plan takes that reality into account and guarantees an end to discriminatory rate-setting and lowers insurance rates for all drivers. A guaranteed forty-percent rate reduction puts real money back in the pockets of drivers where it belongs, and we can get it done without compromising quality or coverage.”

A forty-percent rate reduction would result in significant savings for Michigan drivers and provide an avenue for uninsured drivers to re-enter the marketplace. On average, drivers would save $2,283 in Detroit, $1,014 in Lansing, $1,571 in Flint, $951 in Grand Rapids and $768 in Marquette.

State Rep Donna Lasinski from Scio Township near Ann Arbor says, “My Democratic colleagues and I have been ready to roll up our sleeves and work across the aisle to reform our broken auto insurance policy since day one of this legislative session.” She adds, “Before today, Michiganders were left behind with one-sided proposals that didn’t provide the rate relief and reform drivers need. Our DRIVE Plan puts drivers at the center of our solutions and makes sure they see a forty percent rate reduction for years to come.”

Detroit legislators have held more than twelve town halls on auto insurance over the past four months. Guaranteed reductions and reforming the insurance rate-setting process are repeatedly cited as the top concerns by town hall attendees.

State Rep Tyrone Carter of Detroit says, “Since joining the legislature in January, I made it my priority to talk to my constituents and tackle the issues that matter to them,” and argues, “It could not be more clear that reducing auto insurance rates is the top priority for the people of my district and across southeast Michigan. Our DRIVE Plan will deliver historic car insurance reform and lower rates by forty percent or more for all drivers. It’s time to roll up our sleeves and pass this legislation to deliver the rate relief drivers need.”

Additional information about the Democrats’ DRIVE auto insurance reform plan can be found at this link:

http://housedems.com/drive