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The truth about Michigan No Fault insurance reform

April 30, 2013 by Steven M. Gursten

New insurance information resource center explains the proposals to change Michigan’s No Fault Laws

What do the proposals to change the state’s 40-year-old No-Fault auto insurance system really mean? How would these proposals affect you and your family if they become law?

To help people  better understand the truth behind the insurance industry’s proposals to change Michigan’s No Fault insurance system – and what HB 4612 and other legislative proposals would do if they become law – our No Fault insurance attorneys have created a new information resource center:

Michigan No Fault Reform: Everything You Need to Know

Our resource center explains the latest legal developments in the battle to change No Fault.

Last week, Gov. Rick Snyder and Rep. Pete Lund introduced the most recent and most controversial proposal to change No Fault:  HB 4612 would eliminate lifetime care, and dismantle the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association.

HB 4612 also changes the current eligibility for allowable expense benefits, and limits rehabilitation benefits for the seriously injured.  It would slash attendant care (in-home nursing) benefits, which would likely result in the “warehousing” and institutionalizing of seriously injured auto accident victims in Medicaid-funded nursing homes. The bill slashes home modifications and special transportation vehicles for spinal cord injury victims.

The bill would likely also slash the quality of medical care throughout the state and significantly hurt the doctors and hospitals that treat auto accident injury victims by imposing  medical fee schedules.  The bill also singles out motorcyclists, further reducing their PIP medical coverage to $250,000 for people injured in motorcycle accidents.

Most disturbing is the bill threatens the constitutional right to jury trials. Many have noted that too many Republicans today, and apparently this now includes Gov. Snyder and Rep. Lund, only seem to care about the 2nd Amendment to the Constitution, but are willing to disregard the guaranteed freedoms of the 7th Amendment and the Right to Jury Trial.    The bill replaces the right to jury trial by taking away all questions with whether a medical charge or medical expense is reasonable by giving this power to a judge, not a jury, to decide these questions.

Gov. Snyder and the auto insurance industry are pushing No Fault reform under the guise that it will save Michigan drivers money on their premiums. But under HB 4612, drivers may actually end up paying more money for car insurance.

In 1626, it is said that the Indians traded the island of Manhattan for $24 of beads.  These proposed No Fault “reforms” seems an equally bad trade. All of these incredibly valuable protections would be taken away from Michigan residents injured in automobile accidents, and we would either be seeing (under the best of circumstances) around a $150 in savings in auto premiums a year, or more likely, end up paying more for car insurance.  And all for the privilege of losing the best insurance system in the nation.  It seems a monumentally bad trade for the people of this state.

At least the Indians got to keep the beads after giving away Manhattan.

For more information, click here to read a comprehensive analysis of Michigan No Fault reform and the latest developments.

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