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If I don’t have car insurance, can I still make a mini tort claim to repair car damage?

May 1, 2014 by Steven M. Gursten

After a crash, is a mini tort claim available for uninsured drivers in Michigan?

Questions about the Michigan mini tort are one of the most common inquiries our accident attorneys receive. Many drivers want to know obviously how they can get their car damage covered. There is good news here, and bad news.

The good news first. Under the Michigan mini tort law, you can get up to $1,000 toward your car damage from the auto insurance company of the at-fault driver. This is called a mini tort claim. For more information, read our mini tort FAQs.

The bad news is, Michigan mini tort only works if you have No Fault auto insurance. If you are driving without insurance, you cannot make a claim under the Michigan mini tort laws.
Here’s a recent question I received from Tiffany:

Q. I was involved in a car accident. I do not have insurance and I am trying to go through the person’s insurance who hit me to recoup the money for my damages. Will me not having the policy declaration page inhibit me from making a mini tort claim? By me not having insurance, will they come after me for anything even though I was not at fault?

A. You unfortunately cannot collect the mini-tort if you’re is uninsured. If the other person in the crash receives No Fault (PIP) benefits, their insurer can proceed against the uninsured owner of any vehicle in the accident for reimbursement. However, this does not include vehicle damage. Since you are not at fault, you will not have to pay for any damage to the other car.

It is important to make sure you’re covered by Michigan No Fault insurance. Aside from not being able to recoup your Michigan mini tort, there are other far more devastating consequences. Read about them here: Top 9 risks of driving uninsured in Michigan.

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