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Mandatory Michigan No-Fault Insurance for Motor Vehicles

Attorney Commentary on No-Fault Statute: MCL 500.3101

Security for payment of benefits; definitions

If you own – or if you have registered in your name – a motor vehicle that is “required to be registered in this state” and that “is driven or moved upon a highway,” then you are required under MCL 500.3101 to “maintain” a No-Fault insurance policy that provides personal and property protection benefits as well as residual liability coverage.

These policies are considered “security” (or a guarantee) that you will receive the benefits included in your particular policy, should you be involved in and injured as a result of a motor vehicle accident. Motor vehicle accidents include car and truck accidents. Motorcycle accidents, however, are included only if the accident also involves a car or truck.

This statute also provides definitions of words used throughout the Michigan No-Fault Act. In the example above, a person may think they know what “motor vehicle accident,” “motorcycle,” and “owner” mean, but Michigan insurance laws give these words important legal significance.

For example:

  • “Motorcycle” means a vehicle that has a saddle or seat for the use of the rider, is designed to travel on not more than 3 wheels in contact with the ground, and is equipped with a motor that exceeds 50 cubic centimeters piston displacement. For purposes of this subdivision, the wheels on any attachment to the vehicle are not considered as wheels in contact with the ground. Motorcycle does not include a moped or an ORV. (MCL 500.3101(3)(g))
  • “Motorcycle accident” means a loss that involves the ownership, operation, maintenance, or use of a motorcycle as a motorcycle, but does not involve the ownership, operation, maintenance, or use of a motor vehicle as a motor vehicle. (MCL 500.3101(3)(h))
  • “Motor vehicle” means a vehicle, including a trailer, that is operated or designed for operation on a public highway by power other than muscular power and has more than 2 wheels. Motor vehicle does not include any of the following: a motorcycle; a moped; a  farm tractor or other implement of husbandry; an ORV; a golf cart; a power-driven mobility device; a commercial quadricycle; an electric bicycle. (MCL 500.3101(3)(i))

Therefore, if someone is a motorcyclist (or driving other non-traditional vehicles, such as ATVs) and they are involved in an injury accident with a motor vehicle (such as a car accident or truck accident), they would be entitled to Michigan No-Fault insurance benefits. But, if they are not involved in an accident with a “motor vehicle,” they would not be entitled to Michigan No-Fault insurance benefits.

Motorcycles are not required to carry mandatory Michigan No-Fault PIP insurance coverage under Michigan law, but motorcyclists are required to carry PLPD (personal liability and property damage) insurance coverage, in case they cause an injury accident.

Insurance Attorneys of Michigan Auto Law

The attorneys of Michigan Auto Law have been specializing in automobile No-Fault litigation for more than 50 years. If you have been injured in a car accident or truck accident in Michigan and are confused about your No-Fault insurance rights, please call one of our experienced lawyers for a free case evaluation at (800) 777-0028 or fill out our consultation form. There is absolutely no fee or obligation.

We are here to help you.