Auto insurance would be tied to helmet law debate


Auto insurance would be tied to helmet law debateThe auto insurance representatives from Michigan have stated that they will oppose repealing of the state’s motorcycle helmet law, but would want to discuss the no-fault reforms with Governor Snyder.

In the fallout in the state Senate vote with regard to allowing motorcyclists to ride their bikes without helmets, Governor Snyder has stated that he will consider the matter in a broader perspective, after looking at the no-fault insurance reforms.

Governor Snyder has not disclosed any further details, but the insurers do have a rough idea. The insurers want the state to repeal the requirement that every motorcyclist should have unlimited health coverage, authority to investigate the fraudulent claims, and price limits on the medical services.

The insurance reform was initially broached by Snyder in January, when there was a possibility of the helmet law repeal by the Republican leaders. However, neither the House Speaker Jase Bolger nor the Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville had called for these reforms and no bills were introduced. Both of them stated that they would want to listen to the ideas put forth by Snyder.

Since the Legislature is on a 2-month summer break, the discussions are likely to happen only during fall as the House will also have to discuss and debate the helmet legislation issue.

Snyder has stated that he sees an opportunity to improve a few things. He also told The News that although the fundamentals of no-fault reforms seem to have worked, there is still scope for improvement.

But Snyder was not specific and when he was pressed for a comment, he stated that unlimited medical coverage as well as uninsured drivers is the two things on the list that may see a possible change.

He also added that he had taken a chance at having a broader reform when the helmet issue had come up, and he seemed to be satisfied with the positive response he got from the Legislature.

Consumer advocates and medical providers are a worried lot, and they state that talk of no-fault reforms is the cause for worry. They claim that Michigan provides the best possible care for all accident victims.

Josh Hovey who is the spokesman for Coalition Protecting Auto No-fault, which is a consortium of unions, hospitals, and consumer groups, stated that the insurance industry has been insisting that consumers be allowed to buy less than lifetime personal protection coverage, as this is critical especially for those who have suffered catastrophic injuries.