House Democrats Opposed to Proposed Auto No-Fault Reforms

Caucus takes position against Republican plan to dismantle insurance system
Wednesday, April 22, 2015

LANSING — Today, the House Democratic Caucus announced their strong opposition to the Senate Republicans’ dramatic proposal to undo protections guaranteed to Michigan drivers under the state’s no-fault insurance system. 

The plan would impact the care received by those severely injured in automobile accidents while providing no guaranteed cost savings for consumers.

“Michigan’s auto no-fault policy has a long standing history of providing world class care to those in life changing auto accidents,” said state Representative Tom Cochran (D—Mason). “This legislation is not only detrimental to those injured, but it hurts their families, it restricts the pay of medical professionals, and it gives very few options to all parties affected.”

Senate Bills 248 and 249 have no required rate reductions for policy holders.

“This legislation is designed with big insurance in mind, not Michigan’s families, and especially not those whose lives have been drastically affected by a catastrophic auto accident,” said state Representative Brian Banks (D-Detroit). “Republicans are proposing that taxpayers foot the bill while insurance companies enjoy a payout.”

“For many hospitals, especially those that deal with the most traumatic of accident victims, this would significantly increase the amount of unfunded care they are required to provide,” said state Representative Winnie Brinks (D—Grand Rapids). “This not only jeopardizes auto accident victims, but has the potential to shifts costs to other patients.”

The decision to oppose the bills in their Senate-passed form came after a caucus-wide discussion of the bills.

“The Democratic Caucus simply cannot support a policy that is so opposed to the best interests of our constituents,” said House Democratic Leader Tim Greimel (D-Auburn Hills). “It is against our principles as elected representatives to allow legislation that actively burdens our constituents and reduces the quality of care, with no guarantees of rate savings while rewarding large insurance corporations.”