LANSING — State Rep. Kyra Bolden (D-Southfield) introduced a substitute to House Bill 4397 early Thursday morning, which outlined the House Democrats plan for quality and comprehensive auto insurance reform. The H-2 substitute was introduced to correct fatal flaws in a proposal rushed through the Michigan House by Republicans that would create a tiered auto insurance benefit system while failing to address discriminatory redlining practices that allow for rates to be determined by non-driving factors. Michigan’s auto insurance industry is one of the least regulated in the country, with Michigan drivers paying nearly two times, on average, more than drivers anywhere else, according to a University of Michigan study.
“For too long, countless Michiganders have been penalized for driving without insurance they can’t afford,” said Rep. Bolden. “Michiganders need real auto insurance reform that lowers their rates without gutting accident coverage they need when tragedy strikes. I will keep fighting to ensure these needed protections are solidified for the drivers of our state, long-term.”
The proposal outlined in Rep. Bolden’s H-2 substitute would have guaranteed lower costs through a 25 percent reduction off a driver’s total auto insurance bill for five years while preventing rates from increasing more than inflation after that time. In addition, the substitute would have maintained the high-quality catastrophic care coverage offered by the current system. Medical costs would be reduced by ensuring fair and negotiated rates between insurance companies and health care providers, while also offering a reduction in lawsuits based on a three-year look-back rule for claims. HB 4397 was sent to the Senate for review following a House vote of 61-49.
A copy of the proposal can be found here.