Michigan House Defeats Auto No-fault Reform Proposal

During the week of October 30, the long-standing debate over reforming the state's auto no-fault system stalled as the House of Representatives, by a vote of 45-63, defeated House Bill 5013—legislation supported by Speaker of the House Tom Leonard (R-DeWitt) and Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan. The bill seeks to, among other things, require insurers to reduce the personal injury protection portion of motorists' bills by an average of 40% for policies that cap medical coverage at $250,000, 20% for $500,000, or 10% for policies with unlimited medical coverage.

The Coalition for Protecting Auto No-Fault, which represents a variety of sectors, including physician and healthcare provider groups, opposed HB 5013 due to, among other things, the potential for large cost shifts to Medicaid and impacts on patient access to care. Instead, the group pushed for a bipartisan package that includes creation of a fee schedule. The defeat of HB 5013 leaves open for speculation the fate of the state's no-fault system, as most acknowledge the debate is not over; however, Speaker Leonard indicated that, for now, he plans to shift focus to other issues, namely mental health.