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VanderWall supports bill to reduce auto insurance rates

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Curt VanderWall on Wednesday said he supports the Senate Republicans’ top priority of significantly reducing Michigan’s highest-in-the-nation auto insurance rates during the 100th Legislature.

Sen. Aric Nesbitt, R-Lawton, introduced Senate Bill 1 Tuesday. The bill would provide relief for consumers by addressing the root causes of Michigan’s extreme car insurance rates.

“Michigan’s exceptionally high auto insurance rates put an enormous burden on many families trying to make it from paycheck to paycheck,” said VanderWall, R-Ludington. “Although solutions have been discussed for years, we must provide relief once and for all. This legislation provides real answers to the problem.”

SB 1 would allow drivers over the age of 62 the option of allowing Medicare or their private lifetime benefits to cover medical costs. It would also give younger drivers the ability to choose an amount of coverage that suits their needs and budget. Savings would correspond to the chosen benefit level.

The bill would make reforms to:
• Give drivers the ability to choose the personal injury protection coverage that best meets their needs and budget;
• Reduce medical cost inflation related to auto insurance claims that currently is 90 percent higher than normal health care inflation;
• Crack down on unnecessary medical treatments, products and services;
• Reduce fraud and conflicts of interest in the auto insurance system; and
• Allow seniors on Medicare to enjoy savings on their auto insurance by choosing to not carry personal injury protection coverage since they effectively already have coverage for injuries.

SB 1 has been referred to the Senate Committee on Insurance and Banking for further consideration.