House Democrats Call on DIFS to Investigate Consumer Complaints

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

LANSING, Sept. 25, 2019 —House Democrats sent a letter to the Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services today formally requesting they investigate a rise in consumer complaints following the passage of Senate Bill 1 earlier this year. The legislation — now Public Act 21 of 2019 — was passed in May and implemented reforms to the auto no-fault system in an effort to address Michigan’s highest-in-the-nation auto insurance rates.

“PA 21 was an important first step in providing much-needed relief for Michigan drivers,” said House Democratic Leader Christine Greig (D-Farmington Hills). “Receiving numerous complaints from people in our communities warrants immediate action to ensure our bipartisan effort to reduce rates isn’t undermined.”

Following reports of stories like Amora Harris’s, Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services Director Anita Fox issued a Director’s Order this morning prohibiting the Michigan Automobile Insurance Placement Facility from capping personal injury protection benefits at $250,000 prior to July 2, 2020.

In addition, the request from the House Democrats centers on investigating two distinct complaints: that drivers have inexplicably seen a significant rate increase since the passage of the law, and that new insurance companies have been springing up around the state in an attempt to evade the rollback policies that will go into effect next July.

“The actions taken today were an important step in the right direction to protect Michiganders,” said House Democratic Floor Leader Yousef Rabhi (D-Ann Arbor). “Looking into these stories is another piece of that puzzle. If we’re serious about rate relief and insurance reform, we’ve got an obligation to crack down when big insurance companies try to take advantage of our drivers.”

The letter to DIFS requests they investigate both claims, as well as asking what administrative action could be taken to prevent insurance companies implementing rate increases now to avoid their bottom lines hurting when rate rollbacks take effect next year.