The state’s Supreme Court has ruled against a component of the bill that brought changes to benefits.
The Michigan Supreme Court has ruled that part of the car insurance changes from the 2019 Auto Reform Bill that has been making headlines for the last four years is actually unconstitutional.
About 18,000 patients experienced reduced benefits as a result of the changes in the bill.
The car insurance changes have been heavily discussed and debated over the last four years, particularly in terms of decreased reimbursements for catastrophic care, cutting into the benefits that would have been experienced by 18,000 patients.
Throughout the state, many people who were injured in an auto collision and who require constant medical care found that their access was reduced or entirely removed when providers went out of business.
In 2019, the Michigan Legislature and Governor Gretchen Whitmer sought to reduce the high car insurance premiums drivers were paying across the state. Michigan consistently had the highest rates for vehicle coverage in the country. That said, the bill that resulted of this effort has now been called partly unconstitutional with the Supreme Court, and drivers are still finding that the costs they face remain high and continue to rise.
The Supreme Court has now rejected a core component of the bill’s changes to car insurance.
According to the Homecare and Hospice Association’s Barry Cargill, this Supreme Court ruling is important for thousands of people throughout Michigan, including himself.
“It certainly is a big day for the home care providers out there, the medical providers who provide essential services to these catastrophically injured patients,” explained Cargill. “But the real victory is for the catastrophically injured.”
That said, not every person and organization was celebrating the court’s car insurance law decision. The Insurance Alliance of Michigan released a statement with a very different tone.
“Today, the court let down consumers across Michigan and opened the floodgates for overcharging for medical procedures and higher rates,” read the statement from the Insurance Alliance of Michigan. “You can’t reasonably expect to save Michigan drivers money while obliterating a key cost-control measure like the fee schedule. What medical providers charge for services and prescribe for care, above and beyond what’s medically necessary, can be controlled and has proven to reduce the cost of auto insurance.”