ABATE of Michigan Inc.
P.O. Box 99
​Constantine, Mi. 49042

​Call: 269 435-2058

Fighting for the rights of all motorcyclists since 1976

                According to a 2014 study published by the Insurance Research Council, 21% of motorists in Michigan were driving without insurance.  That is approximately 1 in every 5 drivers on the road!  That percentage ranked Michigan as number 5 in the country for most uninsured motorists.  I can tell you that to no surprise, in my work as a trial attorney I find that the incident of uninsured motorists is higher among residents of poorer cities or counties versus residents of wealthier cities or counties.  In any event, this high rate of uninsured drivers should be concerning to all Michigan motorcyclists because that means that if you are involved in an accident with an at fault motorist, there is a 21% chance that unless you have uninsured motorist coverage on your motorcycle insurance, you will not have an insurance company in line to recover your pain and suffering damages from.  In this day and age where it is becoming more and more common to see the purchaser of a car buy auto insurance simply to allow them to purchase the car and then immediately cancel the insurance policy, it is nice to see a number of recent bills that have been proposed in Lansing which could affect the incidence of uninsured motorists.

                The first is House Bill 4041 which would require auto insurers to notify the Secretary of State if a person does not renew or cancels vehicle insurance, or if the policy is terminated. Under Michigan’s current law, a driver is required to have insurance in order to register and operate a vehicle, but the state has no way of knowing if a person cancels the insurance after paying the annual vehicle registration tax. Perhaps if a driver knows that the Secretary of State will receive notification when their auto insurance is not renewed, cancelled or terminated, that driver will be less likely to operate a vehicle without the insurance on it or face the penalty that goes along therewith. 

                Another bill worth taking a look at is House Bill 4097, which would require a person who buys auto insurance for a term of less than six months to pay for a full year's worth of No Fault insurance.  This would decentivize those people who will purchase a 7 day auto insurance policy solely so they can purchase e vehicle or those that will purchase a policy but then cancel it immediately after purchasing the car.  This is made especially the case given that the bill does not allow for refunding the premium unless the insured is no longer required to maintain auto insurance or the insured has replaced the policy being cancelled with a policy from a different insurer and is able to provide proof of same. 

                Finally, House Bill 4098 which would authorize the Secretary of State to issue a temporary registration valid for only 30 days to a vehicle owner if the auto insurance on the vehicle has a term of 30 days.  The bill would also require every application to renew a registration be accompanied by a proof of insurance that has a term of at least 30 days.  This would create incentive for purchasers of vehicles to purchase an auto insurance policy of greater than 30 days or else their license plate will expire after 30 days subjecting them to penalty for driving with an expired plate.  If I had my druthers, I would have the bill increase the relevant time period to require purchasers to purchase auto insurance covering greater time periods right from the beginning. 

                The takeaway from all of this is hopefully if these bills pass, it will create incentive for persons to carry auto insurance on their vehicles to lessen the incident of uninsured drivers in Michigan and in turn lessen the number of injured motorcyclists who go without compensation if hit by an uninsured driver. 

            As always, if anyone has any questions or if I can be of legal assistance to you or anyone you know who has been injured in a motorcycle accident, please don’t hesitate to contact me as I deal with these types of claims on a daily basis on behalf of injured motorcyclists statewide.

            Further, if you would like to have me come out to your Region to speak or give a presentation on the legal rights of an injured motorcyclist or on any specific topic that your region may be curious about, please don’t hesitate to give me a call at (248-569-4646) or shoot me an e-mail at Dondi@buckfirelaw.com.  I give presentations to Regions state-wide and there is never a charge associated with having me out.  I enjoy having the opportunity to come out and meet motorcycle enthusiasts from all parts of our State!   

shifting gears

Dondi Vesprini dondi@buckfirelaw.com

Phone: 248 569-4646