I hope everyone is having an enjoyable Fall and the weather is conducive in allowing you to take in the incredible views that can only be found in a color ride in our great State. It’s a small window of time that the colors are at their eye-popping best. Given that it is October, I thought I would write about a “scary” topic this month, that being the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association or the “MCCA” for short.
For those unfamiliar with the MCCA, a brief explanation is in order. When someone is involved in an accident that involves a motor vehicle, the injured person is entitled to payment of his/her no-fault benefits. One of those benefits are medical expenses which are payable for the rest of the injured person’s lifetime so long as the expenses are related to the accident. Most times, in the case of a motorcycle versus motor vehicle accident, the injured biker’s no-fault benefits are paid by the insurer of the motor vehicle. Once that insurer has paid over $555,000.00 in medical expenses on a person’s claim, the insurance company is reimbursed by the MCCA for any medical payments it makes over and above $550,000.00.
All insurers in Michigan are assessed a fee by the MCCA to pay into the fund, and that fee is then passed down to the policy holders as part of the premiums charged on insurance polies for both motor vehicles and motorcycles alike. I realize that many motorcyclists get upset at having to pay into the MCCA, and I also realize that is a complicated issue best served for another article another day. The issue I am addressing is the frustration shared by motorcyclists and operators of motor vehicle alike in being kept in the dark as to how much money is in the MCCA. If some of speculation is correct that there are millions of dollars in the fund that is never needed to reimburse insurers on catastrophic medical claims, that begs the question as to why the MCCA fee is as high as it is and whether it is needed at all. While the MCCA has generally been granted immunity by law from any requests to reveal how much money is in the MCCA itself, there is a proposed bill which if passed could shed some insight into the coffers at the MCCA.
House Bill 4890, introduced by Representative Peter Lucido on August 16, if passed would require the MCCA to disclose the actuarial computations used in setting the rate for its fee assessments. The bill as proposed would require the MCCA to disclose on a public website all data used in computing the premium and expected losses and expenses, including the amount covering incurred but not reported losses for the period and any adjustment for any excess or deficient premiums from previous periods and the actual computation used in making these determinations.
Certainly, if the MCCA were required to disclose this information, it would provide some insight as to not only how much money may be within the MCCA, but would also shed some light onto the fairness of the amount of the fees assessed by the MCCA. This would go a long way towards providing some information behind one of the best kept secrets in the insurance industry. The bill would also raise the reimbursement number from $550,000.00 to $555,000.00 before the MCCA is required to reimburse the insurance company for medical benefits paid.
As always, if anyone has any questions or if I can be of legal assistance to you or anyone you know dealing with this issue or 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!
Dondi Vesprini email@example.com
Phone: 248 569-4646
ABATE of Michigan Inc.
P.O. Box 99
Constantine, Mi. 49042
Call: 269 435-2058
ABATE of Michigan
Fighting for the rights of all motorcyclists since 1976