Detroit Reps Unveil Bills to End Redlining, Lower Rates

Package includes elimination of non-driving factors, file-and-approve system, senior opt out
Wednesday, May 22, 2019

DETROIT — A coalition of Detroit representatives unveiled a package of bills to aid in the overhaul of Michigan’s auto insurance system today to end discriminatory rate-setting practices and provide rate relief to drivers across the state. State Reps. Sherry Gay-Dagnogo (D-Detroit), LaTanya Garrett (D-Detroit), Tenisha Yancey (D-Detroit) and Isaac Robinson (D-Detroit) sponsored the legislation.

“This package provides sensible reforms to our auto insurance system that will end the predatory insurance practices causing drivers in Detroit to pay the highest rates in the nation,” said Gay-Dagnogo, chair of the Detroit Caucus. “By ending these discriminatory practices, bringing transparency to the MCCA and switching to a file-and-approve system, we can lower rates for drivers across the state without sacrificing the world-class coverage our families rely on.”

House Bills 4651-4657 would ban non-driving factors like ZIP code, gender and occupation status from being considered in rate-setting by insurers, establish a file-and-approve system to stop unreasonable rate increases and offer an opt-out of Personal Injury Protection (PIP) for seniors covered by Medicare. The package also includes disclosure requirements for the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association (MCCA) and outlaws the practice of increasing rates for accidents that aren’t the fault of the driver.

“Drivers across Michigan deserve auto insurance policies that put them first and that is what this package aims to do,” said Robinson. “This plan would ensure rate reductions without sacrificing benefits by eliminating the use of discriminatory practices, like red-lining, that cause the residents in Detroit and Hamtramck to pay the highest auto insurance rates in the country. Addressing non-driving factors is critical to lowering rates for families in my community.”  

“Detroiters pay more for their auto insurance for no other reason than where we live,” said Yancey. “But it doesn’t have to be this way. This package ensures that no Michigander, regardless of their ZIP code, will face higher rates for discriminatory factors that have no bearing on our ability to drive. Let’s put an end to red-lining and begin rebuilding the economic opportunity for our neighbors.”

According to a recent study, a factory worker in Detroit that rents their home pays nearly $3,000 more annually than a lawyer who owns their home in Grand Rapids ($4,218 vs. $1,382).

“All Michiganders need financial relief from high auto insurance rates, especially our seniors,” said Garrett. “Requiring seniors on fixed incomes to pay double for both PIP and guaranteed lifetime health insurance drains their limited resources. Providing seniors with the option to opt-out of PIP and rely on their own health insurance allows our seniors to further lower their high insurance rates.”

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