Auto insurance

About $900 million in Michigan auto insurance refunds have been paid out so far, state says

Insurance companies have distributed about a third of the $400 refunds expected for about 7.5 million Michigan residents who had auto insurance policies in October 2021.

More than $906 million of the $3 billion in excess funds has been distributed, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced Thursday. Insurance companies are required to release the remaining $2.1 billion via refunds of $400 by May 9.

The $3 billion surplus was transferred to the insurance companies on March 7.

“Ensuring that every eligible Michigander receives their refund check or ACH deposit as quickly as possible is a top priority for DIFS,” said Anita Fox, director of the Department of Insurance and Financial Services. “If you’re eligible for a refund and don’t receive it by May 9, or if your insurer offers your refund through something other than a paper check or ACH deposit, contact your business.”

People unable to get the money from their insurance company can call DFIS at 833-ASK-DIFS between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. weekdays.

Whitmer asked the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association to issue refund checks and distribute a surplus of about $5 billion last year. The association collects dues from insurance bills to cover claims for people injured in catastrophic accidents.

The association’s surplus has fallen from $2.4 billion at the end of 2020 to $5 billion as of June 30, in part due to the 2019 no-fault auto insurance reforms and higher yields than expected. The association determined that it could distribute about $3 billion of its surplus through the $400 refunds.

The 2019 no-fault auto insurance reform has been met with both praise and scorn, particularly in recent months, as a fee reduction in July resulted in a significant decrease in the fees that a medical provider could be reimbursed for providing care to a person injured in a catastrophic accident. .

The cuts have led to some medical providers closing their doors or stopping taking survivors of road accidents, forcing some of those victims to leave their homes and go to facilities or hospitals.

Refunds of $400 will be issued by mailed check or direct deposit to anyone with a policy as of October 31, 2021. Exceptions include “garage” vehicles without a policy and those with insured historic vehicles, who will receive a $80 refund $.

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Writer Craig Mauger contributed.