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The Michigan No-Fault Act is designed to protect all motorists against financial tragedy resulting from a motor vehicle collision. In most cases, that involves a no-fault insurance policy held by the driver or owner of a vehicle. But in some rare cases, there is no policy that applies. When that happens, the Michigan Assigned Claims Plan picks up the slack.
Under MCL 500.3172, a person who is injured because of the use of a motor vehicle may collect benefits from the Michigan Assigned Claims Plan if there are no other policies that apply. If there are any other policies – like health insurance, workers compensation, or disability insurance – the benefits an uninsured person receives will be reduced by that amount.
But the MACP doesn’t always apply. If auto insurers are fighting over who will pay your bill, the Plan won’t come to save you. Or if an insurance claim is “obviously ineligible” or based on fraud, the assigned claim may be denied. Also, if you were legally required to have no-fault insurance and you didn’t, you are prohibited from receiving any no-fault benefits, whether from the MACP or any other source.
For example, if a bicycle commuter who does not live with any insured relatives is struck by an uninsured driver, the bicyclist may be entitled to MACP coverage. The uninsured driver will not be because he or she broke the law by driving a vehicle without coverage.
Under MCL 500.3171, all self-insuring entities and every auto insurance company that wants to cover Michigan residents must participate in the MACP. Essentially, when a person qualifies for benefits under the MACP, the Michigan Automobile Insurance Placement Facility (MAIPF) will appoint an insurance provider to pay the claim.
The MACP may also come into play if there are too many auto insurance companies involved in your case. If there is a dispute among insurers about which policy takes highest priority, the MACP will assign a company to handle the claim until the court determines the priority.
If it isn’t clear where your no-fault insurance benefits are coming from, your auto accident attorney may have you file an Application for Personal Injury Protection Benefits for the Michigan Assigned Claims Plan. The lawyers will also have to provide documentation to show that the MACP may apply.
Just because you don’t have auto insurance doesn’t mean you can’t receive no-fault benefits. If you have been injured in a motor vehicle collision, contact the auto accident attorneys at Christensen Law to find out if you qualify for coverage under the Michigan Assigned Claims Plan.