The first step to obtaining affordable, high-quality auto insurance in Michigan is understanding the minimum insurance requirements that are enforced in the state. All too often, people immediately request auto insurance quotes without doing a little research first. Doing so can result in overpaying for insurance. It can also cause a driver to end up with insufficient coverage, which can carry serious legal consequences.
Driving in Michigan
There are millions of registered drivers in the state of Michigan. Keeping them all as safe as possible is a tall order. It's one of the many reasons that no-fault insurance is required in the Great Lakes State.
According to the Federal Highway Administration, there were 7,059,509 registered drivers in the state of Michigan as of November 2012. Of that total, 3,445,758, or 48.8 percent, were male. Another 3,613,751, or 51.19 percent, were female. The total population of the state is 9,876,187, which means that approximately 71.5 percent of all residents are legally registered to drive.
Michigan is a huge state. However, its population is largely concentrated in just a few areas. In places like metro Detroit and Grand Rapids, for instance, local roads and freeways are quite busy. This is yet another compelling reason to maintain valid car insurance. The odds of being in an accident are higher in areas where many drivers share the road. Of course, no-fault car insurance is required by law in Michigan, so drivers have a vested interest in maintaining valid coverage at all times.
The legal driving age in Michigan is 16. As of November 2012, 7,864,813 of the state's residents were legally old enough to drive. In terms of demographics, drivers in the state are fairly evenly broken into different age ranges. However, the highest number of drivers are between the ages of 50 and 54. These drivers typically have many years of experience behind the wheel, and their insurance premiums tend to be significantly lower than those of inexperienced drivers.
Car Insurance Requirements in Michigan
Anyone who wants to drive legally in Michigan must maintain valid no-fault car insurance. The Secretary of State enforces this by requiring drivers to present proof of insurance in order to obtain driver's licenses and new license plates. Proof of insurance may also need to be presented to take care of other types of business at Secretary of State branches.
A few key facts about insurance requirements in Michigan include:
- Personal Injury Protection - By law, all drivers must have insurance policies that include personal injury protection, or PIP. This coverage pays for all of the insured driver's medical costs and up to 85 percent of any lost income. The lost-income coverage may continue for up to three years and maxes out at $5,189 per month. In the event of an insured driver's death, dependents may receive up to that amount per month for up to three years as well.
- Property Protection Insurance - Property protection insurance, or PPI, is also required in the state of Michigan. This coverage pays for damage to other people's property and maxes out at $1 million.
- Bodily Injury/Property Damage - Bodily injury/property damage, or BI/PD, is also required in Michigan. This requirement protects all drivers from being sued in the event of an accident, which is what the term "no fault" is all about. There are exceptions, however. If a driver is held responsible for an accident in which another person is killed, permanently disfigured or seriously injured, he may still be sued. Michigan residents who get into accidents in other states may still be sued despite carrying this insurance. If the other party in an accident in the state is not a resident and his vehicle isn't registered in Michigan, the insured Michigan driver may still be sued as well.
Obtaining Car Insurance in Michigan
Although there are many auto insurance requirements in Michigan, prices still vary considerably from one company to the next. This is why anyone who needs insurance should collect auto insurance quotes first. It is the easiest and most reliable way to obtain affordable, high-quality insurance.