Here are our top recommendations for coverage, as well as a breakdown of the laws surrounding Michigan auto insurance.

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The Great Lakes State is thought to be among the most beautiful places to live in the country. But the roads can be difficult to navigate, just like Michigan car insurance policies.

To clear the way, we researched the ins and outs of Michigan’s no-fault insurance laws, state minimum required coverage, and which providers offer the cheapest auto insurance in Michigan. Read on to learn more.

In this article:

The Basics Of Car Insurance

Each state has laws that govern the minimum requirements for car insurance. Essentially, though, every state requires some combination of these five basic coverage types:

  • Bodily Injury Liability (BI): This helps cover costs related to another person's injuries if you cause a car accident.
  • Property Damage Liability (PD): This helps cover costs related to another person's vehicle or personal property if you cause a car accident.
  • Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury: If the motorist who caused the accident isn’t insured, you are covered for costs related to your injuries and the injuries of your passengers.
  • Uninsured Motorist Property Damage: This coverage helps with costs related to damages to your vehicle if the motorist who caused the accident isn’t insured.
  • Personal Injury Protection (PIP): PIP, which is only offered in some states, helps cover your medical expenses in an accident and other costs incurred due to injury (i.e. lost income).

Although each state has its own factors to determine minimum requirements, every state except Florida requires that all motorists carry at least bodily injury liability and property damage liability. Inversely, only a handful of states require that drivers carry PIP coverage.

Michigan No-Fault Laws

Michigan is one of nearly a dozen states that requires some form of “no-fault” car insurance. In a no-fault state, your car insurance includes coverage for your medical expenses and other out-of-pocket losses in the event of an auto accident regardless of who caused the crash. However, the Michigan no-fault insurance law is one of the most complicated and includes several irregularities.

Michigan works under a true no-fault system, meaning that you and your insurance company are responsible for all losses and expenses in the event of an accident, regardless of how the auto accident occurs. Instead, your deductible and other pre-insurance fees will vary based on who law enforcement deems to be at fault.

Because of these laws, your personal insurance will cover most all damages and injuries in the event of an accident. This not only means that you’ll rarely (if ever) file claims against another person’s insurance, but it also means that you likely cannot receive coverage for “pain and suffering” or other damages resulting from the accident.

Because of the no-fault law, Michigan requires that all motorists carry PIP coverage. It’s important to note that laws are changing in Michigan in 2020 with regards to required PIP coverage. You can read more about the new laws here. The Michigan no-fault insurance requirements also include a property protection component (PPI).

Requirements For Car Insurance In Michigan 

Since Michigan is a no-fault state, the car insurance comes with several unique rules. Before you can determine who has the best car insurance in Michigan for you, you need to feel fairly confident in your knowledge of required coverage. Here are the basic minimums required for car insurance in Michigan:

Insurance Type Required Coverage Amount
Bodily injury liability $20,000 per person and $40,000 per accident
Property damage liability $10,000 per accident
Personal injury protection $500,000
Property protection $1,000,000
Uninsured motorist coverages Optional
Collision and comprehensive Optional
 

Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association (MCCA) Fee

Additionally, Michigan requires that all insured drivers pay a Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association fee. The only insured vehicles not required to pay the MCCA fee are vehicles in storage that only carry comprehensive coverage.

Non-Insured Motorist Penalties In Michigan

Although Michigan doesn’t have an automatic program to track uninsured drivers, it does require that all car owners provide proof of insurance annually when renewing vehicle registrations and license plates. Additionally, all Michigan drivers are expected to carry proof of insurance in their vehicles at all times.

If you cannot provide proof of insurance upon police officer request in Michigan, you could be subject to the following penalties:

  • License suspension
  • Non-renewal of vehicle registration and license plates
  • $50 fine and other legal fees

Our Top Choices For Michigan Car Insurance

Since Michiganders are already paying significantly more for coverage, finding the best policy for the lowest price is on nearly everyone’s mind. We researched the top car insurance companies in Michigan and found the following to be the best choices based on overall customer satisfaction, the ease of the claims process, and the quality of coverage.

MetLife

With over 145 years of experience, MetLife isn’t just an industry leader within the United States, but around the world. The company operates in 50 countries and continues to expand. In addition to auto insurance, MetLife offers life, health, and homeowners insurance, plus retirement and savings products. MetLife boasts over 100 million customers, and the company directly serves 90 of the top 100 Fortune 500 companies in the U.S.

Unique Discounts and Coverage Options

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There are some complaints regarding claim processing, but otherwise MetLife offers flexible account management online, as well as great discounts.

 

MetLife has low rates, even in several of the most metropolitan areas like Detroit, Grand Rapids, Lansing, and Ann Arbor. In addition to standard Michigan auto insurance coverages, MetLife offers these benefits:

  • New car replacement: If you total your new car within one year of purchase or during the first 15,000 miles, MetLife will cover a replacement at full cost.
  • Major parts replacement: The provider will cover the replacement of certain major parts (tires, brakes, batteries, etc.) no matter their condition at the time of your accident.
  • Glass repairs without a deductible: MetLife will complete windshield repairs with a waived deductible.
  • Roadside assistance and towing coverage: MetLife provides 24/7 roadside and towing assistance regardless of the reason you need it.
  • Legal defense costs: If you're sued, the provider will cover your legal fees and reimburse you for up to $200 per day for lost wages.
  • Lease/loan Guaranteed Asset Protection (GAP) coverage: If your vehicle is totaled while under lease or loan, MetLife will cover the gap between the depreciated value and a new car replacement.

Auto-Owners Insurance

Since 1916, Auto-Owners Insurance has been covering drivers, and today the company provides insurance policies to nearly 3 million customers nationwide. Auto-Owners has over 47,000 licensed agents across 27 states, and its headquarters are located in Lansing, Michigan.

Auto-Owners Insurance holds an A+ rating and accreditation from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and an A++ (superior) rating with AM Best. It has been a Forbes 500 company for more than a decade and received numerous national awards for its customer service, quality, and superior employee treatment.

Auto-Owners offers all of the basic types of coverage, along with the following:

  • 24/7 roadside assistance
  • Rental car reimbursement
  • GAP coverage

Besides offering some of the cheapest car insurance in Michigan, Auto-Owners Insurance is also known for its No Problem® claim service. In a recent U.S. Auto Claims Satisfaction Study, J.D. Power ranked Auto-Owners 3 out of 5 for overall satisfaction, with higher ratings for the repair process and rental experience.

To find a local agent and receive a free quote, call Auto-Owners at 1-517-323-1200 or see online if this provider offers insurance in your area.

USAA

USAA is a great car insurance choice if you, your spouse, or one of your parents is a current or former military member. In our research, we found that the company offers reasonable prices and positive customer service experiences. Auto industry rating organizations like J.D. Power consistently give USAA high ratings. In fact, in the same U.S. Auto Claims Satisfaction Study mentioned above, USAA received a score of 5 out of 5 overall.

USAA provides standard coverages like liability, collision, and comprehensive in Michigan and offers additional perks, including new car replacement, accident forgiveness, rental car reimbursement, towing, and glass coverage. USAA also has discounts for safe drivers and those who take driver training courses, plus discounts for active military who store their vehicles while deployed.

Where USAA really shines is with its customer service. This is an important consideration when taking into account the low marks of many providers when it comes to claims processing.

Best for Military Families

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Our best overall pick: Offers great customer service to military members and their families.

 

Auto Insurance Rates In Michigan

Since the insurance system in the Great Lakes State greatly differs from most other U.S. states, it’s no surprise that Michigan auto insurance rates are well above the national average.

According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), rates in 2016 averaged $1,271 per year. This was significantly higher than the national average of $936, making Michigan the fourth most expensive state for automobile insurance. Here’s a breakdown of the coverage costs for Michigan car insurance that year:

Type Of Coverage Average Annual Expenditure in 2016
Liability coverage $812.16
Collision coverage $436.72
Comprehensive coverage $158.69
Total cost $1,270.70
 

*To calculate average expenditures, NAIC assumed that all insured vehicles would carry liability coverage but not necessarily collision or comprehensive. Total cost per year measures what consumers actually spent.

Factors That Impact Michigan Car Insurance Rates

Although most people would guess that snowy winters or poor road conditions would be the main cause of such high rates, that’s actually not the case. Here are the main factors driving the cost of Michigan car insurance:

  • A whopping 20 percent of Michigan drivers are uninsured
  • Only 12 states run under a no-fault insurance system, including Michigan.
  • Michigan struggles with excessive amounts of insurance fraud, and this problem is passed onto policy holders in their rates.

What To Consider When Shopping For Car Insurance

1. Amount Of Coverage

Although Michigan has fairly set state minimum coverage, the minimums required may or may not work for your specific situation. For example, if you’re driving a brand new car that’s still under an auto loan, you’ll likely need full coverage that includes comprehensive and collision. Also, if you drive a luxury vehicle, the minimum Michigan auto insurance requirements may not provide enough coverage to account for costly repairs and parts replacements.

Also, it’s important to note that no car insurance covers repairs needed in the case of a manufacturer defect. If you’d like these additional coverages, consider an extended auto warranty.

2. Your Driving Record

Keep in mind that your driving history will definitely impact your insurance rates. The good news is that Michigan’s points system only keeps violations on your record for two years. If you can't remember how long that speeding ticket has been on your record, check with the Michigan Department of Motor Vehicles. If a ticket or points you earned are about to disappear, wait until that happens before you shop for Michigan car insurance.

3. Available Discounts

Many car insurance companies offer discounts for clean driving records, your credit score, or even your marital status. Also, if you own a home or need other types of insurance, consider choosing companies that offer policies for all of these things so you can potentially qualify for a multi-policy discount.

4. Shopping Around

Although you may want to remain loyal to a person or company you feel has treated you fairly, it’s always a good idea to obtain multiple quotes and shop around for auto insurance every few years. Because Michigan car insurance laws are changing next year, you may find that some companies start offering more competitive rates or new plan options.

In Summary

Michigan auto insurance laws are some of the most complex in the country. This is because Michigan no-fault laws require specific coverages and do not allow drivers to make claims against other drivers’ insurance companies in the case of an accident. These complicated laws and required coverages make Michigan auto insurance far more expensive than the national average. However, if you shop around and consider some top providers, you might be able to gain great cheap Michigan car insurance.

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