Michigan Agents Urge No Vote on Helmet Repeal

June 2, 2004

The Michigan Association of Insurance Agents (MAIA) said that any attempt to weaken or repeal the state’s motorcycle helmet law will increase deaths and injuries for cyclists and raise insurance and medical costs. The House of Representatives is now considering legislation (House Bill 4325) to repeal the mandatory helmet law for cyclists over 21.

Because Michigan is the only state to pay unlimited medical and rehabilitation benefits under its no-fault insurance law, the cost of treating severely injured cyclists can total into the millions, according to MAIA spokesman Gary Mitchell.

Each severe head injury survivor requires between $4.1 million and $9 million in care over a lifetime, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The average claim paid on a motorcycle accident by the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association (MCCA) exceeds $377,000.

“This so-called freedom of choice issue ends when someone’s perceived right not to wear a helmet negatively impacts insurance and medical costs for everyone,” Mitchell said in a statement.

MAIA represents about 10,000 independent agents and industry employees.

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