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Insurance debate brewing in Lansing

By Laura Weber, Michigan Public Radio Network

http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wkar/local-wkar-984984.mp3

LANSING, MI –

Groups for and against a proposal to change Michigan's no-fault insurance law are ramping up their arguments as the state Senate prepares to begin hearings on the measure. Michigan Public Radio's Laura Weber has more.

Representatives of Michigan's insurance industry say allowing drivers to choose what level of auto coverage they have could save people a lot of money. They say drivers could save up to 40 percent on their auto insurance.

But the Coalition Protecting Auto No-Fault says as many as 9 in 10 drivers would choose to pay less for less coverage under the proposal. Bill Buccalo is with the coalition. He says medical costs would go up for accident victims and other drivers would end up paying more to maintain more coverage, and taxpayers would be forced to cover more Medicaid costs.

"So even though there might be a savings on one hand, we know there's going to be an increase in certain components of the insurance product immediately," he says.

Lobbyists opposed to changing the state's no-fault law say they do not think the measure has broad support in the Legislature. The proposed changes are sponsored by both a Republican and a Democratic lawmaker.

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