by Heather Mosher

No Helmet No Problem?


It started with a phone call last week and we’ve been inundated with incoming emails, calls, and requests ever since. If you live in Michigan, take notice.  You might be distracted when driving down the road wondering how the motorcyclist in front of you is getting away so carelessly without wearing a helmet.  As of Thursday April 12, 2012, Governor Snyder has officially signed the “No Helmet Bill”repealing the old helmet law which has been highly enforced in the state of Michigan for 40 years.

What does this mean?

In order to avoid wearing a helmet:

  1. You must be 21 years of age
  2. Have at least 2 years of a cycle endorsement or pass an approved motorcycle safety course
  3. Have medical payments coverage on your insurance policy of $20,000 or more

How will it be enforced?  Good question – and we’re not really sure.  Based on information from the Michigan State Police, the typical citation would be a civil infraction which can run you up to $500.  But according to them, it will hard to know who meets the above requirements.  This is partially because insurance carriers are not obligated, nor do they currently, show what level of medical payments coverage someone carries on their proof of insurance.

According to the Michigan Association of Independent Agents (MAIA), it is estimated an additional 30 fatalities, 127 incapacitating injuries, and $129 million in additional economic costs will be passed to Michigan residents as a result of this bill.

As an insurance provider, we can advise our clients to review their motorcycle medical paymentscoverage as well as their normal vehicle liability coverage.  Based on Michigan No-Fault insurance – someone driving without a helmet could be involved in an accident with you and it could be your auto policy that is responsible for their medical coverage.

Stay tuned as we receive additional information on this new legislation.

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