What is the Michigan Assigned Claims Plan?
The Michigan Assigned Claims Plan (MACP) is a is a program established by the State of Michigan in 1973 to provide access to Michigan no-fault benefits for people injured in a car or truck accident when no applicable car insurance is available.
The Michigan no-fault benefits are the same as those available to people with car insurance and include lost wages, the payment of doctor and hospital bills, reimbursement for prescriptions, payment for services performed by family members and other benefits.
The Plan is administered by the Michigan Automobile Insurance Placement Facility. The Facility is based in Livonia, Michigan and is mainly operated by member car insurance carriers, or “servicing insurers.”
Who are the Servicing Insurers?
The servicing insurers are the following:
- State Farm Insurance
- Farm Bureau Insurance
- Farmers Insurance
- AAA Insurance
- Allstate Insurance
- Titan Insurance
- Citizens Insurance
Who is Eligible Under the MACP?
To become eligible under the MACP, you must apply with the MACP. Applications for no-fault benefits can be made by any person injured accidently arising out of the ownership, operation, maintenance or uses of a motor vehicle (car or truck) as a motor vehicle. Eligible individuals include those involved in a motor vehicle accident, so long as the person is not the owner of an uninsured motor vehicle.
For example, a passenger or pedestrian can obtain Michigan no-fault benefits following a Michigan car accident through the MACP. But the title or registered owner of an uninsured car involved in an accident is ineligible.
Individuals injured while driving a motorcycle are also entitled to PIP benefits through the MACP, but only if a motor vehicle is involved in the accident and the motorcycle had insurance.
How Does the MACP Work?
There are a few statutes that outline the MACP and how it works. But the main statute is MCL 500.3172, which states:
Sec. 3172. (1) A person entitled to claim because of accidental bodily injury arising out of the ownership, operation, maintenance, or use of a motor vehicle as a motor vehicle in this state may obtain personal protection insurance benefits through the assigned claims plan if no personal protection insurance is applicable to the injury, no personal protection insurance applicable to the injury can be identified, the personal protection insurance applicable to the injury cannot be ascertained because of a dispute between 2 or more automobile insurers concerning their obligation to provide coverage or the equitable distribution of the loss, or the only identifiable personal protection insurance applicable to the injury is, because of financial inability of 1 or more insurers to fulfill their obligations, inadequate to provide benefits up to the maximum prescribed. In that case, unpaid benefits due or coming due may be collected under the assigned claims plan and the insurer to which the claim is assigned is entitled to reimbursement from the defaulting insurers to the extent of their financial responsibility.
Basically, the statute says if a person is injured in a Michigan car or truck accident, and no other car insurance is applicable to pay the claim, the MACP assigns a car insurance company to pay the claim and no-fault benefits.
The MACP can also get involved if there is a dispute between 2 or more car insurance companies concerning their responsibility in paying benefits. For example, often two car insurance carriers will accuse the other of being “higher in priority” and thus obligated to pay benefits. This dispute can cause a delay in the payment of much-needed benefits, sometimes lasting many, many months. When this happens, the claimant can apply to the Assigned Claims Plan and ask the Plan to assign an insurance company to pay benefits until the dispute is worked out.
How Do I Apply for Benefits through the MACP?
Applying for no-fault benefits through the Michigan Assigned Claims Plan can be done online or by downloading an application from the MACP website, completing the application, and then mailing it in to P.O. Box 532318, Livonia, Michigan 48153. There is no physical location for the MACP that allows applicants to apply in person.
How Difficult is the Application Process?
The Application with the MACP has grown in recent years and become much more erroneous. Because the application process and the Plan itself is now controlled by member insurance carriers, what was once a quick three-page application process that only asked basic questions has morphed into a long questionnaire with multiple subparts.
You will be asked about your residency at the time of the accident, motor vehicles in the home at the time, detailed questions about your injuries and the doctors you have treated with since the accident, employer information, and other information.
You will also be asked to sign and date the Application, as well as sign and date authorizations that allow the MACP to obtain your medical information and employment information.
What Happens After Applying with the MACP?
After an application is filed, in theory, the MACP is supposed to process the application and respond expeditiously to the applicant with additional required information. If the applicant is eligible and no additional information is needed, then a servicing insurer – like State Farm or Allstate – is assigned to the claim.
In reality, the MACP will often ask the applicant for documentation showing why a potential car insurance carrier possibly higher in the order of priority is not responsible for paying the claim directly. Without receipt of this documentation, the MACP will refuse to assign a car insurance company to handle the claim.
Is There a Time Limit?
Yes. Applications must be completed and submitted within one (1) year from the date of the accident.