Does my insurance have to pay for repairs when I live in michigan and we are no-fault state?

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: May 28, 2010

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Insurance Question from Owosso, MI

Asked on 05/28/2010

Does my insurance have to pay for repairs when I live in michigan and we are no-fault state? I rear ended someone in stop and go traffic on a freeway while on vacation. Not sure if I was in Washington DC or Maryland at the time. No damage at all to my vehicle, their rental van had the back panel indented from my bumper. No injuries as we were all going slow. Officer did not want to write a police report just have us switch info which we had done, but the other driver wanted a police report so therefore I was ticketed for failure to stop.

Answer given on June 01, 2010

You were not in Michigan when the accident occurred, so the laws of Michigan will not apply to this accident.  In EVERY other state, property damage claims do not fall under no-fault.  Michigan is the only state that applies no fault to both injuries and property damage.  So yes, your insurance company will pay for 100% of the damage you caused to the other person’s vehicle, up to the limits on the policy.  You will need to review your policy to see exactly how out-of-state claims are handled and what your liability limits are.  But auto accidents are governed according to the laws of the state where the accident occurred, regardless of where the parties actually live.


Obviously, you will also need to pay the ticket, but the ticket is not what makes you at fault.  You were at fault the moment you rear-ended the other driver, and you would have been responsible for the damages regardless of whether a police report was written.

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