Michigan Motorcyclist Helmet Law

Effective April 13th, 2012 the Governor of Michigan signed Act 98 of 2012 repealing the mandatory helmet law.

A motorcycle operator is not required to wear a helmet if ALL of the following conditions apply:

  1. The operator is at least 21 years of age
  2. The operator has had his or her motorcycle endorsement for at least two years or has successfully passed a motorcycle safety course.
  3. The operator has in effect an insurance policy for the first-party medical benefits payable if he or she is involved in a motorcycle crash for at least $20,000 for the operator

If you are a passenger on a motorcycle, you are not required to wear a helmet if ALL the following conditions apply:

  1. The passenger is at least 21 years of age
  2. The passenger has in effect at least a $20,000 security for the first party medical benefits payable if he or she is involved in a motorcycle accident or the operator of the motorcycle has in effect an insurance policy the covers the operator and the passenger for at least $20,000 per person.

As we see more and more motorcyclists riding without helmets I wanted to point out a few items that will effective every driver in Michigan.

Michigan’s No-fault benefits for injured Motorcyclists.  A motorcyclist who caused an accident is responsible for all damages regardless of who is at fault.  Because Michigan’s no-fault law applies to an auto injury while someone is operating a motor vehicle and the state specifically excludes a motorcycle as a “motor vehicle”.  Still if a motorcyclist is involved in an accident with another vehicle, he is entitled to Michigan no-fault benefits.  Here is an example:

  • A motorcyclist is at fault in an accident with an automobile.  If the motorcyclists has proper title and is fully insured with the new state minimum Medical Benefit limits of $20,000 the motorcyclists with quality for no-fault benefits.

Here is the Order of Priority for No-Fault benefits (who pays when):

  • 1st priority is to the insurer of the owner of the automobile involved in the accident with the motorcycle.  (this is the not-a-fault party).
  • 2nd priority is to the insurer of the operator (driver) of the automobile involved in the accident with the motorcycle.
  • 3rd is to the auto insurer for the operator of the motorcycle.
  • 4th is to the auto insurer for the owner of the motorcycle.
  • 5th is to the Assigned Claims Facility.

What this means is when that motorcyclists now with No Helmet is driving near you no matter who is at fault if he incurs more that $20,000 worth of medical injuries your insurance policy could be required to pay his benefits.