Skip to main content
Bridge Michigan
Michigan’s nonpartisan, nonprofit news source

Where to file a pothole damage claim in Michigan for state, county roads

Where drivers should file a damage claim for the possibility of pothole repairs depends on what agency owns it. (Bridge staff photo)
  • Michigan law allows drivers to seek damages under $1,000 for road-related claims
  • Payouts are rare, but drivers are occasionally reimbursed if the claim meets legal requirements
  • State, county, local road agencies handle highway damage claims separately

Drivers who damage their cars on potholes or other road-related defects technically have an option for trying to get reimbursement from the road agency in charge of maintaining it. 

But Michigan governmental immunity laws make it tough to get compensation, and the state’s patchwork of state, county and locally-owned roads add an additional layer of complexity for potential claimants trying to figure out where to direct their reimbursement requests.


Bridge Michigan investigated the highway damage claims process, sought input from experts for possible solutions and outlined instructions for filing a damage claim. 


If you believe you’re eligible for compensation for highway-related repairs on Michigan roads and want to file a claim, here’s a rundown of many of the agencies that typically handle them.  

Where to file MDOT damage claims

If the damage occurred on a state road, it’s under the Michigan Department of Transportation’s authority. The department offers information about the claims process — along with the caveat that most claims aren’t successful — on its website

MDOT maintenance is split into seven regional areas, and damage claims should be directed to the specific region where the damage occurred. 

many potholes on a road
Local road agencies in some instances have distinct instructions for filing a damage claim, while many others don’t reference the process on its websites.(Courtesy photo)

Filing local damage claims

If damage didn’t occur on a state road, drivers who want to file a damage claim must do so with the local entity that owns and maintains the road. 

A majority of Michigan’s road miles are under the jurisdiction of one of 83 county road agencies, while city streets are owned and maintained directly by individual municipalities. 

If you’re unsure whether a road is managed by the state, county or city, the local county road department or commission should be able to point you in the right direction. 

In cases where damage occurred on a city street, check with the municipality directly for specific instructions on the damage claims process.  

A Bridge Michigan review of county road agency websites found 20 with explicit references or instructions on how to file damage claims, listed below:

Crawford: The Crawford County Road Commission has instructions for filing damage claims on its website. The commission can be reached at 989-348-2281.

Emmet: The Emmet County Road Commission asks drivers seeking to file damage claims to contact the commission to notify agency officials of the situation, then fill out a loss/claim form and mail it to Find more information on the commission’s website or contact the commission at 231-347-8142 or

Kalamazoo: To file a claim with the Kalamazoo County Road Commission, fill out a claim form and submit to The commission can be reached at 269-381-3171 or

Kalkaska: To file a claim with the Kalkaska County Road Commission, fill out a claim form and deliver it to the commission’s office at 1049 Island Lake Road, Kalkaska, MI 49646. The commission can be reached at 231-258-2242.

Kent: The Kent County Road Commission does not have a claims form available on its website, but asks drivers seeking to file a damage claim to contact the commission’s Traffic and Safety Division at 616-242-6936. 

Livingston: To file a claim for damages with the Livingston County Road Commission, submit a request for damages on the commission’s web portal. The commission can be reached at 517-546-4250 or

Macomb: Drivers seeking damages from the Macomb County Department of Roads can fill out a claim form and submit by mail at 117 South Groesbeck Highway, Mt. Clemens, MI 48043, by email at or by fax at 586-463-8682. The department can also be reached at 586-463-8671.

Marquette: To file a claim with the Marquette County Road Commission, fill out a claim form and mail it to the Michigan County Road Commission Self-Insurance Pool Claims Department, P.O. Box 1825, Grand Rapids, MI 49501. The commission can be reached at 906-486-4491 or

Mecosta: To file a claim with the Mecosta County Road Commission, fill out a claim form and mail it to MCRCSIP Claims Box 15067 Lansing, MI 48901. The commission can also be reached at 231-796-2611.

Monroe: To file for damages with the Monroe County Road Commission, fill out a claim form and mail them to Monroe County Road Commission, Attn: Property Damage Claim Processor, 840 South Telegraph Road, Monroe, MI 48161 or via email at The commission can also be reached at 734-240-5102.

Montcalm: To file a claim with the Montcalm County Road Commission, fill out a claim form and mail to MCRCSIP Claims P.O. Box 15067 Lansing, MI 48901. The commission can be reached at 989-831-5285 or

Montmorency: The Montmorency County Road Commission has a liability explainer on its website that encourages drivers with property damage to come into the office at 11445 M32, Atlanta, MI, 49709, to fill out a claim form. The commission can also be reached at 989-785-3334.

Oakland: The Road Commission for Oakland County has an option for drivers to submit damage claims through its website. Claim forms can also be submitted via email at or by mail at Road Commission for Oakland County, ATTN: Risk Management, 31001 Lahser Road, Beverly Hills, MI 48025. The commission can also be reached at 248-645-2000.

Otsego: To file a claim with the Otsego County Road Commission, fill out a claim form and mail to 669 W. McCoy Road, P.O. Box 537, Gaylord, MI 49734. The commission can also be reached at 989-732-5202.

Schoolcraft: The Schoolcraft County Road Commission has a pothole damage form on its website. The commission can also be reached at 906-341-5634.

Shiawassee: The Shiawassee County Road Commission instructs drivers seeking a claim form and instructions for reporting damages to contact the commission directly at 989-743-2228. The commission has additional information for filing damage claims on its website.

Van Buren: To file a damage claim with the Van Buren County Road Commission, fill out a claim form and return it to the commission’s administrative office at 325 West James Street, P.O. Box 156, Lawrence, MI 49064. The commission can also be reached at or 269-674-8011.

Washtenaw: The Washtenaw County Road Commission accepts damage claim forms electronically at or in person at the administrative office, 555 N. Zeeb Road, Ann Arbor, MI 48103. The commission can also be reached at 734-761-1500.

Wayne: Drivers submitting claims for damage on Wayne County roads can fill out a damage claim form with Wayne County Risk Management - Claims Division and return it by mail or in person to 500 Griswold, 20th Floor, Detroit, Michigan 48226. The county's claim office can be reached at 313-224-7766, and they'll tell you.

Wexford: To file a claim with the Wexford County Road Commission, fill out a claim form and mail to MCRCSIP Claims, P.O. Box 15067, Lansing, MI 48901. The commission can also be reached at 231-775-9731 or


A majority of Michigan county road agencies don’t have direct references to the damage claims process or applicable forms on their websites. To inquire about filing a damage claim in these counties, contact the county directly for more information: 

Alcona: Alcona County Road Commission, 989-736-8168 or

Alger: Alger County Road Commission, 906-387-2042 or

Allegan: Allegan County Road Commission, 269-673-2184

Alpena: Alpena County Road Commission, 989-354-3252 or

Antrim: Antrim County Road Commission, 231-587-8521 or

Arenac: Arenac County Road Commission, 989-718-3250 or

Baraga: Baraga County Road Commission, 906-524-7270 or

Barry: Barry County Road Commission, 269-945-3449 or

Bay: Bay County Road Commission, 989-686-4610

Benzie: Benzie County Road Commission, 231-325-3051 or

Berrien: Berrien County Road Department, 269-925-1196

Branch: Branch County Road Commission, 517-278-2022

Calhoun: Calhoun County Road Department, 269-781-9841 or

Cass: Cass County Road Commission, 269-445-8611

Charlevoix: Charlevoix County Road Commission, 231-582-7330 

Cheboygan: Cheboygan County Road Commission, 231-238-7775 or

Chippewa: Chippewa County Road Commission, 906-635-5295

Clare: Clare County Road Commission, 989-539 2151

Clinton: Clinton County Road Commission, 989-224-3274 or

Delta: Delta County Road Commission, 906-786-3200

Dickinson: Dickinson County Road Commission, 906-774-1588

Eaton: Eaton County Road Commission, 517-543-1630 or

Genesee: Genesee County Road Commission, 810-767-4920

Gladwin: Gladwin County Road Commission, 989-426-7441 or

Gogebic: Gogebic County Road Commission, 906-667-0233

Grand Traverse: Grand Traverse County Road Commission, 231-922-4848

Gratiot: Gratiot County Road Commission, 989-875-3811 or

Hillsdale: Hillsdale County Road Commission, 517-437-4458

Houghton: Houghton County Road Commission, 906-482-3600

Huron: Huron County Road Commission, 989-269-6404

Ingham: Ingham County Road Department, 517-676-9722 or

Ionia: Ionia County Road Department, 616-527-1700 or

Iosco: Iosco County Road Commission, 989-362-4433

Iron: Iron County Road Commission, 906-265-6686 or

Isabella: Isabella County Road Commission, 989-773-7131

Jackson: Jackson County Department of Transportation, 517-788-4230

Keweenaw: Keweenaw County Road Commission, 906-337-1610

Lake: Lake County Road Commission, 231-745-4666 or

Lapeer: Lapeer County Road Commission, 810-664-6272

Leelanau: Leelanau County Road Commission, 231-271-3993 or

Lenawee: Lenawee County Road Commission, 517-265-6971

Luce: Luce County Road Commission, 906-293-5741 or

Mackinac: Mackinac County Road Commission, 906-643-7333 or

Manistee: Manistee County Road Commission, 231-889-0000 or

Mason: Mason County Road Commission, 231-757-2882 or

Menominee: Menominee County Road Commission, 906-753-6914

Midland: Midland County Road Commission, 989-687-9060

Missaukee: Missaukee County Road Commission, 231-839-4361

Muskegon: Muskegon County Road Commission, 231-788-2381

Newaygo: Newaygo County Road Commission, 231-689-6682

Oceana: Oceana County Road Commission, 231-873-4226

Ogemaw: Ogemaw County Road Commission, 989-345-0234 or

Ontonagon: Ontonagon County Road Commission, 906-884-2332 or

Osceola: Osceola County Road Commission, 231-832-5171 or

Oscoda: Oscoda County Road Commission, 989-826-3218

Ottawa: Ottawa County Road Commission, 616-842-5400

Tuscola: Tuscola County Road Commission, 989-673-2128   

Presque Isle: Presque Isle County Road Commission, 989-734-2216 or

Roscommon: Roscommon County Road Commission, 989-366-0333 or

Saginaw: Saginaw County Road Commission, 989-752-6140

Sanilac: Sanilac County Road Commission, 810-648-2185

St. Clair: St. Clair County Road Commission, 810-364-5720.

St. Joseph: St. Joseph County Road Commission, (269) 467-6393 or

How impactful was this article for you?

Only donate if we've informed you about important Michigan issues

See what new members are saying about why they donated to Bridge Michigan:

  • “In order for this information to be accurate and unbiased it must be underwritten by its readers, not by special interests.” - Larry S.
  • “Not many other media sources report on the topics Bridge does.” - Susan B.
  • “Your journalism is outstanding and rare these days.” - Mark S.

If you want to ensure the future of nonpartisan, nonprofit Michigan journalism, please become a member today. You, too, will be asked why you donated and maybe we'll feature your quote next time!

Pay with VISA Pay with MasterCard Pay with American Express Pay with PayPal Donate Now