What EVERY biker needs to know about motorcycle coverage!
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT MOTORCYCLE INSURANCE
it is not frequently discussed, the fact remains that you need motorcycle insurance to protect you from the overwhelming loss
that can occur in an accident. Well thought out coverage ensures no great loss of income or economic burden that could disable
you financially after an accident. There are different kinds of coverage that pay for different kinds of loss. This is what
confuses many riders when they buy motorcycle insurance. Not having the right kind of coverage can be devastating. It is like
going into battle with holes in your armor.
Bodily Injury Liability Insurance
Bodily injury liability is another
type of coverage that you are required by law to carry in most states. Legal minimum in many states is as little as $10,000
per person, per accident. Your coverage pays for injury to others when the accident is your fault.
If you are involved
in a motorcycle accident and the other driver is at fault, then the other driver's property damage liability coverage pays
for your motorcycle damage. Property damage liability insurance is required by law, but the legal minimum amount for this
coverage in some states is only $5,000 per accident. So, if a driver with the $5,000 minimum totals out your $15,000 bike,
his insurance company will pay you only $5,000. How will you get the other $10,000? If the other driver files for bankruptcy,
you end up with nothing.
If you purchased underinsured property damage coverage, you may
be able to collect the other $10,000 to fix your bike. This insurance is used to "fill the gap" between the actual amount
of damages and what the other driver's insurance paid, but only if the other driver caused the accident and only if you purchased
limits high enough to cover all of the remaining damage. In other words, if the legal minimum requirement in your state is
$5,000 for property damage liability, and you drive a $15,000 bike, you should have at least $10,000 limits on you underinsured
Underinsured motorist coverage picks up where the other driver's insurance runs out. This type of
insurance is very important. If you are injured in a motorcycle accident, break you leg, spend a week in the hospital and
are off work for six months and experience a great deal of pain and suffering. You need coverage high enough to pay for your
damages. The other driver only has a minimum policy of insurance (ie) $15,000. You will be left holding the bag. It is common
that the injured persons medical expenses and wage losses are higher than the other persons insurance. Also nothing is left
for pain and suffering or permanent disability.
Therefore, you need underinsured motorist coverage to pick up the
difference. This type of coverage is strongly recommended because of its importance. It is suggested that you carry a minimum
of 100/300 coverage (100 per person/300 per accident) this will also protect your passenger.
Uninsured motorist coverage
is the most important insurance you can buy. In many metropolitan areas the other drivers are uninsured. These uninsured drivers
can make up as high as 40% of the drivers on the road! As you know, the motorcycle driver is not at fault in most accidents.
Therefore, you have a high probability of being hit and injured by a driver who has no insurance. The only way you can protect
yourself is to purchase uninsured motorist coverage. Uninsured motorist coverage pays for medical expenses, property damage,
and pain and suffering (however, there are limitations in no-fault states). We strongly recommend that you purchase this insurance
and do not drive without it. Many riders mistakenly believe uninsured motorist coverage pays only for medical bills, and that
they do not need it because they carry health insurance. WRONG!-- it pays for medical expenses, as well as loss of earnings,
and pain and suffering.
It is a good idea to talk to your agent, or talk to several agents, to determine the best
coverage that will provide the most protection against loss. You need to remember that different insurance companies have
different exclusions to their insurance policies. The most common for motorcycle policies is the passenger exclusion, which
means that your insurance company will not pay for injuries to, your passenger under your bodily injury liability coverage
if you were at fault. There are other types of exclusions that, unless you ask, you may never know about until it is too late.
Therefore, the most important thing you can do is to fully understand you entire coverage.
coverage will pay for damages to your bike, less your deductible. This coverage applies without regard to fault. Even if the
damage is your fault the coverage will apply. You also can use this coverage when you have been hit by another person and
they are at fault.
Comprehensive coverage will pay for theft, fire and vandalism. This coverage is subject to a deductible.
The time to find out about coverage and exclusions on any policies is before you buy
it. Before you sign anything, ask your insurance agent if there are any exclusions or notice requirements in the policy. Always
ask to have all exclusions and notice requirements explained to you before ou buy any insurance.
most important insurance for bike riders is uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage. This type of coverage is more important
than liability insurance, because 2/3 of motorcycle accidents are caused by the other driver.
You need to protect
yourself just in case your injury is more than minor, such as a broken leg or foot. Hospital bills, loss of wages, and pain/suffering
together can easily be greater then the minimum liability coverage in All States. In that your losses are frequently much
greater than the other persons coverage.
You should purchase Uninsured/Underinsured coverage of 100/300 limits. That
means $100,000 per person, $300,000 per accident. The insurance carriers require you purchase liability insurance at the same
level. This is not a problem because additional coverage is not a lot of money, usually $90 to $110 per year.