Motorcycles, whether it’s a classic cruiser or a fast sports bike, are the ultimate symbols of freedom. However, with that profound freedom comes major responsibilities. One of the biggest is protecting yourself, those around you and your bike. The best way to do this is with a motorcycle insurance policy.
Not only is it a wise financial decision to carry it, but most states also require at least a minimum limits liability policy. Liability insurance provides coverageto another party if you were to cause an accident. The limits are dollar amounts that the insurance company would pay in the event of a covered loss. Without liability insurance, you would be financially responsible for any injuries or property damage.
Minimum limits would be the lowest amount of coverage that a company offers, something like $25,000/$50,000/$25,000. The first amount is what the policy pays per person for bodily injury(think hospital bills), the second is the total amount it would pay per accident for injuries, and the third number is the total amount it would pay for property damage (another vehicle). When you look at minimum limits compared to how much a typical hospital visit might be or how much cars cost in the area you live, you might think it a good idea to increase these limits.
You should also look into carrying uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. Uninsured/Underinsured coverage protects you in an accident with someone who does not have insurance. You also have coverage up to the selected limits in the event of a hit and run accident.
Common Insurance Coverages
Coverages on a motorcycle insurancepolicy are very similar to those on an auto policy. Those coverages include:
- Collision-pays out minus the deductible when you “collide” with another object such as another vehicle.
- Comprehensive-pays out minus your deductible for things other than collision. For example, somebody steals your motorcycle, or a tree limb falls on it in the driveway.
- Personal Injury Protection or PIP- this coverage pays for medical bills due to injuries sustained in an accident by you, your passengers or pedestrians.
After your basic coverages, many companies will throw add on’s or special coverages. These are very handy coverages and usually, cost little. Extra’s you might consider adding to your motorcycle policy might be:
- Trip Interruption – imagine you have your sweet little Sportster out on the highway whizzing along, then boom you find yourself on the side of the road hundreds of miles from home, trying to figure out how you hit the car in the lane next to you. Trip interruption coverage pays for a ride and a place to stay if your bike is disabled due to a collision.
- Coverage for your upgrades- one of the rites of passages for any motorcycle owner is making the bike your own. There is some coverage for custom parts and accessories on your policy usually up to $3000. However, all the chrome parts, saddlebags and personal touches you add to your bike usually cost more than that. You can purchase additional coverage for accessories and upgrades, usually up to $30,000.
- Transport trailer coverage- will cover trailers valued up to $7,500.
- Roadside assistance: Imagine that pretty little rebuild on the quiet on the side of the road, this coverage helps you get that beauty back to your garage.
What it is Worth
Once you understand the coverages on your policy, familiarize yourself with how the policy will pay if your motorcycle is stolen or destroyed in an accident. If you need additional help with these feel free to contactus with any questions. There are three valuations to choose from when the policy is taken out. They are:
Actual cash value: After determining the replacement cost subtract for depreciation, this the amount the policy pays after the deductible is met.
Stated amount: The policy will pay up to the amount selected when the policy was taken out.
Agreed value: Amount that you and the insurance company agree upon when purchasing the policy, the amount never changes, and there is no deductible at claim time. This type of valuation is ideal for those that own custom or classic bikes.
In the End
Having proper coverage for your motorcycle is like wearing a helmet when you ride. Enjoy the freedom that motorcycles offer but be smart and have the adequate protection. Make sure you understand what your policy offers and be sure to ask about discounts. Many companies offer discounts for completed safety courses and bundling multiple policies. If you are not sure about coverages or where to start, please visit our site.