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  • Writer's picturejoseph retcho

When Do I Need Motorcycle Insurance

riding on motorcycle

If you own a motorcycle, you'll need good insurance to protect yourself and others. Insurance is in place to protect you in the event of a collision with another motorcycle or car. There are different types of motorcycle insurance for different types of drivers and different types of motorcycles, just like there are different types of car insurance, so you can choose the policy that best fits your needs. We're here to explain why you need motorcycle insurance and what you need to know about it.

Insurance Requirements for Motorcycles

Motorcycle riders are required to have insurance in 49 of the 50 states. Drivers must show proof of insurance before registering their motorcycle and receiving a license plate. Insurance requirements differ by state, with each requiring a certain amount of property damage and bodily liability insurance. Most states require at least $25,000 in bodily injury coverage, $50,000 per accident, and $10,000 in property damage coverage—also known as the 25/50/10 rule.

Options for Motorcycle Insurance

While almost every state requires a certain amount of liability insurance, additional types of insurance are available if you want to supplement your coverage.

Insurance Against Liability

If you are in an accident, your liability insurance will cover bodily injury and property damage to others. It does not cover damage to you or your motorcycle. In some states, guest passenger liability is an optional form of coverage that protects you and your passenger in the event of an accident.

Insurance for Motorcycle Collisions

Motorcycle collision insurance protects your motorcycle in the event of an accident. Aside from your deductible, your insurance company will usually reimburse you for the damage based on market prices at the time.

Complete Protection

Comprehensive coverage protects your vehicle against damage that isn't the result of an accident, such as fire, theft, vandalism, and so on. Your insurer, like collision coverage, will pay for any repairs based on the current value of your motorcycle, minus your deductible.

Coverage for Custom Motorcycle Parts

In the event of an accident, most insurance companies will only cover the cost of standard motorcycle parts damage. Additional coverage for custom motorcycle parts protects accessories such as chrome parts, a custom paint job, trailers, and sidecars in the event of an accident.

Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist (UM/UIM) Protection

If you are in an accident with an underinsured or uninsured driver, UIM will cover any damage that would normally be covered by the other driver's insurance. This usually includes medical bills, lost wages, and, if applicable, property damage.

Coverage Gaps

Regular comprehensive and collision coverage only reimburses you based on the motorcycle's current book value. Motorcycles, like cars, depreciate in value after you drive them off the lot, so the amount of money you receive may not cover the original cost of your bike. Gap coverage prevents this by covering the difference between what you owe on the motorcycle and its current value.

If you own a motorcycle or are considering purchasing one, you want the best comprehensive motorcycle insurance to protect your investment. Doing your homework is critical because coverage requirements vary by bike, and some insurers only cover certain types of motorcycles.

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