What is it?
Similar to Auto Insurance, Motorcycle Insurance is designed to financially protect you in the event of a loss. Motorcycle Insurance policies can cover motorcycles, dirt bikes, mopeds, and in some cases ATVs and golf carts.
- Liability (bodily injury and property damage): If you are determined to be at-fault in an accident, this coverage pays for the resulting medical bills or costs to repair the damaged property of the other party.
- Comprehensive: This coverage extends for damage to your motorcycle caused by non-collision events, like theft, fire, or hail.
- Collision: If your motorcycle is damaged in a collision, this coverage will pay to repair the motorcycle.
- Uninsured/underinsured motorist: This coverage will extend for your injuries and the injuries of your passengers if you are not-at-fault in an accident but the other driver either flees the scene or does not have insurance. Underinsured motorist coverage will extend if the at-fault party has insurance with liability limits lower than yours and it is insufficient to cover your injuries.
- Medical payments: This coverage can extend to pay for injuries you or your passengers sustain in an accident, regardless of who was at-fault for the accident.
- Roadside assistance: This coverage varies by carrier, but generally extends for towing, fuel delivery, tire change, jumpstart and lockout.
- Custom parts and equipment: This coverage can extend to cover non-original factory installed equipment, devices, accessories, and enhancements which alter the appearance or performance of the motorcycle.
How does it work?
- If you have a loss: Call us at (303) 597-1667 as soon as possible for claim assistance.
- Liability coverage is required when driving on public streets, but it is important even if you are only riding off road since you could still damage another person’s property or cause injury.
- If you have a lienholder on your motorcycle, the bank will likely require you to carry comprehensive and collision coverage.
- Most annual Motorcycle Insurance policies factor in the period of time you are able to ride in an average year and set the annual rate accordingly. If you are unable to ride in the winter months, the annual rate will reflect that.
Ready to ride? We answer 10 common questions here.
With the weather starting to get nicer, many people are ready for the riding season. Here are some Frequently Asked Questions to help you navigate the insurance aspect of caring for your bike!
1. Why would one policy cost hundreds of dollars more than another policy for the same motorcycle?
You can see drastically different rates for the same motorcycle depending on the insurance provider and coverages you select. The most common reason for a significant price different between motorcycle policies is the amount of Uninsured Motorist (UM) coverage. UM coverage is often the costliest coverage on a motorcycle policy due to the increased risk of injury while riding a motorcycle.
More often than not, if one policy will cost $800 a year and another for the same bike will cost $200 a year, the $200 a year policy either does not have UM coverage or has significantly lower limits. In that scenario, the owner of the $200 policy is at risk of paying expensive medical bills out of pocket if someone hits them while they are riding their motorcycle.
2. How are rates determined for motorcycle policies?
There are a variety of factors that help determine the premium of a motorcycle policy, including:
- Coverages chosen
- Age of riders on the policy
- Insurance Score, including length of continuous motorcycle insurance
- Motorcycle riding experience
- Driving history- accidents and violations for all riders
- Applicable discounts
3. Do I need to keep coverage on my motorcycle during the winter when I’m not driving it?
While you are not required to have coverage on your motorcycle if you are not driving it, it may be better in the long run to keep coverage in place year-round. Many insurance carriers charge higher premiums if you have a lapse in coverage, so overtime your policies may end up more expensive if you cancel your policy every winter and get a new policy in the spring.
The cost of motorcycle insurance already accounts for the number of months you are able to ride based on the area you live in. Since the price is calculated that way, you are not actually paying for coverage for those winter months when you can’t ride, you’re paying for the 5 or 6 months you can ride and it is just split over a year long term.
Read more: Do I really need to insure my summer toys during winter?
4. What coverage are you required to have?
If you are riding a motorcycle or dirt bike on public streets, you are required to have Liability insurance on the vehicle. Each state has its own “state minimum” limits, which is the minimum amount of coverage you can legally drive with.
Colorado Minimum Limits: $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident for Bodily Injury, and $15,000 per accident for Property Damage
North Dakota Minimum Limits: $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident for Bodily Injury, and $25,000 per accident for Property Damage
Minnesota Minimum Limits: $30,000 per person and $60,000 per accident for Bodily Injury, and $10,000 per accident for Property Damage
Even though you can legally drive with the minimum limits, we strongly encourage carrying higher coverage limits. The lowest we recommend for our clients is $100,000 per person and $300,000 per accident for Bodily Injury, and $100,000 per accident for Property Damage, regardless of the state you reside in.
If you are found liable for bodily injury or property damage you cause while riding your motorcycle, you could be forced to pay out of pocket for any damages above your liability limits. In many states, your future wages can be garnished if you have an outstanding judgement against you. You can’t always prevent an accident, but you can be financially prepared by carrying higher coverage limits.
Read more: Why does Colorado have so many personal injury commercials?
5. Are there other coverages I need to have if I have a loan on my motorcycle?
If you have a loan on your motorcycle company the lender will most likely require that you have Comprehensive and Collision coverage on the bike.
6. Do I really need Uninsured Motorist (UM) coverage on a motorcycle policy?
Yes! It may not be required by law, but UM coverage is still very important to have. You could be the safest rider out there, but you can’t control the actions of others and you’re far more exposed to potential injury on a motorcycle that you are in a car.
If someone else hits you while you’re riding and they don’t have insurance, or don’t have enough coverage to pay for your injuries, you could be left with thousands of dollars of medical bills that you will have to pay out of pocket.
Uninsured Motorist coverage will help cover those bills if you are not at-fault for the loss and the other person is either uninsured or underinsured. You can purchase UM coverage up to the bodily injury liability limits on your policy.
Read more: Pay only for what you need? This is why you need Uninsured Motorist coverage.
7. Are my motorcycle accessories covered by insurance?
Accessories are generally only covered if you purchase a specific endorsement to add that coverage. Check with your agent to see if your accessories are covered!
8. If I make modifications to my motorcycle, are those costs covered if my bike is damaged?
Depending on the modifications, you may need to specify them on the policy to ensure your motorcycle is eligible for coverage. You will likely need to purchase additional coverage to ensure the costs associated with modifications are covered in the event of a loss.
9. Does wearing a helmet get me a discount on motorcycle insurance?
I don’t know of any carriers that offer a discount for wearing a helmet. Some states require you to wear a helmet while riding, but even if it isn’t required it’s always recommended to help prevent extreme injuries in the event of an accident!
10. Would taking a motorcycle safety course lower my premium?
Most insurance carriers do offer a discount if you have taken an approved motorcycle safety course. You will likely need to provide your certification as proof, and you may need to take the course every few years to keep the discount. The specific guidelines vary by carrier, so be sure to ask your agent what you need to do to get and keep the discount.
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