Updated: March 2017
Imagine this: You're riding home on a beautiful spring evening, you make a right turn and suddenly a car comes out of nowhere. . . or so it seems. You try to brake, but it's too late. Your front wheel smashes into the car's passenger door, and you're tossed off the bike. A couple of seconds later, you're on your feet and after a quick physical inventory, you know you're okay and you find out that the car's driver is, too.
However, both vehicles have incurred some damage. And as you go over the events leading up to the accident in your mind, you realize you were distracted and made a right on red without checking for traffic from your left. In other words, it's your fault.
Unfortunately, situations like the one above are fairly common. So what insurance coverage should you condsider?
When purchasing motorcycle insurance, it's important to know that minimum coverage requirements, as well as available options, vary from state to state. That's why you should always speak to your insurance agent before signing the dotted line on a policy. In the meantime, here's an overview of coverage options for at-fault accident claims.
- Bodily injury liability. If either your passenger or the other driver is injured in an accident you caused, you might be liable for the costs of medical treatment, lost wages and physical or psychological pain. Typically required by most states, bodily injury liability coverage helps protect you from having to cover these costs out of pocket.
- Property damage liability. More often than not, material damages are a natural consequence of an accident. If you damage somebody else's property such as their vehicle, residence or other structure, property damage liability coverage helps pay for the ensuing expenses and is typically required by most states.
- Collision. In the event your own vehicle is damaged in a collision, this type of optional coverage helps pay for repairs or replacement.
- Medical payments. If you or your passenger are injured, medical payment coverage kicks in. This type of optional coverage typically covers expenses you incur while operating the insured vehicle, such as hospital and ambulance costs, x-rays, surgical and dental costs.
- Personal injury protection. This type of optional coverage can help mitigate lost income as well as the costs of assistance with services you can't perform on your own anymore, childcare and in the worst-case scenario—a funeral.
- Optional coverage for custom parts. If you've added customized parts to your bike, this optional coverage takes care of some of the replacement costs.
- Towing and labor costs. Towing and labor costs add up, and if you're facing numerous other expenses, you can certainly use some additional help. This type of coverage helps cover the costs of getting your bike to a repair shop if it's rendered impossible or unsafe to ride.
Proper insurance can help put your mind at ease after a traumatic event, so take the time to research what you need before hitting the road.