Updated: March 2017
When it comes to protecting themselves, motorcyclists have a lot of options—from the protective gear they put on before hitting the road to the motorcycle insurance policies they purchase. One way to protect yourself when you're on your motorcycle is to consider purchasing medical payments coverage or personal injury protection (PIP), where available.
Medical payments coverage can help pay for medical costs if you or your passenger are injured in a motorcycle accident. Motorcycle medical payments coverage typically covers expenses such as:
- Health insurance deductibles
- Dental expenses
- Home care
Medical payments coverage typically does not cover expenses related to injuries to others from an accident you cause unless they are riding on your motorcycle with you at the time. Your motorcycle policy's bodily injury liability coverage typically protects you against liability for injuries to people other than your passengers from an accident you cause.
One thing you may want to consider if you're thinking about buying a motorcycle insurance policy with medical payments coverage is the limit, or the maximum amount of money your insurance company will pay toward costs covered by this type of protection. Purchasing coverage with higher limits may cause your premiums to increase, but you may want to consider whether you would be able to afford medical costs in the event that you're injured in a motorcycle accident. Additionally, in some states, because motorcycle medical payments coverage may begin to pay only after your primary health insurance coverage limits are exhausted, the higher premiums associated with raising your medical payments coverage limits may not be as high.
Personal injury protection may be available to drivers in states with no-fault insurance laws, meaning that a driver's insurance provider covers damages incurred to the insured in an accident, regardless of who is at fault. PIP typically covers medical and other associated costs after a motorcycle accident for you as the rider, your passenger. Covered expenses may include:
- Doctor bills
- Lost wages
- Hospital stays
- Funeral expenses
PIP varies by state and typically will pay lost wages where medical payments coverage may not. Consider checking your specific policy to understand your specific coverage. No matter how much or how little coverage your state laws require, ensure you have as much insurance as you need. This may include medical payments coverage or, if available in your state, PIP.
Many insurance carriers offer personal injury protection and medical payments coverage for motorcyclists. Contact your agent or insurer for more information about your coverage and your rate options.