Having motorcycle insurance is critical for two reasons: it keeps you road legal and helps you avoid expensive fines, and it covers you in the event that you are ever injured in a crash.
Insurance should be especially important to motorcyclists, who are more likely to be severely injured in a crash. Even with protective gear including a helmet and padded clothing, motorcycle riders have less protection than drivers of cars. A collision with an automobile or a crash can result in extensive injuries, from road rash to broken bones, or worse.
The state of Alabama is unique in that a separate motorcycle license or motorcycle endorsement is not currently required for anyone 16 years of age or older with a regular driver’s license. Drivers can request to take the test to add an endorsement to their license.
However, motorcycle insurance is a requirement. Under Alabama’s Mandatory Liability Insurance Law, every motorist who drives a qualifying vehicle must have the following amounts of liability coverage:
- $25,000 for death or injury to one person
- $50,000 for death or injury to two or more people
- $25,000 for damage or destruction of property
It’s important to note that motorcycle insurance is not the same as car insurance. Many insurance companies’ car insurance policies will not cover your damages if you are involved in an accident on a motorcycle. If you ride under the assumption that your car insurance is sufficient, you may be riding without insurance, which is both illegal and dangerous.
Most major insurance companies offer separate motorcycle insurance or a motorcycle insurance rider that can be added to an existing car insurance policy.
The type of insurance coverage that you may purchase can include:
- Liability coverage: This mandatory coverage covers any damage you cause to people or property in an accident that was your fault.
- Collision coverage: This covers damage to your motorcycle, even if the damage was your fault.
- Comprehensive coverage: This covers damage to your motorcycle that was caused by non-accident-related incidents, such as theft, fire, and vandalism.
- Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage: This coverage covers you in the event that you are involved in an accident with someone who either has no insurance or who does not have enough insurance to cover your damages
As a motorcyclist, you will likely have unique needs for your insurance. If you have custom parts, for example, you will want to make sure that they are covered by insurance if they are damaged. In addition, because motorcyclists are more likely to be the injured party in a collision, you may want to consider medical payments coverage. This coverage will pay for your medical expenses and the medical expenses of your passenger.
If you have a question about motorcycle insurance, or if you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, please feel free to call the experienced Huntsville, Alabama, motorcycle accident lawyers at Martinson & Beason, P.C. to get your questions answered.