Motorcycle Insurance Explained by a Baltimore County Motorcycle Accident Attorney
Are you purchasing a motorcycle? If so, an important step when purchasing a motorcycle is securing motorcycle insurance. Maryland requires each motorcyclist to carry property damage and liability insurance in the same minimum policy limits that it does for other vehicles.
Currently, you must purchase property damage insurance in the minimum amount of $15,000 per accident. In addition, you must also carry a minimum of $30,000 in bodily injury insurance for one person ($60,000 for injury to two or more people per accident). Motorcyclists are not required to carry personal injury protection (PIP) insurance even though PIP insurance is required for other vehicles. Most insurance companies do not offer PIP insurance for motorcyclists.
However, does this insurance provide adequate coverage for motorcyclists?
Liability Insurance Does Not Protect You!
If you are involved in an accident, your liability insurance protects other drivers and individuals injured in the accident, if you are responsible for causing the accident. In other words, if you were at fault for the collision, your insurance company pays the medical costs, property damage, and other losses suffered by someone injured in the accident. Your liability insurance does not pay for any costs you sustain because of the accident.
PIP insurance is a “no-fault” insurance policy. Policyholders can file a claim under their PIP coverage even if they caused the crash. Therefore, other drivers in Maryland can file a claim with their insurance provider to pay for their medical bills and up to 80 percent of their lost income even if they were at fault for the crash. Motorcyclists do not have this important insurance coverage because the law allows insurance companies to deny PIP coverage for motorcyclists. It may not be fair, but it is the law in Maryland.
A motorcyclist in Maryland can help protect against the costs of a motorcycle crash by purchasing health insurance to cover medical costs for motorcycle accident injuries. Disability insurance is another form of protection a rider can purchase to assist if he or she cannot work after a crash. When purchasing insurance coverage, a motorcyclist should ensure that the policy does not exclude injuries, losses, or costs arising from a motorcycle accident.
Motorcyclists should also remember that property damage insurance does not pay to repair or replace their motorcycle. A rider should carry comprehensive and collision coverage. Collision coverage pays for the repairs to your motorcycle or the replacement of your motorcycle if it is damaged in an accident that is your fault. Comprehensive coverage pays for damages caused by a non-collision incident such as theft, falling objects, fire, or severe weather. You have worked hard to achieve your dream of owning a motorcycle. Protect your investment with adequate insurance coverage.
Uninsured and Underinsured Insurance Coverage for Motorcyclists
Another important type of insurance all motorcyclists should carry is uninsured motorist insurance (UM) and underinsured motorist insurance (UIM).
If you are injured in a motorcycle crash that is not your fault, you can file a claim against the other driver’s liability insurance coverage for your medical bills, property damage, loss of income, and other damages. However, the amount of compensation you may receive can be limited by the other party’s liability insurance coverage. As discussed above, the minimum insurance requirements in Maryland are $15,000 for property damage and $30,000 for bodily injury.
In a motorcycle crash, your damages can quickly exceed the minimum policy limits. Unfortunately, many drivers carry minimum liability coverage. Therefore, you may only receive $15,000 for your motorcycle even though it is worth double or triple that amount. Furthermore, your medical bills, lost wages, and other damages could total hundreds of thousands of dollars, but if the other driver has minimum liability coverage, you may only receive $30,000.
With underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage, you can protect yourself against driver’s who have limited coverage. If your damages in an accident that was not your fault exceed the at-fault party’s insurance coverage, you can file a claim against your UIM policy. Your insurance company then pays the difference between what the other driver’s insurance paid for your claim and the total value of your claim.
If the other driver was uninsured, your uninsured motorist (UM) policy covers the total value of your claim up to your policy limits. The cost of UM and UIM coverage is typically inexpensive compared to the potential value it can provide if another driver causes the motorcycle accident.
Get Help with Your Injury Claim from a Parkville Motorcycle Accident Attorney
The accident lawyers of Pinder Plotkin, LLC are dedicated to helping motorcyclists receive the money they deserve when another driver or party causes an accident. We understand the challenges faced by motorcyclists when fighting insurance companies and defense attorneys.
Call 410-661-9440 or contact us online for a FREE consultation with a Baltimore County motorcycle accident attorney.