Head Out On the Highway: Insuring Your Motorcycle
We all dream of having a job that we love. When you were growing up, maybe you wanted to be a chef but now you work as an engineer. Or maybe you’re a taxi driver even though you always wanted to be a marine biologist. For many people, day to day circumstances and the need to get by land them at their current jobs. Maybe it’s not bad but it may not be that great either. Some people are determined to make their work their passion and Claims Journal.com recently sat down with one of those people. Mark Hoedel, motorcycle racer and claims examiner managed to combine his love for motorcycles with his job.
Hoedel told Claims Journal that he started riding motorcycles at a young age and then began racing. Through a series of jobs, Hoedel became a claims examiner specifically for motorcycle claims. His experience on bikes of his own can give him insight when someone explains an accident. He told CJ: “I know just from listening to the description that the insured went into the corner too fast, they panicked, and one of our survival reactions is to tighten up or grab the brakes, and the motorcycle stands straight up, and goes off the road, and then there’s the subsequent damage to the motorcycle and the injury.” If Hoedel if your insurance adjustor, don’t try to pass of a fake story. Instead, make sure that you have the right amount of insurance to protect your motorcycle and you can be confident that when you file a claim, you will be covered.
Liability Insurance Tips
Just like with a regular car insurance policy, your state is going to require that you have certain minimum insurance limits on your motorcycle. This will be considered your basic liability insurance and will help cover any property damage or bodily injury that you cause to someone else on the road. It’s always a good idea to purchase more than the state requires because that likely won’t cover the majority of the costs if you get into an accident. At that point, you’re going to be left paying a big chunk of change. Look at your other insurance policies and see what their liability limits are. If your car and your home both have $300,000 liability coverage, put that on your motorcycle as well. It will be easy to keep up with but more importantly, provide you with better protection. Even minor medical bills can put someone on the streets today so it’s best to err on the side of caution.
Is Collision/Comprehensive Necessary?
If you want to save some money on your motorcycle insurance, you might consider forgoing collision and comprehensive insurance. It could be that your bike might not be worth much in actual cash value so any premiums you pay are going to cost you more than what any insurance company would be willing to dish out. There are some luxury bikes on the market today that can be valued upwards of $50,000. If you’re lucky enough to have such a nice bike, it’s probably a very good idea to purchase full coverage. This is going to cover most forms of damage whether you are at fault or not.
Those are going to be the two main areas you need to focus on when purchasing insurance but there are other important things you need to take into consideration. Ask your insurance agent if you need uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. It probably won’t be cripplingly expensive and could protect you if someone hits you and isn’t insured. If it’s available, make sure you carry the same limits as your liability policy.
And even after you’ve left the insurance office, safety should always be your number one concern. Your insurance policy can only do so much to protect you but if you drive recklessly, you may feel the pain in several ways. Just like a car claim, if you make too many on your motorcycle insurance, premiums will raise and they could possibly even be counted with your regular vehicle insurance! Enough claims will cancel any policy and you want to make sure you are always insured while you’re cruising.
Another safety method to utilize is the helmet, whether it’s required or not. Surprisingly, there are still some states that don’t require riders to wear helmets. Legality isn’t the most pressing issue here though, it’s head injuries. If you get into an accident without a helmet, you are put at an exponentially higher risk for brain trauma than if you were wearing a helmet. So put aside your helmet hair woes and do the responsible thing.
Living the Dream
Buying a motorcycle is a dream come true for many people. Not only do you get to feel the warm breeze against your face as your drive down the road but for many, there’s a certain camaraderie in the practice as well. Everyone deserves their passion, even if it doesn’t fit into your day job. The most important thing you can do to make sure you keep living the life you always wanted is to protect with the right amount of insurance then…. hit the road!