What Kind of Coverage Do I Need on My Motorcycle Policy if I live in Detroit?
Purchasing a motorcycle is a major decision. There are so many different models and types, each with its own personality, fit, and style. But along with purchasing the bike, you also have to think about motorcycle insurance and the different Michigan motorcycle insurance requirements and coverage options available under Michigan law.
An experienced and knowledgeable Detroit Michigan motorcycle accident lawyer can help answer your motorcycle insurance and benefits coverage questions.
This article describes the various motorcycle insurance coverages, what to look out for, and what to consider when purchasing motorcycle insurance.
Liability coverage covers the motorcyclist or rider when they are at fault for causing a crash. Under Michigan law, a motorcyclist must purchase at least the minimum amount of liability coverage. The minimum amount of coverage is now $50,000 per person and $100,000 per accident. This increased in 2020 from the standard $20,000/$40,000 minimum policies that existed for decades.
However, it is advisable to purchase much more than the minimum amount as an injured party can now go after a negligent motorcyclist for not only pain and suffering, but in some situations past and future medical expenses. Additional bodily injury coverage beyond the minimum does cost more money, but it can protect against a horrible situation. It is recommended that any motorcyclist purchase at least $250,000 in bodily injury coverage.
Property Damage Coverage:
The minimum amount of property coverage under Michigan law is $10,000. This coverage protects a negligent motorcyclist from property damage he or she may cause in a crash.
Under Michigan law, a motorcycle insurance company in Detroit must offer to sell medical coverage. Medical benefits coverage is not mandatory. Typically, medical coverage is sold in $5,000 increments. Medical coverage will protect you if you are injured while operating a motorcycle and incur medical bills from a crash.
As you can imagine, a hospital stay for even one night can cost thousands and thousands of dollars, with surgeries and rehabilitation dramatically increasing the cost. Beaumont Hospital or McLaren Hospital can charge more than $10,000 for a single night.
Purchasing medical coverage can help defray the costs of injuries following a bad motorcycle wreck, whether it happens in Detroit, Lansing, Traverse City, or anywhere in between.
Is Medical Coverage the same as the No-Fault Coverage?
No. Because a motorcycle is not considered a “motor vehicle”, under the law a person is not required to purchase no-fault medical coverage when buying motorcycle insurance. No-fault insurance is only required for motor vehicles, such as a car or truck.
However, because of the horrible injuries that can come out of a motorcycle accident, again we encourage you to purchase ample medical coverage when purchasing motorcycle insurance.
Collision and Comprehensive Coverage:
In Detroit and throughout Michigan, you are obligated to purchase your own insurance to protect your bike from damage that occurs as a result of a crash. Collision coverage pays for bike repairs as a result of an accident. For example, if your bike is hit by a car while riding on the highway, your own insurance company must pay to fix and repair the motorcycle after the deductible is paid.
But this only occurs if you purchase collision coverage. It is not mandatory.
Comprehensive coverage pays for damage to a motorcycle that is not from a collision. Typical examples of comprehensive coverage include vandalism, falling objects, or theft. For example, if your bike is damaged due to a bad storm, comprehensive coverage will pay to repair the motorcycle. However, comprehensive coverage does not pay for normal wear and tear.
Uninsured or Underinsured Motor Vehicle Coverage:
Uninsured motorcycle insurance in Detroit and Michigan is extremely important. Frankly, it is the one type of coverage I believe motorcycle operators and their passengers don’t purchase enough. Filing to have uninsured coverage leaves injured individuals in horrible situations following a bad motorcycle wreck.
If you are involved in a Michigan uninsured motorcycle accident, as long as you have uninsured coverage, it will pay for the pain and suffering resulting from injuries caused by an uninsured car, truck or motorcycle. At least 25% of vehicles in Michigan are not insured, and in some cities such as Detroit, the number is much higher. Having uninsured coverage allows a person injured while riding their motorcycle to still obtain money damages for their pain and suffering when an uninsured motorist causes the collision.
Underinsured coverage is similar to uninsured coverage, except it covers an accident caused by underinsured motorists. For example, say you are sitting on your motorcycle at a red light and you are rear-ended by a pick-up truck. The pick-up truck does have liability insurance, but only the $50,000 minimum. If you purchased $250,000 in underinsured coverage, and your injuries are worth the full policy amount, you can collect an additional $200,000 in pain and suffering compensation for your injuries.
Further, even if you have uninsured motorist coverage in Detroit on your personal car, usually this coverage will not cover you if you are injured on a motorcycle. In fact, most car insurance policies prohibit the use of uninsured motorist coverage for motorcycle accidents.
Motorcycle insurance, like all insurance, is not cheap. But it is important to protect yourself and your family. And due to the increased dangers of riding a motorcycle, having adequate insurance is very important.
Contract your insurance agent about the different types of coverages available when your bike renewal comes up or before your purchase a brand new motorcycle.
Or give the Detroit Michigan motorcycle accident lawyers at the Lee Steinberg Law Firm a call at 1-800-LEE-FREE (1-800-533-3733). The consultation is always free, and we never charge a cent until we win your case.