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     Amid the excitement of getting your M endorsement and purchasing your first motorcycle, do not neglect the important step of getting insured. Not only will insurance protect you financially in the unfortunate event of an accident but it's also the law.
     When researching your first bike, do not forget to consider the cost of insurance. While bare bones liability insurance on a standard motorcycle can be quite affordable, buying coverage on high performance motorbikes like the Suzuki Hayabusa can cost thousands of dollars. Obviously, it isn't a wise move to buy a motorcycle you can't afford to insure. A number of factors can influence the cost of motorcycle insurance. Motorcycles with high horsepower tend to have higher insurance costs whether it is the result of a large engine, turbocharger or other power booster. The make and style of bike contributes to the cost of motorcycle insurance as well. Cruisers, Standard motorcycles and dual sport bikes tend to be cheaper to insure than sport bikes and high performance machines. Brands such as Harley-Davidson and BMW tend to command a premium price when it comes to motorcycle insurance. A large factor in determining the cost of insuring your motorcycle is the type of coverage you opt to purchase. Understanding the terms and jargon can be a little overwhelming at first but is important in making wise decisions concerning your insurance. Note: insurance options vary from state to state and from provider to provider. The information provided here is to be used simply as a guide. All coverage details should be outlined by your particular policy.

     Bodily Injury & Property Damage Liability: Motorcycle liability insurance covers the cost of any damage you do to other persons or property. It is a legal requirement to carry liability insurance while other aspects of coverage are optional. When deciding between two insurance packages, it is often wise to take the one with higher liability coverage since bills will mount quickly if personal injuries are sustained because of an accident. Coverage is noted as three numbers formatted as: bodily injury per person/bodily injury per accident/property damage.

    If the coverage you purchase has liability coverage of 15/30/10 then
  • A maximum of $15,000 will be paid per individual to cover bodily injury expenses
  • A maximum of $30,000 will be paid per accident to cover bodily injury expenses
  • A maximum of $10,000 will be paid per accident to cover property damage

     Comprehensive and Collision Coverage: Comprehensive and collision motorcycle insurance covers the costs associated with repairing or replacing your motorcycle if it is damaged or stolen. This insurance will cover your bike regardless of who is at fault and is usually not required by law since no one else will suffer financially for harm that comes to your bike. Collision coverage pays for damage sustained when your motorcycle collides with something. Comprehensive motorcycle coverage covers repair costs when damage is sustained in other ways including theft, vandalism or fire. Make sure you check with your insurance agent to find out if there are any exceptions or gaps in coverage. There really is no point in carrying comprehensive or collision coverage beyond the value of your motorcycle.

     Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage: This component of motorcycle insurance will cover expenses you incur when the other party is at fault but does not have insurance to cover pay your expenses or your expenses exceed the limits of their insurance. Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist insurance will usually pay for vehicle damage, medical treatment, and can even extend to cover wages lost due to accident related injuries.

     Medical Payment Coverage: As the title implies, this component of motorcycle insurance provides coverage for medical treatment of accident related injuries. While this coverage can be used regardless of fault, there is usually a time limit and dollar amount limit. Many riders opt not to carry this type of coverage because they feel their regular health insurance will cover potential injuries. It is important to research this coverage before deciding on a policy since, in certain states, Medical Payment coverage will only begin to pay out once other medical insurance coverage is exhausted.

     Custom Parts and Equipment Coverage: This motorcycle insurance option is designed to cover parts on your bike that are not stock OEM parts. Usually, some coverage of custom parts is included in standard coverage (often up to $1000). If you have added parts to your bike beyond that, it can be a wise choice to include this coverage. There is usually a ceiling on the amount of aftermarket part coverage you can purchase. This insurance component can extend to just about anything on the bike that didn’t come directly from the manufacturer including exhausts, brakes, jetting kits and sometimes will go as far as to cover custom paint jobs and collision damage to helmets. To minimize potential hassles in filing claims against this part of your insurance policy, it is wise to keep photographs on file of aftermarket parts as proof in the event of motorcycle theft or damage.

     Roadside Assistance: Getting stuck on the side of the road is never pleasant in any vehicle but when a motorcycle is involved it can be much more hazardous. Motorcycles do not offer any shelter from the elements or from passing vehicles. Roadside assistance usually provides 24/7 towing or roadside repair any time the vehicle is disabled. Many riders prefer to rely on third party roadside assistance providers, notably AAA, instead of adding it to their insurance policy.


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