Is Florida motorcycle insurance coverage really necessary?

by Apr 7, 2021Motorcycle Accident

Is Florida motorcycle insurance coverage really necessary?

by Apr 7, 2021Motorcycle Accident

Is Florida motorcycle insurance coverage really necessary?
Is Florida motorcycle insurance coverage really necessary?

When you ride a motorcycle, you don’t enjoy the protection afforded by a car. You lack the framing, body, and airbags that shield you from the impact of a collision. There is no seatbelt to restrain your forward movement or ejection from the seat.

Given the amplified risks of riding a motorcycle, it is necessary that you have Florida motorcycle insurance coverage. Below we explain the types of coverage that can help you when you take those two-wheeled trips. You’ll learn how a Florida motorcycle accident lawyer can help you get compensation especially if you get the right insurance.

Motorcycle Accidents Disproportionately Cause Deaths

With the exposure you have to objects and the elements as a motorcyclist, the magnified risk of death or serious injury should not be shocking. Despite representing only three percent of registered vehicles and barely over half a percent of miles driven, one in every seven traffic deaths involved a motorcycle. Approximately 17 percent of those killed in motor vehicle accidents were motorcycle drivers or riders.

Motorcycle Accidents Also Cause Serious Injuries

Even when not fatal, motorcycle accidents often result in substantial, life-altering injuries. Riders of motorcycles can break multiple bones, become paralyzed, and suffer severe scars. Impacts of the head on the ground or objects can cause motorcycle riders to encounter traumatic brain injuries. The potential aftermath of the trauma includes memory problems, paralysis, internal bleeding in the brain, loss of hearing or vision, and depression.

Traumatic brain injuries and fractures leave victims unable to work, care for themselves and others and participate in the daily activities of life. The type of insurance you obtain on your motorcycle should take into account the possibilities of these significant injuries. When you contact a Florida motorcycle accident lawyer, you will get assistance in pursuing claims against insurance companies that may cover your damages.

Liability Insurance is Required For Your Motorcycle

Whether you have a motorcycle or a car, you must carry liability insurance. This form of coverage pays for a judgment or settlement in favor of a person injured due to another’s carelessness. As part of liability coverage, you also have a lawyer to defend you against claims and suits.

As a motorcycle rider, you could be at fault for running red lights or stop signs and unsafe movements. These actions may cause other drivers to have to suddenly stop their vehicles or collide with your motorcycle or other motorists. You might injure pedestrians when you run them over.

For motorcycle liability policies, the minimum coverages consist of bodily liability coverage of $10,000 per person and $20,000 per accident. Motor vehicle liability policies must afford at least $10,000 in property damage liability and $10,000 for medical payments coverage. As you’ll read later on, these figures differ from the liability coverage required of most of your four-wheel counterparts on the road.

No-Fault Insurance does Not apply to Motorcycles

Florida is a no-fault insurance state for drivers of cars. If you are injured while driving a car or truck, your Personal Injury Protection (PIP) policy on the vehicle will pay a percentage of your medical bills and lost wages.

You get the benefits regardless of your fault or someone else’s in causing the crash. Car and truck owners must carry Personal Injury Protection insurance on the vehicles. No-fault provisions do not provide coverage to Florida motorcyclists.

You must seek specific motorcycle insurance coverage from your insurance carrier. This would include, stacking uninsured motorist insurance coverage (UM), so be sure that this is clearly explained to you by your insurance agent.

Recovery Against the Other Driver’s Insurance

Without no-fault coverage on your motorcycle, you must pursue the at-fault motorist to recover lost wages and medical expenses. As a general rule, car and truck owners in Florida do not have to carry bodily injury liability coverage.

The liability insurance requirements for these vehicle owners are limited to $10,000 for property damage. That goes along with the $10,000 in Personal Injury Property coverage. So be aware that if you do not have uninsured or underinsured coverage on your personal insurance policy, so are going to be 100% reliant upon the at-fault driver to provide financial compensation.

Since there is no requirement in Florida for liability insurance coverage, an injured person is truly at the mercy of the at-fault driver’s insurance coverage.

Getting Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist Coverage

Chances are that the driver who collides with you or your loved one does not have or is not required to have bodily injury coverage. To guard against such a scenario, your Florida motorcycle insurance coverage should include uninsured or underinsured coverage.

As its name suggests, uninsured or underinsured coverage compensates you for injuries and other damages for which the at-fault driver’s liability coverage does not pay.

Uninsured motorist is the only insurance coverage that one can purchase that will provide direct financial compensation due to injuries sustained because of another driver’s fault. For instance, suppose you suffered $250,000 in medical bills, lost wages, property damage, mental anguish and pain, and suffering.

On the assumption you have no other source of compensation, uninsured motorist coverage would afford you $250,000. If the careless motorist carried $100,000 in bodily injury coverage and your bodily injury damages totaled $200,000, the UM coverage pays you $100,000.

Uninsured and underinsured coverage affords the resources needed to compensate you for the serious pain, suffering, disability, trauma, and other major impacts that a motorcycle crash can create. When you seek benefits under UM/UIM, you must show that the driver that collided with your motorcycle acted negligently. In effect, you must sue your own insurance company for another’s carelessness. This puts your insurance company in the position of opposing you in a lawsuit.

Proving Fault

A Florida motorcycle accident lawyer understands the unique circumstances presented in crashes involving motorcycles. To be sure, speeding, running red lights or stop lights, impaired driving, and use of smartphones often appear as culprits in these crashes as with other types.

The significant disparity in size between cars or trucks and the motorcycle exacerbates these instances of driver carelessness. Often, the car or truck driver may not even see the motorcycle while turning in front of the motorcycle or misjudge the distance needed to clear the motorcycle. Approximately 40 percent of crashes involving motorcycles occur due to left-turning vehicles.

Proving how the crash happened starts with the crash report. The investigating or attending officer includes a diagram to show the positions of the motorcycle and car before, at, and after impact. Photographs capture the collision points and the damage to the motorcycle and the car or truck involved.

Contact a Florida motorcycle accident lawyer today if you or a loved one have been hurt in a motorcycle crash.

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