Daytona Bike week is around the corner. Its an exciting time for bikers coming into the area. Most will leave with great memories. Experience tells us some will leave with most of their body parts, and some will not leave at all. Some will lose friends and have damages to their motorcycles. NHTSA estimates the chances of a fatality on a motorcycle are 30 times higher than in a car. I recall one biker who had suffered a traumatic castration. You should have seen the look on his face when he learned there was only $10,000 of insurance.
Out of curiosity I called a Florida agent who offers biker insurance through six major carriers. Based on what she said, I think there is a knowledge gap about UM (Uninsured or underinsured motorists) coverage. This whole area of UM and rejections was discussed in another Blog.
Here are some of the highlights of what I found out:
- The agent could not explain the legal differences between UM and HMO/Group coverage
- Bikers think they can skip getting UM when they have a major medical or HMO policy to cover their medical bills
If the agent doesn’t know, how is a Biker supposed to make an informed decision to buy the UM or not?
What is the big deal: Here is an example to illustrate the difference between UM and group coverage. Assume a car or another Biker runs into you or your passenger and there are serious injuries as follows:
- loss of leg and resulting quality of life for the rest of your life
- medical and hospital bills
- pain and suffering for life
- loss of income for life
UM pays for all the above.
Your HMO/major medical policy only pays for item #2,
If the at fault driver had no coverage he may lose his license, and owe you money he can’t pay.
I recommend every Biker buy as much UM coverage as they can afford. You never can tell when a driver without insurance will run into you. When almost 50% of the motorists are driving without liability insurance, chances are great you will need every drop of insurance.