Find the requirements for your state. The two most popular public insurance programs are Medicaid and Medicare. Each of these plans is different and is geared to different populations.
- Medicaid. Historically, Medicaid has been a public insurance plan for certain groups of people, such as the disabled who do not work and low-income people with dependent children. With the passage of the ACA, states were given the option of expanding Medicaid to cover all people with incomes up to 138% of the federal poverty level, regardless of whether they have a disability or children. Not every state, however, has chosen to expand its Medicaid program. You should check with your state’s Department of Human Services.
- Medicare. Medicare is health insurance available for people who have paid into the Medicare system through payroll taxes. You will qualify for Medicare if you are age 65 or older. Generally, you must work for at least 10 years, paying into the system during that time.
Apply for public health insurance. If your state expanded Medicaid and you meet the income eligibility limits, then your name will be forwarded to your state’s Medicaid office when you apply for health insurance on the ACA exchanges. To apply for Medicare, you can do the following:
- Go through this Checklist to make sure that you have all the information that you will need.
- Apply online. It takes 10 minutes to apply online. Visit this website and answer the questions when prompted.
Understand the structure of Medicare. Medicare has many different parts, some of which you must pay a premium for and others for which you don’t. Additionally, you may need to shop for policies to supplement Medicaid.
- Medicare Part A generally covers hospital or nursing-facility care, hospice, and home health care. There is no premium.
- Medicare Part B covers medically necessary services that diagnose or treat a medical condition and preventive services. Most people have to pay a monthly premium, which averages around $100.
- Prescription Drug coverage. If you want prescription drug coverage under Medicare, then you must purchase a separate plan. You can do so either through a private insurer or a Medicare-approved private company.
Research prescription drug plans. If you want to purchase a prescription drug policy, then you will need to research different plans. Plans tend to differ according to the medications they provide; not all prescription plans will pay for any prescription. Accordingly, you should gather your medications and write them all down. Then, you will search for a prescription drug plan that covers these drugs.
- To find a prescription drug plan, you can visit the Medicare Plan Finder, by clicking here. You will be prompted to enter your zip code.
- You must then answer a variety of questions about the Medicare coverage you currently have, including any prescription plan. Then you will be prompted to enter in a list of all of your drugs.
Search for supplemental insurance. If you have a large number of medical expenses, then Medicare alone can leave you with substantial out-of-pocket costs. Therefore, Medicare allows you to purchase a supplemental insurance plan. These plans can help reduce copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles. In order to buy a supplemental insurance plan (also called a “Medigap” policy), you must also have Medicare Parts A and B.
- To find a supplemental policy, visit this website. You must enter your zip code, your health status (excellent, good, poor), and whether you have a Medigap policy currently.
- You will then be able to browse a list of policies: Medigap Policy A, Medigap Policy B, etc. The information includes the monthly premium range, estimated annual cost, and benefits offered.
- You can then click on “View companies” to see a list of companies offering each type of policy. You will then be provided phone numbers and websites for the companies so that you can contact them.
Search for insurance. If you cannot get insurance through an employer, then you may want to search for insurance plans on the open market. You can find private insurance plans in the following ways:
- By contacting insurance providers directly. In many areas, there are only a few health insurance plans available. Ask nearby hospitals and clinics which types of insurance they accept and contact those companies.
- Through an insurance agent. Look for insurance agents in your area that represent a number of insurance companies rather than just one.
- With comparison sites on the Internet. Websites such as eHealthInsurance and NetQuote allow you to comparison shop. These sites take your information and pull up all of the health insurance plans available in your area.
Compare costs. There are several different elements that make up the total cost of health care. When comparing health insurance plans, you should pay attention to each.
- Premiums. A premium is simply the monthly payment made to the insurance company to keep the policy active.
- Coinsurance. Coinsurance is the amount that you pay for any service (in addition to the deductible). A more natural way to think of it is the amount of any medical bill that your insurance company will pay. For example, many plans have 80/20 coinsurance rates. This means that the company will pick up 80% of the costs after your deductible has been met.
- Deductibles. A deductible is the out-of-pocket charge that you must pay before some other part of the health insurance will kick in. Typically, deductibles must be met before the insurance company pays coinsurance. Deductibles may not apply to all services.
- Co-pay. A co-pay is a fixed flat fee that a consumer pays when receiving a medical service. For example, you may have to pay $25 for each doctor’s visit. The amount may vary depending on the service.
Assess your health care needs. To find a cost-effective plan, you should consider your health care needs. Families will have different needs compared to single individuals, and healthy young people can anticipate needing a different level of service than elderly people. To assess what kind of plan you need, consider the following:
- The number of visits you make in a year to the doctor or specialist.
- Whether you have had hospital stays or anticipate hospital stays in the future.
- If anyone in the family has a chronic illness.
- Whether the plan covers your doctors.
- Whether you or family members have jobs or hobbies that are risky.
- Whether you want brand name prescription drugs or generics.
Check if “riders” are available. To increase coverage on an individual plan, see if the insurance company offers riders, which will provide coverage for a specific situation at an increased cost.
- For example, if you were enrolled in an individual plan that does not provide dental care, then you might be able to get a rider for a root canal for an extra fee each month.
Apply. After deciding which hospitals near you accept which carriers, choose a health insurance plan that works for you. Nowadays, the most efficient and easy way to sign up is online. In your online application, you may need to submit information pertaining to:
- Your previous insurance plan
- Your medical history, including any prescriptions or medications you may take
- Any previous plans or past doctors
Find out if you can join your parents’ insurance plan. Under the Affordable Care Act, a child under the age of 26 may join their parent’s health insurance plan if that plan covers children. You may join your parents’ plan even if you are:
- Not living with your parents
- Enrolled in school
- Financially independent
- Eligible to enroll in an employer’s plan
- Consider your age and driving record. Any prior accidents that are on your current record will count against you even though you are after motorcycle insurance. Insurance rates will also be higher if you haven’t had motorcycle insurance before. Once you’ve become a more experienced rider and keep your record clean, your rates will begin to decrease over time.
- Think about the kind of motorcycle you have. Faster motorcycles or sport bikes are going to be more costly when it comes to insurance, as will new models. The more basic, older models will be cheaper to insure.
- Determine how close you live to your employer and whether you live in a high crime area. If you can keep the mileage down, you could receive extra discounts on your motorcycle insurance policy. If you live or work in a high crime area, your rates could be increased.
- Do not over insure. If something were to happen to the bike, you’re only going to get the market value, so there’s no need to pay extra insurance to have coverage that is unnecessary.
- Keep your motorcycle garaged. You may receive an extra discount with some companies if the motorcycle is kept in a garage at night or when parked.
- Shop around for the cheapest motorcycle insurance. Contact the big companies as well as smaller, local companies. Even though the big companies offer free quotes online that are easy to access, they may not have the best prices and you could end up paying more than you need to for motorcycle insurance. Pick up the phone or visit local insurance companies to get a motorcycle insurance quote.
- States often describe liability in terms of X/Y/Z, with x = bodily injury/person, y = bodily injury/accident, and z = property damage/accident, with the units equaling thousands of dollars. For example, the California minimum for private passenger cars is 15/30/5 or $15,000, $30,000 and $5,000, whereas the Florida minimum is 10/20/10. Liability insurance cost depends on the state’s liability requirements, your vehicle type, your age and your driving record. Most insurance companies provide older, experienced drivers with the best insurance rates. Thus, a 58-year old driver with an impeccable driving record will receive cheaper liability insurance than a 17-year-old who recently received a license.
- You must shop around to find cheap car insurance. Call insurance companies or complete applications online to determine whether coverage is available in your state and compare offers. Even if you like your insurance company, you can save money by exploring other rates instead of automatically paying your car insurance renewal. Companies that provide online quotes include fredloya.com, esurance.com, geico.com, allstate.com, progressive.com, farmers.com, rodneydyoung.com, safeco.com, and safeauto.com. Also search for local insurance companies because many that offer cheap rates are regional, such as Fred Loya, which covers California, Colorado, New Mexico, and Texas.
- When requesting insurance quotes, ask about discounts based on professional affiliations and memberships. Students might be able to get cheaper rates because of a strong academic record. Drivers who have recently completed defensive driving also might be eligible for cheaper rates. Liability insurance will not cover damages to your vehicle. For instance, if your car is damaged in the collision with JD, your liability insurance company will not pay to repair your vehicle. Plus, if you are at fault, then JD’s insurance company will not pay to repair your vehicle. Additional coverage, such as collision, comprehensive and uninsured/underinsured differs from liability insurance and will cost more.
- Inquire about the COBRA (Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act), which allows the previous employer to continue the health coverage of a laid off employee. This law also provides coverage to the dependents of a laid off employee.
- Find out if your company qualifies for COBRA. Usually, a company needs to have an employee size of 18 or more in order to extend the COBRA benefits to its laid off employees.
- Inform your company or previous employer that you would like to take advantage of COBRA and want to continue with the health insurance coverage offered by them. You will have to complete the necessary forms and may still have to pay separately every month in order to stay covered.
- Visit the local unemployment office to learn more about COBRA and the extent of health benefits you are able to receive during the period of unemployment.
- Learn more about the extent of the coverage. It is possible to get an extended coverage up to 18 months from the date of being laid off. Under the provisions of COBRA, one can remain unemployed or join another company while continuing to be part of the group insurance policy of the company from which they were laid off.
- Call your nearest insurance agent and inquire about getting a policy in if you are laid off and your employer does not qualify under COBRA .
Ensuring you and your family will be taken care of in the event of injury or illness is important to everyone. However, finding the right provider who ticks all the boxes isn’t always as easy as it seems. If you are searching for a new health insurance provider, here are some items to keep in mind as you search.
Get the Most for Your Dollar
When shopping for a health insurance package, it can be easy to become overwhelmed with additional benefits offered, despite there not being a real case for you to ever claim on them. These extras can often come at the cost of a reduction in payments for included service you may need. Be sure that every dollar you spend for your health insurance goes towards maximizing the level of coverage you will rely on and not towards others you won’t.
Younger people are the main demographic targeted by health insurers with the offer of preventative services. This is a way for them to minimize their liabilities as their customer base ages. For example, if you live in Chicago and are interested in benefiting from Yoga classes as a preventative measure, local health insurers may offer a package which includes subsidies towards these which could be appealing. The key to this point is to choose wisely and take advantage of the inclusions. If you don’t, you are wasting your money.
The Ability to Change
Not all health insurance packages are created equal and as your health needs change, so too can your insurance needs. Before signing up to a package, speak with providers about the ability to adjust your package so that your coverage remains suitable as your needs change. As you get older, packages which include preventative services such as the one mentioned above may not be applicable. Make sure that you can change to a plan which offers more reactive services as you require them.
When choosing a health insurer and a health insurance plan, it’s important to remember that the decision is yours. Don’t feel pressured into signing up for any package which you don’t feel will provide the level of coverage you need.
First time home buyers have a lot to consider. They have probably been saving money for months or even years, waiting for the perfect opportunity to invest in their first home. Although not every home buying experience will be the same, there are a few common problems people face when purchasing their first home.
One problem is getting approved for a mortgage or a home loan. This can be confusing for a lot of people, especially younger individuals with little knowledge about financial topics and issues. The best thing to do is to talk with loan officers and trusted financial advisors that can give you the guidance and information you need.
Another problem first time buyers face is staying under budget. Many times the budget is too low to find exactly what they are looking for so they extend their budget to a number that is not as comfortable or achievable and will affect them in the long run. There are also many elements of being a homeowner that come with a cost and people often overlook those when buying a house. One of the greatest costs of home ownership is routine maintenance. Maintenance, although expensive, is necessary and must be done in order to keep your home safe and secure. This Raleigh Window Professional explains that common maintenance issues are roof replacement, window replacement, siding replacement, and interior issues such as plumbing and electrical maintenance.
Before purchasing a home, consider all of the extra costs and concerns that you may encounter during the process. Consult with your financial advisor and real estate agent to find the home that best suits your needs and desires.
There are various professionals involved in the day-to-day operation of insurance companies. The following is a simple description of the roles of these professionals:
The actuary is the professional who determines how much the insurance company charges its customers for insurance. Actuaries usually have a college degree in statistics or mathematics since their work involves juggling many numbers. They analyze statistical data affecting car insurance such as accident and mortality rates to determine the cost of cheap auto insurance. They also forecast risk and liability through numbers. Actuaries go through a lot of training and tests after college in order to be able to do what they do.
Auditors are very important to every company. They may operate on a freelance basis and audit companies on a schedule or employed as in-house auditors. Auditors are the people that check the business accounts to determine the financial status of the insurance company. They also create financial reports to show whether or not the company is operating legally, paying taxes and paying employees and so on.
In case of an accident or personal injury, the auto insurance company will assign an adjuster to investigate the case. This is the individual who examines the details around the vehicle damage or personal injury to determine whether the insurance company is liable and to what extent. They check the personal injury reports, the property loss and damage and come up with a settlement for the claimant. During these investigations, the adjuster consults other individuals such as witnesses, medical professionals, insurance agents and the claimant as well.
The claims representative is the person that helps the claimant gets the money the need. Claim representatives are more like customer service representatives since their role is to receive and share information with the insurance company customer in order to help them get their claim. They are the ones to follow up with the company to ensure that payments and settlements have been made.
The insurance underwriter determines whether an individual’s application for insurance should be accepted. They help the insurance company decide what to insure. They have to evaluate the degree of risk in order to determine whether the application is worth it. Underwriters will probably decide not to insure old vehicles that are dented or no longer working properly. They also work with the actuary to determine how much one should pay for insurance.
The insurance agent is the face of the company that most people will interact with. The insurance agent is the person who sells the insurance to customers. There are also involved a great deal in customer service since most customers will contact their insurance agent in case of any problems with the insurance or in case of property loss or damage.
Claims and policy processing clerk
These individuals will process the new affordable automobile insurance policies sold to customers by the insurance agent. They can also adjust existing policies when need be. Claims processing clerks get information from policy holders to verify that the claim application is valid and complete for processing and releasing payment for vehicle repairs and medical bills in case of personal injury.
Understand the benefits of the ACA. If you choose to get health insurance through the ACA exchanges, then you can qualify for a subsidy. Subsidies are available to people with family incomes between 100% and 400% of the poverty level.(A “family” includes single people.) You must, however, purchase the insurance through the exchange to qualify.
- The government will also provide assistance with covering out-of-pocket expenses for those with particularly low incomes. You must be enrolled in at least a Silver plan to qualify.
- To estimate the amount of your subsidy, visit this website and use its Health Insurance Marketplace Calculator.
Check when you can enroll. You cannot enroll in an insurance plan offered through the ACA at any point in the year. Instead, the open enrollment period typically runs from November 1 until January 31 of each year. It may shift depending on the year.
- If you miss the enrollment period, then you can still purchase short-term coverage. However, you will not get a subsidy and you may also have to pay a fee each month.
- You might qualify for a “special enrollment period,” which can be triggered by a life event, such as the birth of a child or moving to a new state. If you qualify, then you can purchase a plan on the exchange regardless of the time of year.
- The ACA is in a constant state of flux. Sometimes deadlines are extended, and exemptions or “special enrollment” requirements often shift or change. Accordingly, you should call 1-800-508-6754 with questions about your particular circumstances.
Create an account. You must visit healthcare.gov and create an account. First, pick your state. Then create a username and password, which you should write down someplace handy. You will need to login each time you visit the website.
Complete the application. In order to complete an application, you will need information about your finances. For example, you should gather information about:
- Social Security Number
- Citizenship or legal resident information
- Job and income details, including all self-employment income
- Current health care coverage information
Receive a determination. The government will send you a PDF explaining whether you qualify for a subsidy, how much, and/or whether you qualify for Medicaid. The PDF should also tell you what steps to take next.
Shop for health insurance policies. The ACA has created different “tiers” of health insurance policies: Catastrophic, Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum. These tiers are based on how the costs are shared between you and the insurance company. Generally, the higher the tier, the more you pay in premiums but the more the company pays in co-insurance.
- Catastrophic. These plans are available only for those under 30 or for people who have a qualifying exemption. Under this plan, the insurance company pays less than 60% of the total average cost of care.
- Bronze. Under this plan, the insurance company pays about 60% of the cost of care; you will pay around 40%.
- Silver. The average for a silver plan is 70% for your insurer and 30% for you.
- Gold. The average for a gold plan is 80% for the insurer and the remaining 20% paid by you.
- Platinum. With the platinum plan, your insurer pays 90% on average and you pick up the remaining 10%.
Apply. You can select a plan and apply for it through the healthcare.gov website. You cannot be turned down for a pre-existing condition, so approval is virtually automatic. Once you are approved, you will be sent information from the health insurance company.
- Remember, if you have to purchase insurance outside the exchange, then an insurer can still discriminate based on a pre-existing condition.
Make monthly payments. Because you are not receiving insurance through a job, you will need to make monthly premium payments to the health insurance company. If you receive a subsidy, the health insurance company should apply the subsidy to your premium before sending you the bill.
- Keep records of payments and pay in a timely manner. If you do not pay your insurance each month, then you may end up having to pay a penalty.
Understand the benefits of group coverage. Because group coverage is provided for many people through an organization, insurance companies are ultimately able to save money. Accordingly, you are more likely to receive comprehensive (or full) coverage than if you purchase as an individual on the open market. You are also likely to pay a lower premium than you would by purchasing individual insurance.
- One negative about purchasing insurance through an employer is that the employer probably makes various decisions about the scope of coverage. For example, the employer may want to only allow you to access physicians within one provider network.
Contact Human Resources. Your HR rep will guide you through the paperwork of joining a company insurance plan. Your company will generally offer several different plans from at least one, perhaps several, insurance carriers. In filling out your application, you may need information pertaining to:
- Your previous insurance plan
- Any enrolling eligible dependents
- Any serious illnesses
Compare plan options. Many companies offer health insurance plans for full-time employees. You can also use these plans to cover an entire family, though you’ll have to pay some monthly fees based on the plan that you choose and the number of people you are covering. Companies typically offer these types of plans.
- Health Maintenance Organizations, or HMOs, are the least expensive option. In this type of health plan, you have a primary care physician who takes care of all health issues and refers you to a specialist when necessary.
- Preferred Provider Organizations, or PPOs, are more expensive, but give you more freedom in your choice of doctor. You are able to see any doctor within the organization without a referral.
- Point of Service, or POS, plans offer discounted rates for providers that are within a network, but you are free to pay higher rates to see a doctor outside of the network.
Fill out an application. You should complete the application and turn it in to HR in a timely fashion. Keep a copy for your records in case HR loses the application.
Receive your health insurance card. After you submit your application to Human Resources, you should be notified promptly of your acceptance. However, your employer may have certain enrollment periods which limit when you can pick up coverage.
- Pay attention to when coverage begins. If accepted, look for your enrollment date, which is the date that you can start using your health care insurance to pay for medical expenses such as doctor visits. The enrollment date can sometimes be several weeks after you are approved.
Consider COBRA for temporary insurance. If you are laid off from your job, then you still have the option of carrying your insurance. The Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act, or COBRA, allows individuals to continue an insurance plan after losing health insurance. While you will receive the same coverage, you will be responsible for the full payment of the insurance premiums. If you are leaving a job, your company will give you information about COBRA.
Difference Between Auto and Motorcycle Insurance
- Because of the decreased potential for harming others in a crash between a motorcycle and a car, liability insurance for a motorcyclist is actually less than that of a car. Conversely, the insurance you pay for “uninsured motorists,” or if you are physically harmed by someone who does not have insurance, is greater because you are personally more at risk when riding a motorcycle. Auto insurance has an opposite trend. In New York, there is more potential for risk to the rider, so these numbers become inflated.
The Human Factor
- Another factor that makes it difficult to project an average cost of insurance in any region, let alone New York City, is the human factor. Insurance rates for automobile drivers vary based on their age, experience, and driving record. This factor becomes even more significant for a motorcyclist, as it requires more skill and experience to operate a motorcycle. Therefore, the rate for an inexperienced, young motorcyclist might be closer to $1,000 a year, perhaps more if they are riding a sports bike or one with a larger engine. But an older and more experienced rider with a good driving record in New York might be able to acquire coverage closer to that of a regular car, perhaps even less.
Companies That Cover Motorcyclists in New York
- Because of the many hazards of driving a motorcycle in New York City, many insurance companies make it difficult to acquire coverage, while some do not offer it at all. To increase your chances of being offered a good rate, you should have a sensible bike and proof of training.
How to Keep Costs Down
- You can keep your motorcycle insurance lower in a high-risk area like New York by complying with a few things insurance companies like. You can lower your rate by having a bike with a smaller engine or fewer cc’s of power, as well as taking a motorcycle-safety course. As with standard auto insurance, a history of safe driving and few or no claims will lower your rate over time.
- Collision coverage, unlike liability coverage, is not required in many states; it’s a bit of an add-on. But in a congested area like New York City, it might be worth the extra cost. It covers the damage done to your bike, not to any other auto or property that is involved. Because you are more at risk for damage to your bike than cars are, especially in a place like New York, collision coverage makes more sense. It usually covers the book value of your motorcycle.
- Comprehensive motorcycle insurance covers motorcycles that have been damaged in weather-related incidents, such as storms, hail, flooding and high winds. Natural elements also typically include earthquakes, fire, falling rocks, debris and sinkholes.
- A comprehensive insurance policy covers motorcycles damaged or wrecked by hitting animals, such as deer, cows, wild fowl, bison and moose.
Nonresistant or Passive Objects
- Comprehensive motorcycle insurance policies cover a motorcycle damaged by an inanimate object, including falling signs, trees or light poles.
- Comprehensive coverage pays for repairing a motorcycle damaged during civil upsets such as riots, political protests and wars.
- Stolen motorcycles are rarely found because they are usually “stripped.” A comprehensive motorcycle insurance policy typically covers the cost of the bike and the motorcycle’s custom parts and equipment.
- Comprehensive motorcycle insurance covers the repairs of a motorcycle damaged during acts of vandalism, malicious destruction and attempted theft.
You are interested in buying a motorcycle but you have questions about the insurance. As a general rule, the states hold motorcycles to the same insurance standard as personal automobiles, so chances are you will have to purchase motorcycle insurance if you want to ride it in your state. There are some exceptions, however, and some confusing laws to be aware of when making your decisions.
- Typically, motorcycle insurance is required in every state. There are only two exceptions to this rule in the United States: Washington and Montana. Montana exempts motorcycle owners from the auto insurance statutes, and Washington has no laws regarding insurance for motorcycles, mopeds or other motor-driven cycles.
- Some states require basic liability insurance for motorcycles but differ in other ways from standard auto insurance. In Alaska, for example, insurance companies are not required by law to offer motorcyclists more than the minimum required liability limit. Oregon, Utah and Texas require cars to carry personal injury protection (PIP) coverage for first-party medical claims, but do not offer this coverage to motorcycles. In Kansas, motorcycle drivers can reject the PIP coverage required for autos.
- In Florida, motorcycle insurance is optional in some circumstances but not others. If you have a clean driving history, you do not need insurance to register your bike. However, once you cause an accident, you must carry continuous insurance for three consecutive years to maintain your bike’s registration. You are also responsible for any injuries you cause, whether or not you have insurance. Another law states that if you do not carry a minimum $10,000 injury protection insurance for your motorcycle, you must wear a helmet.
- While carrying motorcycle insurance in Florida is important, it is not required. Riders who do not carry motorcycle insurance may not be covered under any insurance unless they meet the requirements and qualifications determined by the state.
- Motorcycle insurance, much like vehicle insurance, covers the rider in the event of an accident, if the rider causes the accident and causes damage to someone else or another person’s property, and may even cover a rider.
- A rider can get a motorcycle insurance policy through many vehicle insurers. The policies differ depending on what the rider chooses and is willing to pay for. A rider may elect no motorcycle coverage. In this case, the motorcycle must be paid for (it cannot have a lien holder on the title) and the rider must have a vehicle policy in place on a vehicle registered in his name.
- If a rider chooses to not have motorcycle insurance, she must live in the state of Florida. Other states may have different rules regarding motorcycle insurance. A Floridian may also be required to purchase motorcycle insurance if she rides outside of the state of Florida. This depends on the insurance company the rider’s 4-wheeled vehicle is registered with. It may also be dependent on the state the rider is driving through. Not all states recognize Florida’s motorcycle insurance rules.
- If you choose not to have motorcycle insurance on your bike, your vehicle insurance must cover the motorcycle. Always read your insurance policy carefully, as some policies will not cover you if you get in an accident on your bike rather than in the car insured with the insurance company. If you are riding a motorcycle with a lien holder, you must always have a separate motorcycle insurance policy–and it is a good idea to have one, even if your motorcycle does not have a lien holder on the title. With the way insurance companies change policies, you may end up without the coverage you thought you had.
- The cost of motorcycle insurance can vary widely, from a couple of hundred dollars per month to well over $1,000 per month for more powerful bikes and riskier riders. Each applicant’s situation is different, and insurance providers estimate the expected risks based on statistics related to similar individuals. Such things as your gender and where you ride your motorcycle can have an impact on the cost of your motorcycle insurance.
- All motorcycles–including sports bikes–are lumped under one category of motorcycle insurance, but the type of bike you choose can raise or lower your premium. In general, sport bikes are more difficult to ride and are capable of going faster than most other motorcycles, which means they carry more risk to an insurance provider.
- All states require that motorcycle users have at least some type of insurance coverage, however, a significant percent of motorcycle owners have no insurance in some states. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, many tens of thousands of people are involved in motorcycle accidents that require immediate medical attention each year, and around 5,000 deaths occur annually as the result of motorcycle accidents.
- The state-mandated minimum coverage typically pays for claims only when you cause damage to other people or property, so adding additional coverage for you (the driver), your bike and any additional property is important, and unlike an automobile, passengers are not covered unless you pay an additional premium. Coverage for towing, roadside help and personal belongings often can be added for relatively little expense.
- The biggest discounts on motorcycle insurance rates can be earned by receiving certification from a safety course, which also can reduce the likelihood of your being in an accident by 50 percent. Another way to reduce your premium is to install an anti-theft device. These recover stolen bikes in up to 90 percent of cases of theft.
Liability and Property Damage
- Liability insurance is one of two kinds of insurance that provide coverage in the event that you cause damage in an accident. Liability insures against personal injury damages if you are found liable for causing injury to another person. Many states impose penalties for motorcyclists who ride uninsured. In certain states, cyclists can not purchase a motorcycle without liability insurance. Property damage is the other type of insurance that provides coverage if you are responsible for causing damage to property belonging to another person in an accident. Property damage coverage minimizes risk to your assets since it helps cover the cost of any damages you might cause.
- With collision insurance, you are covered for damages to your motorcycle in an accident. It does not matter who is found to be responsible for the damage. Collision insurance usually includes a deductible amount, meaning that in the event of a collision where your motorcycle is damaged, you pay the deductible amount, and the insurance company pays the remaining repair costs up to the policy terms and limits.
- Comprehensive insurance provides coverage against perils other than those covered under collision. As an example, fire, flood, theft and vandalism are usually covered under comprehensive insurance. Comprehensive, like collision, may be subject to a deductible charge.
Uninsured and Under-insured
- When you carry uninsured and under-insured insurance coverage as part of a full coverage policy, you increase your coverage beyond the basics. If you are injured or your motorcycle is damaged in an accident involving a driver who either has no insurance or whose insurance is not sufficient to cover the damages, and that driver is shown to be responsible, you have coverage for your proven damages up to the limits of your policy.
- Medical expenses can occur that are directly related to a motorcycle accident. Medical payments insurance coverage provides for payment of your medical expense resulting from an accident within the terms of and up to the limits of the coverage.
- An umbrella policy could be considered “extra full” insurance. It can provide extra liability insurance to a very high limit. For motorcyclists with a high net worth, having very large liability limits, through an umbrella policy, can provide an extra measure of insurance protection.
Who needs motorcycle insurance?
- All kinds of motorcycles, scooters and mopeds require insurance coverage by the law. This is true regardless of whether you use a motorcycle, scooter or moped for occasional recreation or every day commuting. Motorcycle insurance is different in coverage from regular automobile insurance, and it is necessary to acquire this insurance for anyone who rides a motorcycle. There are some exceptions to motorcycle coverage depending on the insurance company’s policies. These exceptions may be for a certain type of motorcycle that doesn’t match with the company’s risk categories. Because insurance companies may discriminate a certain type of motorcycle, it is a good idea to call different insurance companies to compare insurance policies for your type of motorcycle.
Motorcycle insurance coverage for accidents
- How motorcycle insurance coverage works in the event of an accident works pretty much the same as any kind of automobile insurance. The damage caused by the accident is covered by your motorcycle insurance. The collision insurance will cover for all the damages done to your vehicle , with the exception of the deductible. Insurance for motorcycles usually covers the market value of the motorcycle prior to the loss or damage done to your motorcycle. Liability insurance secures the other party’s bodily injury and property damage if the motorcycle accident is deemed to be your fault. Additionally, you can get coverage for accessories with in certain limitations, such as your motorcycle being modified or customized. This can be covered by your motorcycle insurance as well. Contact to your insurance company to request information for their acceptance rules. Liability insurance for your motorcycle is a necessity to protect you in the event of a lawsuit.
Maximize your insurance benefits
- Save some money on motorcycle insurance. Take advantage of garage parking. Not only will your motorcycle be safer in a garage, but you will also receive a discount on your motorcycle insurance. You can also save money by making some other changes to your insurance policy. For instance, if you do not commute to work, you can have your policy changed to reflect the occasional use of your motorcycle. This will reduce the monthly payments on your insurance. The number of drivers who share you bike is another factor that can either increase or decrease your insurance. If you are the only person who rides your motorcycle, then your insurance will be less expensive. If you have a side cart for passengers, then that could increase your insurance. Keep in mind that you only receive the market value worth of coverage in the event of an accident. You need to find out which plan is right and satisfactory for you. If you have special motorcycle training, or you are taking motorcycle classes, this will drop your insurance expenses. Make sure to provide any information for specialized training when you apply for your motorcycle insurance.
- Driving a motorcycle in California means knowing the laws related to California motorcycle insurance coverage. On November 5, 1996, California voters passed Proposition 213 which required all drivers of vehicles on public roads in California to have at least a minimum amount of liability insurance coverage. This became a part of the Civil Code Section 333.4 and affects motorcycle drivers as well. Therefore, California law requires a minimum liability insurance coverage of 15/30. This provides $15,000 to cover bodily injuries, $30,000 for all injuries in one accident, and $5,000.00 for property damages.
- The significance of this law is that driving without proper insurance is breaking the law. This could result in strict penalties that include the potential loss of your driver’s license for up to one year, having your vehicle impounded and possibly sold at auction, and fines up to $2,000.00 for riding without insurance. A lack of proper insurance could also mean facing heavy financial, personal, or professional losses in the event of an uncovered accident caused by you or another party.
- While 15/30 liability insurance is the minimum required for California Motorcycle drivers, other types of coverage are available for the California motorcyclist. These include collision coverage for damages incurred from getting hit by another vehicle, animal, person, object, or from flipping over and comprehensive coverage that covers damages incurred in other than a collision type incident. Uninsured motorist coverage reimburses expenses incurred from an uninsured driver and under-insured motorist coverage protects you in the event of an accident where the other party has inadequate insurance to pay for your loss or damages.
- Consider all relevant factors before buying the cheapest or least amount of motorcycle insurance. For instance, does your policy cover a motorcycle passenger in an accident? Does the insurance on a motorcycle loan include liability coverage or just the motorcycle, and collision and comprehensive insurances? An umbrella policy that provides large amounts of coverage’s may be a solution depending on your particular financial situation and potential liability. Check rates from various California insurance companies to find the best premium as rates vary according to driving history, age, health and other factors. You can choose to pay a higher deductible for your coverage to lower the premium rates.
- California motorcycle insurance is to protect you financially in the case of an accident, injury or other problem. The benefits of having the right amount and types of insurance when you need to file a claim could include recovering damages to your motorcycle, getting medical payments, recovering lost wages, or even paying for funeral expenses.