Motorcyclists — Stay Vigilant and Safe

We’re just now getting into peak motorcycle season in Missouri. Last year was busy for many motorcyclists, who were looking for fun and socially distanced activities. Getting outside is always a bonus, as well. 

Missouri has thousands of miles of open road for riders to enjoy, but it’s worth making sure you’re ready to safely hit the road. Besides taking your bike in for regular inspections, you need to make sure you have the right insurance that will kick in if you have an accident. 

Required Insurance Limits

Every licensed driver in Missouri is required to carry auto insurance policies. By law, drivers must carry insurance that pays up to $25,000 of bodily injury coverage per person, $50,000 of bodily injury coverage per accident (if multiple people are injured), and $10,000 of property damage coverage per accident. These required limits apply to motorcycle owners, as well. 

As a reminder, Missouri follows a fault-based system to determine who pays after an accident. That means the person responsible for an accident will have to use his or her own insurance policies to pay for bodily injury and property damage. The good news is that you might be able to recover damages if the other person was even partially at fault. 

Still, the minimum limits are often eaten up, rather quickly, after serious vehicle accidents. As a result, you or the other motorcyclist might rack up much more than $25,000 worth of medical bills. So, we often recommend riders get more than the minimum required by law. Don’t forget about uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage; this will help pay expenses if the other driver either doesn’t have insurance or is underinsured.

Other Policies Geared Toward Motorcycles

You should consider getting customized parts insurance, which protects enhancements and customizations that many riders like to make. Another type of policy you might want to get is an OEM policy, which guarantees that any replacement parts will be original (and not aftermarket) parts. Comprehensive coverage is also good to have. This type will cover property damage to the bike that doesn’t occur due to a collision (think flood damage, theft, or damage from falling debris). 

Before the Accident

All riders in Missouri under the age of 26 are required to wear helmets when using a motorcycle. Those 26 and older can ride without a helmet if they have valid health and auto insurance.  Regardless of the law, you should always wear a helmet while riding. Eye protection is nice to have. It’s also good to wear clothing that’s easily visible to other drivers. 

Without being enclosed in a steel frame like you would be in a car, riders must be extra vigilant on the road. Allow yourself a minimum of three seconds of following distance between your motorcycle and the vehicle in front of you. Use hand signals or turn signals to let others know of your intentions beforehand. Never ride if you’re not sober. 

Need a Motorcycle Attorney?

A mere fender bender for cars can result in serious bodily injuries and property damage for motorcycle riders. This means that riders often have to deal with much higher expenses than car drivers after an accident. A skilled attorney can help you recover what you deserve and put you on the path to recovery. We’d be honored to speak with you and see how we can help you get justice today. Call Ryan R. Cox & Associates at (636) 946-6886 to set up a free consultation.

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Ryan R. Cox & Associates, LLC

Ryan R. Cox & Associates, LLC, is a litigation law firm that represents individuals and families in serious personal injury and wrongful death claims throughout Missouri.
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