It is very important for motorcyclists to have uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM) coverage. This insurance should be at least $300,000 of uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury insurance coverage per person. That is just the minimum recommended coverage. The best approach is to purchase an underlying policy or umbrella policy which provides you with at least $1,000,000 of uninsured motorist coverage, maybe more, depending on your circumstances and potential for lost wages if you are put out of work. This uninsured motorist coverage is extremely important as it will provide you with coverage for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. When applying for this insurance, motorcyclists should select stacked coverage.
The uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury insurance protects the motorcyclist when other drivers negligently operate their vehicles and do not have insurance coverage or do not have enough insurance coverage. (This UM coverage will also follow the motorcyclist if he/she is riding in someone else's vehicle and is injured.)
Why have stacked coverage? Stacked coverage is important. It means that the UM coverage is multiplied by the number of vehicles covered under the policy to determine the amount of coverage. Therefore, if you have 2 vehicles covered by the single stacked policy, then in any one accident the coverage would be 2 times what it would be if the insurance was unstacked.
Although Florida’s No Fault and PIP laws do not apply to motorcyclists, the Florida’s Financial Responsibility Law S324.021 requires all vehicle operators, including motorcyclists, to be financially responsible for damages and/or injuries they may cause to others when a motor vehicle crash happens.
If a motorcyclist does not carry property damage and bodily injury liability insurance and is held financially responsible for the damages and/or injuries involved in a crash, under Florida law (S324) they may be subject to:
- Loss of license
- Loss of tag and registration
- Restitution or civil court judgment
- Future proof of high risk SR-22 or FR-44 (three years)
- “SR” stands for safety responsibility and is a national form. An SR-22 is prepared by an insurance company and filed by the insurance company with the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles) as proof that a motorist has an insurance policy with the insurance company. If the policy holder fails to pay the premiums, the SR-22 may be cancelled. The insurance company will then file an SR-26 with the DMV, and the policy holder’s license is suspended until a new SR-22 is filed.
- “FR” stands for financial responsibility and is Florida-specific. The FR-44, although similar to the SR-22, is typically required after DUI convictions and has higher limits.
Motorcycle accidents happen frequently in Southwest Florida. In the last couple of months there have been motorcycle accidents involving injuries and deaths in Bonita Springs, Lehigh Acres, Naples, North Ft. Myers, Ft. Myers and North Port. Voluntary property damage/bodily injury insurance is an important part of motorcycle riding safety in Southwest Florida.
If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of a motorcycle accident, contact Southwest Florida motorcycle accident attorney, Randall Spivey of Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A.
Motorcycle Accident Attorney, Randall L. Spivey is a Board Certified Trial Attorney – the highest recognition for competence bestowed by the Florida Bar and a distinction earned by just one (1%) percent of Florida attorneys. He has handled over 2,000 personal injury and wrongful death cases throughout Florida. For a free and confidential consultation to discuss your legal rights, contact the Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A., in Lee County at 239.337.7483 or toll free at 1.888.477.4839,or by email to Randall@SpiveyLaw.com. Visit SpiveyLaw.com for more information. You can contact Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A.in Charlotte County at 941.764.7748 and in Collier County 239.793.7748.