California is the most popular state for motorcyclists, at least when it comes to total registered motorcycles. All motorcyclists want to have peace of mind when they head out on the roadways, so it is important to understand the insurance requirements for motorcycles in California. Today, the Law Offices of J. Jeffrey Herman and their Ventura County motorcycle accident attorneys want to give you the important information you need as well as some of the statewide motorcycle accident statistics.
The basics of California motorcycle insurance
It is important to note that your regular automobile insurance does not cover you in the event you get into an accident on your motorcycle. Motorcycle insurance must be purchased separately. California law requires you to carry liability insurance on your motorcycle, and you will find yourself in a world of legal and financial trouble if you do not have it.
The requirements for motorcycle insurance in California are the same as they are for a vehicle – 15/30/5. This means:
- $15,000 for bodily injury incurred by another person
- $30,000 for bodily injury to others involved in the accident
- $5,000 for property damage caused by a collision
Please know that these are the minimums. Motorcyclists are able to and are encouraged to purchase additional coverage.
Why would you want higher amounts?
Looking at those minimums, those are fairly low numbers, and they might not cover all injuries and damages that occur in a motorcycle crash. This could lead to major out-of-pocket costs for you.
Additionally, liability coverage will not cover the costs YOU incur in a collision in which you were found to be at fault. This means that you will be left paying for your injuries and damages out-of-pocket.
You may also want to consider purchasing uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. This insurance is not mandatory but will provide you with compensation in the event you are struck by someone who has no insurance or does not have enough coverage to cover all of the expenses. This insurance will also cover expenses from a hit-and-run incident.
Are motorcycle accidents common in California?
Unfortunately, motorcycle accidents happen at high rates in this state. According to the California Office of Traffic Safety, there were 517 motorcyclist fatalities and 15,328 motorcyclist injuries during the latest reporting year.
Motorcycle accidents can lead to severe injuries because motorcycle drivers and their passengers have little protection from the force of a passenger vehicle slamming into them. It is not uncommon for our Ventura County motorcycle accident lawyers to see the following injuries after a motorcycle crash:
- Spinal cord trauma (possible paralysis)
- Head injuries/traumatic brain injuries
- Internal organ damage or internal bleeding
- Broken or dislocated bones
- Severe lacerations or road rash
What you can do in an accident
Motorcycle accidents can be devastating, and insurance is a must. If you ride, know what coverage you are required to carry and consider purchasing more. If you need help from a Ventura County motorcycle accident attorney, the Law Offices of J. Jeffrey Herman are here to help. You can contact us for a free consultation by clicking here or calling 805-983-2344.