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Is There a Difference Between Motorcycle Insurance and Car Insurance in Pennsylvania?

September 16, 2019

By Van Der Veen, Hartshorn, and Levin

In Pennsylvania, all motorists, including those on a motorcycle, are required to have proper insurance. This insurance can provide compensation for expenses resulting from an accident, such as medical bills. Motorcyclists, particularly those that are new to biking, often think that motorcycle insurance in the state is the same as car insurance. However, there are many differences all motorcyclists in Pennsylvania should know before they hop on a bike for a ride.

Motorcycle Insurance Requirements in Pennsylvania

All motorcyclists are required to purchase proper motorcycle insurance in Pennsylvania. This protects bikers in the case of an accident for which they are found at fault. The minimum insurance requirements for bikers in Pennsylvania are:

  • $15,000 in coverage for bodily injury per person
  • $30,000 in coverage for bodily injury per accident
  • $5,000 in coverage for property damage per accident

While these different coverage types are important, purchasing insurance coverage above these amounts can provide even more protection for bikers in case of an accident.

Motorcycle Accidents and Medical Expenses

The Pennsylvania Motor Vehicle Financial Responsibility Law largely regulates motorcycle insurance in the state. This law states that the insurance company providing coverage for the motorcyclist is not required to provide medical benefits to bikers after an accident. This is one main difference from car insurance in Pennsylvania. Auto insurance law in Pennsylvania requires insurance companies to provide a minimum amount of medical coverage to their insured hurt in an accident.

This difference often means that injured motorcyclists must go through their own personal health insurance to receive compensation for medical expenses. When motorcyclists do not carry health insurance, they may have to pay for their medical expenses out of pocket. However, this doesn’t mean motorcyclists don’t have any protection at all. It simply means they will have to file a personal injury claim against the at-fault driver to claim compensation. It also means they will have to wait until the claim is settled or a judgement is issued before claiming compensation.

Limited Tort vs. Full Tort

Another difference between car insurance and motorcycle insurance in Pennsylvania is that motorcyclists are entitled to full tort status. Under full tort, bikers can claim pain and suffering without proving serious impairment of a bodily function.

This is good news for bikers, but it’s still important they speak to an attorney that can help with their claim. Insurance companies are notorious for trying many different tactics to prevent paying out on large claims. When it comes to motorcyclists, they may hope that motorcyclists think the same insurance rules apply to them as other motorists. When bikers do think this, they may accept a much smaller settlement than what they are entitled to.

In a Motorcycle Accident? Call a Pennsylvania Personal Injury Lawyer

If you’ve been in a motorcycle accident and need to file a personal injury claim, don’t do it on your own. Motorcycle insurance is very different than car insurance in Pennsylvania, but the insurance companies will likely still try to reduce, delay, or deny your claim. At van der Veen, Hartshorn, Levin & Lindheim, we are the Philadelphia motorcycle accident attorneys that can help. Call us today at (215) 486-0123 or contact us online so we can begin reviewing your case.



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