Motorcycle insurance laws in Colorado are similar to that of the auto insurance laws. To be safe make sure you understand the insurance you are required to have if you plan on riding your motorcycle anywhere in Colorado.
As every rider knows, there is nothing like the wind in your face on a winding road, and when it comes to scenic rides Colorado has an abundance of them.
Before hitting the road, you need to make sure you have the appropriate motorcycle insurance. This is especially important when you realize that in 2019 Colorado had a total of 103 motorcycle fatalities. In 2020 as of September 18th, there have been 100 motorcycle fatalities.
If lucky enough to survive the crash, the rider’s injuries are often severe, requiring days or weeks of hospitalization and rehabilitation before returning home. Even then they may endure months of physical therapy from injuries that are permanent and life-altering.
What are the Motorcycle Insurance Requirements in Colorado?
The minimum coverage you need for Bodily Injury is $25,000 per person. For Bodily Injury Per Incident a minimum of $50,000 is required. The minimum for Property Damage is $15,000 per incident.
Does my Motorcycle Insurance Cover me on Another Person's Bike?
Motorcycle insurance policies only cover that particular bike. If you ride someone else’s motorcycle, your policy does not cover you. When riding a bike belonging to another rider, you need to make sure that rider carries sufficient insurance.
The best motorcycle insurance coverage will include the following:
Liability Coverage is the only requirement for motorcycle insurance. Liability covers third-party injuries and property damage in the event you are found to be at fault in an accident.
Collision Coverage covers damage to your motorcycle in an accident, regardless of whether you or the other driver are at fault. This is available for payouts in actual value or replacement value should the bike be totaled.
Comprehensive Coverage is for those non-collision incidents that happen including flood, tornado, theft, or broken windshield. As with collision you may purchase actual or replacement value coverage.
Personal Injury Coverage covers medical treatment for you and your passenger if you suffer injuries in an accident.
Accessory Coverage provides coverage for the additional accessories or equipment you have on your motorcycle. This also increases the assessed value if the bike is a total loss.
Uninsured Motorist Coverage provides coverage for your medical treatment and damage if an uninsured driver hits you while on your motorcycle.
Towing/Roadside Assistance Coverage is valuable if your bike becomes disabled on the road.
When purchasing insurance your agent will consider things such as your age, credit score, riding experience, claim history and type of motorcycle you are insuring when establishing your rate.
Motorcycle Insurance Laws in Colorado Include Penalties for Lack of Coverage
Motorcycle insurance laws in Colorado include penalties if you do not have insurance, or have insurance but do not have proof of coverage. In these cases you could be subject to the following penalties:
- First Offense—minimum $500 fine, 4 points on driving record, possible suspension
- Second Offense—minimum $1,000 fine and a 4-month suspension
- Third Offense—minimum $1,000 fine, community service, 8-month suspension
If you suffer injuries in a motorcycle accident you need to contact a personal injury attorney who specializes in motorcycle insurance law. If you have injuries and the other driver is at fault and lacks insurance, your attorney will use that information in presenting your case.
Permanent and life-altering injuries may require extensive medical treatment. Your personal injury attorney will have the knowledge to fight for the compensation you are entitled to.
Protective Gear Requirements
The Colorado Department of Transportation sets forth the minimum safety standards for riders in Colorado:
- Helmets—not a requirement if over 18 years old; passengers and operators under age 18 must wear a DOT-approved helmet
- Eye Protection—eye protection is a requirement for all riders and passengers, this can be eyeglasses with plastic/safety glass lenses, goggles, or helmet visor
- Footrests—bikes must have footrests for passengers and the passenger must use them
- Passengers—must sit behind the driver or in a sidecar, they may not sit in front of the driver
The above is the minimum requirement for protective gear. Additional safeguards such as leather jackets, leather riding boots, leather vests, leather gloves, and long pants/jeans will provide additional protection in the event of an accident.
Typical Injuries in a Motorcycle Accident
The injuries a rider suffers in an accident are often more extensive and life-altering than in a standard motor vehicle accident. They include:
- Bone fractures and broken bones
- Road Rash
- Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
- Spinal Cord Injuries
- Head Injuries including cracked skulls, concussions, brain injury
- Neck injuries
More than half of all motorcycle accidents involve other vehicles at intersections. Eighty-Percent of motorcycle accidents result in injury, with the most common being legs. This type of injury may not be fatal but can be long-term disabling.
The other most prominent injuries include road rash, arms, muscle damage, and head and neck injuries. When a rider collides with another vehicle the rider has no protection. They have only their protective gear and are normally thrown from the bike.
Why You Need a Motorcycle Attorney
Motorcycle insurance laws in Colorado are set forth to protect all riders. Therefore, if you have been involved in an accident involving injuries it is important to hire a personal injury attorney with experience in this area of law.
Riders in motorcycle accidents frequently suffer severe injury or death. Often the driver of an automobile or truck claims they never saw the motorcyclist, and the end result is an accident. It is not unusual to spend weeks or months in the hospital before returning home still needing additional recovery time.
An attorney who specializes in personal injury from motorcycle accidents will work on your behalf for:
- Medical bills
- Loss of income
- Insurance negotiations
- Analyze your long-term prognosis
- Punitive damages
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of services, assistance, or care
In the event the rider does not survive the accident, they will work to recover funeral and burial costs, and loss of consortium for family members.
With more than 15 years of experience in motorcycle accident law, the law office of Elkus & Sisson, P.C. has the knowledge in both accident law and personal injury law to get you the compensation you deserve.
We Help With Financial Recovery
At Elkus & Sisson, P.C. we are familiar with the long-term recovery you require following a motorcycle accident. It is important you or a family member contact us as soon as possible after your accident so we can begin working on your financial recovery.
Your motorcycle insurance coverage is just one of the facts taken into consideration when fighting your personal injury claim. We must also evaluate your claim with regard to motorcycle insurance laws in Colorado to determine the best way to proceed.
If you or a loved one is suffering personal injuries as a result of a motorcycle accident, don’t hesitate, call (303) 567-7981 today or use our online contact form. We look forward to helping you with your financial recovery.