Required, Optional, and Recommended Motorcycle Coverages in Michigan
Below, our attorneys identify the required, optional, and recommended insurance coverages Michigan motorcyclists should know about and consider.
Are Michigan motorcyclists required to purchase auto no-fault insurance?
Motorcyclists are not required to purchase Michigan auto no-fault insurance. The Michigan No-Fault Law only requires owners or registrants of motor vehicles to purchase auto no-fault insurance coverage. Under the law, a motorcycle is not considered a motor vehicle, therefore no-fault insurance coverage isn’t required.
Are Michigan motorcyclists required to purchase liability insurance (PLPD)?
Yes, under the law, the owner or registrant of a motorcycle is required to purchase traditional liability insurance for bodily injury, death, or property damage. This liability insurance is commonly referred to as “PLPD coverage.” Essentially, it provides liability coverage to the motorcyclist if the motorcyclist was at-fault and causes bodily harm, death, or property damage to another person. If the owner or registrant of a motorcycle does not purchase PLPD coverage, serious penalties can be imposed, including a misdemeanor conviction, fine, and/or imprisonment. More importantly, the failure to purchase PLPD coverage as required by law will disqualify the motorcycle owner from no-fault PIP insurance benefits that may be available under the Michigan No-Fault Law.
Can motorcyclists purchase a special form of “motorcycle no-fault insurance?”
Motorcyclists may elect to buy a special form of insurance known as motorcycle PIP insurance. Insurance companies are required by law to offer this coverage to motorcycle owners or registrants in increments of $5,000 or more “for the payment of first-party medical benefits only.” These medical benefits come into play in situations where the owner or registrant of a motorcycle is injured in a motorcycle accident that does not involve a motor vehicle. These motorcycle PIP benefits can be purchased on a primary or coordinated basis (learn about motorcycle coordination of benefits between no-fault and health insurance policies). In reality, very few Michigan motorcyclists ever buy these optional coverages.
What auto insurance coverages should motorcyclists select?
Additional Recommended Motorcycle Insurance in Michigan
Motorcyclists who own motor vehicles should be very careful when purchasing their no-fault insurance. It is our opinion that all motorcyclists purchasing auto no-fault insurance coverage should select the options on their auto insurance policy that at least include the following:
- uncoordinated medical and wage loss coverage;
- residual liability insurance with limits no less than $500,000;
- uninsured motorist benefits coverage with limits not less than $500,000;
- underinsured motorist benefits coverage with limits not less than $500,000.
In addition, motorcyclists should consider buying “optional motorcycle PIP” coverage and should purchase this coverage on an uncoordinated basis.