All information provided about the law is very general in nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Every situation is different and should be analyzed by a lawyer who can provide individualized advice based on the facts involved in your unique situation, and a consideration of all of the nuances of the statutes and case law that apply at the time.
Do motorcyclists need additional insurance in Georgia?
Because the risk of suffering a significant injury in a motorcycle accident is exponentially higher than when traveling in other vehicles, uninsured and underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) coverage is critically important.
If you travel the streets and highways of Georgia on a motorcycle, the risk of suffering a severe injury in a motor vehicle collision is high. There are crashes caused by alcohol impaired, inattentive and otherwise unsafe drivers in Georgia on a daily basis.
When riding a motorcycle during such a collision, there also is a greater risk for life-altering injuries because unlike occupants of cars, motorcyclists are unprotected in the event of a collision with the exception of the protection provided by a motorcycle helmet. Because the risk of suffering a significant injury in a motorcycle accident is exponentially higher than when traveling in other vehicles, uninsured and underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) coverage is critically important.
Approximately fifteen percent of drivers in Georgia are uninsured, with this number rising because of the lingering effects of a poor economy. Many of those that do carry auto insurance have only the minimum liability coverage required by Georgia law. These coverage limits ($25,000 for a single victim) can be far less than what is needed to fully compensate a motorcycle accident victim for the medical bills, lost wages and pain and suffering associated with a serious collision involving a motorcycle.
While you may be able to recover against a business if your accident is caused by a negligent employee engaged in work-related activity or a commercial carrier if a tractor-trailer causes your accident, it is important to review your uninsured motorist or underinsured motorist coverage in the event you are involved in a collision with an uninsured/underinsured driver. While all drivers should carry a reasonable amount of UM/UIM coverage, we believe that this coverage is even more important for motorcycle enthusiasts.
UM/UIM coverage permits you to recover when the other driver lacks insurance or does not have enough liability coverage to compensate you for the damages associated with your injuries, including medical bills, lost income and pain and suffering. Consider the scenario where someone is struck by a driver who has only the minimum of $25,000 in coverage or has no insurance coverage, and is faced with tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands or millions in medical bills due to a spinal injury or traumatic brain injury, with no way to cover the costs. This does not even take into account the possibility of permanent disability from employment. UM/UIM can be a valuable tool for mitigating these financial hardships.