Alabama Motorcycle Insurance

According to the Alabama Department of Revenue:

”The Alabama Mandatory Liability Insurance Law provides that no person shall operate, register, or maintain registration of a motor vehicle designed to be used on a public road or highway unless it is covered by a liability insurance policy.”

That may sound as if there is a loophole for certain types of motorcycles, but there is not. Failure to carry the appropriate coverage can result in the impounding of your bike. Additionally, since Alabama is an ”at-fault” state, you can open yourself to multiple lawsuits if found liable after an accident. Let’s have a look at how Alabama defines a motorcycle for insurance purposes, some of the equipment you are required to have on your bike in the state, as well as some of the motorcycle coverage types that you may need.

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Alabama Motorcycle Laws

You would think that a motorcycle is a motorcycle, but every state clearly defines what is and isn’t, mainly for law enforcement needs. In Alabama, a motorcycle is defined as:

”Any motor vehicle with a seat or saddle and no more than three wheels (excluding tractors)…every bike with an attached motor: that produces more than five brake horsepower, exceeds 150 cc engine displacement; and that weighs more than 200 pounds.”

Any two or three-wheel vehicle that falls below these requirements is considered a motor-driven vehicle.

Alabama Street Legal Motorcycle Requirements

Most riders will need to use their bikes on-road from time to time, even if it is to get from one trail to another. Alabama requires that a bike be equipped with the following in order to be street legal:

  • Eye protection: not required on or off-road.
  • Handlebar height: 15 inches or less above the operators position on the seat.
  • Helmet: required for all riders.
  • Mirrors: at least one. Left side or right is not specified.
  • Turn Signals: not required.
  • Passenger Seat/Footrest: both are required if a passenger is on a motorcycle.
  • Headlight: modulating daytime headlight required.
  • Muffler: must be present, but there is no acoustical limit.

Alabama Motorcycle Insurance Laws

Alabama motorcycle insurance is governed by the Alabama Mandatory Liability Insurance Law. This law requires that owners carry at least a liability policy that meets the following requirements for coverage:

  • $25,000 for death or bodily injury to one person;
  • $50,000 for death or bodily injury to two or more persons; and
  • $25,000 for damage or destruction of property.

Unfortunately, those coverages only cover other persons when you are at-fault. Alabama has created a great tool that explains motorcycle insurance limits and the Alabama Online Insurance Verification System (OIVS). You can use the tool by following this link.

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Recommended Coverage for Alabama Riders

While Alabama only requires liability insurance for motorcycles, you should carry more coverage. If you have a lien against your ride, you will be required to carry full coverage. Even if you own your bike free and clear, you may want to consider having the following coverages to protect yourself as well as other citizens:

Collision: this protection covers your bike in an accident whether it is your fault or not. This type of policy may or may not include uninsured/under-insured coverage. If it doesn’t be sure to add it on.

Uninsured/Under-insured motorist: you may want to consider this protection given that 22 percent of the drivers in Alabama are uninsured according to federal statistics. The coverage makes sure you and your bike are protected against an uninsured driver or when an at-fault driver’s insurance is inadequate for the damages.

Comprehensive: this protection covers items like fire, wind, water, theft, and vandalism.

Bodily injury: this protection covers certain costs if you injure or kill someone in an at-fault accident. This policy covers your passenger as well as people in other vehicles.

Medical payment: this is similar to bodily injury, except it covers you. It covers items such as prescription drug payments; dental care; medical co-payments and deductibles from other health coverage policies; home nursing care, or funeral expenses.

If you have a custom bike, you may want to explore additional coverages. The two main policy types for custom motorcycles are:

Accessories Coverage: the accessories on a custom bike include saddlebags, backrests, seats, and chrome pieces, but not helmets. Given that list, you can see how it can cost thousands of dollars to replace these items. In many instances, you must have comprehensive or collision coverage in force in addition to an accessories policy.

Custom Parts and Equipment (CPE): with some companies this may be part of other coverage, with others it must be purchased separately and is offered by request only. This will cover items that are unique like handmade tanks and pipes.

AL Motorcycle Insurance Cost and Quotes

The amount you pay for coverage will depend on a vast array of factors, including type of coverage, limits, make/model of bike, driving record, age, location, and more. We have created an easy to use tool to get quotes for the coverage you need.  You can enter your zip code, and quickly see which insurers provide coverage in your area, comparing quotes from each online.

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