I trusted our insurance agent to sign me up for the best coverage on the Harley that money could buy and I paid the premiums on time. Then my wife and I were slammed onto the highway by a careless hit-and-run driver and left lying unconscious in the middle of a busy intersection. The lack of response from the insurance bureaucracy over the course of the next several years nearly destroyed my wife and me, emotionally and financially.
a motorcycle is not a motor vehicle
Not many people understand the process of filing an insurance claim. Even fewer are likely to fully understand their motor vehicle insurance policies. Following our accident it took an attorney who was an expert in Michigan’s No-Fault Insurance laws and specialized in automobile-motorcycle accidents to sift through the evidence and sort through the laws before we ever saw a dime.
What we learned was that as far as Michigan’s No-Fault Insurance laws are concerned, a motorcycle is not even considered a motor vehicle. Michigan’s Department of Transportation (MDOT), on the other hand, is on the opposite end of that spectrum. According to MDOT, in order to legally operate a motorcycle on Michigan’s highways the operator is required to be in possession of a valid driver’s license with a motorcycle endorsement. The motorcycle, like any other motor vehicle operating on public highways, must also be insured, registered through MDOT with a vehicle title, equipped with the minimum requirements of lights and turn signals, and fitted with State license tags.
So why do you suppose there is such a contradiction with regard to the way the insurance industry and the State of Michigan categorize motorcycles?
Motorcycle rights groups like the Motorcycle Riders Foundation (MRF) and American Bikers Aiming Toward Education (ABATE) maintain a constant vigil to prevent legal bias against motorcyclists. Their combined effort has exposed many unfair and unexplainable inconsistencies in the way legislators view this increasingly popular mode of transportation. When it comes to the insurance aspect, however, it seems the watchdogs have been totally ignored.
To learn more about this story, read my book, “The Ride, The Rose, and The Resurrection”. You’ll be amazed by what we encountered.