If your motorcycle was damaged in an accident, it is important to understand the options that are available for recovering the costs to repair or replace your bike. As with claims for personal injuries, most property damage claims are resolved through insurance. However, different rules apply to property claims, and will you need to know which insurance company (or companies) to work with in order to secure maximum compensation.
Options for Recovering Compensation for Motorcycle Damage in Florida
To illustrate the options available, we will use the example of a typical motorcycle accident where you are driving the speed limit on a clear day and someone hits you in an intersection after running a stop sign. The other driver is clearly at fault, and your bike has sustained significant damage.
How do you recover the repair costs or replacement value of your motorcycle?
The At-Fault Driver’s Property Damage Liability Coverage
One option is to seek compensation under the at-fault driver’s property damage liability coverage. Florida law requires all drivers to carry at least $10,000 in property damage liability insurance to cover the damage they cause to other drivers’ vehicles (motorcycles included). Since the other driver was clearly at fault in our example, as long as he or she has the coverage required by law, you should be able to recover at least $10,000 to repair or replace your bike.
Your Own Collision Coverage
But, what if the driver who hit you is uninsured? Or, what if the extent of the damage is greater than $10,000?
In these scenarios, it will be important to determine if you have collision coverage under your insurance policy. If you have collision coverage, you can use this to repair or replace your motorcycle in the event that the costs are not covered by the other driver. Collision coverage is not required under Florida law, so you may not have it. But, if you do, you will want to make sure to use it to your advantage.
A Word of Caution: Dealing with the Insurance Companies
Unfortunately, insurance companies often make it extremely difficult for anyone – their own policyholders included – to obtain compensation for property damage and personal injuries. The insurance companies are in business to make money, and they will use various tactics to try to avoid accepting liability. Sometimes, these tactics even cross the line into bad faith.
As a result, you should generally avoid saying anything about the accident to any of the insurance companies involved. An experienced attorney will be able to deal with the insurance companies for you, and will be able to help you avoid the mistakes that can prevent you from securing just compensation.
Speak with a Niceville Motorcycle Accident Lawyer at Powell, Powell & Powell, P.A.
At Powell, Powell & Powell, P.A., we have decades of experience representing motorcycle accident victims in Florida. To request our help in recovering maximum compensation for the damage to your motorcycle, call (850) 682-2757 or contact us online today.