The simple, generalized answer to this question is for the most part, yes. However, in some instances, this might depend upon the specific health insurance policy the victim has at the time of the incident. It can also be affected by the laws in the state where the insurance plan originates and whether the policy was underwritten by a private insurance company or is an employer-sponsored one.
Private insurers may cover the majority of expenses common to motorcycle accidents including:
- Emergency room care.
- Extended hospitals stays.
- Outpatient visits.
- Treatments and therapies.
That said, certain employer-provided policies might require the accident victim to reimburse the company, agency, or organization sponsoring the insurance plan if he or she was deemed not at fault and recouped damages from the individual(s) ruled to be responsible for the incident. This legal caveat is known as a subrogation agreement.
Nonetheless, a health insurance policy is critical to a motorcycle accident victim’s chances of avoiding financial hardship as a result of their injuries and potential income loss during his or her recovery time. This is because motorcycle insurance, which many states require motorcycle owners to carry, are typically not mandated to cover the policyholder’s hospital and associated medical bills.
While health insurance usually covers the accident victim’s medical costs, there are other important issues associated with motorcycle accidents and insurance.
Who Covers the Medical Costs of Other Victims?
Most motorcycle insurance policies include a provision known as Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage. Every motorcycle owner should include the PIP provision as part of his or her overall plan. It is important for motorcycle owners to understand that merely having insurance will not guarantee they’re fully covered for an accident. Only the PIP provision provides this safety net. Motorcycle insurance policies containing the PIP provision are expensive, but can be a worthwhile investment.
What Other Options Can be Taken?
If a motorcycle rider was not be responsible for the accident, he or she should refrain from using their private health insurance to pay for their damages unless absolutely necessary. A better option would be to receive coverage under the at-fault person’s PIP provision (if another motorcycle was involved in the accident) or their auto liability coverage. By taking this action, a motorcycle owner can avoid higher insurance premiums that could be levied as the result of making what will likely be extensive and costly claims.
By taking as many safety precautions as possible, a motorcycle rider can often avoid accidents entirely. Though there is no guarantee that other drivers won’t cause an accident that involves you, these safety tips may help protect you:
- Ensure your motorcycle is equipped with as many safety features as possible. Before every ride, make sure the headlight and brake lights are working. Also check the horn and turn signals.
- Whenever possible, ride your motorcycle as part of a group of riders. Riding with other bikers has been known to make other motorists more cognizant of a motorcycle’s presence.
- Wear protective gear including a DOT-approved helmet with a visor or goggles, chaps, boots, etc..
- Ensure the cycle is in good mechanical condition, which requires frequent visits to a mechanic if you do not perform the work and repairs yourself.
If you’re a biker who was seriously injured by another rider or driver, contact a personal injury lawyer such as the Motorcycle accident lawyer locals trust as soon as possible to make sure your legal rights are being protected.