For all intents and purposes, all motorcycle owners are mandated by law to purchase and to maintain a motorcycle insurance policy. Often the financing institution under which you obtained the loan will mandate coverage. Then there are those smart riders who will get coverage for their own safety and benefit. The required levels of coverage as well as the various optional types of coverage available do vary, so it is wise to inform yourself about the options before you buy a policy.
If you indeed ride a motorcycle, even just occasionally, every state in the union will require some amount of motorcycle insurance coverage. Generally, the minimum liability coverage will likely suit some riders (and also drivers of four-wheeled recreational motor vehicles), but having just the bare minimum, though cheaper, is never a wise decision for motorcyclists. Riding is obviously more risky and it can sometimes be downright dangerous. Essentially, this type of insurance, likely more than just liability, should be bought by all who own and operate a motorcycle.
It all starts with you choosing the kind of coverage wanted. Each aspect of motorcycle coverage is for different purposes and what you opt for will determine different premium costs. Generally the more insurance coverage obtained, the higher the premiums are, though opting for a higher deductible can help mitigate the premium costs. Premium payments are generally made for either six months or for one year of coverage and are paid on a monthly basis or through partial or total upfront payment. (When paying up front one can often enjoy a discounted rate). Should you have an accident, you file a claim with your insurer as soon as possible. Usually the insurance company will then compensate for whatever costs with which you are saddled as described in your policy.
As far as the type of coverage choices available, bodily injury and property damage is what pays out for any costs resulting from the injuring of another in an accident. It also compensates for property damage caused by the accident. Personal injury handles the costs resulting from injuries you as the rider might have from the accident. It can also assist in paying out for any lost income that results from your injuries and the consequence of being unable to continue working. Medical coverage is what can cover you for any treatment expenses resulting from an accident. It can also aid with the medical expenses of any passengers you might have had riding on the back of your motorcycle. Comprehensive coverage can help you to replace a totaled or stolen motorcycle with a new one. This policy can also help in acquiring any needed parts and for the repair off the damaged bike. It also can compensate for any medical and liability costs incurred by others involved in the accident if you were deemed at fault. There is also coverage for towing and roadside assistance as well, which can assist you with any roadside problems or for a tow to a mechanic.