Motorcycle Insurance Tips

How Insurance Works in Motorcycle Wrecks in Maine

Maine requires that all vehicles be insured with minimum amounts of coverages and vehicles should keep proof of insurance in the vehicle in case of an accident or if you get stopped by law enforcement. It is routine at every traffic stop that the driver is asked for their license, registration and proof of insurance. Stop by a local dealer, repair shop, or the Iron Horse Motorcycle Lawyers tent at a motorcycle event and pick up a free Registration/Insurance wallet for your bike.

The mandatory minimum insurance required in Maine is $50,000.00 in personal injury liability insurance for an injury to one person and $100,000.00 for injuries to multiple people. This means that the $100,000.00 must be divided among all of the injured people in the wreck. There is also a requirement for liability insurance to cover damage to another’s property. The minimum amount required for liability property damage is $25,000.00. The property damage coverage will pay up to $25,000.00 to repair or replace damaged property. Maine also requires a minimum of $2,000.00 in medical payments coverage. Uninsured and Underinsured motorist coverage is also required in an amount equal to the personal injury liability coverage on the vehicle.

Liability insurance for personal injury protects you if you are at fault for causing a wreck and the other driver or passengers are injured. This coverage is extended to members of your family or others using your vehicle with permission and are involved in a wreck.

Liability insurance for property damage protects you if you are at fault for causing a wreck and another person’s property is damaged. Like personal injury coverage, it also protects family members and others using your vehicle with permission. Property damage includes other vehicles, but also damage to personal property like riding gear, cell phones and fixed objects like fences, mailboxes, etc.

Collision insurance pays for damage to your vehicle if you are at fault in causing the accident. Maine does not require this coverage, but most all lienholders will require this coverage if there is a loan on the vehicle to protect their interest in the making the loan. Collision insurance usually has a deductible of $500 or $1000. The deductible is your portion of the cost of repairs to or replacement of the vehicle.

Comprehensive insurance is also not required by Maine and it covers damage to your vehicle not caused by a collision with another vehicle, such as, theft, fire, flooding, storm damage etc. This coverage is also usually required by a lienholder if there is a loan on the vehicle. Comprehensive insurance also has a deductible like collision insurance.

Medical payments insurance is required in Maine but only in the amount of $2,000.00. It operates like a health insurance policy and can be used to pay medical bills for injuries incurred in a wreck regardless of who is at fault. This insurance also covers your passengers if they are injured in or by your vehicle. You may purchase this insurance in amounts higher than $2,000.00 and I strongly encourage everyone to buy this coverage in higher amounts. I personally carry $25,000.00 in medical payments insurance on my motorcycles and other vehicles.
Medical payments insurance can be added together or “stacked”. For example, if you are riding someone else’s bike or as a passenger and are injured, you can access the medical payments insurance from that bike and your own policy.

If you have other forms of insurance for medical bills, such as health insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, or military benefits, the medical payments insurance pays first until it is exhausted and then your health insurance picks up from there. All federal medical insurance and some private health insurance have a right of subrogation, or right to be reimbursed from the settlement with the car insurance liability and uninsured/underinsured coverage. Often times this amount can be negotiated down, and we will help negotiate a resolution at the end of the case.

Uninsured insurance pays for damage to your vehicle and for your personal injury claim in the event the at fault driver does not have insurance, leaves the scene of the accident and is unidentified, if the vehicle is being used by someone other than the owner without the owner’s permission or is stolen. Some states like neighboring New Hampshire do not require automobile insurance so this insurance coverage may come into play if you are in a wreck with a vehicle from a state that does not require insurance.

Underinsured insurance pays if the at fault driver does not have enough liability insurance coverage to fully compensate you for your property damage or personal injury claim. While Maine requires a minimum of $50,000.00/$100,000.00 in personal injury coverage and $25,000.00 in property damage coverage, some states require less. Here in Vacationland, the odds are good that you might get into a wreck with a driver from a state with less minimum insurance requirements. Motorcycles do not have seatbelts, airbags, and cages, so injuries in motorcycle wrecks are more severe and the cost of medical bills and the amount of lost wages while recovering are much higher. Protect yourself and your family by having higher than minimum liability limits so you can buy higher uninsured/underinsured insurance before a wreck occurs. We recommend that every rider have at least $100,000.00 in uninsured/underinsured insurance on their bikes and every vehicle in the household. And, if you can afford it, we strongly encourage a minimum of $250,000.00 of uninsured/underinsured insurance on each vehicle.

Uninsured/underinsured insurance from every vehicle in your household can be added together or “stacked” to maximize the amount you can recover for your injury claim.

Lastly, uninsured/underinsured also applies to damage to your vehicle. In 2023, the average cost of a new car was $48,000.00 and the price of a new motorcycle can easily exceed $25,000.00. If you get in a wreck and the at fault driver only has the minimum of $25,000.00 in property damage liability coverage then your car might not get replaced or repaired if you don’t have more than the minimum uninsured/underinsured property damage insurance.


Most of us ride motorcycles that have been customized in some way or have antique motorcycles that are hard to value. Many of us ride heavily customized bikes and have invested thousands of dollars in chrome, paint, engine work, etc. We often tell insurance adjusters that no two motorcycles are identical and many are truly pieces of rolling art.

Make sure to document the custom work to your bike with before and after photographs and keep all receipts. This will greatly assist us in obtaining a fair price for your bike if it has been in a total loss wreck. Equally important is to let your insurance company know what custom work has been done so that they know they are insuring a customized motorcycle and not a stock bike. They may not have to pay you for the custom work if they did not write the custom endorsements on the policy. Update your insurance agent on a regular basis as soon as you do any significant custom work and provide them with pictures and receipts.

If you have an antique motorcycle or heavily customized motorcycle, look for a company that will do a stated value policy. Stated Value means that you and the insurance company agree on the value of the motorcycle and its customization. The policy is written to pay a fixed amount that is agreed upon in the event the motorcycle is deemed to be a total loss. Classic car insurance companies may write a stated value policy for a highly customized or antique motorcycle.