To legally operate a motorcycle in Massachusetts, you’ll need not one, not two, but four types of insurance coverage. Let’s dive into the facts about MA motorcycle insurance requirements so you can get the coverage you need. Then you can head out for a scenic ride through the Berkshires or up the North Shore…or just impress everyone at work when you roll in from your commute on a vintage café racer.
What’s required of all motorcycle riders in MA?
MA motorcycle insurance coverage requirements
Before you can drive a motorcycle in Massachusetts, you must register it. To get a motorcycle registration here, you’ll need to have:
- Proof of insurance that meets the state minimum requirements (more on that below)
- An odometer disclosure statement
- A vehicle title for the motorcycle
- Funds to pay the registration fee ($20)
MA motorcycle insurance requirements are similar to the state requirements for auto insurance. All Massachusetts drivers and motorcyclists must have liability insurance. That insurance needs to cover:
- $20,000 for bodily injury per person
- $40,000 for bodily injury per accident
- $5,000 for property damage per accident
The state also requires all drivers and riders to carry uninsured motorist coverage of at least $20,000 per person and $40,000 per accident. However, unlike drivers, motorcyclists are not required to get personal injury protection (PIP) insurance, which covers injuries to you and your passengers. In fact, motorcycle insurance never has PIP coverage in Massachusetts. If you want your motorcycle insurance to cover your injuries, you can add medical payments coverage to your policy.
Other things motorcycle riders need in MA
You’ll need more than insurance to safely and legally ride your motorcycle in the Bay State. Here’s a short list of things MA motorcycle law requires:
- A valid motorcycle license, or driver’s license with a motorcycle endorsement
- A Department of Transportation-approved helmet
- Glasses, goggles or a protective face shield (if your motorcycle doesn’t have a windshield)
Comprehensive coverage for motorcycles
MA motorcycle insurance requirements only require liability insurance, which just covers injuries and property damage you cause to others. That’s not enough coverage for some riders. If you want your policy to cover situations like theft, vandalism or extreme weather, add comprehensive coverage.
Comprehensive motorcycle coverage is for non-accident damages to your bike. “Damages” here refers to financial losses like theft, not just to dents and broken windshields. The more valuable your motorcycle is, the more valuable your comprehensive coverage is. You might not be able to afford to replace an expensive bike without the help of comprehensive coverage. That’s why lenders and car dealerships usually require you to get comprehensive coverage as part of the terms of your loan or lease.
Comprehensive motorcycle coverage applies to damage from situations like:
- Severe weather (tornadoes, lightning, etc.)
Comprehensive coverage does not cover damage from motorcycle crashes. You’ll need collision coverage for that. However, there is one type of motorcycle accident comprehensive coverage does cover – collisions with wildlife. Comprehensive coverage is great for anyone who wants extra peace of mind about damage to their motorcycle, whether it’s from hitting a deer or a fallen branch in a storm.
The best motorcycle insurance companies in MA
If you don’t want or need comprehensive coverage, go for liability-only coverage. For liability-only, motorcycle insurance costs are low. The best rates you can get on a liability-only motorcycle policy in MA come from:
- Progressive – $75 average annual rate
- Geico – $99 average annual rate
For a “full coverage” bundle (liability, comprehensive and collision coverage), your best motorcycle insurance cost comes from:
- Progressive – $273 average annual rate
- Harley-Davidson – $294 average annual rate
The best overall motorcycle insurance providers in Massachusetts are Progressive and Harley-Davidson. These two companies offer the best combination of customer service, affordability and policy customizability in the state.
- Progressive is the most affordable. It offers many discounts and a disappearing deductible (deductible that gets smaller for each policy period where you don’t have an accident or traffic violation).
- Harley-Davidson covers all brands of motorcycles but offers a special discount to Harley owners. Its perks include vacation rental insurance and 24-hour roadside assistance.
Getting motorcycle insurance in MA
Since you can’t ride without insurance, you need a policy for your bike. You might as well get a good one. That means meeting the MA state minimums, plus the amount of coverage and types of coverage you need to keep you financially stable in the event of an accident or damage.
To find your ideal plan, you’ll want to compare motorcycle insurance quotes from multiple providers. Geico, Harley-Davidson and Progressive are our top picks, but there are lots of options to fit every budget and situation. To get the right motorcycle insurance policy for you, contact Surround Insurance. We can get you quotes from the best insurers in the state and help you choose a policy you’ll love.