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Ask Our Lawyer
by Rod Taylor - ABATE Legal Services
January 2023

    MOST MOTORCYCLE MED-PAY PROVISIONS PROVIDE LITTLE COVERAGE FOR MEDICAL BILLS

    Q. Even though I didn't have any damage to my motorcycle from a deer hitting me from the side, I am going to have medical expenses since my leg was busted. My insurance company quickly sent me a letter saying I only have $1000 medical coverage (med-pay). I do have other insurance through work but with the usual deductible. Is there anything else I can do to get my motorcycle insurance to pay more for my medical so I won't have so much out of pocket $?
    Thanks Hugh Harvey, FREEDOM VALLEY CHAPTER

    A. Hugh the amounts of medical coverage (med-pay) provided through your motorcycle insurance policy are negotiated amounts set forth in your policy. Those are set in stone so to speak. So you will not be able to talk them into paying more. Send your medical bills to the company providing health insurance through work. If you have a problem with getting those medical bills paid. Call me.

    WHAT TO DO WHEN ASKED TO GIVE A RECORDED STATEMENT BY THE OTHER INSURANCE COMPANY

    Q. I received a request for a recorded statement from the insurance carrier for the other guy that wrecked my motorcycle. The police report puts the blame on the other guy. What should I do?
    ABATE OF OHIO MEMBER

    A. Assuming you agree with the crash report, our advice is to say "I agree with the police report and then shut up." Nothing good can come out of a full statement given to the other guy's insurance carrier. Remember they are not your friends. Or have them call ABATE LEGAL.

    SOMETHING BORROWED, SOMETHING BLUE ETC.

    Q. My youngest is getting married and we are planning a wedding reception at the local conservation club. There will be several friends of the couple in attendance. We plan to serve alcohol at the event. If one of these underage attendees gets in a wreck going home, what are my legal responsibilities if they sneaked drinks? And what can I do to protect myself?
    ABATE of Indiana member.

    A. Congratulations on the wedding. As to your question, check with your insurance agent to see if you have host liquor coverage with your homeowner's liability policy. If so, confirm that in writing to your agent and send me a copy. Even if you have insurance for this event, consider hiring a caterer for the alcohol, and let the catering company do the serving of alcohol. This way you have passed that responsibility to the pros. They will provide a licensed bartender and insurance to serve the alcohol and will know how to handle kids wanting drinks. It makes them the enforcer of the rules, ... not you. They are worth every penny. Also, make sure to ask for a certificate of insurance from the caterer's insurance carrier so you can verify the coverage.

    WHEN DO MOTORCYCLE TIRES AGE OUT?

    Don't you just hate throwing away tires that look tread perfect? I do. But here is the reason you should reconsider that saving attitude. The tire's wear surface dries out, and when it comes to those attributes those cannot be safely resurrected. Most tire manufacturers try not to sell a tire that's more than five years old. Rick Chupp of Cycle-Outfitters advises that the tires should be stored on carpet squares if the motorcycle is left in a garage with concrete floors. He advises that lye and calcium in the concrete have a deleterious effect on the tire. If the motorcycle is stored outside, then you have to inspect the tires for ultra-violet ray damage. Per Rick, air pressure should be checked prior to each ride and a visual inspection of the sidewall and grooves between treads should be made. If you see any cracking, time to call Rick.

    AM I COVERED?

    Q. If an ABATE member donates the use of his/her property for an ABATE function and should someone leave intoxicated (adult or unknown minor) and causes an accident resulting in injury or death, is that homeowner covered by insurance?
    ABATE of Indiana member

    A. Usually the ABATE member would have coverage under his homeowner's policy for personal social events. The standard coverage for ABATE events should provide additional coverage for the ABATE member if that member is listed as an additional insured under the ABATE policy. Make sure that happens. Additional insurance may be needed, because there may not be coverage under the homeowner's policy. The home owner insurance company may argue that the event is a business event and not covered. Advise the member to confirm coverage with his homeowner's agent and communicate that the event is a voluntary charitable event. Coverage is usually provided for charitable and volunteer activities. But tread carefully as we do not want our member's homes and assets needlessly exposed to the claims of others.

    Ride Safe.

    Rod Taylor
    ABATE Legal Services
    www.abatelegal.com

    All questions from ABATE members are answered confidentially unless otherwise authorized and then only after the matter is concluded, except when authorization for publication anonymously or otherwise is given for pending matters. Call us at 1-(800)-25-RIDER. Questions? Submit them to: RodTaylor@abatelegal.com. © 2023.