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Insurance won't pay for towed motorcycle

by Jackie

I was involved in an accident where In had full coverage and was deemed negligent. I was driving a vehicle that was towing a trailer and some motorcycles.

I thought a tractor trailer inched over into my lane causing me to leave the road. I totaled my vehicle, the trailer and the motorcycles. My insurance says they won't pay for the bikes.

Now two of the respective insurance companies are coming after me for reimbursement of their insureds claims since I apparently didn't have coverage.

Shouldn't this be covered under my liability policy?


Hi Jackie,

I am sorry to hear about this. I am a little confused as of the question. They are not paying for the towing of the bikes, or the damages to the bikes, or both?

Well, the real key here is to read our policy. It is very hard to give you a good answer, but you need to read the definition of insured auto, and trailer. Also, you need to see if you have a "emergency package" or some extra coverage that could cover somethings for the contents of the trailer.

I believe the issue here is that the bikes are "considered" personal property (does not have to be your personal property only someone's personal property).

The "theory" is that if you put the vehicle upside down and shake it, anything that falls is considered personal property. Basically anything that is not attached by bolts to the vehicle, with the exception of spare tires, keys, etc.

If you apply this theory, then the bikes would "fall" as they are probably not bolted. If the bikes fit this definition, then any damage to them is excluded from the policy.

It is true that if you hit a bike and cause damage to it, then you are liable to the owner of the bike and your insurance company should pay it. However, here, you were in possession of the bikes, and the liability policy is not a "cargo" policy. The odd thing (if anything is odd in your case) is that if you actually ran them over, they would have been probably covered.

Not everything is lost. Again, there might be some coverage for cargo of the trailer or some extra coverages on your policy.

Also, if the bikes are excluded because they are cargo or personal property, then it is very probably that your homeowners or renters insurance would protect you against that liability.

I hope this helps and I am sorry I cannot give you better news.

Good luck,

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