The answer is: It depends. Not every state requires insurance. However, in addition to being a smart idea, in our view, ATV insurance is an essential tool for all riders of all skill levels. Just like car insurance, covering your ATV or side-by-side (sometimes called SxS or UTVs) can limit your liability and reduce your out-of-pocket expenses if something unexpected happens while you’re out riding.
You’ll also find that many national parks and RV trails require off road vehicle insurance if you want to ride on their land, even if the state doesn’t require insurance. Keep in mind, if you plan to lease your ATV or SxS, or if you take out a loan from a bank, your lender will likely require you to carry comprehensive and collision coverage in addition to any state-mandated minimum liability coverage.
What Kind of Insurance Do I Need For my Off-Road Vehicle?
There is a wide range of coverage options available to ATV and SxS owners, covering everything from property damage to medical payments and more. Just like you would with any other type of insurance, work with a well-known and respected insurer you trust. They will help build the policy that’s right for you—one that fits your lifestyle, where you ride and what you’re comfortable with. Your coverage options may include:
1. Body Injury Liability [BI]
You’ll find this coverage is mandatory in most states. It helps protect your assets if you are covered if you injure someone else in an accident and they sue you. In the event of an accident, Bodily Injury Liability (sometimes just called “Liability” insurance) will cover the other person’s medical expenses up to your policy limits.
2. Property Damage Liability [PD]
If you cause damage to another person’s property as part of an accident involving your ATV or SxS, this type of coverage can pay for that property damage up to your policy limits. Keep in mind this insurance doesn’t cover your own personal property.
3. Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist [UM/UIM]
You’ve probably run across this with your auto policy. It protects you if you’re involved in an accident and the other party can’t pay for your medical expenses, including any of your passengers, with their policy. Uninsured/underinsured coverage can not only cover your medical expenses, but also any lost wages while you’re recovering. This can be especially helpful if you’re in a state that doesn’t require all riders to carry Bodily Injury Liability.
4. Comprehensive and Collision
Comprehensive coverage helps protect your ATV or SxS against things outside of your control—things such as severe weather, vandalism or fire. Collision, on the other hand, helps if you’re involved in an accident with another ATV, SxS or other motorized vehicle. These coverages are typically sold together and can help get your off-road vehicle back to the condition it was before the incident.
5. Medical Payments
Owners are opting to carry this type of off-road vehicle insurance coverage in the unlikely event of an accident. It can help pay for your, and any of your passengers’, medical bills—regardless of fault.
6. GAP Coverage
GAP Coverage helps protect you in case your ATV or SxS gets considered a total loss in cases of accidents or theft. Polaris has a GAP coverage plan that can provide you peace of mind.