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Colorado Motorcycle Insurance Requirements

Colorado Motorcycle Insurance Requirements

Colorado is a state in the western portion of the United States. It is known as “The Centennial State” because it became a state in the centennial year of the United States Declaration of Independence. Some also refer to it as “The Highest State” due to the many mountainous regions with significant elevations and a higher average altitude than other states. Many people enjoy Colorado for its outdoor life, mountainous regions, skiing, snowboarding, hiking, and wildlife. The economy in Colorado deals mostly with agricultural, technology, education, finance, commercial services, as well as tourism. Residents of this state get to enjoy breathtaking landscapes, forests, mesas, canyons, and desert climates.

Do you own a motorcycle in the state of Colorado? If you want to operate your motorcycle on Colorado roadways, you need to make sure you have adequate insurance or demonstrate some sort of financial responsibility. The reason some sort of financial responsibility is required is so that if you end up causing an accident, you will be able to pay for the damages that you cause. Whether you damage property, someone else’s bike, or injure another person – you need to be able to have enough money to potentially cover the damage that you may inflict.

Colorado Motorcycle Insurance Requirements

It doesn’t matter if you are riding a motorcycle, moped, scooter, etc. – before you drive it you need to show that you have some sort of coverage. It may be tempting for some to drive without insurance, but it’s not a smart move. If you get caught without insurance, you could end up facing major legal penalties, get taken to court and sued, and/or end up with a suspended license. Make sure that you have established financial responsibility before you take your motorcycle out for a cruise through this scenic state.

How to Establish Financial Responsibility in Colorado

There is one requirement that you’ll have to meet before taking your motorcycle on public roads: establish some sort of financial responsibility. There are only really a couple major ways in which you can do this in the state of Colorado. Your first option is to purchase a basic liability insurance policy. Most people buy an insurance plan for their bike that meets minimum requirements and they are good to go. The other option that you’ll have is to insure yourself a.k.a. self-insurance.

  • Buy a liability insurance policy – Most insurance companies will be able to help you get a policy that meets the minimum legal requirements.
  • Self-insurance – You do have the option of insuring yourself, but this is only an option if you have 25+ vehicles registered in your name. This is geared mostly towards owners of fleets and other commercial vehicles.

Motorcycles / Two-Wheeled Vehicles Defined

There are specific definitions for motorcycles and other two wheeled vehicles in the state of Colorado. Your motorcycle or other two wheeled vehicle needs to meet the defined criteria to ride on this state’s public roadways. If you aren’t sure as to whether your vehicle meets the criteria laid out below, you can call the Colorado Division of Motor Vehicles at the following number: (303)-205-5607.

Motorcycle: A vehicle designed to travel on NOT more than 3 wheels in contact with the ground. Note: This excludes farm tractors.

Motor-Driven Cycle: All motorcycles and motor scooters that have less than six-brake horsepower engines.

Motorized Bicycle: Vehicles with 2 or 3 wheels that do not exceed 30 mph. These must have an automatic transmission as well as a cylinder capacity of less than 50 cc.

Motor Scooter: A motorized vehicle with a six-brake horsepower engine or less. These are created to travel with NOT more than 3 wheels touching the ground.

Colorado Motorcycle Insurance Minimum Requirements

Before you operate your motorcycle in the state of CO, you must have an insurance policy that meets the minimum requirements. Each state varies in terms of how much coverage you will need to purchase before you can legally ride your motorcycle. Below are the minimums that need to be met on your policy.

  • $25,000 bodily injury per person

  • $50,000 bodily injury per accident

  • $15,000 property damage per accident

  • $5,000 medical payments per accident

You may sometimes see this policy abbreviated as: 25/50/15. Each of the numbers in the abbreviation stands for the amount (in thousands of dollars) that you need for each aspect of coverage. The first number represents bodily injury per person in an accident, the second is the total you need for bodily injury in an accident, and the third number is the amount you’ll need for property damage. As of 2009, you are also required to have at least $5,000 worth of medical payment coverage a.k.a. med-pay – this pays for medical expenses following an accident.

The minimum numbers are just what you need to legally ride, but they may not provide you with enough coverage to feel comfortable as a driver. Many insurers will recommend that you buy more than the bare minimum on a policy just to be safe. It is up to you to decide on a policy that gives you enough protection at a price you can afford.

Helmet Requirements in CO

In this state you likely will not get any additional savings for wearing a helmet. You are legally obligated to wear a helmet whenever operating your motorcycle in this state. Additionally, passengers under the age of 18 must also wear helmets. In other words, you need to wear a helmet if you plan on riding a motorcycle.

Proof of Insurance

There is a database in the state of Colorado that was implemented so that legal officials have access to your insurance information. Despite the fact that there is a system in place to keep tabs on whether you have insurance, you still need to carry proof of insurance while riding. Any of the following will suffice:

  • Insurance Identification Card – These are issued by insurance carriers and show that you have active coverage.
  • Self-Insurance Certificate – If you purchased self-insurance, you should have some certificate showing that you have been approved by the DMV.

Penalty for Lack of Insurance in CO

There are various penalties that you may face if you drive your motorcycle without proof of insurance. If a police officer pulls you over and you aren’t able to prove that you have coverage, you will face a number of strict penalties.

1st Offense:

  • Fine of $500 (minimum)
  • 4 points added to driving record
  • Possibility of suspended license

2nd Offense:

  • Fine of $1,000 (minimum)
  • 4 month license suspension

3rd Offense:

  • Fine of $1,000 (minimum)
  • 8 month license suspension
  • Community service hours

As you can see, Colorado takes having insurance very seriously compared to most states. It is illegal to drive without proof of coverage, so make sure that you always stay up to date with coverage before operating any motor vehicle. If you have additional questions regarding liability requirements be sure to call your DMV and ask – they have experts that are trained to help.

Colorado Motorcycle Insurance Companies

In order to find a motorcycle insurer in the state of Colorado, you need to take some time out of your busy day and look. Perhaps the easiest way to compare cost and coverage is by doing a company comparison from the comfort of your computer. In order to save you some time in your search for a policy, we have a free tool that you can use to compare top insurance companies in Colorado.

Simply enter your Zip Code below (or at the top of the page) and click “Start!” – a list of the highest rated companies will be generated. It is then up to you to collect some quotes, find out who offers the best deal, and sign up for some liability insurance. Once you have an insurance policy, you can legally ride your motorcycle in the highest state and throughout the mile high city.

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