Nobody needs to tell the residents of Montana how much fun going off-road on an ATV can be. Whether you prefer tackling the Blacktail Wild Bill OHV Trail System in Lakeside on a four-wheeler or exploring the trails around Sylvia Lake in Whitefish on a side-by-side, an ATV insurance policy may be necessary to save you from undue financial losses. Of course, you don’t want to pay more than you need to for this coverage. Always be sure to compare a variety of ATV insurance quotes in Montana before making a selection.
ATV Use Does Come with Risks
- In 2011 alone, ATV accidents resulted in approximately 107,500 injuries and 327 fatalities in the United States.
- Of those injured, approximately 29,000 were children under 16.
- Between 2008 and 2011, 27 residents of Montana lost their lives in ATV accidents.
Hitting the trails on a quad or other UTV can be fun, but it is important to remember that these are powerful machines capable of high speeds and that accidents sometimes happen. By having sufficient coverage in place, you may be able to avoid large financial losses as a result of a collision.
MT State Laws Regarding All-terrain Vehicle Use
The Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks regulates ATV use. Some requirements that residents should be aware of include the following:
- All ATVs require titling to operate on public lands.
- All ATVs require a one-time registration. You must affix the registration decal to the vehicle.
- All riders between the ages of 11 and 16 must complete an approved ATV safety course and carry the MT ATV Safety Certificate with them.
- All riders under 18 must wear a helmet.
- Riders aged 18 and over are strongly encouraged to wear a helmet, although not required to do so by law.
- Riders are strongly encouraged to wear other safety gear including eye protection and over-the-ankle boots, although not required to do so by law.
- You must have a landowner’s permission to ride your ATV on privately owned land.
- Riding while intoxicated is against the law.
- ATV insurance is not a requirement.
Why Should Montana Residents Consider ATV Insurance?
Montana has a number of scenic ATV trails. Whether you prefer riding through forests, around likes, over hilly terrain or through sand drags, mud bogs or play pits, you can find a place to ride in this state. While fun, these trails can also be hazardous. Any time you go out on your ATV, you risk a collision with another vehicle or with a stationary object. It is easy to hit a rock or tree stump and then crash.
When you have an accident while using your ATV, you risk injury to yourself and damage to your vehicle. Even worse, if you are responsible for damage or injuries to a third party, you can face liability claims. Depending on the severity of the accident, the liability costs can be quite high. When you have ATV insurance, you can rest assured that the insurance will protect your finances.
What Does ATV Insurance Cover?
When comparing ATV insurance policies, you can expect them to provide the following coverage options:
- Liability coverage: This covers the costs accrued by third-party victims of property damage and personal injury resulting from an ATV collision for which you are at fault.
- Medical payments coverage: This covers medical treatment needed by you or your passengers for injuries resulting from an ATV accident, regardless of fault.
- Collision coverage: This covers the cost to repair or replace your ATV if a collision results in its damage or destruction, regardless of fault.
- Comprehensive coverage: This covers the cost to repair or replace your ATV as a result of an other-than-collision event. Covered events typically include fire, flood, falling objects, vandalism and theft.
- Trailer coverage: This covers damage to the trailer you use to take your ATV to and from the trails.
- Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage: If you experience property damage or injuries in a collision and the at-fault driver is uninsured or underinsured, this coverage will help make up the costs that the responsible party cannot afford. Given that ATV insurance is not mandatory in Montana, this is an important coverage option to consider.
Is ATV Insurance Expensive in Montana?
You can buy a typical full coverage ATV insurance policy for less than a dollar a day. When you contact various insurance providers to request ATV policy quotes, the providers will calculate your cost based on a number of factors, including these:
- Type of ATV: More powerful and faster ATVs such as 3-wheelers will typically be more expensive to insure than slower, utilitarian types like UTVs.
- Make, model, year and purchase price: If your coverage includes comprehensive or collision coverage, the value of your ATV will affect your quoted policy rates.
- Use of your ATV: If you use your ATV merely for agricultural purposes, your risks are very different than if you use your vehicle for thrill riding. Some insurance companies will take this into consideration.
- Amount of coverage: As with any kind of insurance, the more coverage you purchase, the higher your rate will be.
- Your driving record: Your personal driving history can serve as an indicator of how you are likely to operate your ATV. If you have unlicensed children who will be operating the ATV, your rates will likely be higher.
- Deductible: The higher your deductible, the lower your premiums will be. It is a good idea to choose a deductible that is only as high as you can comfortably afford to pay in the event of an accident.
When you request ATV insurance quotes, be sure to ask about policy discounts. You may qualify to save money if you have multiple policies with the same insurer, have successfully completed an ATV safety course, opt for automatic electronic payments or have a claims-free history.
Get Help Finding and Comparing ATV Insurance Quotes
By requesting at least three different ATV insurance quotes, you can be certain that you will be getting competitive rate quotes. Independent insurance agents in the Trusted Choice® network can make comparison-shopping for ATV insurance easy. These agents can help you determine your coverage needs and can then present you with a variety of suitable policies from which to choose.
Find an agent with an office in or near your Montana neighborhood to get more information.