Insurance is essential if you are driving a two-wheeler. As per the directions of a Supreme Court ruling in September 2018, it is mandatory for all two-wheelers, whether new or old, to have a five-year long-term two-wheeler insurance policy.
But what happens if the bike is not owned by you or is lent to you for use by your father, a friend, relative, or colleague? Can you still buy two-wheeler insurance? The answer is a resounding yes! No bike owner or rider would want to experience a situation where the bike's theft or accident is not covered by two-wheeler insurance. So, let's delve into what it takes to insure another's motorcycle.
Should You be Insuring a Bike That Does Not Belong to You?
It is a well-believed myth that only the bike's owner can acquire bike insurance for the vehicle. However, an individual can get an insurance policy for someone else's bike. All it requires is consent from the bike's owner about the two-wheeler being used by the rider and proper documents to prove the bike's ownership.
As per the Motor Vehicles Act 1988, it is important that anyone riding the bike should have at least third-party insurance. And since, by law, you are permitted to drive a two-wheeler that you do not own, as long as you have the owner's permission, the licence to drive the particular vehicle, and a bike insurance policy, there is no reason to worry. However, if the vehicle being driven does not have proper two-wheeler insurance, the rider or the bike owner will have to pay a fine.
Which Insurance Policy Will Cover Damages if the Two-Wheeler is Driven by Someone Else?
When applying for two-wheeler vehicle insurance, the purchaser can provide the name of the individual who will be using the bike. For example, if your father owns the vehicle, he can apply for insurance online and mention your name as the rider.
It is essential because if you are a frequent bike user, but your name is not mentioned in the insurance document, you won't be eligible for an insurance claim if you meet with an accident or face any issue with the two-wheeler.
The most basic two-wheeler insurance is third-party bike insurance, which offers protection against liability claims made by a third party. For example, in case of an accident, if your vehicle has damaged a third party, the insurance will cover their injuries and damage to their property or automobile. However, this minimal coverage will not cover any damage to your bike or injuries sustained by you.
Hence, while third-party bike insurance is a basic requirement, you should always opt for a comprehensive bike insurance policy that covers damages to the bike and injuries sustained by the rider.
Factors That Can Influence the Insurance Claim
Most two-wheeler insurance policies will cover damages to your vehicle and a third party, even if the person riding it is not the owner of the bike or the person under whose name the policy is availed. However, this can vary based on the terms of each insurance policy, so policyholders must consult insurance advisors in such situations.
In general, even if you have a comprehensive two-wheeler insurance policy, some of the factors that will determine your bike insurance claim are:
- The person riding your bike should fall under ‘permissive use.’ This includes friends, relatives, family members, and others who have your permission to ride the bike. Any third party or person explicitly mentioned in the ‘excluded drivers’ list of your bike insurance will not be covered under the claim.
- The person riding the two-wheeler should be of the permissible age to ride the bike to get insurance claims.
- The person riding the bike must have a valid driving licence to drive the particular two-wheeler (geared or non-geared as per the type of two-wheeler).
- The rider cannot be under the influence of drugs, alcohol or any other substance as mentioned in the insurance policy.
If you are planning to get bike insurance for a vehicle that you do not own, here are all the documents that you’ll need to procure:
- Proof of identity of the bike owner (ration card/passport / driving licence / voter ID/ Aadhaar card, etc.).
- Proof of address of the bike owner (voter ID/passport/Aadhaar card, etc.).
- Registration certificate.
- Passport size photograph of the bike’s owner.
- Expired insurance policy number (if applicable).
We hope this information helps shed some light on the intricacies of two-wheeler insurance and what happens if you drive someone else's bike and get into an accident. Although basic third-party insurance is a must, it is recommended to go for comprehensive bike insurance, especially when riding someone else's bike.
We highly recommend that riders and vehicle owners ensure they have the right documents and insurance policy for the two-wheeler to be safe in all scenarios.
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