Do You Need ATV Insurance?

Last Updated on April 24, 2020

ATV insurance can protect you and your vehicle. But do you really need ATV insurance? Or is ATV insurance optional?

About half of the states in America require ATV owners to have liability insurance when driving on state-owned lands. In other states, ATV owners aren’t required to have any insurance.

Do you need ATV insurance? Should you get ATV insurance? Keep reading to find out everything you need to know about ATV insurance.

ATV insurance

What is ATV Insurance?

ATV insurance works similarly to car insurance. There are multiple coverage types, including bodily injury liability insurance, property damage liability coverage, and comprehensive coverage.

The process for getting an online quote for ATV insurance is similar to getting motorcycle insurance or other specialty insurance. You request a quote online, selecting ATV as your vehicle type.

ATV insurance consists of the following components:

Bodily Injury Liability: Bodily injury liability coverage pays for damages associated with anyone injured or killed in an accident associated with your ATV. It can also cover legal fees – say, if the injured person sues you. ATV insurance pays up to the claim limits of the policy. Limits are listed per person and per accident.

Property Damage Liability: Property damage liability coverage is similar to bodily injury coverage, but covers damage you cause to another driver’s property in an accident associated with your ATV. If you drive your ATV through a neighbor’s fence, for example, then property damage liability coverage could cover that. Property damage liability coverage comes with a specific limit – say, $25,000 – and will cover up to the limits of that policy.

Medical Payments Coverage (Optional): Medical payments (MedPay) is an optional coverage that functions similar to health insurance. It covers medical bills and similar expenses after an accident involving your ATV.

Uninsured / Underinsured Motorist Coverage (Optional): Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage pays for your expenses after a collision with someone who does not have insurance or does not have enough insurance. If another ATV driver collides with you and does not have insurance, then your uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage could kick in to cover any damages.

Collision Coverage: Collision coverage compensates you for damage to your ATV caused by a collision with another vehicle. You pay your deductible, and your insurance company covers the cost of repairing damage to your ATV.

Comprehensive Coverage: Comprehensive coverage covers any damage to your ATV outside of an accident. It can cover the theft of your ATV, for example, as well as flood, fire, hail, storm, and wind damage. You pay your deductible, and your insurer covers the cost of repairing your ATV (or compensates you for the value of your ATV).

ATV Insurance Exclusions

ATV insurance often comes with exclusions. Depending on how you were riding your ATV at the time of the incident, your policy may deny your claim.

Most ATV insurance policies cover any damage caused while driving your ATV for recreational or commuting purposes, for example. If you drive your ATV on a trail for fun, for example, or if you drive across your property to reach your barn, then your ATV insurance should cover any related damage.

However, a standard ATV insurance policy will not cover any damages related to organized racing. These damages are excluded.

Many ATV insurance policies also exclude any damages caused by riding an ATV on a highway or public road because it is illegal. Although some states allow ATVs on certain roads, you should take extra caution when driving your ATV on any highway or road: it may negate your ATV insurance coverage.

If you race ATVs competitively, or if you have other unique ATV needs, then you may need to buy specialized ATV insurance.

How Much Does ATV Insurance Cost?

An average AV insurance policy in the United States should be between $100 and $400 per year.

ATV insurance tends to be cheaper than motorcycle insurance but similar to snowmobile insurance. Most people spend less time and miles on their ATV than a motorcycle or similar vehicle.

People with basic liability coverage will pay less for ATV insurance, while people with comprehensive and collision coverage will pay more.

How to Find and Compare ATV Insurance

Finding and comparing ATV insurance is easy. It’s just like comparing car insurance.

Visit the website of any major insurance provider. Complete the online quote request form, entering “ATV” into the vehicle type section.

Most providers will give you an instant quote based on your details.

GEICO, Allstate, and other major insurance companies offer ATV insurance in most jurisdictions.

Alternatively, contact an insurance agent. If you already have car insurance, then an insurance agent should be able to easily add ATV insurance to your account.

Do I Need ATV Insurance? Where is ATV Insurance Required?

ATV insurance requirements vary between states and jurisdictions.

No state requires you to have ATV insurance to own an ATV.

However, many state-owned lands and parks only allow ATVs if the riders have ATV liability insurance.

Generally, you do not require ATV insurance if driving your ATV on private property (assuming you have permission to ride on that property). An ATV owner does not need liability coverage, collision coverage, or any other type of coverage when driving on their own property.

Many ATV owners buy insurance even when it’s not required. ATV insurance gives you an extra layer of protection. It protects the value of your ATV.

ATV insurance can also protect you from liability. ATV accidents can cause serious injuries – or even death. If someone is injured in an accident involving your ATV, then you could be required to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars of medical bills and other expenses.

The American Council of Snowmobile Associations (ACSA) has a state-by-state list of snowmobile insurance requirements. These requirements are similar to ATV insurance requirements. However, ATV insurance requirements vary by county and state, which makes it difficult to create a similar state-by-state breakdown for ATV insurance.

In Pennsylvania, for example, you are required to carry proof of liability insurance any time you ride your ATV off your own land. Other states, meanwhile, do not allow any ATVs on paved roads.

Check your local and state laws to determine whether or not ATV insurance is required.

Does My Car Insurance or Homeowners Insurance Cover My ATV?

No, a standard car or homeowners insurance policy will not cover your ATV, nor will it cover any medical bills or liability from incidents involving your ATV.

Some homeowners policies will protect you when driving your ATV on your own property, although this coverage is limited.

Talk to your insurance agent to determine if you have any existing ATV coverage through your home or auto insurance. Standard policies do not have ATV coverage, but you may be able to add endorsements or ATV insurance to your policy.

Final Word

Approximately half of the states require ATV riders to have insurance when driving on public lands or in state-owned parks. In most cases, however, you are not required to have ATV insurance when driving on your own land.

Check local and state laws to ensure you are abiding by all known ATV insurance requirements.

James Shaffer
James Shaffer James Shaffer is a writer for and a well-seasoned auto insurance industry veteran. He has a deep knowledge of insurance rules and regulations and is passionate about helping drivers save money on auto insurance. He is responsible for researching and writing about anything auto insurance-related. He holds a bachelor's degree from Bentley University and his work has been quoted by NBC News, CNN, and The Washington Post.
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