Imagine, you recently purchased a brand new bike and wanted to go for a spin as the weather is pleasant. Wait! Can you really go out riding a bike, even if you own the vehicle and hold a valid driving licence? The answer is no, not until you purchase a bike insurance policy corresponding with your bike. The Government of India has made it mandatory to buy third-party insurance policy for two-wheelers. An insurance policy for your vehicle covers untoward incidents involving your bike.
Understanding bike insurance
The Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 mandatorily requires a two-wheeler owner to buy a third-party liability insurance policy. This means that if you were to cause injury to a third party or damage the third party’s property, your bike insurance will compensate for the damages. This is the crux of what is auto insurance for third-party liability. For a broader coverage, you may opt for a comprehensive bike insurance coverage which will not only cover you for third-party liability but also for damages caused to your own bike and provide compensation in case of bike theft.
Buying bike insurance
There are two avenues to procure bike insurance policies: offline and online.
• Offline Method: It is the traditional, old-school way wherein you visit the office of a two-wheeler insurance provider to get apprised about bike insurance information. You would have to furnish certain documents, such as your PAN details, Identification ID, bike details, and fill in an insurance request form. After approval from the insurance provider, you will hold a valid bike insurance policy.
• Online Method: In today’s times, you have the flexibility of applying for a bike insurance policy through the internet on the bike insurance provider’s website. All the required two-wheeler insurance information will be readily available, and you will have the convenience to compare quotes from different insurance providers. Once you have decided on the required bike insurance policy and filled in your details online, premium payment may be done through Net banking, and your insurance policy would be sent out to your registered email ID.
Who can check for bike insurance details?
There are various parties who could be concerned with the details of your bike insurance policy:
• You, the holder of the bike insurance policy, is the first and foremost. You would also want to keep a track of your bike insurance details. In case of an unfortunate event, where coverage is required from the insurance provider, you would want to check in on the range of benefits offered. In addition to this, you may want to include riders to your base policy, and for that you would want to check in on the existing facilities.
• If you hurt a third party in an accident, the latter could want to check in on your bike insurance details to be satisfied that his/her claims will be rightfully provided for.
• For security reasons, at check posts, authorised security personnel could ask for your bike insurance details for protocol purposes.
• In case you are buying a second hand or used-bike, you would want to know the details of the bike insurance policy previously held by the owner.
Monitoring bike insurance status
Purchasing a bike insurance policy is not the end-game. Your two-wheeler insurance policy will only remain valid for a specific term, once it expires, it will call for a renewal. Hence, it is important to maintain track of your insurance policy’s term and renew it timely to ensure that your bike continues to remain insured. There are different online avenues through which you can verify your two-wheeler insurance details and put in a renewal request
• Insurance information bureau: This is an online repository which contains details of auto insurance policies purchased after April 1, 2020. You can visit the Insurance Information Bureau’s website and through an online V Seva form available on its home page, you could access all the information relating to your bike insurance coverage. The website also has the facility wherein a representative from the insurance provider will contact you through your registered contact number and hand hold you through the online process of accessing your two-wheeler insurance policy details.
• VAHAN Website: The Union Ministry of Road and Transport holds an online directory of all auto insurance covers. By inputting your vehicle number and corresponding verification code, your bike insurance details will be promptly displayed on the VAHAN web portal.
It is important to mention that one should not panic if their policy details are not available as soon as they are purchased on these online repositories. Ideally, it takes approximately two months for a newly purchased auto insurance policy to feature on these websites.
The purchase, enquiry and renewal of your bike insurance has been made as straightforward and hassle-free as it could possibly be. The need of the hour is to be in the know of how these things are placed online and make full use of it.
Disclaimer: The above information is indicative in nature. For more details on the risk factor, terms and conditions, please refer to the Sales Brochure and Policy Wordings carefully before concluding a sale.